PRESIDENT PROFESSOR DR. ANTON CARAGEA ATTENDED WORLD TRAVEL AND TOURISM AWARDS FESTIVITY

July 19, 2016

President, Professor Dr. Anton Caragea attended the General meeting of world tourism community had celebrated the world level achievers in tourism and culture in a glittering display on 22 june 2016, hosted by the Peace Palace in Phnom Penh.

 

President Dr. Anton Caragea officiated over the important moment for world tourism when the Kingdom of Cambodia was officially crowned as WORLD BEST TOURIST DESTINATION FOR 2016 and universally acclaimed as FAVORITE CULTURAL DESTINATION IN 2016.

 

The full text of the powerful speech delivered by ECTT President can be observed here:

 

WORD BEST TOURIST DESTINATION FOR 2016-CAMBODIA

OFFICIAL STATEMENT

ECTT President-Professor Dr. ANTON CARAGEA

 

 

Your Excellency Samdech Akka Moha Sena Padei Techo Dr. HUN SEN- Prime Minister of Kingdom of Cambodia,

Your Excellency Mr. Thong Khon – Minister of Tourism,

Esteemed members of Royal Government of Cambodia, of Parliament of Cambodia, distinguished member’s diplomatic corps

Dear guests,

All protocol observed

 

We are all assembled here, on the venue of the most important global cultural event: WORLD BEST TOURIST DESTINATION AWARDS, to celebrate the country and the personalities that had contributed outstandingly to humanity evolution.

Humanity, a word that must encompass our greatest achievement: culture, history, development and tourism.

This year theme of world community is concentrated around the role of CULTURE AND HISTORY in shaping our life`s and destinies.

Culture is the bedrock of societies, nations and civilizations.

 

We have to put the world at the right hour: the hour of culture, of history, of civilization!

Culture and history must be recognized not as resource consuming, but as major economic factors, that helps countries to develop and enrich themselves in more ways than just simple economic value.

Countries and peoples are rediscovering themselves by tourism, cultures are resurrected, history is re-lived and people are creating new opportunities by tourism development.

What is a country that is having all of the industrial and technical riches of the world but does not have the cultural contribution, civilization achievements and a history to look after and preserve?

The answer is: nothing!

 

Industrial patrimony is becoming obsolete, technology goes yearly outdated: while the history and patrimony are enriching and are becoming more valuable day after day.

Everything fears time, but time fears history, says a valuable proverb!

This is the answer why rich countries are spending billions in preserving what little history they have, in creating a tradition and a civilization out of nothing!

Because they realize, that by material values alone they will count for little!

ECTT President Dr. Anton Caragea declares Cambodia-World Best Tourist Destination in 2016

History and culture are the true indicators of a country and a people values and standing in the world.

Today, in XXI century, culture, tourism and historical patrimony are humanity tools of choice for building bridges of information, understanding and cooperation in the world.

In this new world, when tourism is the center of the economy, culture is the heart of a nation and traveling is the new diplomacy that is shaping peoples and nations destiny, there is no more important moment, as the moment when world tourism is choosing his World Best Tourist Destination.

We are fully aware of the importance of our choice, as we have in some years to support tourism as a vector for economic development, others when we have to privilege tourism as factor of unity in the world, but some time we are fortunate to select our winner on the fundamental base: that TOURISM IS WORLD EDUCATOR.

 

ECTT President Dr. Anton Caragea on the platform of Cambodia-Favorite Cultural Destination with Royal Opera from Phnom Penh

This, on the account that our decision must lead the way for tourists to discover and rediscover new horizons , to open themselves to new cultures, to immerse in the understanding of new ways of life and creeds.

Our presence here: must be a signal of re-emphasizing our commitment to place history, patrimony and cultural legacy on the world spotlight.

 

We must never let us forget, the simple truth that: our main duty as a world institution is to make tourism a bridge toward culture, a pathway to understanding the world.

In a time when many are preaching dogmatism and narrow mindedness we must insure that by simple act of tourism we touch the soul and the imagination of  the traveler.

This is the rationale, the powerful driving force that etched our decision to universally proclaim THE KINGDOM OF CAMBODIA as World Best Tourist Destination for 2016.

We could not think at any country more suitable, to teach the world, the real value of culture, the significance of historical patrimony in the resurgence of a nation and in creating a new scale of values in the world.

