The Cabinet Secretary for Tourism, Wildlife and Heritage Peninah Malonza has said that the government will diversify tourism products to encourage tourists to explore more options other than the common wildlife and World Safari that has Marketed Kenya globally.
The CS urged Kenyans to value the range of millions of tourism products the country is bestowed with together with the tourism attractions sites located in various parts of the country.
Speaking in Kakamega during the close of a two weeks’ Western/Kisumu region refresher course for the hospitality industry, CS Malonza said unlike in the past when both local and international tourists enjoyed visiting the Coast and beaches, majority are now taking advantage of other attractions like Karura Forest, Kakamega Forest as the government opens up other areas like Agro-tourism, medical tourism, adventure tourism, sports tourism among other untapped tourism potential sites.
She said potential areas also include gastronomy which is about eating and drinking cuisines and food samples.
“Gastronomy is about eating and drinking our cuisines and our drinks and therefore we not only enjoy wine, I am looking forward to seeing the government regulate some of our local brews well because they make sense in our communities,” she noted.
Last Week, The Kenya Utalii College hosted the first gastronomy festival which aimed to place the country in the forefront in gastronomy tourism as the CS noted that today, the country has grown its niche of products targeting specific customer needs.
While appreciating Kakamega for hosting the refresher course, CS Malonza said the Hospitality and tourism industry within the western region has undergone a tremendous growth, with an increasing number of both local and international tourists who are choosing to visit the region to enjoy the diverse tourism products.
She urged the more than 147 graduates who completed the two weeks’ refresher course offered by the Kenya Utalii College to offer quality services and share the knowledge with their colleagues to promote the growth of the industry.
“I believe the county government will see a great change in the service provision by the hospitality and tourism practitioners who participated in this training. They will be more conscious of the customers’ needs and will aim to go above and beyond their expectations,” she added.
“Today we are expecting quality and excellent customer service; this two weeks training has given you the skills and knowledge with which to guarantee excellence service delivery. One of the key strategies is the diversification of our products and services,” she noted.
She said the hospitality industry can no longer be undervalued, since even if sometimes they feel they are not making much impact in the world, the labor force that is looked for in the current world is the travel and hospitality industry.