Sagada reopens doors to tourists; new rules set amid COVID-19 threat
Aileen Cerrudo • February 24, 2020 • 787
After its temporary closure, the tourist spots in Sagada, Mountain Province have been reopened to the public but with a new set of rules as precautionary measure against the coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-2019).
Sagada Mayor James Pooten, Jr. has signed an order lifting the suspension on all eco-tourism activities in their area. However, Pooten said spelunking and sunrise viewing will remain suspended to prevent the spread of the coronavirus.
The official also said tours will begin at 7:00 a.m. and tourists need to undergo health screenings upon arrival in Sagada.
“Assessment will be done when registering at the Tourist Information Center when checking in at accommodations, and before tours start,” he said.—AAC
The Department of Tourism (DOT) has announced that young and senior tourists from Western Visayas are now allowed to visit Boracay Island.
Tourism Secretary Bernadette Romulo-Puyat said Boracay will reopen for tourists, ages below 21 and above 60, from Western Visayas.
“This move aims to further reinvigorate the tourism economy in the region and address the earlier clamor of Boracay tourism stakeholders to attract more tourists to the island,” she said.
The Inter-Agency Task Force on Emerging Infectious Diseases (IATF-EID) on Thursday (July 23) approved the DOT’s recommendation to lift the ban on tourists below 21 and above 60 on Boracay island.
Puyat assured the government will continue to put the safety of the public first and will strictly implement health and safety protocol as the island reopens. She also noted that there were no reported coronavirus (COVID-19) cases on the island.
“The DOT will always put paramount concern on the safety of our people — tourists and residents alike,” she said. AAC
Palawan is again hailed as the “best island in the world,” by international travel magazine Travel+Leisure.
“It’s dramatic at sea level, with mountains rising directly from the ocean palm-edged beaches. Though it’s difficult to reach from many parts of the world, once travelers get there they can dive in World War II wrecks, explore old-growth rain forests, and paddle one of the world’s longest subterranean rivers at Puerto Princesa,” according to Travel+Leisure magazine.
The magazine released its Top 25 Best Islands in the world on Wednesday (July 9), in which Palawan ranked first with a score 94.83. This is the fourth time the island topped the list.
One of the fans wrote, “The landscape and scenery are just gorgeous. It offers the most beautiful beaches, resorts, and scenery anywhere.”
Meanwhile, the Department of Tourism celebrated Palawan’s recognition. DOT Secretary Bernadette Romulo-Puyat said that the “rehabilitation and sustainable development efforts last year, especially in El Nido and Coron, were well-received by tourists everywhere.” AAC
Tourism industry stakeholders agreed to help boost domestic travel by offering discounted airfare and hotel rates following a meeting with President Duterte.
“Come with me and be my travel companion. I’ll be traveling around the Philippines. Pasyal tayo dito sa atin. Unahin natin ‘yung atin. Mabuhay ang Pilipino. Mabuhay ang turismo ng Pilipinas,” Duterte said on his video message.—AAC (with reports from Rosalie Coz)
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