Workshop promotes Scandinavian holidays

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Workshop promotes Scandinavian holidays

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Shigeyoshi Noto, director of the Finnish Tourist Board for Japan, explained the country to visitors this way: “Finland is a good place to visit all year around. You can find different attractive sights for every season.”
Mr. Noto works in Tokyo but said he didn’t mind flying to Seoul to attend a workshop held by the Scandinavian Tourist Board on Friday.
Seventeen tourism companies, including Scandinavian Airlines, Silja Line and Fjord Norway, from Finland, Sweden, Norway, Denmark and Iceland participated in the workshop to promote their attractions to mostly Korean travel agencies.
Ambassadors Arild Braastad of Norway, Lars Vargo of Sweden, Kim Loutonen of Finland and Poul O.G. Hoiness of Denmark also attended the workshop.
At the opening, Ambassador Braastad said that about 15,000 to 20,000 Koreans visit Scandinavia every year and that he’d like to see that number increase. He said the workshop offered a chance to do that. Because Korea is a long ways away from the region and there are no direct flights, Scandinavia has not attracted many Korean tourists compared to cities in Europe.
Sampo Rautio, project assistant of the Helsinki-based Area Travel Agency, said that he sees great potential in Korea. “I’m not sure yet what Korean tourists want to find in Finland, but it seems that Koreans tend to visit one region at a time instead of visiting the whole of Europe for about two weeks,” Mr. Rautio said. “We are here to make tour programs for Koreans.”
Barbara Zanoni Utne, the fifth-generation managing director of the family-owned Ullensvang Hotel located at the Hardanger Fjord, Norway, said that the number of Korean tourists visiting the hotel doubled last year from the year before. “Well, the number is not, of course, millions, but as the number is growing, we see the potential in the market,” said Ms. Utne, who visited Korea for the workshop.


by Park Sung-ha
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