Colors: Yellow Color
Colors: Yellow Color

The World Tourism Organization (UNWTO) has appointed the Prime Minister of Samoa, Hon. Tuilaepa Sailele Malielegaoi, as Special Ambassador of the International Year of Sustainable Tourism 2017. The ceremony took place in New York on 7 June on the side-lines of the UN Ocean Conference, where among other activities the Prime Minister addressed participants on the value of tourism to sustainably advance the blue economy.

“The designation of 2017 as the International Year of Sustainable Tourism for Development was due to the recognition by the United Nations of the potential of the tourism sector to contribute to the fight against poverty, to help curb climate change, promote gender equality and foster mutual understanding and peace amongst diverse cultures” said the Prime Minister.

“Tourism is a sector that is vital to the livelihoods of our people and touches all the three dimensions of sustainable development, the social, economic and environmental aspects. As a people-to-people activity, it has helped and continues to contribute to the revitalization of our culture, customs and traditional crafts, and plays a pivotal role in the preservation of our cultural heritage and is a force that promotes peace and understanding” he added.

“The International Year is a unique opportunity to promote common action and enhance the power of tourism to build a better world. We thank Samoa for leading the initiative for the adoption of the UN resolution declaring the International Year and for its sustained, exemplary contribution in promoting the value of our sector towards the achievement of the 2030 Development Agenda, particularly for the Small Islands Developing States (SIDS)” said UNWTO Secretary-General, Taleb Rifai.

The Special Ambassadors of the Year are leaders and prominent personalities committed to promote the role and contribution of tourism in the achievement of the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) and the 2030 Agenda. While tourism is included in three of the SDGs – SDG 8: ‘Promote sustained, inclusive and sustainable economic growth, full and productive employment and decent work for all’; SDG 12: ‘Sustainable Consumption and Production’ and SDG 14: ‘Conserve and sustainably use the oceans, seas and marine resources for sustainable development’, it can advance all 17 SDGs.

The Ocean Conference was an opportunity to highlight how tourism can effectively contribute to Goal 14. UNWTO joined the World Bank and the UN Department of Economic and Social Affairs (UNDESA) to discuss and launch the report ‘The Potential of the Blue Economy: Increasing Long-term Benefits of the Sustainable Use of Marine Resources for Small Island Developing States and Coastal Least Developed Countries’.

UNWTO was also co-organizing a Side Event on the “European Union tourism committed to Blue Growth” on the 8 June with DG MARE and NECstour. Coastal and Maritime Tourism is one of the key sectors of the European Union Blue Growth Strategy with a high potential for sustainable jobs and growth. Tourism employs over 3.2 million people and generates a total of 183 billion Euros in gross value added, representing over one third of the maritime economy. The universal dimension of the SDGs provides the EU regions with the opportunity to show leadership and share best practices to extend and scale up their Blue Growth strategy in other parts of the world, and in particular through their island territories in SIDS regions.

In these days of being constantly available thanks to modern technology, many people long for a place to take refuge from the hustle and bustle of everyday life and turn inward. And now Frankfurt Airport has added a Quiet Room where travelers can do exactly that.

Harry Gatterer, a trend researcher and futurologist who leads the Zukunftsinstitut (“Future Institute”) in Frankfurt and Vienna, explains why havens like this are so important in today’s fast-paced world: “In the 21st century, we are constantly bombarded by masses of information and bathed in the glow of screens with hardly a break. The so-called information society is now reacting to this overkill with a countertrend: mindfulness. It’s therefore safe to say that in the future, people will actively seek moments in which to reflect and reconnect with themselves. This type of everyday spirituality is poised to become an essential survival technique. The principle of ‘strength in serenity’ has never before been so relevant.”

Frankfurt Airport has responded to this widespread wish for a place of silence by creating the “Quiet Room”, which all passengers may use for free regardless of their worldview, culture and religious affiliation. The highlight of the white room is an undulating golden ceiling illuminated by lamps that reflect the light onto the floor and walls. An oak bench occupies the middle of the room, inviting travelers to sit down and enjoy moments of rest and contemplation.

The Quiee Room is located in the postsecurity part of Terminal 1 on Level 3 of Pier Z and is open daily until 10 p.m. The airport’s operator, Fraport, has coined the motto “Gute Reise! We make it happen” to communicate its commitment to serving passengers and meeting their individual needs and wishes. It constantly strives to upgrade the customer experience at Germany’s most important transportation hub by launching new services and facilities.

