Boracay Declared 2015 Favorite Beach Destination in Malaysian Tourism Fair, Embassy Launches Second Ambassador’s Tour to Cebu and Bohol

10 March 2015 – The Philippine Embassy in Kuala Lumpur said today that Boracay has been declared as Favorite Beach Destination 2015 by the Malaysian Association of Tour & Travel Agents (MATTA) for its annual MATTA Fair on March 13 to 15 at the Putra World Trade Center in Kuala Lumpur.

The announcement was made in a press conference held on March 9 at the MATTA Headquarters in Kuala Lumpur.

MATTA organizing committee chairman S. Jayakumar said that the Philippines is rich in natural resources and biodiversity, and also praised Boracay's fine white sand beaches.

"Boracay has consistently been part of the list of the best beaches in the world, as evidenced by awards bestowed on it by major travel magazines and organizations. It is our pleasure for Malaysians to discover the island, with its pristine white sands and breathtaking beaches, which captivated many visitors for nature tripping, watersports and beach hopping," Ambassador J. Eduardo Malaya said.

At the press conference, the Embassy also formally launched the Second Ambassador's Tour to the Philippines, this time to Cebu and Bohol.

Ambassador Malaya said that now is the best time to visit the Philippines, amidst the country's hosting of major international conference, and its strong economic growth.

"Now is the best time to visit the Philippines. For one, the Philippine Government has declared this year as Visit Philippines Year 2015 (VPY 2015). The flurry of festivals, concerts, conferences, other activities and events lined up will draw in both domestic and foreign tourists in the country. The country is also hosting the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC) meetings, where its member economies will congregate in different Philippine cities to talk about inclusive growth for their citizens and during their downtime, take in all the beautiful sights the Philippines has to offer," Ambassador Malaya stated.

After the highly-successful 'Ambassador's Tour to the Philippines' in November 2013, the Embassy, in partnership with the Philippine Department of Tourism, is rolling out the second edition of the tour on May 2 to 5 in Cebu and Bohol.

"This is mainly because the participants of the first Tour informed us that they would like to join the tour again and promised us that they will bring in more friends and family to join. Cebu and Bohol are increasingly becoming major Philippine tourist destinations. It is an opportunity for our Malaysian friends to see other parts of the country," Ambassador Malaya explained.

Assisting the Embasy and the DOT Regional Office in Cebu are the offices of Cebu Governor Hilario Davide III and Bohol Governor Edgardo Chatto.

Participants of the three-day/four-night tour will fly directly to Cebu from Kuala Lumpur, where they will be immediately treated to a city tour, with visits to a guitar factory and workshops on hand painting and fashion accessory. Cebu is well-known for its guitars and fashion accessories. They will then be feted to a welcome dinner.

The next day will have the participants explore Cebu's world-class islands and beaches in an island-hopping tour, with opportunities for snorkeling and fish feeding in a marine sanctuary, a fishing village tour and a picnic barbeque lunch on the island.

The participants will also have an opportunity to go on a day tour of Bohol province, where they will be treated to a countryside tour, visit the world-famous Chocolate Hills, see the world's smallest primates in their natural environment at the tarsier reserve and have a lunch while cruising the Loboc River before returning to Cebu.

Before they fly back to Kuala Lumpur the next day, they will have the chance to see Spanish colonial influences in Cebu in historical sights such as the Magellan's Cross, the Sto. Nino Church, Casa Gorordo and the Cebu Heritage Monument.

The four day tour costs RM2788 or PhP33456 (half twin) and RM3288 or PhP39456 (single) to include the Bohol day tour. The fee includes three-nights hotel stay with daily breakfast in a four-star hotel, meals, transfers and tours with English-speaking local guide. Official carrier is AirAsia, which flies directly to Cebu from Kuala Lumpur.

The Ambassador also thanked Malaysians for discovering more of the Philippines, as Malaysians posted the highest growth compared at 27.24 percent increase with 139,245 arrivals in 2014, and became the Philippines' ninth largest tourist market. END