Watch: Explore UAE's hidden gems as tourism campaign is launched

The tourism drive showcases country's rich diversity and cultural treasures

by

Angel Tesorero

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Photo: DXB/X
Photo: DXB/X

Published: Tue 9 Jan 2024, 1:21 PM

Last updated: Tue 9 Jan 2024, 11:50 PM

The UAE has launched its annual tourism campaign, the ‘World's Coolest Winter Campaign’, on Tuesday aimed at increasing the sector’s contribution to the country’s gross domestic product (GDP) to reach Dh450 billion by 2031.

Now in its fourth iteration, the campaign – under the slogan ‘Unforgettable Stories – highlights the country’s natural resources, architectural marvels, cultural landmarks, and, more importantly, its diverse and welcoming people.

The campaign, activated during the cooler months, encourages residents and tourists to explore its hidden gems — beaches, nature retreats, cycling routes, islands, bazaars, camping spots, heritage places and hiking trails, among others.

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His Highness Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice-President and Prime Minister of the UAE and Ruler of Dubai, said the country is seeing a huge influx of tourists. “Our goal is to reach Dh450 billion as a contribution to the gross domestic product by 2031,” he underscored.

Here's the campaign video:

Increase in tourists

Last year, the campaign registered 1.4 million tourists, an increase of 8 per cent as compared to the second edition in 2022, according to a statement issued by the Government Media Office.

Abdullah bin Touq Al Marri, Minister of Economy and Chairman of the Emirates Tourism Council, noted the campaign supports inbound and outbound tourism sectors. “The UAE tourism sector witnessed high performance and was able to outperforms many international tourism markets”.

Hotel revenues increased to Dh32.2 billion from January to September 2023, a growth rate of 27 per cent as compared to the same period in 2022. The number of hotel guests reached 20.2 million or 12 per cent higher in 2022. The hotel occupancy rate registered 75 per cent during the first nine months of last year.

What to explore?

The UAE has natural sites, including oases and mountains that turn into green paradise in winter. The country is also famous for desert tourism, which offers visitors the opportunity to enjoy many recreational activities, including desert safari trips.

The UAE mountains offer various outdoor options such as climbing, hiking, and mountain biking. There is also adventure tourism such as diving and skydiving while the beaches offer tranquil and relaxing vibes.

There are several historical and heritage sites and museums that offer valuable insights into the country’s past and journey to the future.

Shopping tourism is also one of the most famous types of tourism in the UAE, with several shopping festivals at world-class shopping centres.

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