BANGKOK, June 15 (Xinhua) -- The Thailand Travel Mart Plus Amazing Gateway to the Greater Mekong Subregion (TTM+) 2017 was held this week to promote tourism in the kingdom and also its neighboring Cambodia, Laos, Myanmar and Vietnam.
During a panel discussion on Thursday, representatives from these five countries shared their views on heritage tourism, community-based tourism, city tourism and food tourism.
They emphasized the importance of food tourism as many local food in the region such as Pad Thai of Thailand, Larb of both Thailand and Laos, Bun Cha of Vietnam have gained popularity among international tourists.
"I think the food, in terms of tourism, is not a by-product anymore, it is also a very new tourism sector." said Thai representative Chattan Kunjara Na Ayudhya, deputy governor of Tourism Authority of Thailand.
"Food is a primary attraction for tourists, so I think this is an exciting time for food tourism," Chattan added.
Vu Nam, deputy director general of Tourism Marketing Department of Vietnam National Administration of Tourism, said some foods in these five countries share similarities and they can work together on promoting these foods.
The representatives from the five countries also introduced their countries' attractions to participants of the event and encouraged tourists to explore self-driving cross-border tourism routes, such as the route starting from Thailand's Chiang Mai to Laos's Luang Prabang, Vang Vieng and Vientiane and back to Thailand's Nong Khai. Enditem