Why do we want to do this?

government. We acknowledge that “tourism is government led but private sector driven” and, therefore, we know we cannot do it on our own. We will be moving towards providing more content digitally and on implementing more joint marketing agreements. We also want to target locals to become tourism ambassadors and have “know your town” campaigns.

Drakenstein boasts an abundance of beautiful, open, and safe spaces which we need to use to our advantage. Just think about our area’s natural splendour, our great outdoor spaces which one can explore, and our retreats where mind, body, and soul can be rejuvenated. We acknowledge that the Drakenstein destination has had a historical wine tourism focus. However, COVID-19 has forced us to broaden our horizons and diversify our tourism offerings to create a destination where there is a bit of something for everyone. So, we are adopting a more holistic approach towards our destination marketing. This means we are going to encourage “family (inter-generational) tourism” to make wellness (mind, body, soul) more accessible for everyone. We will continue to support the promotion of wine tourism but also focus on sports tourism, heritage and culture, as well as on tourism product development and on broadening participation through ongoing small, medium, and micro enterprise (SMME) support.

Tell us about some of the brand messaging you have in mind?

We are thinking of exploring the following:

Explore or Experience (Paarl, Wellington, Simondium, Hermon, Gouda, Saron) - a place of natural beauty where you can free your mind, body, and soul. Experience/Explore/Discover the freedom of the Heart of the Winelands.

Explore #paarl-wellingtonnow.

Take a sho’t left to #paarl-wellingtonnow.

Embrace vintage in the heart of the Cape Winelands.

What is the current state of the Drakenstein economy and what was the impact of COVID-19 on the tourism sector? The Drakenstein municipal area recorded an improvement in economic activity in 2021 following a sharp decline experienced in 2020 when most businesses were forced to halt their operations to curb the spread of COVID-19. The economy therefore registered a 6.7% growth in 2021 off a very low base. Contractions in economic activity were registered in the secondary and tertiary sectors, with the tourism sector contributing to the 9.5% decline recorded by the wholesale and retail trade, catering ,and accommodation sector.

What are our priorities in terms of the Municipality’s Integrated Development Plan (IDP)?

Our priorities are tourism transformation; tourism infrastructure; the conservation of our environment (responsible tourism); and focusing on sports, adventure, and wellness tourism.

How do we do this?

We will continue to focus on collaborating with strategic local, provincial, national, and international tourism partners. These include the private sector and other spheres of


VARS | September

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