More than 100 travel journalists from around the world have landed in Winnipeg as part of a travel media show aimed at selling the city to tourists.
Travel Manitoba and Tourism Winnipeg are hosting the 11th annual Carrefour GoMedia Canada Marketplace conference from Aug. 17 to 21 to create a buzz about Canada's tourism industry.
“To come to Manitoba and experience what Manitoba has to offer, then go back and write it in their magazines, post it in their blogs, tweet out the messages – these kinds of things create incredible awareness for the province,” said Travel Manitoba’s Colin Ferguson.
And many of them are getting sneak peeks at what Manitoba will have to offer in the fall.
The Canadian Museum for Human Rights doesn’t officially open until September, but travel writers got a glimpse inside this week. They also took in Assiniboine Park Zoo’s new Journey to Churchill exhibit as well as a slew of restaurants and venues.
Travel Writer Jim Byers said he was blown away by the Canadian Museum for Human Rights tour.
"I got inside and I thought it was utterly sensational,” said Byers. “I mean there's this beautiful alabaster imported from Spain, and they've taken LED lights and they've put them inside the alabaster and so as you walk up these ramps you're surrounded by this glowing, other worldly kind of light.”
In fact, he said, the building sets Winnipeg apart from other Canadian destinations.
"There's not a building that looks like this in Toronto or Montreal that I've seen, so I think that's going to be a real bonus for you,” added Byers.
For Karishma Sen, who works with Travel Trends in India, it’s all about Hudson.
“I would tell them to come for the polar bears. I was just mesmerized by the four of them. They were so cute!” said Sen.
Ferguson said the positive reviews are buoyed by Winnipeg’s friendly, laid-back attitude.
“What we have is a friendly, warm and caring personality. People gravitate toward it. We just need to tell more people about it. This opportunity provides that,” said Ferguson.