Wildfires affecting the tourism sector in California

Published on : Monday, December 2, 2019

California’s tourism industry is facing the new abnormal due to wildfires raging across the region.

 

 

 

While visitor numbers has not dropped much, what has affected  California tourism marketers is the grappling challenges such as lack of affordable housing for service employees and the need to steer wine tourism away from the popular — and most fire-prone — fall harvest season.

 

 

 

This year was the fifth lightest fire season for California in 25 years. However, there was no loss of life, and just one winery out of many hundreds doused into flames.

 

 

 

Even so, the wildfires have prompted changes in how the state markets and manages tourism, including placing more emphasis on visiting wine regions during the winter and spring. The state is also working to encourage more visitation to lesser-known wine regions such as Paso Robles on the Central Coast and Temecula in Southern California.

 

 

What’s encouraging is that the tourism industry is really stepping up by encouraging local politicians to work on issues like affordable housing.

 

 

 

The tourism destination most struggling with the wildfire aftermath is Sonoma County where the Kincade Fire burned over 77,000 acres in October, coming dangerously close to the popular tourist town of Healdsburg and destroying the historic Soda Rock Winery.

 

 

 

The county was still reeling from the far more disastrous Tubbs and Atlas fires of October 2017, which destroyed entire neighbourhoods and two major hotels in Santa Rosa as well as multiple wineries throughout Sonoma County and neighbouring Napa County. (While the Tubbs Fire was the largest wildfire in California history, it was soon eclipsed in 2018 by the Camp Fire, which decimated the Northern California town of Paradise.

 

 

 

After a huge marketing effort in 2018 to shore up its hard-hit tourism industry, visitation was returning to normal just as the Kincade Fire and several days of power shutoffs throughout the county occurred.

 

 

Now Sonoma County is launching a Gather in Sonoma initiative, primarily aimed at the drive market, to encourage winter holiday visitation. A more ambitious program called Life Opens Up is positioning Sonoma County as a spring destination for national and international visitors.

 

 

 

Napa Valley, which enjoys greater name recognition than Sonoma and did not suffer the same degree of fire devastation, rebounded more quickly after the 2017 fires. While tourism took a nosedive in late 2017, the destination hosted a record 3.85 million visitors in 2018.

 

 

 

Related Posts

Tags: , ,

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

*

code

arrow2Follow TTW
 
facebook-logo  twitter-logo  LinkedIn_logo  rss_logo 
ttw_blogger_logo  ttw_blogger_logo

ADVERTISEMENT

  • 20 satte 2020
  • 20 uzakrota Istanbul 2019
  • 21 ameistanbul 2020
  • 22 BLTM Banner 2020
  • 22 iitm 2020
  • 23 Emitt 2020
  • 24 OTM-Banner 2020
  • 25 aviation-festival-asia 2020
  • 25 fitur 2020
  • 30 PATA

TRAVEL INDUSTRY EVENTS

    1. HOTELIER SUMMIT SOUTHEAST ASIA

      Nov 13, 2019 - Jan 14, 2020
    2. DRT SHOW HONG KONG

      December 13 - December 15
    3. REISELIV MESSEN OSLO 2020

      Jan 4, 2020 - Jan 5, 2020
    4. LAIKI TECNHI 2020

      Jan 8, 2020 - Jan 12, 2020
    5. SATTE 2020

      Jan 8, 2020 - Jan 10, 2020
Get our toolbar!
Review www.travelandtourworld.com on alexa.com