DOT-6 to assess Antique as cruise destination

The Department of Tourism (DOT-6) is aiming to lure 5.5 million tourists by the end of 2017.

The Department of Tourism (DOT-6) is sending a team that will assess the preparedness of Antique province as a cruise ship destination and an alternative to Boracay Island.

Antique Governor Rhodora J. Cadiao, in an interview on Wednesday, said she has been informed by DOT-6 Regional Director Helen Catalbas that an assessment team will arrive in Antique mid-April.

“The DOT team will assess the Lipata Port in Culasi if cruise ships could dock there,” Cadiao said.

She said that initially, there are around 400 to 600 foreign tourists that are supposed to visit Boracay island in the nearby Aklan province on board a cruise ship but with the situation now, they might divert their visit to Antique where they will spend 12 hours.

“The DOT team together with the provincial tourism office will also come up with a plan on what these tourists could do for the 12 hours visit in Antique,” Cadiao said.

The governor said that the total closure of Boracay which President Rodrigo R Duterte is considering is really bad news for Aklan that is why they will tackle it during the Western Visayas Regional Development Council (RDC) meeting this coming Friday.

Cadiao, who chairs the RDC, said Aklan Governor Florencio Miraflores is requesting for the passage of a resolution urging the national government not to totally close Boracay.

Cadiao, however, said that now the DOT is preparing Antique and Guimaras as a catch basin of Boracay tourists who many have already booked their visit a year ahead or months before.PNA