The scene of a seaside in Ayia Napa, Cyprus. (Xinhua/Zhang Baoping)
Cyprus has a lot to offer to Chinese tourists and its tourism businesses are ready to become more China-friendly, said Savvas Perdios, Deputy Minister of Tourism of Cyprus.
LONDON, Nov. 5 (Xinhua) -- Cyprus can be considered as a new tourism destination for Chinese tourists, a Cypriot official said at the 2019 World Travel Market (WTM) in London which runs from Monday to Wednesday.
Savvas Perdios, Deputy Minister of Tourism of Cyprus, told Xinhua that Cyprus has a lot to offer to Chinese tourists and its tourism businesses are ready to become more China-friendly.
He said that Cyprus is not well known in China as a tourism destination, but "we feel that it's a destination with a lot of potential."
"We know that Chinese guests and travelers like to travel in the winter months. And Cyprus has a lot to offer in the winter because we have beautiful mountains. We have ten UNESCO churches, which we know that the Chinese market will be very interested in," Perdios said.
In recent years Cyprus is collaborating with surrounding holiday destinations, such as Jordan, Israel, to promote it to Chinese travel agencies and tourists. At the moment, around 4,000 or 5,000 Chinese visitors visited Cyprus every year, according to Perdios.
The scene at the Athalassa National Park, a wetland park on the fringes of Nicosia, Cyprus. (Xinhua/Zhang Baoping)
Perdios said as the business relationship between Cyprus and China has started, with Chinese companies investing in real estates in Cyprus, the country is talking with the Chinese side to facilitate tourist visa applications and to launch direct flights.
Meanwhile, Cyprus is working to cater Chinese travelers' needs, to "make sure that there is always food available and Chinese travelers would appreciate tour guides that speak the Chinese language."
"In general, we wan to make applications and payment systems available so that Chinese travelers can feel at home," he said.
Traditional tourist markets for Cyprus are Russia, Britain and Germany and tourists focused on the sun and the sea. The Cypriot government eyes on new tourism strategy for 2030 to attract new markets that will help it develop the whole island in a different way.
China, as a huge and most important outbound tourist market, could help Cyprus achieve the goal, Perdios added. ■