AWEX, Visit Brussels, Wallonia Belgium Tourism jointly organise a tourism training event ‘The Hidden Gems of Belgium’

Wallonia in India (AWEX Mumbai), Visit Brussels and Wallonia Belgium Tourism jointly organised a spectacular tourism training event in association with Maratha Chamber of Commerce Industry and Agriculture and TAAP recently in Pune. Emmanuelle Timmermans, Trade and Investment Commissioner from AWEX along with Ellona Pereira from Visit Brussels presented the hidden gems of the tourist destination.

Introducing Wallonia to the audience, Emmanuelle Timmermans said, “This event was organised, as we realised that even regular visitors to Belgium are not always aware of some of the hidden gems of Belgium. One of those is the new sensational city of Dinant, which was voted one of Europe’s Best Destinations in 2019.”

She further highlighted the most popular tourist attractions in Wallonia. Spa is one of Belgium’s main tourist spots. Spa is famous for its several natural mineral springs. It is also the location of mineral water producer and where the term ‘spa’ originates from.

Wallonia is well known for its castles, one of the major attractions being ‘Radhadesh’, a spiritual place which has an impressive castle turned into a temple complex named the ISKON Temple. The castle has been restored and transformed into a spiritual oasis where visitors can explore colourful Indian traditions. Wallonia is home to the second-largest cave in the world called ‘Caves of Han’, an excellent option for MICE tourism and family segments.

Educational Tourism is also growing rapidly for a few years and Euro Space Centre experiences a large number of Indian tourists including all major Indian schools. The European Space Centre provides a virtual reality experience. Another major attraction is the upcoming Beer Palace to be opened near the Grand Palace in the City of Brussels. Brussels is the second most cosmopolitan city in the world and is well-known for heritage tours,  be it Grand Place, Manneken Pis., Belgian Comic Strip tour, Atomium, Mini Europe or Flying Restaurant, Belgium has it all. It is also called ‘The City of Museums’.

The event showcased different itineraries for FIT, Luxury, MICE, Group and Educational Tourism. Wallonia and Brussels also offer amazing Beer Route across the two regions. Most of the breweries are well known for their traditional manufacturing process. The Sweet Experience with chocolate and waffle workshop is also a must.

Many hidden truths about the ‘Tourism Gems’ from Wallonia are unknown to the world like the fact that the saxophone was invented in Wallonia and there is a Saxophone Museum on the river Maas at  Dinant.

Talking on Belgium’s promotional goals for 2019 and 2020, Emmanuelle Timmermans said, “We would like to attract an increased number of visitors from India to our region. Wallonia tourism is truly “Hidden Gems” as many truths are unknown to the world. I have seen tourism trends are changing now, tourists believe more in unique experiences such as amazing activities, beautiful memories, mysterious places. Wallonia is one destination for all generations  and for all type of tourism interests, be it FIT, Luxury, family, MICE or educational tourism, Wallonia has lots to offer to everyone.”

The event was attended by major Indian tour operators.