Juan David Latorre
During last week’s International Tourism Trade Fair (FITUR) in Madrid, the Paraguayan Embassy, headed by its Minister of Tourism, Sofía Montiel de Afara, and its ambassador, Ricardo Scavone, carried out a very intense tourism promotion of their country, highlighting the natural, cultural, historical, faunal and floral beauties of the South American country.
Minister Sofía Montiel presented the documentary Paraguay Solo Para vos at The H. Club Restaurant, which she accompanied with a brief and descriptive speech on Paraguay’s tourist attractions. “To talk about Paraguay is to talk about unique experiences, he said. What stands out most about my country is its people. It is the warmth, the general feeling of empathy for others, doing everything possible to make them feel happy and enjoy the hours, days or weeks that they visit Paraguay”.
The Paraguayan minister went on to point out “the natural attractions, the exuberant beauty of green areas, protected areas, nature reserves, biosphere reserves,… To speak of a Paraguayan marshland, which is a sanctuary of nature where only with contemplation the tourist is astonished, with the amount of unique flora and fauna, much of it endangered… That is the Paraguayan land.”
The minister referred to the country’s capital, Asunción, as the Capital of Birds, “where more than three hundred species roost, in the bay of Asunción. She spoke of Paraguay’s indigenous and ancestral culture, with its own customs, ancestral knowledge related to the properties of natural herbs, aromatic and medicinal plants, which are a source of inspiration for all pharmacology”. Minister Sofía Montiel then highlighted the gastronomy offered by her country, the product of a fusion between ancestral dishes and the arrival of the Spanish, which gave rise to recipes that are still used today”.
Paraguay was presented with the designation of Asunción as the Ibero-American Capital of the Gastronomic Culture of the Jesuit Missions, by the president of the Ibero-American Academy of Gastronomy, Rafael Ansón, who highlighted the spiritual and gastronomic role of the missions. “It was in Paraguay that the first vineyards, the first olive trees, the first cows were planted, the people from there went there to learn to farm, to milk, to eat”.
An agreement was also signed between the National Secretariat of Tourism of Paraguay and the Organisation of Ibero-American States for Education, Science and Culture (OEI), in the presence of its Secretary General, Mariano Jabonero, who said that this agreement “puts Paraguay in its place because of its culture”.
Finally, the Distinction “Asunción as a Smart Tourism Destination” was awarded by SEGITTUR (Sociedad Mercantil Estatal para la Gestión de la Innovación y las Tecnologías Turísticas) in the presence of its president, Enrique Martínez Martín.