The Baragatan Tourism and Travel Fair kicked off on June 24 at Robinsons Place Palawan as part of the province of Palawan's tourism promotion. (From left to right) Miss Palawan Tourism Fritzie Mendoza, City Councilor Matthew Mendoza, City Tourism Demetrio Alvior, Department of Tourism MIMAROPA Regional Director Atty. Bevienne Malateo, Palawan Tourism Council President Rey Felix Rafols.

The three-day Baragatan Tourism and Travel Fair kicked off Friday at Robinsons Place Palawan as part of the province’s destination marketing.

The event, organized by the Provincial Tourism Promotions and Development Office (PTPDO) and the Palawan Tourism Council (PTC), aims to highlight the tourism programs and initiatives that have earned Palawan the title of “World’s Best and Friendliest Island” that’s perfect for all types of travelers around the world.

Some of the activities are the Exhibits, Food Show, Travel Expo videos, the appearance of Fashion Design Winners, and Banwa Performers.

The tourism sector in Palawan, according to Rey Felix Rafols, president of the province’s tourism council, is not just about the destinations but also about the culture and people within.

Photo from Palawan Provincial Information Office)

He said they are hopeful that the tourism industry will fully recover.

“Now is the right time to promote, rebuild and recreate tourism, we are very hopeful for the next few years for tourism to come back,” he said.

“It is not about the sites, it is all about the history and people. Palawan is very diverse; you cannot see it in just one week but it will take how many weeks and months to experience Palawan,” Rafols added.

Mayor Lucilo Bayron’s representative, councilor Matt Mendoza, acknowledged the cooperative efforts of the city and provincial governments to promote tourism for a quick recovery.

Mendoza emphasized, on the other hand, the importance of tourism considering that many Palaweños are dependent on this industry.

“Kapag tulong-tulong natin na i-promote ang turismo dito sa lalawigan at sa lungsod ng Puerto Princesa City ay mabilis po natin na maibabalik ang sigla ng turismo lalo na alam natin na marami dito na nabubuhay through tourism. Sana ay tuloy-tuloy na ito at wala ng hahadlang sa turismo,” Mendoza said.

Provincial tourism officer Maribel Buñi stated that various local government units, including those from the Calamian, will participate in the event.

She stated that the purpose of the travel fair is not only to promote but also to raise awareness and appreciation for the various destinations in the province of Palawan.

The public may visit different tourism-related booths and stalls.

“Dito sa ating travel fair ay mayroon tayong mga exhibitors from Calamian, local government units. Ang target talaga natin dito ay magkaroon ng appreciation at dagdag kaalaman sa ating mga kababayan kung ano ang ino-offer ng private sector. Sa tatlong araw na ito ay inaasahan natin na mas mapalawig ang pagbibigay kaalaman sa mga products, services and promotion,” Buñi said.