A delegation from the Solomon Island Visitors Bureau (SIVB) conducted their third provincial visits to Marau Sound, East Guadalcanal.
The first two provincial visits were made to Auki and Gizo early this year.
The visit to Marau Sound last Friday was headed by SIVB board of director representatives Andrew Nihopara, SIVB chief executive officer (CEO) Josefa Tuamoto and a staff Elison Kyera.
The visit was aimed at getting the SIVB officials to look at all existing and non-existing accommodation operators in the area.
Not only that but to see tourism products that are on offer and to meet with potential tourism operators there.
More than 8 tourism operators in Marau met with the SIVB officials on Saturday.
Mr Tuamoto on Sunday said, the trip was a board’s initiative to reach all operators throughout Solomon Islands and ensure operators met with the SIVB new CEO.
“I’m happy to meet with operators here.
“This place is really wonderful and through our visit I hope this people would learn something from us which would help develop their tourism business,” Mr Tuamoto said.
He added Marua Sound is an easy area to operate such a business because its closer to an airport and wharf.
“Comparing with the Western and Malaita provinces, Marau have potential in tourism because they are so close to airport and wharf.
“All they need to do is form an association and work together, that’s all,” the SIVB chief said.
Harrison Waruhena owner of Anthurus Beach Front accommodations on Alite Island told the Solomon Star that Marau operators have all the resources and products available.
But accessing resources and marketing is a problem, he added.
“We are happy with this visit because the new SIVB CEO encourages us and gives us more insights about the tourism industry.”
He said for years most of the operators are conducting their business in darkness.
“But the since the visit we are able to get more ideas and how important it is to continue with this industry and support it,” Mr Waruhena said.
He thanked the officials for their visit.
By DENVER NEWTER