From August 23 to 26, a media tour was organized in the Jizzakh and Samarkand regions for guides, representatives of tourist organizations and the media.
The info-tour, organized within the framework of the USAID's Future Growth Initiative by the Association of private tourism agencies of Uzbekistan. (APTA) and the National PR Center with the support of the Ministry of Tourism and Sports of the Republic of Uzbekistan, is aimed at developing CBT tourism and promoting the tourist potential of family guest houses, as well as a range of services provided to tourists in these accommodation facilities.
CBT (Community based tourism) is a tourism, which implies a form of tourism in which representatives of the local community are involved and receive benefits from their activities. Today, the potential of CBT tourism in Uzbekistan is inextricably linked with the cultural and national characteristics of the region and local communities. Recently, there has been a large increase in the number of CBT tourists, in accordance with which the number of family guest houses is also growing.
Earlier, in May 2021, within the framework of the USAID's Future Growth Initiative, a series of training seminars on the organization of effective activities of the guest house for future entrepreneurs in the Jizzakh, Samarkand and Bukhara regions was held. About 200 entrepreneurs planning to run family guest houses, as well as 100 tour operators and guides took part in the training seminars. At the seminars, local residents were taught the basics of organizing guest houses, business management, marketing, basic forms of reporting, planning expenses and income. Also, the participants of the seminars developed new tourist routes, made a menu of national and European dishes.
After the events, there is an increase in the number of new family guest houses in these regions. For example, more than 35 family guest houses were opened in the village of Tersak in the Samarkand region after training seminars, and about 40 houses were opened in the Zaamin district in a few months, and today their total number is more than 80. It is worth noting that these accommodation facilities, in addition to accommodation, can offer leisure services to tourists: master classes on cooking national dishes, making products of folk and applied art, escorting to local attractions and demonstrating the life and culture of the local population.
As part of the media tour program, the participants got acquainted with the activities of guest houses of the Zaamin district of the Jizzakh region, the villages of Konigil and Tersak of the Samarkand region, and also visited tourist attractions of the regions, including the Zaamin National Natural Park, the Peshagor Cave and the Khujai Serob-ota shrine. The highlight of the event was an introduction to the process of cooking national dishes, master classes on baking local flatbread, processing milk and dairy products, butter, sour cream and other activities of family guest houses.