Page 30 - DMA Bosnia & Herzegovina Report 2013

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28
Investing In Bosnia & Herzegovina
2013
economic stability as well as favourable
geographical position in the hear t of
South East Europe. The transpor t sector
is undergoing significant improvements
through suppor t from the government
and international institutions with new
and modernised transpor t links improving
domestic travel. The country’s main
airpor t is located in Sarajevo with others
in Mostar and Banja Luka. European
airlines such as Austrian Airlines, Czech
Airlines and Lufthansa operate out of
intercontinental hubs such as Vienna,
Munich and Istanbul. This year, low cost
airline Wizz Air announced for the first
time that it will begin operating flights
between Tuzla and Malmo, Sweden, from
31 May and between Tuzla and Basel-
Mulhouse from 15 June.
Ski and winter tourism already has a long
tradition in BiH.The XIVWinter Olympic
games were successfully held in 1984 in
Sarajevo and perfect pistes can be found
in Bjelasnica, Igman and Jahorina. Large
investments have already been made
to build modern ski lifts and improve
accommodation standards, especially
in Bjelasnica. With its vast tracks of wild
and untouched nature, eco-tourism is
also seen as having great development
potential and has grown in impor tance in
recent years. BiH has many national and
natural parks. Sutjeska National Park was
one of the first parks to be opened in
Europe and contains the ancient Perucica
Forests and spectacular Maglic Mountains.
Canyons, lakes, 23km of Adriatic
coastline and sweeping rivers also offer
numerous oppor tunities for the more
adventurous traveller. In 2009, the Rafting
World Championships were successfully
organised on the Vrbas and Tara Rivers.
The long and rich history of BiH, whose
wealth of cultural heritage presents a
complex mixture of Mediterranean,
Byzantine, Ottoman and Central
European influences have made this
beautiful country a unique attraction
for cultural and religious tourism. Two
impor tant cultural assets in the country
– the Old Bridge in Mostar and the
Mehmed Pasa Sokolovic Bridge in
Višegrad have been welcomed to the
UNESCO World Heritage list. And, in
the last few years BiH has been actively
developing its spa tourism which benefits
from the country’s rich high-quality
thermal and mineral springs; creating a
burgeoning health resor t industry. There
are currently 15 health spas registered as
health care institutions.
UNWTO Secretary General Taleb
Rifai rightly stated that BiH has all the
ingredients for tourism to boom, “Given
its rich natural and cultural heritage, its
unique mix of cultures and religions,
as well as its strategic location close to
major European source markets”. There
is no doubt that BiH has immense
oppor tunities for the development of
tourism. The natural resources which the
country enjoys are enviable; and with new
investment and continued suppor t from
the government, the future is bright for
the tourism sector.
“The long and rich history of Bosnia and
Herzegovina have made this beautiful
country a unique attraction for
cultural and religious tourism