His Highness Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice-President and Prime Minister of the UAE and Ruler of Dubai
His Highness Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice-President and Prime Minister of the UAE and Ruler of Dubai Image Credit: X

Dubai: His Highness Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice President, Prime Minister, and Ruler of Dubai, today launched the 4th edition of the "World’s Coolest Winter" campaign.

The national domestic tourism initiative, part of the UAE's domestic tourism strategy launched in December 2020, is designed to foster an integrated tourism system across the Emirates, focusing on enhancing local tourism.

"Today marks the launch of a new season of the UAE's annual national tourism campaign, 'World’s Coolest Winter'. Our country is becoming a favoured destination thanks to its enchanting natural beauty, architectural marvels, rich cultural heritage, and, most importantly, its warm and welcoming people," stated His Highness.

He further emphasised the burgeoning growth of the national tourism sector, with aspirations to contribute Dh450 billion to the GDP by 2031.

This year’s "World's Coolest Winter" campaign, themed "Unforgettable Stories", offers a series of diverse programs and a packed schedule of events. The campaign, the largest of its kind, aims to boost domestic tourism within the UAE and draw international tourists to enjoy the unique winter experiences the country offers.

Visitors will be treated to a blend of activities, including enjoying the pleasant winter climate, exploring key recreational, cultural, and natural sites, and engaging in a variety of environmental, sporting, and leisure activities.

The previous edition of the campaign saw significant progress over its first edition, registering an 8 per cent increase in tourist numbers in its third cycle, reaching 1.4 million. The campaign's global reach extended to 190 million people, with content views hitting 159 million.

Recognised as one of the premier tourist destinations globally, the UAE stands out for its cultural, artistic, and historical appeal. The country boasts a wide range of assets, from diverse landscapes and rich resources to an abundance of options for visitors. The UAE's tourism sector is characterised by its varied entertainment elements, an array of events and activities, and the unique experiences it offers.

The campaign showcases key attractions in each emirate, providing comprehensive support to all visitors. With diverse programmes and a full schedule of events, the campaign creates a welcoming environment, offering numerous choices that reflect the UAE's environmental diversity, tourism capabilities, and its distinct social and cultural identity.

Abdullah bin Touq Al Marri, Minister of Economy and Chairman of Emirates Tourism Council, said: “The launch of the World’s Coolest Winter campaign is a key step in our ongoing mission to enhance and evolve the diverse facets of our tourism sector. It builds upon the solid foundation laid in recent years, a period during which the UAE has cemented its status as a premier tourist destination both regionally and globally. Our various tourism sectors have not only achieved high performance rates but have also successfully surpassed numerous international tourism markets in this endeavour.”

The UAE's tourism sector has shown promising performance indicators. From January to September 2023, revenues of hotel establishments in the country soared to Dh 32.2 billion, marking a 27 per cent growth compared to the same period in 2022. The number of hotel guests reached 20.2 million during this period, a 12 per cent increase from 2022. Additionally, the hotel occupancy rate in the first nine months of the last year stood at 75 per cent up by 6 per cent from the same period in 2022, reflecting the sector's robust growth and resilience.

The UAE presents a comprehensive and varied tourism experience, encompassing ecotourism attractions like natural sites, reserves, oases, and mountains that transform into lush paradises in winter. The country is also renowned for its desert tourism, offering a plethora of recreational activities in its vast deserts, including the Empty Quarter and the deserts of Dubai, with options like safari trips and more.

In the field of cultural and heritage tourism, the UAE is dotted with numerous historical sites, diverse heritage landmarks, and a variety of museums. The beach tourism sector is also gaining momentum, inviting visitors to indulge in marine and beach sports, taking full advantage of the UAE's pleasant spring weather.

Moreover, the UAE's mountainous landscapes provide a plethora of opportunities for outdoor enthusiasts, with activities like climbing, mountain hiking, and mountain biking. Adventure tourism is also thriving, with options ranging from diving and paragliding to various other sports, catering to the interests of a wide audience.

The UAE stands out for its vibrant festival, celebration, and major events tourism sector. Festivals, carnivals, and an array of festive events provide a unique draw for tourists seeking memorable experiences. This includes attending various concerts, artistic, musical, and entertainment events that are a hallmark of this period, offering an array of diverse and enriching experiences for visitors.