On the real scale of values, we seldom find a civilization more originally, more splendid and sending a more powerful sentiment of desire to live, to aim the beauty and to never stop striding for happiness and pride as the KHMER CIVILIZATION.

Travelers that will select, this kingdom of wonders and wisdom-Cambodia, as their destination of choice will have the chance of immersing themselves in a magic land, from where humanity learned the values of greatness of ancient Khmer kings, the spirit of beauty of magic Apsaras, carved in the temples of Angkor Watt and Angkor Thom.

Certificate for FAVORITE CULTURAL DESTINATION for 2016

 

Here is where the magic never stop`s, the wonder never ceased to astonish us.    Mekong is becoming part of the magic that is Cambodia and the rich waters of the river flow to the plain and by magic they stop their normal course to the Sea and the turn inlands, creating one of the world larges lakes: Tonle Sap, covering1/10 of the territory of Cambodia.

Where can you see such magic: a river that flows upwards?

Only in the land of wonders: THE MAGIC KINGDOM OF CAMBODIA.

Here, in Cambodia, tourists can find themselves and their inner peace and reconnect with God and the world in the magic and wonder of the celebrated WATT of Cambodia.

Here Buddhism will teach you not necessary to become a Buddhist, but to become BETTER: Better Christian, better Free Thinker.

Whatever your religion and creed, Cambodia will educate you, to search for the better in side you and outside: in the world.

This is the wonder of Cambodia!

The striking power of Khmer people, mirrored in the temples of Angkor is  a testimony to the ingenuity and prowess of people of Cambodia enshrined forever   in the stoned Watt`s of the Siem Reap province.

Astonished travelers of XX century, made up stories of extraterrestrial civilizations   coming to build them and as a tourist will see that: these all powerful beings still have a name, a face and an address: is the face of Khmer people, the name of Khmers who labored for ancient kings and the address is only one: Cambodia.

We, in XXI century, we forgot the all conquering power of humans to build, to snatch from nature the materials needed and construct all conquering monuments, that fear neither time, neither decay.

Khmer people and history are here to teach us this valuable lesson: that humanity can do whatever is ambitioning to create!

See Angkor and you will believe!

Today, when we need to be taught also the lesson of humility, of moderation, in our economic and practical goals, the lesson of ecological preservation: Cambodia is also the open book that we need.

 

When all powerful, and all mPresident Anton Caragea and H.E. Prime Minister of Cambodia on the World Tourism awards venueighty, Kings of Angkor conquer all that their ambitions has sought after, they started under the influence of  Buddhist Theravada to moderate their desire, slowly abandoning their cities and create for them a kingdom to conquer, inside their hearts and minds.

When they finish conquering the world, they started to conquer their souls and inner peace!

When nothing in the world tempts them, they started bettering themselves and making the Khmer people in the most splendid of the temples.

I cannot find another civilization, in the realm of history, capable of such a radical change.

Another wonder in the Kingdom of Wonders: Cambodia!

This is making Cambodia the ideal destination for peoples searching their connection with their inner fillings, in quest for their peace of mind and soul; you can never have better allies that Khmer wisdom.

Because thus is Cambodia today: an educator to the world, a provider of wonder, in a century that stopped believing in them, a classical spiritual adventure, a discovery trip in times and places, that is a must see and is richly deserving the appellative of World Best Tourist Destination.

I will not restart the detailed description of all the UNESCO heritage sites existing in Cambodia or perusing the long list of region and cities awaiting their inscription on world heritage list.

I will just emphasize how rare is country that is offering such a diversity of landscapes, climates, cultural and historical beauties as Cambodia.

Educator of humanity, cradle of culture! This is CAMBODIA of today!

We must also mark down Cambodia as a world example in building tourism fair revenue distribution and with H.E. Samdech Akka Moha Sena Padei Techo HUN SEN, Prime Minister of Cambodia, support to the program: ONE VILLAGE/ ONE PRODUCT encourage tourist, travelers or just prospective tourists to invest in local artisans creations.

These revenues are helping community to develop, are helping people restarting their lives, protecting cultural landscape and historical legacy.

Coming as a tourist in Cambodia, is not just a self rewarding adventure, but is also an opportunity to make a responsible tourism, fair trade tourism, supporting local communities and poor rural areas.

