Ambassador's Tour Participants Enjoy a Warm Boholano Welcome


BOHOL, 5 May 2015 – Participants of the 2nd Ambassador’s Tour to the Philippines – headed by Philippine Ambassador to Malaysia J. Eduardo Malaya  were treated to a warm welcome and a tour of the countryside on the third day of their tour which brought them to the province of Bohol.

Upon arrival, the tour participants were greeted by Boholanos with a warm smile. They also gave the tourists colourful necklaces to wear while touring the island.

Participants were able to meet the world’s second smallest primate – the tarsier – and to see it in its natural habitat at the Tarsier Conservation Centre.

This was followed by a sumptuous lunch while on board a cruise along beautiful Loboc River. Bohol Governor Edgar Chatto personally welcomed the group, along with Loboc Mayor Helen Alaba. 

Governor Chatto thanked Ambassador Malaya for bringing the 2nd Ambassador’s Tour to Bohol and introducing the province and its many wonders to Malaysians and other nationalities who joined the tour.

Ambassador Malaya also discussed with Bohol’s public officials the importance of Halal tourism to boost the province’s tourist arrivals.

During an interview with members of the Malaysian media who joined the tour, the Ambassador urged everyone to discover more of the Philippines and to share what they see in the country to their people as the Philippines remains to be one of the best and nearest destinations to Malaysians in the region.

“The Philippines is the undiscovered tourism destination for Malaysians and yet everything Malaysians are looking for are here,” the Ambassador said.

“It is relatively a short distance so there is no reason why Malaysians cannot see more of the Philippines,” he added.

Ambassador Malaya also explained how Bohol and Cebu can be great options for Malaysian tourists as both islands offer heritage and eco-tourism. 

Governor Chatto added that Bohol now also offers a geological experience to tourists as they can see how the island’s landscapes have changed the past few years due to natural phenomena. "We have unique geological features such as the Chocolate Hills and even the Great Wall of Bohol," he said. "Our beaches are also very beautiful so just one day in Bohol is not enough. We thank you for supporting our tourism industry and we would love to have you back."

During the cruise, the tour participants were treated to performances by the river and some were even game enough to try out the instruments and dance with the performers.

The group also took a side trip to the world-renowned Chocolate Hills, one of the island’s many unique geological formations.

Last year, 139,000 Malaysians visited the Philippines, chalking up a 27 percent growth compared to the 2013 figures. This makes Malaysia the ninth most important tourist market of the Philippines with the highest growth rate among the country’s major markets.

The Ambassador quipped that he would like to see more growth in the future and that it should not be too hard nowadays especially since there are more direct flights connecting Kuala Lumpur to the Philippines’ various islands than ever before.

The 2nd Ambassador’s Tour to the Philippines gave this year’s tour participants the chance to get to know more about the Philippines’ islands and to spend more time in Cebu’s beaches and Bohol’s countryside.

The tour lasted from May 2 until 5 and was a joint project between the Philippine Embassy in Kuala Lumpur and the Department of Tourism. END.