Bulgaria’s Bansko Expects Growth of Visitors from Serbia and Macedonia
During this winter season, Bulgarian tourism industry experts expect a growth of local tourists, as well as visitors from Macedonia and Serbia, they said during yesterday’s conference on the development on winter tourism.
The number of people coming to Bulgaria’s winter resorts from Macedonia and Serbia is expected to grow by 10 per cent compared to last year, while the Russian share of the market will remain the same as in 2008.
The resorts of Pamorovo, Chepelare and Devin in the Rodopi Mountains expect to see 20 per cent more local visitors.
Despite the positive expectations, some set-backs of Bulgaria’s mountain tourism were also discussed during the conference.
“The small hotels in the mountain resorts are especially hurt by the chaotic overdevelopment, ” Dimitar Popov, managing director of the Penguin Travel agency, said during the conference, adding that this overdevelopment is a real nightmare for West European tourists who are interested in hiking. Most of them don’t want to see during their hikes traces of a human intervention in nature – even an asphalt road, power lines, lifts, etc., he claimed.
According to him, the urgent needs of Bulgaria’s winter resorts include an infrastructure improvement, the creation of exact maps of the mountains, the fixing of signs and other route signifiers, as well as to mark routes for various kinds of tourism, such as hiking, mountain biking or ATV tours.
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