Cape Town crowned leading destination in Africa

Cape Town has again earned top honours in the world of tourism by garnering the title of Africa’s Leading Destination 2011 at the World Travel Awards on Monday. It is the 12th time this accolade has been won by the city. Since 1998, Cape Town has picked up the award in all but two years (2004 and 2007), when it was pipped by Sharm el-Sheikh.

Cape Town faced tough competition from fellow South African destinations Johannesburg, Durban and the Kruger National Park, as well as Luxor in Egypt, Marrakech in Morocco and Victoria Falls in Zimbabwe.

Awards are important for awareness and the profile of destinations, but they must be followed up with campaigns that convert awareness into real visitors to the destination. Naturally we are proud of this award and the recognition it brings.

Together with TripAdvisor’s Top Destination 2011, and more recently Travel and Leisure’s World’s Best Cities vote, these accolades form an excellent platform for the launch of our national and international marketing campaign aimed at increasing demand for Cape Town. The campaign will launch locally at Cape Town Tourism’s AGM on October 17 and will be rolled out internationally from the World Travel Market in November 2011. The campaign is part of a broad strategy Cape Town Tourism is implementing to meet the changed market conditions and consumer demands.

Cape Town Tourism has worked closely with the industry to come up with a more compelling and inclusive tourism marketing positioning for Cape Town that goes beyond beauty. Cape Town’s natural beauty is perhaps her best-known quality, and while it must remain an important part of our marketing message, it is important for tourism marketing campaigns to complement a broader economic message and reinforce Cape Town as a city of inspiration and innovation.

Mariette du Toit-Helmbold
Cape Town Tourism CEO

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