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Peaceful and romantic, with a new regional costume: Mecklenburg-Vorpommern increases its international profile

2,000 kilometers of Baltic coastline, 2,000 lakes and 2,000 hours of sunshine annually – just three good reasons for vacationing in Mecklenburg-Vorpommern, as Manuela Schwesig, the state’s Minister President pointed out on Wednesday at ITB Berlin. “Our state is just the place for people seeking to escape from the stresses of everyday life and find themselves again”, said Schwesig. The state premier assured her audience that Mecklenburg-Vorpommern is very proud to be the first of Germany’s federal states to feature as an ITB Berlin partner region.

The oil and honey routes: Morocco’s women seek to attract guests

Marokko, Berber-Frauen

Increasing numbers of European vacationers on the sunny beaches of the Agadir region in Morocco also want to become acquainted with the mountain villages in the Atlas mountains. Such day trips are included in the standard programmes offered by all the larger hotels complexes on the coast. However, it is rare for visitors to be able to stay overnight and to make contact with the locals and with women’s groups.

The Maldives presents its first TV channel

Malediven, Strand

“The tourism sector in the Maldives is booming“, said a delighted Moosa Zameer, the country’s tourism minister. Last year’s partner country of ITB Berlin recently set up its own embassy in Berlin, “an important step for tourism in our country“, the minister said. Hussain Afeef, vice chairman of the Maldives Association of the Tourism Industry, added: “Tourism is important for economic development in the Maldives.“ Looking at the figures, the prospects are good: as early as January a 15 per cent rise in tourism gave tourism professionals cause for joy.

Ambitious goals: Vietnam remains on course for growth

Vietnam-Stand, ITB Berlin 2016

Last year, it happened: the number of international tourists who travelled to Vietnam crossed the magical ten million mark for the first time. The number of visitors to Vietnam has been growing for years, and last year saw an increase of 26 per cent. Ha van Sieu, Vice Chairman of the National Administration of Tourism, and Va Zhe Binh, Vice Chairman of the Vietnam Tourism Association, reported this on Thursday at ITB Berlin.

Myanmar campaigns for visits during the rainy season

Myanmar, Boot

Myanmar is presenting itself as an up-and-coming destination at ITB Berlin. Formerly Burma and ruled by a military dictatorship for decades, the country is advertising with its culture, its beaches and the "50 shades of green" campaign.

15 new airports by 2019: Indonesia's growth strategy emphasises their features

Indonesien, Tempel

"We are a country with an Islamic population - but not an Islamic republic", clarifies Fauzi Bowo, Ambassador of the Republic of Indonesia in Germany. At the beginning of his speech today at ITB Berlin 2017, he indicated the importance of values such as freedom of expression and the press, tolerance, democracy, and solidarity in the fight against terrorism. Because if visitor numbers are to almost double from 12 million (2016) to 20 million by 2019, it cannot be done without Europe, which, at 15%, is next to China and Singapore as the island state's largest source markets.

Caribbean: Carnival all year round - and more and more tourists

Karibik, Strand

The over 30 islands in the Caribbean are using their unique "feel of the Caribbean" more and more in advertising. Beaches, palm trees, hammocks, fine hotels, and sunshine year round can also be found in other parts of the world. But calypso groups that warm the sand under the full moon, joint parties and church visits with islanders, Caribbean rum and countless kinds of cocktails, the reggae version of "Silent Night," and carnival for twelve months – that’s something. "The Caribbean feeling is unbeatable," said Karolin Troubetzkoy at ITB Berlin.

Kenya invests in security

Kenya, Leopard

"We have developed significantly in the area of security," Kenya's Ambassador Joseph Magutt immediately addressed the most pressing issue for him and his countrymen at the press conference at ITB Berlin. Against this backdrop, he quoted an impressive number: 103,000 new police officers have been hired.

Spain: Yet another record year...

Spanien, Landschaftsbild

The 75 million mark has been exceeded: Spain attracted 75,563,198 tourists in 2016, an increase of 10.3% compared to 2015. With that, the continuous increase is on a seven-year streak. Total expenditure from international tourists was € 77.625 million (an increase of nine per cent). In 2016, the number of German tourists in Spain rose to more than 11.2 million visitors (up 6.4%), making Germany the third largest source market after the United Kingdom, with almost 18 million tourists (up 12.4%), and France, with 11.4 million (up 7.1%).

Moscow taken over by football from 2017


The Russian capital is preparing to host top-class sporting events: the highlight of the 2017 season will be the FIFA Confederations Cup from 17 June to 2 July with the participation of the German national team, considered a rehearsal for the 2018 World Cup in Russia. The games will take place in stadiums, which will also be venues for the 2018 World Cup; many international fans are expected for the event, including many Germans. Speaking of: every fourth foreign visitor to Moscow is German, and a total of 17 million travellers visited the Russian capital – a new record.

