A top official from the Department of Tourism (DOT) 7 has invited tourists to visit other areas in Central Visayas while the region is still working to recover from the destruction left by super typhoon Yolanda in areas like northern Cebu.
Northern Cebu logged 17,580 arrivals from January to July this year.
“We are inviting our tourists not to postpone their travels to the region as we still have other provinces like Siquijor and Negros, which have equally beautiful tourism sites to explore,” DOT 7 Director Rowena Montecillo said.
She said that despite the natural calamities that hit Central Visayas, tourism promotion for the region is still going on.
Super typhoon Yolanda devastated Bantayan and Malapascua Islands.
“Majority of the tourism establishments in these areas, particularly resort accommodations, are in the stage of rehabilitation and accommodation facilities are limited,” the DOT 7 said in its travel advisory.
Of the 50 resort accommodations in Bantayan Island, Montecillo said only one resort facility is functional, the Anika Island Resort, which has 22 rooms. Malapascua, on the other hand, was left with only one facility, the Malapascua Exotic Island Dive and Beach Resort, which has 29 rooms.
The island has about 30 resort facilities.
These two resorts, however, are not DOT-accredited.
Bantayan and Malapascua islands are two of Cebu’s top tourist destinations.
Bantayan is known for its white and pristine beaches, while Malapascua is known for its world-class dive sites and thresher sharks.
DOT 7 said there were no reports of stranded or harmed tourists during the typhoon.
Montecillo said the agency is now focusing efforts in helping the areas recover immediately. She said efforts are underway to revive tourism in these islands.
She said ferry trips to Bantayan are back to normal and special trips to Malapascua are being offered to travelers, but these areas still lack electricity and water.
In its advisory, the DOT warned that both islands are dependent on generator sets for power and water supply.
“We need the power to be restored immediately so these areas can move on,” she said. (PNA) LOR/EB/