During the Guangzhou International Travel Fair in Canton, China on March 2018, Panama won an award as the “The Most Popular Destination”. Throughout this event the categories of Best Travel Agencies and Best Tourism Buyers were also announced.
The Ministry of Tourism in Panama, Gustavo Him, together with the Ambassador of Panama in China, Francisco Carlos Escobar, received the award on behalf of the Panamanian Government. For Him, “It has been proved that the Chinese market is interested in knowing Panama, because this country has all what they are looking for: culture, history, nature, gastronomy, shopping malls and one of the most important piece of engineering: The Panama Canal. Additionally, Him mentioned that the country, together with the private industry, are prepared to receive the demand of travelers coming from this Asian region.
On the other hand, Escobar mentioned that the Panamanian tourism products are now receiving more exposure and together with the inauguration of Air China’s first flight multi-destination tourism will be an option while taking advantage of Panama’s connectivity. Besides, the country was recently approved as a destination for the Chinese market, “it is a prove of our wide cooperation with the Chinese people and our long-lasting friendship”, said Escobar. Now Chinese citizens with valid visa of the United State, Australia and Canada could enter the Panamanian territory without requiring any additional documentation.
Panama’s participation at the fair stood out for having the largest pavilion. Its design presented images of Casco Viejo, Panama Viejo, Bocas del Toro, Amador Convention Center Amador, the country’s map showing the main destinations and a platform for traditional dances where the National Company of Folk Dances made different performances. In addition, the fair’s official magazine Show Daily, published a photo of Gisselle Ow Young, former Queen of the Panamanian Carnival 2017 in its cover, followed by a folkloric celebration in the back cover and both Coral Cay in Bocas del Toro and the Tower on the Old City were featured in one of the inner pages featuring the following note: “Panama is a tourism resource with wonderful scenarios as the interoceanic Canal, beaches and the Barú volcano in Chiriquí”.