Foreign dignitaries receive ‘Love from the Philippines’

The attache of the Embassy of India and other foreign dignitaries assigned here in the country have given the Department of Tourism a tap at the back for conceptualizing the Philippine Experience Program which showcases the country’s tourist attractions and provinces’ rich traditions and sumptuous delicacies.

In an interview, Shikha Kumari, Political Attache of the Embassy of India, also extolled the warmth and hospitality of the locales of Cavite, Laguna, Batangas, and Quezon where the second leg of the Philippine Experience took place.

“We love the smiles and greetings of the locales. It’s indeed we felt the love of the Philippines. Indeed there’s so much to explore with the Philippines and we can deliver this to our nationals who would want to visit this wonderful country,” she told the DAILY TRIBUNE.

Other dignitaries that joined the CALABARZON leg of the Philippine Experience and felt the warm Filipino hospitality are Hanada Takihiro, minister and co sul general from the Embassy of Japan, Huang Yaping and Liang Hao from the Embassy of China,  Indian Attache Saurav Kumar, and representatives from the Embassies of Japan and Indonesia, among other delegates such as social media influencers, tour operators and the mainstream media, including the DAILY TRIBUNE.

Seeking for DoT’s interventions

Meanwhile, two local executives in the provinces of Batangas and Quezon have sought the help of the DoT to back and further boos tourism initiatives in their respective municipalities and provinces.

Taal, Batangas Mayor Fulgencio Mercado sought the support of Tourism Secretary Cristina Garcia Frasco in making their province’s tourism efforts to be realized.

“We really need these projects in order for us to show our local and foreign tourists what more we can offer to them aside from the wonders of Taal Volcano,” he said during a program at the Taal Heritage Village on Sunday.

Taal Lake is now closed to tourists because of the continuous activities of Taal Volcano.

On the other hand, San Pablo City Vice Mayor Justin Colago expressed gratitude to the DoT for choosing the city as one of the venues in the second leg of the Philippine Experience.

“We want to collect the help that we need to be able to develop further our destinations, particularly our Seven Lakes. We still need to promote our coconut industry, as well as its by-product buko pie as makers of this delicacy were indeed affected by the  Covid pandemic,” Colago said.

San Pablo City is also where the famous Villa Escudero is situated, which closed doors when the contagion hit the country in March 2023.

Other places visited by the Philippine Experience were Museo ni Aguinaldo in Kawit, Cavite; Bakood Festival of Bacoor, Cavite; Casa San Pablo in San Pablo City; Pagsanjan Falls (Cavinti Falls) in Pagsanjan, Laguna; the wood carvers in Paete, Laguna, and the weavers of Lumban, Laguna, home of the famous barongs and ternos.

The Philippine Experience Program is just one of the many projects of Secretary Cristina Garcia Frasco, a program that facilitates a cultural tourism circuit development focused on heritage, culture, and arts to enhance current tour and domestic circuit offerings, which include: Food and Gastronomy, Pilgrimage and Wellness, Living Cultures and Heritage, and an Arts caravan.

The program also aims to diversify the cultural tourism product offerings of the country, equalize opportunities across the regions, support the preservation of the country’s heritage, and artistic resources and assets, and most importantly, instill a sense of pride and patriotism among the Filipino people through a greater appreciation of the country’s inheritance and legacy.