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Published on : Thursday, April 13, 2017
The Waikato Tourism Monitoring Observatory, New Zealand’s first tourism observatory, has joined the UNWTO and International Network of Sustainable Tourism Observatories (INSTO). The Observatory focuses on two major tourist locations in Waikato region: Raglan and Waitomo. It is committed towards daily and timely measurement of tourism and its effects and is hosted by the University of Waikato Management School.
To quote UNWTO Secretary-General Taleb Rifai, “New Zealand is an example of tourism sustainability and thus the incorporation of the Waikato Observatory to the UNWTO INSTO Network adds immense value to this global initiative.”
To quote Paula Bennett, Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Tourism of New Zealand, “The Waikato Tourism Monitoring Observatory is a wonderful initiative that will provide valuable data over time to support the tourism sector to maximize its contribution to the economy, while ensuring our visitors enjoy high-quality experiences.”
The tourism sector of New Zealand is experiencing constant growth and this observatory is important for providing tangible evidence for up to date decision making in sustainable tourism development-related themes.
The Waikato Observatory aims to support strengthening of Raglan as a sustainable destination, while continuing to protect the unique landscapes and the biodiversity of Waitomo and its iconic tourist attraction the Waitomo Caves. The Waikato region received 357,000 visitors in 2015, most of whom were domestic visitors.