May 30, 08 | 7:06 am
By Anil Mathur | May 30, 2008
NEW DELHI, India (eTN) - Only a few years ago, it would have been
difficult to comprehend, but today communist Cuba is wooing Indian
traveler. The move comes follows a recent trip to India by a strong
Cuban delegation s touring India to see how the numbers Indian travelers
to Cuba can be increased. In 2007, some 3000 Indians travelers visited
Cuba for leisure.
Cuba Tourism marketing director Mayra Penichet said while in Delhi that
she and her delegation were looking forward to catering to a larger
number of Indian travelers. Though she didn't divulge numbers, three
travel agents in Cuba are dealing with Indian operators currently.
The Cuba delegation said they are aiming to increase the awareness on
Cuba, which has seven UNESCO heritage sites. Scuba diving and other
water activities are attractions being highlighted, apart from beauty of
nature and culture. Recently the country was in news for promoting golf.
Cuba receives some two million tourists a year--some 600,000 are from
Canada and 200,000 from the UK. The island nation is also popular among
Asian travelers, with Japan and China as the major visitors. Other
generating markets are Armenia, Italy, Spain, France, Mexico,
Netherlands, Switzerland and Scandinavian countries.
Not many know that Cuba has as many as 10 international airports and is
connected to 43 cities by 94 airlines. Fourteen international hotel
companies manage sixty-two hotels with more than 24,000 rooms.
Investment of US$200 million dollars is being made to refurbish and
renovate existing facilities.
Cuba is being marketed as an island of charms, happiness, history and