By Rungano Dzikira
Domestic tourism continues to be on an upward trend owing to concerted efforts of boosting local arrivals as a spring board to enhance tourism earnings in response to the impact of COVID-19, Government has said.
While infections have receded in the country and the African continent at large, a new wave of growing Corona virus infection in the traditional tourists market (Europe and Asian countries) points to low foreign arrivals in the country.
As such, the Ministry of Environment, Climate, Tourism and Hospitality Industry, has sought to leverage on domestic arrivals to keep the tourism sector afloat amidst the difficult period of the Corona virus pandemic.
In a statement, the Tourism Minister, Mangaliso Ndlovu said Government seeks to use Zimbabwe National Parks (ZimParks) and National museums and Monuments to anchor domestic tourism.
“ZimParks is on a major renovation drive of its facilities all around the country to improve standards. Besides ZimParks, we have the Museums and Monuments, though not under my Ministry, we are working hand in glove to ensure that they provide packages for domestic tourists in their heritage facilities all around the country,” he said.
Minister Ndlovu added that there was need to ensure, “Affordable transport and accommodation and enhanced marketing through the Zimbabwe Tourism Authority (ZTA).”
Prior to the COVID-19 pandemic, the Tourism Ministry had started reviving Community Based Tourism Enterprises (CBTEs) which thrives around packaging and promoting local culture, norms and cuisines as tourist attractions.
Apart from CBTEs, the Tourism Ministry also seeks to leverage on local festivals to grow local arrivals.
“Upcoming events includes the M’sango festival in Nyanga from 27-29 November 2020, and the Braai OutZW Jungle Kariba slated for 21-23 December 2020, at Nyanyana Camp in Kariba amongst other festivals lined up,” ZTA said in a statement.