A moun­tain city’s peak ap­peal

China Daily (USA) - - LIFE - By YANG FEIYUE

Chongqing’s al­lure was demon­strated when it edged out four other do­mes­tic cities to host the Beijing-based World Tourism Cities Fed­er­a­tion’s an­nual sum­mit in late Septem­ber.

It signed a strate­gic mem­o­ran­dum of un­der­stand­ing at the sum­mit to strengthen co­op­er­a­tion with more than 170 fed­er­a­tion mem­bers.

It will strive for more than 5 mil­lion in­bound vis­its in five years, says Liu Qi, head of Chongqing’s tourism bu­reau.

About 40 tourism projects were signed at the tourism sum­mit, in­volv­ing 80 bil­lion yuan ($12 bil­lion).

Lo­cal au­thor­i­ties plan to in­te­grate cul­ture, agri­cul­ture, sports and med­i­cal el­e­ments into travel.

Chongqing’s tourism bu­reau has signed deals with Airbnb and tourism au­thor­i­ties from home and abroad.

“Ai rb nb will use its re­sources to pro­mote qual­ity tourism, es­pe­cially ac­com­mo­da­tion, among in­ter­na­tional tourists,” says An Li, head of Airbnb in China.

The plat­form will also pick cer­tain sites to pro­mote world­wide and of­fer pri­vate train­ing to lo­cal ho­tels to bet­ter serve in­ter­na­tional trav­el­ers, An says.

Chongqing will also talk with Washington DC’s tourism ad­min­is­tra­tion about train­ing and pro­mot­ing as­sets, says Liu.

He points out it’ll be eas­ier for lo­cals to visit the US cap­i­tal.

Over 282 mil­lion tourists vis­ited Chongqing over this year’s first eight months, up 15 per­cent over the same pe­riod last year. Tourism in­come hit 166.5 bil­lion yuan, up 16 per­cent.

In­bound tourists paid 1.9 mil­lion vis­its, up over 12 per­cent. They con­trib­uted more than $1 bil­lion to tourism in­come, up 13 per­cent.

Last year, Chongqing re­ceived 100,000 vis­its from the United States. Liu says the num­ber is ex­pected to dou­ble in five years.

The mu­nic­i­pal­ity has also launched cruise, cul­ture and eco­tourism routes.

It does in­deed seem ready to ac­cept more trav­el­ers from more places who seek more in more places, Liu says.

YANG FEIYUE / CHINA DAILY

A glimpse of the Tiankeng scenic spot in Chongqing’s Wu­long county where Trans­form­ers4 was shot.

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