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Open World Delegates from Kyrgyzstan Learn about Travel and Tourism in New Hampshire

posted Feb 3, 2018, 7:11 AM by FriendshipForce NHSeacoast   [ updated Jun 25, 2018, 10:41 AM ]
How do you attract visitors to a ski resort in the summer? How does one promote your country’s distinctive and unique culture? These and other questions about attracting tourists were at the heart of an 8-day Open World program organized by Friendship Force of the New Hampshire Seacoast. Five tourism professionals from Kyrgyzstan lived with Seacoast families while interacting with their counterparts across the Granite State. These delegates are emerging leaders who own and operate among the first tourism companies and guesthouses in Kyrgyzstan.

During their stay, the delegates met with representatives from the New Hampshire Division of Travel and Tourism to learn how our government provides support for the industry and with faculty and students of the Hospitality and Recreation programs at the University of Hampshire to learn how we prepare young professionals looking to enter the field.

The high points of the week were the site visits to many of New Hampshire’s marvelous tourist destinations. The delegates were introduced to: four-season activities at Gunstock Mountain Resort, including a ride down the mountain coaster; vacillating weather conditions during a van ride to the top of Mount Washington (60 sunny degrees at the base, 33 degrees with 20-yard visibility and gale force winds at summit); Agrotourism at Butternut Farm, a popular Pick-Your-Own fruit farm in Farmington; an overnight stay at an Appalachian Mountain Club lodge followed the next day by a guided trail hike in the White Mountains which included information on trail development and maintenance; small, local museums highlighting unique facets of New Hampshire culture and direction on founding cultural museums in Kyrgyzstan; a “Foodie Tour” of Portsmouth; and a tour of the gallery of the League of New Hampshire Craftsmen, with advice on ways to highlight local crafts. Meals not provided by the members of our FF club were taken at local Farm-to-Table restaurants to emphasize another facet of agritourism.