We are hailing Cambodia as The Favorite Cultural Destination for 2016 and with good measure also, as we just inscribed as intangible cultural and tourism patrimony heritage the concept of SROK KHMER – the specific Khmer concept of carving a national space and an integrated community of peoples.

The concept of SROK KHMER, offering a special mark of inter-community dialogue and acceptance, of tolerance and friendship, that explains in full how Cambodia can unite peoples and religions, can give them the sense of historical unity and bind them together, in love for a nation and a country.

This concept is also a fundament of Cambodia history and development, a secret to ingratiate in a polite and correct manner, that makes tourist feel at home in this wonderful country.

Cambodia is in itself a World Lecturer in history and civilization, and I could go one for hours, underlining the many reasons why crowning Cambodia today as World Best Tourist Destination, it is just a normal act of recognition of a country so rich in culture and promises of tomorrow that it becomes the embodiment of the tourism for the future, of the tourism for knowledge and experiences, of tourism that is letting us richer in conscience and soul.

 

The story of SROK KHMER continues and is writing today a new and remarkable page: the page of development, tourism and cultural world recognition, the page of CAMBODIA as WORLD BEST TOURIST DESTINATION FOR 2016.

ECTT President Dr. Anton Caragea declares Cambodia-World Best Tourist Destination in 2016

Your Excellency Mr. Prime Minister and European Academician,

It is with great honor and privilege that I hand over this title, as an international recognition for all the people of Cambodia, all united in the service of protecting and preserving historical and civilization patrimony of your country, in fostering tourism and culture.

I repeat myself in the desire and trust that:  This title must be regarded as a challenge to conquer new barriers, as we are expecting Cambodia future contribution for the development of the world culture and tourism.

I am confident that: our world platform will be transformed in a growing support for the international recognition of THE KINGDOM OF CAMBODIA, as an open air, open to the world museum of humanity and in a base for further success for A WORLD MIRACLE: THE KINGDOM OF WONDERS- CAMBODIA.

 

It is my privilege to handover to Your Excellency, as the most representative   leader of people and tourism of KINGDOM OF CAMBODIA the award for WORLD BEST TOURIST DESTINATION FOR 2016.

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PROF. DR. ANTON CARAGEA OPENS SUMMER 2016 GENERAL ASSEMBLY OF EUROPEAN COUNCIL ON TOURISM AND TRADE

June 14, 2016

CAMBODIA: THE LAND OF MAGIC- THE PLACE WHERE GOD`S AND KINGS BUILD THE WORLD!

On the framework of the 9th Meeting of the European Tourism organization, held at the Romanian Parliament, Professor Dr. Anton Caragea MA, FINS, ETA, presented a tourism analysis and evaluation report titled: CAMBODIA: THE LAND OF MAGIC- THE PLACE WHERE GOD`S AND KINGS BUILD THE WORLD!

CAMBODIA-WORLD BEST OURIST DESTINATION 2016web

The report noted the reasons for awarding WORLD BEST TOURISM DESTINATION FOR 2016 PRIZE to CAMBODIA:

 

• The excellent preservation of humanity landmarks such as: the Temple of Preah Vihear- the heart of ancient Indochina.
The temple outstanding history can be traced to the 9th century, when the hermitage was founded.
Today the site is particularly well preserved and is offering to the visitors an outstanding vision of grandeur, thanks to his exceptional for the quality of its architecture, which is adapted to the natural environment and the religious function of the temple, as well as for the exceptional quality of its carved stone ornamentation.

 

The Siem Reap province is home to the majestically and unique Angkor Archaeological Park – the residence of the Khmer’s Kings from 9th to 15th century.

Angkor Wat Temple before sunset, Siem Reap, Cambodia.

Angkor Wat Temple located in Siem Reap, Cambodia.

 

Today this incredible humanity legacy, stretching over some 400 sq.km, including forested area, Angkor Archaeological Park contains the magnificent remains of the different capitals of the Khmer Empire, from the 9th to the 15th century.

They include the famous Temple of Angkor Watt and, at Angkor Thom, the Bayon Temple with its countless sculptural decorations.

 

All this sites where recognized as being of world significance and registered as UNESCO World heritage monuments.

