Al­berta lur­ing tourists

China Daily (Canada) - - FRONT PAGE - By WANG RU in Beijing wan­gru@chi­nadaily.com.cn

See­ing a grow­ing de­mand in the Chi­nese tourist mar­ket for qual­ity win­ter ex­pe­ri­ences, Al­berta, sit­u­ated in the heart of western Canada, found a new way to showcase its cel­e­brated cold weather attractions.

On Oct 27 Travel Al­berta, the prov­ince’s of­fi­cial tourism agency, launched a Chi­ne­se­lan­guage ver­sion of its vir­tual win­ter tour on its web­site (trav­e­lal­berta.cn) in Beijing.

“Al­berta is the fairy­land of win­ter,” said Wade Harper, ex­ec­u­tive di­rec­tor of In­ter­na­tional Mar­ket­ing of Travel Al­berta, “home to five UNESCO’s World Her­itages sites and a par­adise for win­ter cul­tural events.”

“We want to in­tro­duce Chi­nese tourists to the won­der­ful win­ter ad­ven­tures in Al­berta with both snow and sun­shine,” said Harper.

Travel Al­berta has se­lected nine travel agen­cies in China to help them pro­mote its win­ter tourism of­fer­ings.

The 10-year visa pol­icy for Chi­nese tourists with mul­ti­ple en­try and 82 flights from China to Canada ev­ery week have at­tracted more Chi­nese tourists to Canada year round.

Six of the rec­om­mended win­ter ac­tiv­i­ties in Al­berta are ski­ing and snow­board­ing, canyon ice walk­ing, dog sled­ding, snow shoe­ing, aurora bo­re­alis view­ing and hot spring spa.

Al­berta is bor­dered on the west by the ma­jes­tic the Cana­dian Rock­ies. To the east lie the Cana­dian Bad­lands, a winderoded moon­scape of mul­ti­hued canyons and lava flows and home to some of the great­est di­nosaur fos­sil finds ever.

It is also home to five na­tional parks, four of which are UNESCO World Her­itage Sites. They showcase the beauty and di­ver­sity of Al­berta’s nat­u­ral her­itage of ma­jes­tic moun­tains, forests and grass­lands and wildlife.

Al­berta has three ski re­sorts lo­cated in Banff Na­tional Park: Mt Norquay, Lake Louise and Sun­shine Vil­lage. A sin­gle tri­area lift ticket is good at all three of them.

The frozen canyons of the Cana­dian Rock­ies of­fer ad­ven­ture for both hard core ice climbers and tourists who just want a mel­low ice walk. The gi­ant cas­cad­ing wa­ter­falls frozen in lu­mi­nes­cent shades of blue are breathtaking.

Al­berta is also home to the world’s two largest dark sky pre­serves — Jasper Na­tional Park and Wood Buf­falo Na­tional Park. See count­less con­stel­la­tions, the plan­ets and the back­bone of the Milky Way, all vis­i­ble with the naked eye, while tele­scopes re­veal fine de­tails like the rings of Saturn and far­away gal­ax­ies.

Al­berta’s gate­way ci­ties of Ed­mon­ton and Cal­gary of­fer lux­ury ac­com­mo­da­tion, fine din­ing, shop­ping (Al­berta is the only prov­ince in Canada with­out a provin­cial re­tail sales tax) and a lively arts and cul­tural scene.

PRO­VIDED TO CHINA DAILY

Banff, Al­berta, is a popular des­ti­na­tion for Chi­nese tourists.

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