Tuesday, April 5

Japan Earthquake Aftermath: A comment about Atomic Tourism

As Japan recovers from the aftermath of the latest world event impacting tourism trade, entrepreneurial tour operators are starting to think aloud about the ways to keep the travel trade alive between Japan and the rest of the world. Some have already whispered that "atomic tourism", a niche sector involving visits to significant sites of the nuclear age might hold some potential revenue. This field is set in a wider "dark tourism" realm, encompassing various visitor discoveries of catastrophic events, tragedies and sites where genocides might have occurred through the ages. People's fascination for morbidity often knows no boundaries. Let's hope that whatever new atomic tourism product emerges will be produced ethically, without appropriating fundamental elements that are rightly owned by the grieving population of Japan. There will surely be many lessons to be learned by us all from the journey of recovery this remarkable society is undertaking since March 11, 2011.

Sailors' Storytelling in Gwaii Haanas

.

At the end of every sailing day starts a new phase on our Gwaii Haanas nature cruises. It is time to take in our surroundings in a secluded bay, to discuss the day's discoveries with our sailboat companions. It is time to relax, eat and get into the sailing lifestyle at a deeper level, helping out preparing great meals or cleaning up with the crew. Eventually, we gather and settle in to learn about new Haida Gwaii legends and stories in that most meaningful of ways... by simply listening.

Regina Welcomes World's Curling Enthusiasts

While most Regina residents wait for a long awaiting spring thaw, world curling enthusiasts have converged on the City this week for the Ford World's Men Curling Championship. Once again, hotels are full with visitors from countries where the sport is sometimes big, in in some cases much less popular than it is in Saskatchewan. The local tourism industry has quite some time ago realized that business flows from hosting events where attendance to events by regional fans can create the kind atmosphere - and ultimately revenue - that attracts sponsors. Curling certainly does that for Regina.

The same factor played a large part in ensuring that Regina was a successful hosting venue for the fascinating Royal Red Arabian Nationals, until the organizers opted to look for another host. For many years, Royal Red participants - many of which originated from the USA - were delighted to show off their know-how in front of such a welcoming crowd made-up mostly of Saskatchewan residents.

We will be sad to see the Royal Red move on, as others discover the genuine hospitality Regina's population extends to visitors from away. I hope that as the City's tourism stakeholders will carry on bidding for world-stage events, while emphasizing that Regina's tourism appeal as a destination extends beyond the quality of its sports venues, hotel capacity and hunger among local residents for more leisure and special events that take place in the city itself.

A great significant element in Saskatchewan's and Regina's charm lies, after all, in the special sense of place that is found in this city, and in the surrounding grasslands environments that are easily accessible from Regina.