 

• The rich cultural and historical legacy of Cambodia is not limited to the previous presented list.
In order to fully grasp the natural potential of Cambodia natural parks and natural reservations we must look at the potential of these regions designated in 1993 Royal Decree on the Protection of Natural Areas.

Bayon-Temple

Bayon Temple: one of the humanity landmarks

 

They are encompassing 23 protected areas, which at the time covered more than 18% of the country’s total land area

The royal decree divides the areas into four distinct categories: natural parks (sometimes described as ‘national parks’), wildlife preserves, protected scenic view areas (sometimes described as ‘protected landscapes’) and multi-purpose areas.
Cambodia is also home to rarely and valuable Ramsar sites rated accordingly to RAMSAR CONVENTION of June 1999:

 

A stretch along the Mekong River approximately 37 km long and 14,600 hectares in Stung Treng Province
Boeng Chhmar and associated river system and floodplain, 28,000 hectares in Kampong Thom and Siem Reap provinces (part of a designated multiple use area)

Koh Kapik and associated islets, 12,000 hectares in Koh Kong province (part of a designated wildlife sanctuary).

Angko Thom

The awe conquering Angkor Thom Temple- a part of humanity legacy.

 

• Giving tourists access to outstanding and pristine nature and the opportunity to explore nature, to contribute to ecological preservation, and the opportunity to visit extraordinary places.

All these regions and national parks are a model of achieving ecological and green tourism that must be recognized throughout the world.

New prominent landmarks are to be added to UNESCO list such as: Angkor Borei and Phnom Da, the former celebrated as the ancient capital of Kingdom of Cambodia under the name of Vyadhapura and pace at the confluence of Mekong and Stun Sla Ku. This is now home to perfect archeological treasures like sculptures and stones star shaped called stelae.

Phnom Da is famous for his caves, the mud tower and the all sought Ashram Maha Rosei, made in long standing stone and celebrated as a model of architectural ingenuity made out of interior monk housing units blending in the exterior wall.

Udong is the former capital of Royal Cambodia in 17th century from 1740 to 1746.

 

Udong is now a perfect example of a sprawling royal city, but also a royal necropolis gathering the funerary temples of kings that offered to Cambodia a chance of survival in the country darkest times.

Udong is the proof of the resilience and endurance of Khmer spirit in time of peril and dangers.

The project ONES VILLAGE/ONES PRODUCT designed to promote social fair tourism, to sustain rural production and to bring about the rebirth of traditional craftsmanship created and promoted by H.E. Samdech Akka Moha Sena Padei Techo HUN SEN, Prime Minister of Cambodia , is a perfect way of sharing revenue, growing income and supporting marginal and rural communities development.

The way in which social-tourism has become the base for local economic development, for empowerment of remote community and supporting educational and vocational projects benefiting the communities, makes social-fair tourism, the lesson that today-the KINGDOM OF CAMBODIA is offering to the world.

 

• The ongoing development and protection of cultural, religious and historical shrines of the Kingdom of Cambodia, the transformation of Angkor Region into a historical and spiritual center, offering to the visitors a glimpse into rich culture and heritage of peoples of Cambodia.

Angkor must be the world center of religious pilgrimage and cultural tourism offering to world tourists the complex healing experience of cultural legacy, religious special atmosphere and faith imbued air.

 

• The preservation of outstanding historical and cultural heritage in the form of the former capital of the Kingdom of Cambodia, the Angkor cultural complex, an ample palatial complex from the 9th Century, offering an incredible sense of magnificence of one of the Asia greatest empire.

UDONG MOUNTAIN

The sacred mountain of Udong-Cambodia

 

• Today, Cambodia offers tourists bound for the country a rich and perfect open air collection with a rare presence of historical and archaeological treasures that educate and enrich the world.

• The KINGDOM OF CAMBODIA is also a perfect center for river trips and adventure tourism, offering large areas suitable for this special kind of tourism, and the necessary infrastructure to welcome the adventure seeker, its safety and peace, makes the country, one of the world’s top adventure river destinations that make the KINGDOM OF CAMBODIA as a perfect cultural class destination.

 

In the speech conclusions, Professor Dr. Anton Caragea, MA,FINS, ETA proposed CAMBODIA as the winner of WORLD BEST TOURIST DESTINATION FOR 2016 and as receiver of the FAVORITE CULTURAL DESTINATION distinction for 2016.