BALANGA City, Bataan- Bataan got the “Best LGU Booth” award in the recently-concluded North Philippines Tourism and Travel Exposition 2013 held at the SM City –Clark in Angeles City, Pampanga, the provincial tourism office announced Friday.
The Association of Tourism Officers (ATOCEL) and the Philippines Exhibits and Theme Parks Corporation (PETCO) handed the award last November 17, end of the three-day exposition which is considered as the biggest travel and tourism exhibition in the North.
Architect Techie Banzon, head of the tourism office, said Bataan presented a destination booth that bested nine areas under the Local Government Unit (LGU) category.
Competitors in said category were Angeles City, City of Alaminos (Pangasinan), Licab in Nueva Ecija, Puerto Princesa City (Palawan), San Fernando City (Pampanga) and the provinces of Bulacan, Nueva Ecija, Zambales, Cagayan and Bataan, Danica Tigas said.
Featured in the Bataan booth were the City of Balanga Wetland and Nature Park and shorebirds, Dunsulan Falls at the foot of Mt. Samat, Dambana ng Kagitingan (Shrine of Valor), Camaya Coast as one of the beach resorts in the province and Pawikan (Marine Turtles).
“There were also skimboards with fast facts about Camaya Coast, marine turtles Olive Ridley and Green Turtle, migratory bird Black Winged Stilt and City of Balanga Wetland and Nature Park,” Banzon said.
These were highlighted in a 12-square meter booth.
To attract visitors in the booth, the architect said they conducted question and answer about the featured destinations and asked guests to rate their overall experience in the booth by giving one descriptive word.
“We gave prizes like free picture in the photo booth and free Galing Bataan products,” Tigas said.
The provincial government led by Gov. Albert Garcia and the provincial tourism office in coordination with the Bataan Tourism Council Foundation headed by Mrs. Vicky Garcia and the City government of Balanga spearheaded the setting-up of the destination booth that attracted the attention of judges and visitors, Banzon said.
Other exhibitors competed for the Corporate and regional pavilion (Best Department of Tourism Booth) categories.
Amanda’s Marine Products and Las Casas Filipinas de Acuzar also presented their own booths.
On its 8th year, Northphil Expo was presented by DOT regional offices in the Cordillera Administrative Region, Region 1 -Ilocos and Pangasinan, Region 2 – Cagayan Valley and Region 3 – Central Luzon.
It highlighted not only North Philippines sprawl of tourism destinations but the whole country as well. It featured tourism, travel, hospitality, leisure and other related industries both local and international, organizers said.
“It also aims to bring together under one roof, our country’s provinces and key cities to showcase and promote their tourism attractions, culture and heritage, cuisines and arts and crafts,” said Michael Palispis of ATOCEl and Edith Collado of PETCO.