Midsummer in Scandinavia is a highlight of the year, with celebrations across the region welcoming the light and warmth that summer brings. The long daylight hours also open up the opportunity to make the most of the activities on offer, from the more conventional kayaking, cycling and wildlife viewing to more unusual midnight golf tournaments, marathons and even midsummer night skiing. As the Solstice approaches (this year falling on Wednesday 21 June), why not book a holiday where you can enjoy the midnight sun in style.

From its magnificent mountains to its reflective lakes, the Austrian Tirol is an ideal destination for outdoor enthusiasts, especially during the summer months. Alongside the renowned hiking and mountain biking trails, there's rock climbing, white-water rafting, paragliding and many more activities on offer.

Mountain biking in Zugspitz Arena For keen cyclists after challenging trails, the Zugspitz Arena has plenty, 4,330 kilometres to be precise. Located at the border of Austria and Germany, and comprising seven beautiful villages, there is a wide variety of downhill, high-altitude summits and winding paths to explore. An approved bike area for 2017 – after a rigorous assessment by TUV and ISO – the region has been designed with bikes in mind and has specialist hotels, circa 20 pre-prepared tours plus top rentals and services available. Those after a truly hair-raising descent should head to Lermoos (one of the seven villages) and check out the freeride scene consisting of jumps, ramps, curves and dirt tracks. Try the Forest Two route, which sees riders plunge down a 3.3 kilometre course (with 392 metres vertical difference) while trying to avoid the various obstacles. Alternatively, put the pedal to the metal on the three-day Zugpitz Loop Tour, which provides acess to more than 5,000 metres vertical and 200 kilometres of trails.

Jamaica Minister of Tourism, Hon. Edmund Bartlett, met with Skift President Carolyn Kremins to discuss the United Nations World Tourism Organization (UNWTO), Government of Jamaica and World Bank Group Conference on Jobs & Inclusive Growth: Partnerships for Sustainable Tourism, taking place November 27-29, 2017 in Montego Bay. Skift is the largest industry intelligence platform, providing media, insights and marketing to key sectors of travel.

In commemoration of the 2017 UNWTO’s International Year of Sustainable Tourism for Development, the event is a collaboration between the Government of Jamaica, international development firm Chemonics International and the UNWTO. This conference is of especially momentous importance because it is the first time the UNWTO will stage a world conference on tourism in the Caribbean or the Americas. The conference will bring the world’s spotlight to Jamaica and the Caribbean, both of which rely heavily on the economic power of tourism. The participating heads of state, planners, policy makers, developers and investors will discuss the need for public-private-partnerships with the mission of sustainable tourism for development.

The meeting was held at the midtown NYC offices of Finn Partners, public relations agency of record for the Jamaica Tourist Board.

Birmingham Airport is to launch a new flight update service for departing passenger via Twitter from this summer.

Working with Cork based technology company, TIC, the new information service, known as BizTweet, allows passengers to receive real-time updates via their Twitter feed at each step of their journey, from the opening of check-in to flight departure.

Paul Kehoe, Birmingham Airport's Chief Executive said, "We want to deliver information to our customers in an innovative and instant way and BizTweet allows us to meet the demands of our passengers.

"We're confident that the new service will be welcomed by the growing number of Twitter users choosing to fly from Birmingham so they can enjoy the journey through the terminal while information is delivered direct to their mobile devices."

Travellers will be able to sign up via the airport's website or personal Twitter account. In addition to receiving flight information, other operational and commercial information will be delivered highlighting important information and offers.

The news was announced today (Tuesday) at the British-Irish Airports Expo in Birmingham.

Commenting from the event, founder and CEO of the award winning BizTweet service Paul Brugger, said, "Birmingham Airport is very special to me as it was my local airport prior to moving to Cork. It's an airport I've used numerous times and one I know well as a passenger. I'm delighted Birmingham, our 3rd airport in the UK, has chosen BizTweet to provide passengers with real time personalised information direct to their mobile devices by social media".

The airport hopes to launch the new service during the summer.

Last night, Viking Cruises proudly collected the Best River Cruise Line award at the Silver Travel Awards 2017, whilst Managing Director Wendy Atkin-Smith was honoured with the Exceptional Achievement Award in recognition of her continued support for the mature traveller.

In a highly successful year for Viking Cruises, which included the launch of two new Ocean Ships, Wendy was praised for her role in raising the profile of the sector, redefined the perception of River Cruising and widening the possibilities for travellers.

