The Indonesian city of Yogyakarta and surrounding areas are safe and fully accessible for tourists following the eruption of the nearby Mount Merapi volcano last October. Most of the tourist infrastructure has not been affected by the eruption and the rapid response of the Indonesian authorities and the international community has allowed for a quick return to normality. The United Nations World Tourism Organization (UNWTO) has been in close contact with the Indonesian Ministry of Culture and Tourism to minimize the impact on the region’s tourism sector.
“I was happy to see that tourism infrastructure is intact and that no more ash can be seen or perceived in the air,” said UNWTO Executive Director Márcio Favilla visiting the region. “Yogyakarta is ready to welcome back tourists. This was clearly evidenced by the successful holding this week of the World Conference on Culture, Education, and Science, which I attended,” he added.
UNWTO could confirm that basic infrastructure, including hotels, restaurants, and roads, is intact and that Yogyakarta’s Adi Sucipto international airport is open and fully operational. The World Conference on Culture, Education, and Science, for example, took place in Yogyakarta with the presence of over 800 participants from some 20 different countries (December 5-8).
Indonesia has seen international tourist arrivals increase by 14% through September 2010 after posting positive figures in 2009, despite the global economic downturn. UNWTO offers its full support to Indonesia as it continues to consolidate itself as one of Southeast Asia’s top tourism destinations.