Sophie Ibbotson: "The UNWTO General Assembly will allow Uzbekistan to widely demonstrate the tourism potential of the republic"
Tashkent, Uzbekistan (UzDaily.com) -- Samarkand continues to host foreign delegations from 130 countries around the world on the eve of the 25th anniversary session of the United Nations World Tourism Organization (UNWTO) General Assembly.
Today, Sophie Ibbotson, the Ambassador of the Uzbekistan Tourism Brand in the United Kingdom, shared her expectations for the upcoming major event.
"There are two reasons why the 25th UNWTO General Assembly is important for Uzbekistan. Firstly, representatives of tourism administrations from around the world will gather here. We expect the participation of 160 delegations from UNWTO member countries. This gives Uzbekistan the opportunity not only to contribute to international tourism policy but also to shape it for the next two years. Another reason for the significance of this event is that Uzbekistan has the opportunity to showcase its hospitality and the direction of MICE tourism. MICE refers to conferences and events within business meetings. This is not the form of tourism that Uzbekistan developed in the past, but it will be developed in the future. We can demonstrate that Uzbekistan has all the opportunities and experts to host high-level events and encourage organizers from around the world to hold planned events in Uzbekistan."
Sophie Ibbotson also talked about the types of tourism in Uzbekistan that attract foreign tourists from EU countries.
"The attractiveness of Uzbekistan for tourists from the EU lies in the fact that it is a new, exciting, and sufficiently exotic destination for them, but at the same time, it is very safe and accessible. This balance of qualities makes it desirable to visit. Of course, this is not the only quality; the fact of the immense diversity of tourism products is also attractive. We know about the attractions of the Silk Road, natural sites, and places of public interest, and I am very pleased that the UNWTO General Assembly plans to recognize the "Best Tourist Villages." It is a new and wonderful direction for Uzbekistan, which allows international tourists and local tourists to interact with rural residents and learn about their way of life."
Furthermore, Sophie Ibbotson shared her impressions of the recent changes in Uzbekistan over the past 5-10 years and the positive qualities of traveling to our country for tourists.
"I regularly visit Uzbekistan, so I can speak about the significant gradual changes in the country, especially when comparing it to what Uzbekistan was like 5-10 years ago. Firstly, it is easier to get here. In addition to the increased number of flights, no visa is required to enter. Secondly, the logistics within the country have improved. The high-speed train is a tremendous advantage, and there are plans to extend it to Khiva and Nukus as well. This will make the western part of the country much more accessible to tourists. Thirdly, there are many more quality accommodation options throughout Uzbekistan. Well-known 4- and 5-star hotels have opened not only in Tashkent but also in Samarkand, Bukhara, and Khiva. This allows tourists to stay in various places, especially in hotels of brands they are familiar with."