By JUNE S. BLANCO
THE Tourism Infrastructure and Enterprise Zone Authority (TIEZA) has approved in principle the development of new tourism loops for Bohol.
Rep. Erico Aristotle Aumentado (Bohol, 2nd District) said the TIEZA concept groups that visited Bohol last month have endorsed the Abatan River-San Vicente Ferrer pilgrimage site-Punta Cruz Watchtower loop in Maribojoc town, the Ubay Stock Farm in Ubay and all possible activities on top of rodeos that can be done there, and more exciting and titillating activities at the Danao Adventure Park in Danao.
Aumentado said the concept groups will next conduct the formal feasibility studies to determine what infrastructure and improvements are needed to ensure complete, convenient, enjoyable and memorable tourist experiences.
Based on the studies, the detailed engineering designs (DEDs) and programs of works (POWs) can then be prepared. These, in turn, will determine the cost of the projects – readying them to be proposed for funding.
The visit of the TIEZA concept groups was at the instance of Cabinet Secretary Leoncio Evasco and Aumentado as part of the latter’s responsibilities as House Tourism vice chair.
The solon had said Bohol should offer more than the Chocolate Hills and the tarsier to keep its niche in the highly competitive tourism industry – at a reasonable price range.
The entry of more airlines to the province is a step in the right direction. Competition augurs well for each company trying to outdo each other in terms of rates and services, he said.
This should also be the case for the resorts and hotels in Alona Beach in Panglao and all other beach strips here.
To note, he warned, other provinces are starting to develop their respective beaches and are now offering river cruises as well.
“Sooner or later, beach tourism – a maturing industry in Bohol – will reach a plateau. Pairing it with just the tarsier and the Chocolate Hills might become too bland already for adventure seekers hence, the need to innovate, improve existing and add more facilities”, he explained.