An Aristotle Municipality delegation recently travelled to Almaty, Kazakhstan to present its summer vacation programs to the Kazakh tourism market.
The programs, which focus on luxury, marine, and pilgrimage opportunities, were presented during a series of business meetings held with local travel and tourism stakeholders.
At the meetings, the delegation presented a summer holiday program that combines leisure with pilgrimage, wine tasting, and gastronomy. The program was well-received by the Kazakh tour operators, who were familiar with Eastern Halkidiki because of the direct flights that connected Almaty and Astana with Thessaloniki in the pre-pandemic period.
“We are reaching out to all Russian-speaking tourist markets,” said Aristotle Mayor Stelios Valianos, adding that the municipality’s strategic tourism plan “focuses on thematic outreach to Azerbaijan, Georgia, Kazakhstan and the Baltic countries, whose economic growth has been rapid, but whose peoples’ loyalty and interest in Athos, an important center of Eastern Orthodox monasticism, remains as strong as ever.”
In addition to the business meetings, the Aristotle Municipality will promote Eastern Halkidiki in collaboration with the FUN & SUN specialized tour operator, who is also examining ways to reintroduce flights between Thessaloniki and Almaty and Astana.
In early October, FUN & SUN sales managers are also expected to visit and inspect the area’s luxury hotel infrastructure, while during mid-April 2024, a team of Kazakh travel agents will visit large and small hotels in Eastern Halkidiki.
Furthermore, the Aristoteleia festival, to be held in July 2024, will celebrate Kazakh cultural heritage for four days, in a bid to culturally link the area with Almaty.
The initiative was co-organized by the Municipality of Aristotle and the MidEast travel organization, while future promotion bids and related activities will be carried out in collaboration with the Central Macedonia Region and the Thessaloniki Hotels Association.