Ilocos and Cagayan provinces are touted as the next top tourist destination in the country, once improvements on accessibility and infrastructure are in place.
John Paul Cablaza, Philippine Travel Agencies Association (PTAA) president, said that these provinces remain “untapped” at present.
“They offer adventure and eco-tourism. They have some of the most pristine white beaches in the Philippines and the food there are also some of the best in the country,” Cabalza said.
“Those destinations can easily be reached with daily flights or buses that operate in the region from Metro Manila. Tourists going to Ilocos or Cagayan also need only to spend P5,000 a day to enjoy their stay there,” he added.
PTAA, in cooperation with the Cagayan Economic Zone Authority (CEZA), target a total of 100,000 tourists in the area annually that will increase arrivals by about 33 percent.
“Just like what we did for Ilocos, we will also do for the province of Cagayan. We will take our members there [in CEZA]to see the business potential of the province and have them establish networks with local tourism players. We want to create awareness on the province,” Cabalza said.
PTAA and CEZA have started “bringing travelers to Cagayan” as foreign tourists are attracted to the province, particularly Palaui Island which is included in CNN’s list of top 10 best beaches in the world.
Kristyn Nika M. Lazo