Uganda to promote Agri-tourism

Uganda Travel Agents Opt Agri-Tourism to Boost Arrivals

There are numerous things to see and do on a Uganda safari ranging from the common gorilla watching in Bwindi/Mgahinga gorilla national park, game viewing, game viewing, cultural tours, bird watching, chimpanzee trekking and mountain climbing among other activities. To diversify her tourism offers, the pearl of Africa has introduced agritourism to increase tourist arrivals. Pineapple farming is a focus for the travel operators who will offer this package as part of Uganda safari packages. The idea started in July 2018 when a pineapple farm was launched in Luwero district to promote agritourism. The pineapples are now ready and travelers are called on to visit take visit the farm for a new experience. A visit to a pineapple far will complement other attractions in Uganda which include rich fauna and flora, rolling hills, magnificent landscapes, mountain gorillas, chimpanzees, national parks with wildlife gem, over 1.200 bird species, hospitable people, conducive weather and diverse culture among others. Travel operators believe that a ripe sweet pineapple is an agritourist charm that can attract more visitors to the pearl of Africa. Private travel operators all over Uganda have been urged to be creative and offer incoming holidaymakers a variety of new travel not only to national parks and other tourist destinations all over the country.

How is the experience?
When tourists come, they are guided to pineapple gardens to learn and take part in all experiences farmers go through from planting to harvesting and making pineapple juice. These reward travelers with a deep understanding of how pineapples are farmed harvested and processed into different products before they are consumed. While going to the garden, each tourist is given a knife to go hunt for the biggest and most ripe pineapple. Travelers then roam all over the garden searching for the biggest and most ready pineapples. When travelers return from the garden, farm managers assess all collected pineapples and the person with the biggest ripe pineapple is rewarded with a gift of their harvest. Travelers are then guided on how to get different products from pineapples from slicing, heating, drying, and packing. Uganda exports pineapples to Europe and Asia, which earn the country foreign exchange.

Benefits
There are lots of benefits which local people, travel operators and the government expect from this new form of tourism. The introduction of agritourism is a great achievement for Uganda’s tourism industry and all the stakeholders. Farmers whose gardens will be visited are at a great advantage assured of a ready market for their products. At the same time, travelers will achieve a great understanding of how pineapples are planted, harvested and processed.

Target Market
Chinese are presently Uganda’s target market has shown much interest in exploring and discover why Uganda is called the pearl of Africa. After visiting all continents, the Chinese have picked a special interest in Africa and Uganda. Last year, Uganda Tourism Board registered a great increase in Chinese tourist travelers. Luckily, the Chinese come both as tourists and investors, which make them exceptional people to deal with. In order to promote Uganda’s tourism products in China, Uganda Tourism Board is to hire public relations firm to liaise with tour operators, airlines and other companies in China. Already, Uganda’s embassy in China and its consulate in Guangzhou are marketing tourism activities and attractions in Uganda to expose what the pearl of Africa offers. In the same way, the Uganda Tourism Board (UTB) has conducted a number of promotional initiatives including road shows in Guangzhou, Beijing, and Shanghai to make Uganda’s tourism products known to Chinese. Besides China, Uganda Tourism Board is extending Uganda’s market to Europe and the United States of America.

Uganda earns over 1.5 billion U.S dollars annually from tourism which figure is expected to double by 2020. Agritourism is hoped to earn Uganda increased revenue, which will increase the country’s gross domestic product.