Visitors flocking to learn about Cuba

Campaign News | Thursday, 11 May 2006

Record tourism figures reported

Havana, 11 May: Cuba received 2,319,334 foreign visitors in 2005, the highest figure ever and a 13.2 percent increase over 2004, said Tourism Minister Manuel Marrero Cruz at the inauguration of the 26th International Tourism Fair held Tuesday at the Amadeo Roldan Theatre in the Cuban capital.

Marrero highlighted new strategies used to attract visitors in a difficult time for the world tourism industry.

He said the record figure was reached despite the stepped-up propaganda campaign against the island and the hardened US blockade, which has caused serious financial losses to the industry. The official said: “This year we hope to welcome 2.5 million tourists and grow by 7.7 percent. On May 6, we reached the first million visitors with a record daily average of 66,900 tourists lodged in the country.”

Marrero noted the recent conclusion of 1,500 new hotel rooms and the nearly completed remodeling of 3,000 others. He also said that more than 1,000 vehicles had been added to those available for tourism and that flights have been increased to Cuba’s main markets. New tourism promotion offices were opened in Venezuela, China and Holland.

The latest edition of the island’s most important tourism event concludes on Friday at the surroundings of the old San Carlos Fortress that overlooks Havana. This year the fair is dedicated to China and Venezuela and hundreds of foreign tourist agents will learn about the most recent packages and attractions offered by Cuba.

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