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Vacation in Georgian style2010-03-25 15:20
According to the research carried out upon recommendation of the World Tourism Organization only one in four Georgia's guests come there for tourism. Less than 7% of visitants are serviced by Georgian travel operators. Mainly people come on business or to their relatives. What will help Georgia's recreation sector to revive competing with Turkey, Krasnodar territory and Abkhazia?
Mountain and sea resorts of Georgia - as the country's main recreation resources - have unique characteristics. Batumi, Mtskheta, Gudauri used to be favorite health resorts among tourists in the USSR.
However after the collapse of the Union and acquisition of independence the famous sanatoriums and health resorts of the republic fell to desolation. Georgian authorities couldn't afford maintenance of tourist facilities so the struggle for vacationers was lost to Krasnodar Territory.
After the aggression in August 2008 Georgia was added into the list of 11 most dangerous countries for tourists composed by Petit Futй famous guide (France) as well as Afghanistan, Iraq, Somali where armed conflicts never cease. According to the guide, Georgian health resorts are not among tourist attractions because of the country's instable situation and complications with Russia.
Curiously enough, even those who came to Georgia for vacations last summer were unpleasantly surprised. The point is that president Mikheil Saakashvili went to Ajaria to spend a few sunny days there. As a result unprecedented security measures were taken: the Georgian leader visited all restaurants and cafes without exception that's why the traffic in Batumi was regularly blocked and when Saakashvili was sunbathing on a beach of Bobokvati residence, the vacationers were disallowed to go bathing within 0,5 km from this place.
It seems the country authorities realized that such a situation might scare last fans of vacations in Georgia away and started planning revival of recreation sector. Recently Zurab Pololikashvili, minister for economic development reported on creation of an ad-hoc group in charge of development of Svaneti, one of the tourist regions. "The commission's aim is coordination of work between all structures and joint realization of the plan worked out for Mestia development", - Pololikashvili remarked.