Experience India live – at ITB Berlin 2017 or now even easier with an eVisa on site

Indien-Stand, ITB Berlin 2017

India's strong presence of around 50 exhibitors at ITB Berlin 2017 shows once again how important the German travel market is for the subcontinent. Unique cultural performances, such as the traditional Navrati and Holi festivals, bring visitors closer to Indian culture. A special programme highlight will be the performance of popular singers Lovely & Monty on Saturday, the first day open to the public. They will sing a special "Incredible India" version of their song "Wenn Du." Even Bollywood dancers will add to the Indian flair that day.

Malaysia: attractive, but is it also safe?

Malaysia-Stand, ITB Berlin 2016

ITB Berlin 2017 coincides with an important political anniversary for Malaysia: the south east Asian country obtained its independence 60 years ago. To honour this occasion in a suitable fashion not only the Director of the Tourism Promotion Board, Datuk Seri Mirza Mohammad Taiyab, but also the Minister for Tourism and Culture, Dato Seri Mohamed Nazri Abdul Aziz, are attending ITB Berlin.

Madagascar: unknown Treasure Island

Madagaskar, Landschaft

Madagascar is also called a "world island" or the "eighth continent." Or, as in the Malagasy Ministry of Tourism's current campaign: "Treasure Island." The campaign’s goal: the island east of Africa would like to move up into the league of the top worldwide destinations. The attractiveness of the fauna and flora and active tourism including scuba diving, hiking, and trekking should be advertised.

It’s official – Costa Rica makes you happy

Costa Rica, collared aracari Vogel

Costa Rica is becoming an increasingly popular holiday destination among Germans – a fact confirmed by the country’s tourist board, the Instituto Costarricense de Turismo. In 2016 Costa Rica reported 67,939 arrivals from Germany, 2.2 per cent more than the previous year. Now that new flight routes connecting Europe have been opened the aim is to ensure further growth in this source market. In 2016 arrivals from Europe numbered 434,884, an increase in visitors of 10.6 per cent. Tourists from the UK accounted for the largest share, followed by Germany, Spain, France and Switzerland.

South Africa’s “inspiring new ways” at ITB Berlin 2017

Südafrika-Stand, ITB Berlin 2017

In 2016, South Africa emerged as one of the world’s most trendy tourist destinations with more than ten million arrivals from all over the globe. This is almost 13 per cent more than in the previous year, which was overshadowed by uncertainties surrounding the Ebola epidemic in West Africa. Visitors from Germany, in particular, are impressed by the country’s amazing diversity and often come repeatedly, according to the South African Tourist Office. Minister of Tourism Derek Hanekom is overjoyed that “we registered more than 300,000 German tourists last year -  an increase of 21 per cent.

Egypt to introduce electronic visa at the end of May

Ägypten, Kamelen in der Wüste

Egypt will introduce an electronic visa at the end of May. The fee will initially remain unchanged, said Tourism Minister Mohamed Yehia Rashed at ITB Berlin. A decree to increase fees has been suspended until June; a reassessment will be discussed in the cabinet next week. One can assume that no action that would harm the tourism industry will be taken. With 650,000 visitors, Germans were the top tourists to Egypt last year – despite a 35 per cent decrease. After recording 20 per cent growth in January, an increase of 35 per cent is expected for this year.

Japan breaks all records

Japan-Stand, ITB Berlin

“The records are falling like ninepins“, said a delighted Bettina Kraemer of the Japanese tourist board. In 2016 more than 24 million people visited Japan, 21.8 per cent more than in 2015. However, for Japan’s prime minister Shinzō Abe that is still not enough. Kraemer added, though not altogether seriously, that he is hoping for 40 million in the year of the Olympics. Visitor numbers from Germany are rising too. In 2016 183,300 Germans visited Japan, 12.7 per cent more than the previous year.

Botswana: The journey of the rhinos


Rhinos can consider themselves lucky to catch a plane to the Okavango Delta, a place where conditions for them are ideal and where the government makes every effort to prevent poaching. Botswana’s biggest treasure is its biodiversity. Thus great attention is paid and efforts are made accordingly to protect relevant areas. One of the most important projects is the protection and conservation of the black rhino and the rare white rhino.

Central America: More tourists and new historical discoveries

Menschen aus Costa Rica, ITB Berlin 2016

The seven small Central American countries are enjoying significantly more tourists and foreign exchange revenue. Costa Rica continues to be the region's shining example. And in Guatemala, researchers have discovered a new ancient Mayan road network. The Central America Tourism Agency (CATA) announced the latest facts at ITB Berlin. 

"Cuba si" – But the upsurge in visitor numbers has slowed down

Auto in Havana, Cuba

Cuba has been racing from one record to another, but there is a limit to everything. Following the massive boom in tourism that accompanied the thaw in political relations with the USA two years ago, growth has now slowed down. After recording 3.5 million visitors in 2015 and 4.035 million in 2016, the Tourism Ministry in Havana is expecting some 4.2 million from all over the world in 2017. Compared with the double-digit expansion of the previous years this would represent just a five per cent increase, it was reported on the Cuba stand in Hall 22a at ITB Berlin.