Guyana’s Rupununi can be among world’s ‘most powerful’ tourism products – Pres. Ali

… country’s first regional tourism centre key in pushing Rupununi tourism


By Vishani Ragobeer in Lethem

Guyana’s Rupununi is one of the country’s most sought-after tourism destinations and if Guyana can successfully twin this tourism product with that of Northern Brazil, the Rupununi can be among the world’s most powerful tourism destinations.

This is according to President Dr. Irfaan Ali, who provided brief remarks at the opening of Guyana’s first regional tourism information centre.

The centre was established in Lethem by Visit Rupununi, a tourism body that represents over 70 enterprises across the tourism value chain in the Rupununi. It is located just across from the town’s airstrip, strategically positioned to capture travellers.

President Ali, who commissioned the centre on Saturday, emphasised the value of Rupununi in Guyana’s overall ecotourism brand- which has been rated as the top ecotourism destination in the world.

Guyana’s first regional tourism information centre in Lethem, Region Nine (Photo: Vishani Raogbeer/April 16, 2022)

“Each one of us must become an ambassador for tourism and there is no better place than here in our Rupununi.

“We must never ever underestimate the value we bring to the world,” the President emphasised.

The President explained that efforts are being made to harness Guyana’s environmental and ecological services to push the country’s sustainable development. This will be pursued through the revised Low Carbon Development Strategy (LCDS).

Because of the Rupununi’s strategic geographic location at the northern Brazilian border, President Ali said that efforts must be made to build a common tourism product with Brazil.

“Once we are able to incorporate (Brazil), we will have one of the most powerful tourism products in the world,” President Ali said.

And Melanie McTurk, the President of Visit Rupununi, said that tourism players in the region are acutely aware of the value of the space they live and work in.

“The Rupununi sits as the gateway to Brazil with development of Linden to Lethem Road, Visit Rupununi is poised to help make people of the Rupununi part and parcel of the region’s development,” McTurk said at the centre’s opening.

And this tourism centre, she explained, will serve as the central hub for tourism opportunities in the region, business development support for all the regional tourism players and marketing opportunities. All of these features, she posited, will be able to push the ‘Visit Rupununi’ brand.

McTurk also noted that it was President Dr. Irfaan Ali who, last year, challenged the tourism body to establish this centre.

The Rupununi is located in the southwest region of Guyana; it is best known for sprawling savannahs, picturesque mountains and abundant biodiversity.

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