Colombian authorities came up with a new
way of attracting more visitors – by promoting their rich cuisine and typical
dishes. The emphasis on gastro tourism is the new marketing strategy announced by the Ministry of
Commerce at the Caribbean Food and Rum Festival.
The aim is to attract more foreign tourists
with egg-stuffed arepas, paisa platter, corn pudding, fried ants, and other
authentic Colombian delicacies.
At the festival, the ministry presented a
list of dishes that make up the national gastronomic offering and the calendar
of activities taking place in the country throughout the year, to promote local
flavors, energize the economy of the different communities, and to boost
tourism in Colombia.
According to the ministry, Colombian
cuisine has a great variety of foods and dishes due to the diversity of
products found in the different regions. All this added to the provincial
traditions and the 48 culinary events that take place throughout the country,
represents a potential for the development of gastro tourism.
These events include the National
Gastronomic Congress of Popayán, the Black Pacific Gastronomic Festival of
Nuquí (Chocó), the Caribbean Islands Gastronomic Festival in San Andrés, and
the Bogota Wine and Food Festival. The 48 gastro tourism shows and festivals
make up the Network of Significant Gastronomic Events in Colombia.
"Colombian gastronomy is a product
that could have a significant impact on the tourist development of the
regions," said María Claudia Lacouture, Minister of Commerce, Industry and
Tourism, who issued an invitation to rediscover traditional flavors.
The strategy also includes education and
training, business development and promotion.
Colombia also has a wide range of
restaurants, four of which are among the best 50 in Latin America: Leo
Espinosa’s Leo Cocina y Cava (16th place), the Rausch brothers’ Criterion (29th
place), Harry Sasson (40th) and Andrés Carne de Res (49th place).
In addition, the country was chosen to host
Latin America's 50 Best Restaurants for 2017 and 2018, with the support of the
Corazón Verde Foundation.
Bogotá, Cali, Medellín, Cartagena and Santa
Marta are some of the country’s main gastronomic destinations, with a wide and
interesting offering of predominantly local packages. But there are also
first-rate restaurants, with sophisticated facilities, that offer the best in
international cuisine. Gastro tourism in Colombia has a great potential
according to the ministry which is now to be utilized.