Sept. 27, 2022
Cowichan is celebrating the United Nations World Tourism Organization’s World Tourism Day (September 27, 2022) and the 2022 theme of, “rethinking tourism,” by highlighting the ongoing projects and plans throughout the region.
Throughout spring and summer 2022, the Cowichan region saw visitation rebound with the easing of pandemic measures and an increased interest in exploring the more than 250 partners and stakeholder businesses, experiences, and activities. Partners in the region have anecdotally shared that visitation seems to have rebounded. So far, the top destination factors that rated amongst the highest importance with visitors were: overall atmosphere, outdoor adventure activities, and parks and public spaces.
“This year has been one of renewal for the Cowichan region, with a return of a sense of normalcy and a welcome back to regional, national, and international visitors,” said Ken Bailey, Chair, Tourism Cowichan Society. “Our organization continues to expand on the investment of marketing, destination development, and engagement in order to ensure that the hundreds of small businesses in the Cowichan region continue to prosper in the months and years ahead.”
Following the impacts of the COVID19 pandemic, the opportunity to rethink tourism helped to guide a new Cowichan Action Plan through the first half of 2022. In July, Tourism Cowichan Society finalized the Cowichan Action Plan with the support of Destination BC, the provincial destination management organization, providing a roadm ap for the region until 2027. Within the plan are themes and actions of planning and collaboration, tourism infrastructure, integrated multi use trail systems, technology and innovation, human resources, and product development.
Following the finalization of the Cowichan Action Plan, a new $100,000 Tourism Development Fund will be released to partners and stakeholders in the next few weeks. The fund was created as a progression of the former EventWorks program, established in 2019, to support the development of incremental tourism and event products in the region. Stakeholders will be able to apply for funding beginning in November.
Recently, new Tourism Cowichan Accessible Travel Guides have been published online and through social media to enhance accessible and experiential tourism in the Cowichan Region. These online guides align with and accentuate the information available both in the hard copy visitor guide and at tourismcowichan.com.
This fall, Tourism Cowichan stakeholders, partners, and business owners may look forward to open dialogues at scheduled roundtable meetings in the region. In addition, Tourism Cowichan team members will be hosting ‘Tourism Tuesdays’ at the Regional Visitor Centre (2896 Drinkwater Road in Duncan), each Tuesday throughout the month of October, beginning October 4th.
About Tourism Cowichan Society
The non-profit Tourism Cowichan Society promotes the desirability of the Cowichan region to potential visitors by telling the story of Cowichan in a way that taps into the essence of the area. The Tourism Cowichan Society board represents both First Nations and industry stakeholders, and is committed to delivering tourism advisory and management services for the Cowichan Valley Regional District.
For more information, visit www.tourismcowichan.com.
Media contact: Martina Morgan, Coordinator, Tourism Cowichan: 2506683402 or firstname.lastname@example.org