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Africa: Kenya Sets Sights on Attracting Asian Golfers to Boost Tourism

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Kenya is eyeing Malaysian golf enthusiasts to bolster its tourism sector, tapping into the growing Asian market.

According to allafrica.com, the Kenya Tourism Board (KTB) has witnessed a remarkable 36 percent growth in visitor numbers from Asia within the past seven months, signaling the region’s potential to contribute significantly to Kenya’s tourism arrivals.

During this period, Kenya welcomed 104,764 visitors from the Asian market, up from 76,977 in the same period the previous year. This growth has spurred KTB to explore ways to further tap into this market.

READ: Africa: Kenya Tourism Board sets target to attract 10 million tourists in five years, to diversify its offerings

KTB Chairperson Francis Gichaba sees Malaysia, known for its strong golf culture and trade links, as a promising source of tourists. Nairobi, Kenya’s capital, boasts seven golf courses, and Gichaba believes that leveraging the adventurous nature of the Asian population and packaging Kenya’s offerings will result in growth exceeding 50 percent.

To highlight the appeal of golf tourism and foster collaboration, a Malaysia Day celebration at the Sigona Golf Club brought together over 100 participants from the diplomatic corps and the business community. Malaysian High Commissioner to Kenya Ruzami Mohamad expressed his commitment to working with KTB to promote golf tourism, emphasizing the unique experiences that Kenya offers.

READ: Africa: Kenya Tourism Board appoints John Chirchir, HSC as its acting Chief Executive Officer, as Betty Radier bows out

Unlike in some countries where wild animals are confined to zoos, Kenya’s national parks feature free-roaming wildlife, providing an exceptional experience for visitors. This natural setting appeals to Asian travelers who are seeking unique and authentic experiences.

Golf is a popular leisure activity across generations in Asia, making it a prime opportunity for KTB to attract visitors interested in combining golf with Kenya’s stunning landscapes and safari adventures. With approximately 40 golf courses in picturesque locations across the country, Kenya offers golf enthusiasts a unique blend of sport and natural beauty.

Kenya’s consistent sunshine and temperate weather make it an ideal golfing destination, particularly for those escaping the northern hemisphere’s colder seasons. Many of Kenya’s golf courses are conveniently located near major tourism attractions, ensuring that visitors can enjoy excellent hotels, lodges, cuisine, and service alongside their golfing experiences.

The Japanese Ambassador to Kenya, Okaniwa Ken, commended Kenya for its efforts to enhance golf sports, making it more attractive to international golfers. He praised Kenya’s hospitable people, favorable climate, and unique natural attractions, which set the country apart as a top destination for golf enthusiasts and tourists alike.

Kenya’s strategy to target Asian golfers is part of its broader initiative to diversify its tourism offerings and attract a more extensive range of visitors to experience the country’s cultural and natural treasures.

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