Global National Trust representatives welcomed
Bermuda’s cultural tourism could get a boost when the country hosts representatives from about 37 countries next week.
The Bermuda National Trust will welcome 100 delegates from around the world for the biennial International Conference of National Trusts. The conference is expected to highlight the island’s cultural assets and how they can be used to stimulate new opportunities in tourism.
The Bermuda Tourism Authority said it welcomed the extra exposure as it had created a cultural tourism strategic plan in 2018 and used its findings in the National Tourism Plan.
The BTA met Heritage Bermuda, a consortium of heritage and culture organisations, last week, to discuss opportunities.
The conference will run alongside the Caribbean Conference of National Trusts and take place from March 27 to 30 at the Fairmont Southampton hotel.
The BTA is also working with the African Diaspora Heritage Trail Foundation to create new cultural tourism based on Bermuda’s African Diaspora Heritage Trail and to make it more attractive for group travel.
Glenn Jones of the BTA said the National Tourism Plan was designed to concentrate more on collaboration than competition.
Mr Jones added: “We hope to see all of our cultural tourism partners thinking more cohesively.”
He said: “We’re excited about what may come of this.”
Last year’s cultural tourism plan identified 200 cultural sites, museums and annual events across the island that could be used to enhance the island’s tourism package.
Heritage Bermuda and the Bermuda Tourism Authority are now working on ways to improve cultural assets and make them more accessible to visitors and allow them to book visits online.
Richard Spurling, the group’s chairman of Heritage Bermuda said: “Heritage Bermuda is encouraged and excited by the developing collaboration between our nine members and the Bermuda Tourism Authority.”
Mr Spurling added: “If we all work together we can achieve a better cultural tourism experience and better value for money for our visitors.”
He added: “The International Conference of National Trusts presents a perfect opportunity to showcase our beautiful island and rich cultural content, leading to further group tours.”
The conference, which will happen simultaneously with the Caribbean Conference of National Trusts, will take place March 27 to 30 at the Fairmont Southampton.
The BTA is also working with the African Diaspora Heritage Trail Foundation to shape new cultural tourism experiences around Bermuda’s African Diaspora Heritage Trail (ADHT), and to make it more attractive for group travel.
A team from the BTA and its Visitor Services Centres toured ADHT sites recently with Titan Express.
Simon Boden, the BTA’s Director of Sales said: “In addition to working with the Bermuda National Trust for next week’s conference, our team worked on the Educational Travel Consortium last year and is working now with new groups for 2019, including a state botanical group from the US looking to experience Bermudian homes, gardens and architecture.
“So much about Bermuda’s heritage and culture set her apart from any place else and there are many groups out there that want to experience this uniqueness first-hand.
“There is a lot of room for growth in this area for Bermuda.”