An increasing number of Japanese tourists have begun taking an interest in Shenzhen, a city adjacent to Hong Kong in the southern province of Guangdong.
A number of Japanese travel agencies have recently sent representatives to Shenzhen to see the scenery and attractions for themselves as well as to collect tour information, sources with the local government say.
Man-made scenic spots, such as the Window of the World, the China Folklore Culture Village, have caught the eye of these agencies, according to the sources.
A Japanese travel agent said Japanese tourists are thronging to Asia, especially China which is rich in tourist destinations, instead of European and American countries, particularly after the September 11 incident.
Japanese businesspeople also hope to cooperate with Shenzhen travel agencies to promote the travel industry in both countries.
In addition, a delegation of Hong Kong travel agencies related with Japanese tourist service has also visited Shenzhen recently. Hong Kong has traditionally been the destination of many Japanese tourists. However, local tourist agents say that the territory is tiny which has greatly hindered local tourism. They hope that a new route will be created to link Hong Kong and Shenzhen.
Last year, about 1.38 million Japanese paid visits to Hong Kong. However, only 20 percent found their way into neighboring Shenzhen, which means there is still a great development potential for the Shenzhen-Hong Kong route.