'I would like to say a huge thank you for this award – I truly never expected to win! I'd also like to say just how humbling it is to win an award for doing what I so dearly love', says Wendy Atkin-Smith. 'We are also delighted to collect another best-in-class award for our river cruises. In our 20th year, this is proof of our impeccable service, inspiring itineraries and excellent experiences'.

Viking Cruises' success this year has been recognised at the Wave Awards with the Passenger Favourite River Cruise Line accolade following on from eight wins at the Cruise Critic Cruisers' Choice Awards 2017, as chosen by past customers.

A grown-up summer break on the south coast needn't always be about kicking back and relaxing on a sandy shore or wooded glade – there's plenty to satisfy the more adventurous holidaymaker.

Shorefield Holiday's Oakdene Forest Park may be set in 55 tranquil acres on the edge of the Hurn and Avon Forest in Dorset, but it offers a great base for a holiday of full-on fun from start to finish.

With its Go Active+ programme of activities and loads to do nearby, there's lots to tempt active couples or groups of friends who much prefer energetic breaks to leisurely ones.

Go Active+ offers more than 20 activities for all ages, from archery and panna soccer to sea scooters, body-Zorbing and Waterwalkerz, where participants climb inside a giant inflatable ball and run, roll, flip and spin on water without getting wet.

Not only are there heaps of activities on park, the local area is full of adventurous things to do. How about a Total Wipeout-style obstacle course at New Forest Waterpark? Or try the Go Ape Treetop Adventure at Moors Valley Country Park and Forest, where you'll also find segway trails, walking and fitness routes, orienteering and fishing.

Over in Milford on Sea, adventurers can explore the scenic coastline of the New Forest, beautiful salt marshes and historic Hurst Castle by kayak or stand up paddle board with the New Forest Paddle Sport Company – there's also a special rate for those staying at Oakdene Forest Park.

The sandy beaches, with surfing and zip wires, in cosmopolitan Bournemouth, plus a host of great walking and cycling routes in the magnificent New Forest National Park are right on the doorstep, too.

Back on site, VRoom offers guests the chance to explore undiscovered lands and distant galaxies – through fully immersive virtual reality experiences – and still be home in time for a sundowner on the terrace.

Located in the serenely beautiful French Alps, the charming village of Samoëns is an idyllic summer holiday destination. Brimming with outdoor pursuits and abundant in stunning alpine views, those looking to explore untrodden and beautiful territory this summer won't find a better match. What is more, being just an hour's drive from Geneva – a short flight from the UK - makes Samoëns the ideal location for a stress-free, high-culture break.

For adrenalin-junkie families and couples, the destination offers a broad range of adventurous outdoor activities. Travellers can take to the water with white-water rafting and water skiing, or explore the region's terrain with quad-biking and the latest activity to hit Samoëns - E-fat biking. Allowing cyclists to take to the challenging mountains smoothly, the E-fat bikes are equipped with extra wide and durable tyres to ensure riders traverse the mountain terrain with ease. To get the most out of the bikes and the stunning scenery, book a fun session with a guide and tour the mountains like a pro!

Samoëns isn't all about the fast-paced sports adventures though, since the destination's calm mountain provides the perfect setting for more relaxed pursuits too. Whether travellers are passionate about hiking, golfing, horse riding or playing classic French boules, Samoëns has something to suit. What is more, visitors can explore the relaxing offerings of the village after a day of fresh mountain air by indulging in a massage, enjoying a warming glass of local speciality Grolle after a delicious meal, or cosying up at the village's art deco cinema.

With 188 km of trails, 28 downhill slopes and 600 km of hiking tracks, Samoëns is a paradise for outdoor enthusiasts.

Sun, sea and exhausted parents; you never forget your first family holiday.   At this time of year, the pressure is mounting on mums and dads to carefully craft a summer trip and create those lifetime-lasting happy memories for their little ones. Having a water fight, taking a toy dinosaur and even jumping in a magic potato are just three of the more imaginative ideas that children shared with, when asked what would make a holiday special for them.   These top ingredients show that it really is the little things that count - and stay with us forever.

