KOTA KINABALU: Tawau should be developed and promoted as a food-based tourism or gastronomic destination, suggests Datuk Jafry Ariffin (pic).
Making the call for the Tawau Municipal Council to consider this, the state Tourism, Culture and Environment Minister said the east coast district was known for its status as a food haven, complemented by its multi-ethnic communities with diverse cuisine and taste.
“We want tourists visiting Tawau to taste food that are considered a trademark for a place.
“For example, the Bugis are known for their customs and traditions including unique and attractive dishes, such as Burasak (rice dumpling wrapped in banana leaf), Barobok (corn congee), Tumbu (similar to burasak but using black glutinous rice) and many more.
“I am confident such efforts to lure visitors will add value to the tourism products in this district,” he said in a statement Sunday (June 26).
Jafry had earlier made a working visit to the Tawau Municipal Council on Saturday (June 25).
To complement such gastronomic-based tourism, the Sukau assemblyman also suggested that community-based tourism activities continue to be fostered.
The meeting at the council also saw engagement with tourism operators from the district to discuss issues faced by them, as well as determine the direction of community-based tourism.
In related development, Jafry revealed that among tourist spots having infrastructure upgrades are Batu Bersusun and Rumah Api Tinagat.
“With the variety of tourism products Tawau has to offer, I have confidence that it will no longer just be a stop-over district but a main tourism destination,” he added.