Let's inspire! How to lure tourists to Siberia and the Far East

Let's inspire! How to lure tourists to Siberia and the Far East

In Irkutsk, the Russian Event Awards, a regional competition of the National Award in the field of event tourism, was held for the first time. Museums, non-profit public organizations, municipal departments of culture, entrepreneurs, tour operators and even theaters submitted applications for participation in the competition. To say that the competition among them was tough is to say nothing. From 17 regions - from Tomsk to Vladivostok and Kamchatka - 124 projects were submitted for the competition, already implemented in 2017.

The AiF in the Armed Forces correspondent spoke with the founder of the award, the “guru” of the Russian tourism industry, Gennady Shatalov, that tourists need to be inspired to travel to the regions.

Events are over the roof

It is simply unrealistic to list all the participants, because every project deserves at least a brief description. And as a result, it could not be a newspaper article, but a guidebook for those who, planning their travels, focus on interesting and unusual events. I will just say that it was the Irkutsk region that presented the most of all event events to the experts' judgment - 35 projects, which, according to their organizers, can become drivers of the region's tourism industry in the Russian and even international markets. The experts partly agreed with them, awarding the victory to thirteen applications.

Among them, the festival of wooden sculpture "Lukomorye" near Angarsk, which is already well known to many, and its "brother", which is just starting to develop, is the festival of concrete sculpture in Svirsk; another young project "Ice Library of Wonders" and the already held architectural and ethnographic open-air museum "Angarsk Village"; Baikal International Art Folk Festival and Theater Festival "At the Bratsk Sea" named after Gennady Mikhasenko (Bratsk); traditional meeting of golendras "Pikhtinskie meetings" and the days of Chuvash culture "Akatui on Baikal", etc. By the way, according to Gennady Shatalov, many festivals have recently appeared in Siberia that emphasize the national and ethnic characteristics of the territories, which is very advantageous and profitable, because this is a zest that is characteristic of our regions.

“Siberian projects always differ from projects in central Russia in their scope - that is, in the territory they cover and in their brightness,” Shatalov commented. - In addition, there is always a gastronomic component in national festivals, and this is also a kind of feature that can inspire a sophisticated traveler to travel not to warm Turkey, but to distant Siberia, for example, to the Pan Varenik festival in the Angara region or Buuzyn Bayar- Buuza's holiday "in Buryatia".

Leverage for the economy

The Russian Event Awards program in Irkutsk was not limited to the distribution of prizes and gifts.

“The most important thing is to learn from each other”, - Gennady Shatalov outlined another direction of his “brainchild”.

As it turned out, coming up with an event, organizing it and holding it does not mean that it will become a mega-tourism product that can attract a lot of travelers. To achieve this, experts advise organizers to take into account a lot of nuances - from global ones, such as creating an attractive image of their region, to “mercantile” ones, related, for example, to the production of souvenirs dedicated to the event and the return on investment of the event. It was about this - how to make event tourism a lever for the development of the region's economy - that was discussed at a special round table.

According to the experts of the National Prize, there are a lot of beautiful events in our country, but they do not attract travelers to the territory where they are held, because there is no normal interaction between its organizers and travel companies that know how to attract tourists and make money on them. And in this regard, an important role is assigned to the creation of event calendars, but not “shtetl” calendars, but interregional ones. In particular, in the Irkutsk region, Buryatia and the Trans-Baikal Territory, Shatalov is sure, such a calendar with the code name "Baikal History" is simply vital. Moreover, it must be done as quickly as possible in order to have time to inspire tourists with our winter and, first of all, New Year's events. Indeed, can not the Buryat Father Frost - Sagaan Ubugun (White Elder) compete with the Finnish Joulupukki?

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