The World Tourism Organization (UNWTO) awarded Bahrain the hosting of the ninth UNWTO World Forum on Gastronomy Tourism in 2024, the world’s largest gastronomy tourism event.
This announcement is a testament to the exceptional tourism and entertainment capabilities of Bahrain, as one of the leading gastronomy and gourmet destinations in the Middle East.
The UNWTO announcement was on the sidelines of the 8th World Forum on Gastronomy Tourism, taking place in San Sebastian, Spain, on October 5-7, held by the World Tourism Organization and its Affiliate Member, the Basque Culinary Centre (BCC), with the aim of promoting the exchange of expertise in tourism and gastronomy, identifying good practices, and promoting gastronomy tourism as a main factor in destination development.
The Bahrain Tourism and Exhibitions Authority (BTEA) will organize the 9th UNWTO World Forum on Gastronomy Tourism 2024 at Exhibition World Bahrain in Sakhir, the Middle East’s newest and one of the largest convention and exhibition centres.
This outstanding international recognition reflects the insightful vision of the Ministry of Tourism and BTEA in pursuing innovation and excellence in gastronomy tourism on a global scale, enhancing Bahrain’s competitiveness in various worldwide conventions and exhibitions, raising awareness about F&B culture, and joining efforts to lift up gastronomy tourism globally to ideally position the Kingdom as one of the most internationally sought-after destinations for gourmet and gastronomy enthusiasts. This direction is well aligned with the Tourism Strategy 2022-2026 objectives to turn Bahrain into a leading regional and global tourism hub.
“We are very happy to bring the Forum to the Middle East for the first time. As this region experiences rapid development in tourism, we are thrilled to showcase Bahrain’s rich heritage and the unique spirit of sharing embedded in its gastronomy – a driver of inclusive tourism development,” Zurab Pololikashvili, Secretary-General of UNWTO.
Dr. Nasser Qaedi, CEO of BTEA expressed the honour of the notable recognition.
“Bahrain is proud to have such a varied combination of culinary tastes that reflects its rich legacy and its appealing spotlight for gastronomists and culinary tourists. This prominent event will serve as an ideal platform to offer the best innovative solutions to elevate gastronomy tourism, highlighting the Kingdom’s outstanding gourmet and culinary experience based on its rich legacy, intersection of civilizations and cultures, local cuisine diversity, and its fame for diverse tastes, which will positively support tourism product diversity and increase inbound tourism influx,” he added.