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Chiang Mai Expected to Enjoy Greater Tourism Growth

23 January 2017 (Readers 3297)

Chiang Mai province, which has traditionally been one of Thailands prime tourism destinations, is expected to enjoy a tourism growth rate of 10 percent in 2017 over 2016, according to the Tourism Authority of Thailand (TAT), Chiang Mai Office. 
In 2016, Chiang Mai welcomed about 9.6 million Thai and international tourists. The number is likely to increase to 10 million in 2017. The TAT Chiang Mai Office has prepared many tourism activities all year round to attract more tourist arrivals. Among them are those concerning sports tourism, medical tourism, and cultural tourism.
TAT announced that Chiang Mai was voted the Next Golf Destination of the Year Asia and Australasia 2017 by 220 golf tour operators worldwide. It will also drum up support for the next ASEAN Tourism Forum 2018, to be held in Chiang Mai between 22 and 26 January 2018. This will be the sixth ASEAN Tourism Forum to be held in Thailand.
Hosting it in Chiang Mai is in line with the national policy to give greater prominence to provincial destinations and highlight Thailands linkages with the Greater Mekong Subregion. TAT Governor Yuthasak Supasorn said that it will be the first time that the forum will be held in the city often known as the "Rose of the North, under the theme "ASEAN Sustainable Connectivity, Boundless Prosperity.
He said that Chiang Mai is the economic, communications, cultural, and tourism center of northern Thailand. In recent years, the city has undergone considerable economic development but still retains its cultural heritage. It is also becoming increasingly well-known as a center of traditional Thai massage, meditation, spas, and health and wellness.
The TAT Governor pointed out that Chiang Mai is well-known for diverse cultural and natural attractions, ethnic cultures, and unique Lanna-style traditions in celebrating many Thai festivals. It is also well connected by direct flights from many parts of Asia, including China, Japan, Korea, Singapore, Malaysia, and Hong Kong. In the future, Thailand hopes that there will be direct flights from Jakarta and Manila, as well.
Chiang Mai was among Thailands top five destinations for international visitors in 2016. Other destinations include Bangkok, Phuket, Chon Buri, and Surat Thani.
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