Leisure in Karelia at the international exhibition in Finland

From January 20 to January 23 Messukeskus exhibition center of Helsinki, Finland, was a venue for the international tourist exhibition MATKA - 2011.

The Republic of Karelia is one of the main tourist destinations in the north-west of the Russian Federation, so Karelia traditionally participated in this significant tourist exhibition of North Europe.

In 2011 MATKA exhibition presented 1200 exhibitors from 70 countries, including the largest Finnish companies. Estonia was a partner country of the exhibition. The representatives of such countries as Macedonia, Gabon, Azerbaijan and Singapore took part in the exhibition for the first time, and exhibitors from Denmark and Nepal returned to the exhibition after a few years.

Karelia was presented at the exhibition by a corporate stand and comprised the main part of the exposition of the Russian Federation. The experts of the Petrozavodsk City Administration, Information Tourist Center of the Republic of Karelia, Kizhi open-air museum, Intourist-Petrozavodsk Joint-Stock Company and Nordic Travel, Ltd. travel agencies, the Waters of Mars (Martsialnye Vody) spa, Tourholding Karelia, Ltd. worked at the collective stand of Karelia. In addition, Druzhba, Ltd., Korela, Ltd. and Kolmas Karelia, Ltd. travel agencies of Karelia presented their tourist products at the stand of the Finnish company Futurist. Karelia-Fleet tourist and transport company was presented by an individual working site.

Guidebooks, catalogues, brochures, booklets, leaflets for promotion and information about tourist organizations of Karelia were distributed at the exhibition. Visitors of the stand were offered information about leisure in Karelia. The prospective development of new tourist services and programs were discussed. Among the Russian regions the Republic of Karelia was notable for the most significant presentations, appeal of tourist offers to visitors of the exhibition.

Opinion poll among representatives of Karelian tour operators concerning efficiency of participation in the exhibition has revealed that almost all of their expectations were legitimated. Karelian participants of the exhibition pointed out that there remains interest to Karelia, however, no increase in tourist traffic from the countries of Scandinavia is expected in the season of 2011. The principal factor inhibiting growth of entrance tourist flow in the republic from abroad remains high cost of packages of proposals of Karelian tour operators.


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