Top ingredients for the perfect holiday – according to kids

• Jumping over a net and doing a flip • Eating ice cream every single day • Having friends on the other side of my door • Swimming right to the bottom of the pool • Seeing a starfish in the sea • Having a water fight • Going on daddy's back because I don't know how to swim • Taking my toy dinosaur and the family it's supposed to go with • And even jumping in a magic potato – proof that a little imagination can produce a lot of holiday fun

Because parents only get one chance to book the perfect summer holiday,'s in-house children's holiday experts have pulled together a list of the top most family-friendly destinations and hotels around, based on insights from children and parents.   These are: • Dubai • Canary Islands • Disneyland Paris • Crete • Costa del Sol   Reigo Eljas, Country Director UK & Ireland at, said: “Whether it's playing badminton on the beach, trying a new flavour of ice cream or simply enjoying some uninterrupted family time, kids treasure holiday moments for years to come. Our job is to take the stress out of booking a family holiday, so parents can pour all their energy into making those memories instead, safe in the knowledge that we've got the perfect destinations covered.”   Making a perfect holiday can be hard work for parents, but there are plenty of tricks to make life easier.

Calling all classic car fans! Blenheim Palace is hosting the Pre-50 American Auto Club 'Rally of Giants' on Sunday 9 July. This superlative gathering offers a rare opportunity for collectors and admirers to see the finest and most valuable examples found anywhere in Europe.

There will be more than 400 classic American vehicles attending, including some of the best examples of motoring history and the most valuable. Dating from the early 1920's through to the 1970's the Rally of Giants is a must visit for those with a passion for American motorcars. For those with only a passing interest in motoring avocation expect your interest to be piqued with this remarkable collection of American motorcars, trucks, military vehicles and bikes.

Attracting collectors from the UK and continental Europe to Blenheim Palace the rally provides the perfect backdrop for admiring, purchasing and selling classics. Visitors can enjoy a full day out in Blenheim Palace, Park and Gardens with delicious food and refreshments available in the new Orangery Restaurant which overlooks the private Italian Gardens.

Creating a fresh perspective on Edinburgh's rich narrative of history, culture, heritage and everyday life, Edinburgh's 101 Objects is a new visitor experience set to bring the city's colourful, and sometimes dark, past to life through some of its most treasured objects and curiosities.

The city-wide attraction is a first for Edinburgh with 50 partners, including city institutions, attractions, universities, galleries and local pubs, coming together to each showcase their precious objects in celebration of 1,000 years of Scotland's capital city.

From the architectural grandeur of the Scott Monument and the ethereal ceiling in the Thistle Chapel at St Giles' Cathedral, to a 90-year old paint mixer used on the Forth Bridge and a golf ball once owned by Robert Louis Stevenson, every object has been carefully chosen for both their personal intrigue and part in the compelling story of the city.

Seven themes provide a thread through the Edinburgh's 101 journey through time: Building a City, Faith & Nation; City of Innovation; Arts & Performance; Everyday Life; On the Dark Side and Books, Words, Ideas.  A balanced combination of familiar favourites including The Stone of Destiny, Sherlock Holmes statue and Dolly the Sheep, sit along the first Edinburgh International Festival programme from 1947, the 200-year old Sabal palm tree, the original New Town Plan and the Witches Well.

A new website presents all 101 objects, providing an entertaining insight into each object's personal history and its place within Edinburgh's gripping story. With each item numbered 1-101, visitors can explore the objects, arranging them by locale or theme, creating a personal visitor experience tailored to their interests.  Designed to be an engaging information resource, the site also acts as a mobile geo-mapped guidebook, enabling visitors to navigate the city and discover the physical objects for themselves.

With the May half term holiday out of the way and summer holidays all finalised, now is the time to book a trip to see Santa in his Lapland home this winter to ensure the best availability for departure dates and accommodation.  With the increase in demand for Santa holidays, these magical breaks often sell out quickly. This winter, independent tailor-made tour operator Best Served Scandinavia offers its widest choice of Santa breaks with four different itineraries available in Finnish Lapland ranging from a luxurious wilderness retreat to the option of a night in a glass igloo.

New this year is a 4 day tailor made break to the Finnish town of Rovaniemi also known as Lapland's Christmas Capital.  Direct flights, transfers, 3 nights at Ounasvaaran Lakituvat in a cosy log cabin, a visit to Santa's Village, husky sledding and a snowmobile ride to a local reindeer farm are all included in this magical break. Early booking is recommended with a free husky toy for children under 12 for all bookings made before the end of June.

The quiet village of Luosto in Finnish Lapland is home to Santa's Hotel Aurora, a cosy hotel ideally located for Northern Lights viewing.  This year, the Snow and Santa in Finnish Lapland break includes a magical night in a glass-domed igloo where it's possible to catch a display of the Northern Lights.  There's also a private visit from Santa in the igloo and a guided reindeer excursion.

