As part of a concerted effort to revive its tourism sector, eThekwini Municipality launched the ‘My City, My Heritage’ campaign at uShaka Marine World on Friday (September 10).
The campaign aims to position travel and tourism in a new way, reminding visitors how culturally diverse Durban is by showcasing its hidden gems.
The campaign was unveiled by eThekwini Mayor Mxolisi Kaunda during Tourism and Heritage Month. It was welcomed by industry stakeholders who applauded the initiative as an innovative marketing tool to aid the recovering tourism sector, which has been adversely affected by COVID-19 and the recent civil unrest.
Kaunda said: “Through this campaign we are going to unearth and showcase Durban’s hidden gems to promote domestic tourism. This will be achieved through several roadshows, digital activations and competitions encouraging people to rediscover Durban through heritage tourism.”
He said the campaign would take South Africa on a digital historical journey of Durban, to rediscover the city through media campaigns.
Mayor Kaunda said they were projecting increased visitor numbers during the heritage public holiday long weekend from September 23 and the October school holidays.
“For the September long weekend, we are anticipating 60% visitor occupancy, which equates to 75 000 visitors, including day visitors, a direct spend of R103 million (€6.2m), injection of R256 million (€15.3m) to the GDP and 550 jobs being created. For the October school holidays, we are forecasting a 55 percent visitor occupancy, which translates to 90 000 visitors including day visitors, R192 million (€11.5m) direct spend and R476 million (€28.5m) contribution to the GDP. Around 1 020 jobs will be created,” he said.
Chief Executive Officer of uShaka Marine World, Ndabo Khoza, said: “We are prepared to work with the city as stakeholders to ensure that Durban is a destination of choice. As a coastal city, it is imperative to showcase and educate people about marine life. We encourage residents to be visitors and explore their own city.”