Cologne Bonn Airport was officially wed to Las Vegas when Eurowings launched its twice-weekly direct link to the vibrant party city in Nevada. Commencing the German airport’s second connection to the US, the carrier will utilise its fleet of A330s on the 8,824-kilometre sector.

“We are very pleased that Cologne Bonn Airport is now connected to this dazzling metropolis. We are expanding our route network to the US ‒ Las Vegas is now our second destination after Miami," said Michael Garvens, Chairman of the Management Board, Cologne Bonn.

Understanding the commitment with the Lufthansa Group carrier, Cologne Bonn’s latest low-cost long-haul destination will add another 612 weekly seats to the US this summer. Joining its existing service to Miami, the carrier is set to launch two further US links next month – Orlando and Seattle-Tacoma – resulting in Eurowings offering close to 60,000 seats to the US from Cologne Bonn during S17, a remarkable 210% year-on year increase in US capacity.

This summer will see Eurowings base over 20 aircraft at Cologne Bonn, serving a total of 95 routes with 506 weekly flights, including operating 18 low-cost long-haul destinations from the airport.

The premiere Beijing International Travel Mart (BITM) 2017 will be held at China National Convention Center (CNCC) in Beijing, China from 16 – 18 November 2017. The three-day event, open to trade visitors on the first two days and to public visitors on the last day, will climax the current ASEAN-China Year of Tourism Cooperation 2017.

With a gross area of 10,000 square metres, BITM 2017 will feature over 400 international exhibitors from over 60 countries. The countries of Southeast Asia are expected to form a significant ASEAN Pavilion to highlight the touristic attractions and programmes along the Maritime Silk Route.

In addition, the event is expected to attract some 400 local and international buyers and is projected to attract 10,000 public visitors as well as 6,000 trade visitors from the MICE, OTAs, Travel Agents, Corporates and Trade Associations.

Beijing, the capital of China, is the world’s third most populous city and is ranked second to Shanghai in China’s outbound generating markets for year 2016. The UNTWO has predicted that 200 million Chinese will travel out of the country by 2020, spending US$422 billion.

“A globalized one-stop sourcing platform is vital for stakeholders within the tourism industry to effectively reach out to the Chinese travel market,” says Edward Liu, Group Managing Director of Conference & Exhibition Management Services (CEMS), the organizers.

To accentuate the ASEAN-China Year of Tourism Cooperation, a panel discussion on the first day of the BITM 2017, would feature prominent captains of industry from both ASEAN and China, exploring extended cooperation between the two regions, in sync with the initiatives being formulated under the Maritime Silk Route.

Another forum on the second day would be dedicated to big data and analytics as well as the latest travel technologies that are being implemented across the global tourism industry. There would also be specially curated workshops running concurrently with the exhibition to provide attendees with relevant industry updates.

To generate awareness for the exhibition and forums, CEMS would be running pre-event roadshows in various cities and regions within China. Participating exhibitors would be invited to join the pre-event publicity campaigns to attract buyers prior to the event.

Exhibitors could also look forward to enriched business matchings through one-on-one meeting interaction technology to maximize the efficiency of their pre-scheduled appointments with the preferred Chinese and international buyers.

For the record, CEMS is the founder of Beijing International Travel Expo (BITE) series in Beijing, China and is accountable for over 13 years of continued success in the tourism exhibition.

Cumulatively, CEMS has a track record of 25 successful professional international tourism exhibitions such as BITE, CGITE, XSPRITE, and CITE, with participants from across 80 countries over the last 15 years.

The Caribbean Hotel and Tourism Association (CHTA), a federation of 32 private sector-led organizations throughout the Caribbean basin, reiterates its previous position to join with the nations throughout the Caribbean in supporting the adoption of the Paris climate change agreement.
The Caribbean is one of the world's most vulnerable regions to the escalating effects of climate change. The socio-economic consequences from rising sea levels and temperatures, increasingly violent storms and severe droughts, oil spills, mismanagement of waste, and coral bleaching are having mounting consequences, and left unchecked threaten the very viability of the region's economies and societies, and the health and welfare of Caribbean people.
Countries and businesses throughout the region, particularly tourism-related enterprises, are increasingly adopting policies and practices aimed at preserving, protecting and enhancing the environment. This is important to the Caribbean's own self-interests and also those of the world, with millions of visitors enjoying the incredible natural beauty the region offers.
CHTA urges the region's countries, businesses and residents to do their part in supporting sound environmental practices. It is important to ensure that the Caribbean remains a safe, secure and viable partner, benefiting its neighbors and major trading partners.