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Malaysia’s spectacular showcase at BIT 2024: A fusion of Culture, Nature, and Adventure

Tourism Malaysia highlighted its ecological and cultural heritage at BIT 2024 in Italy, aiming to boost visibility and attract Italian tourists with a focus on eco-tourism and rich cultural experiences.

Tourism Malaysia showcased Malaysia’s diverse ecological heritage, blending nature, culture, and adventure at Italy’s premier international travel and tourism trade fair, Borsa Internazionale Del Turismo (BIT) 2024.

The Tourism Malaysia team was headed by Ms. Zalina Ahmad, the then-new Director of the Tourism Malaysia Paris office, who represented the new product/destination during the three-day event, meeting both trade partners and consumers. Tourism Malaysia aimed to enhance the destination’s visibility by sharing information on its offerings to visitors and updating trade partners on recent developments and upcoming projects. The goal was to entice the Italian public to choose Malaysia for their next holiday.


The Malaysia booth, spanning 36 sqm, spotlighted the destination’s new and undiscovered experiences tailored for the Italian market. Colourful images representing segments preferred by Italian travelers were on display. To add moments of joy, a renowned caricaturist provided caricatures to all visitors. Additionally, attendees discovered Songket, a fabric belonging to Malaysia’s brocade family, handwoven in silk or cotton, intricately patterned with gold or silver threads, creating a shimmering effect.

Malaysia had received 44,508 Italians as of November 2023, which was an encouraging growth. August recorded the highest number of visitors with 13,761 pax from Italy, more than double when compared to the same month in 2022.

Ms. Zalina Ahmad, the Tourism Malaysia Paris Director for Italy, France, Spain, and Portugal, stated, “The main trends in the Italian market appeared to be focused on culture and eco-tourism, especially among the younger generation. With the richness of nature and culture and increased national efforts towards eco-tourism, we aimed to position Malaysia as a dream destination for Italians. Italy was currently a top market in Europe for Malaysia; hence, it was crucial for Tourism Malaysia to continuously increase its efforts to keep the destination visible and attractive to the locals and neighbouring countries.”

Malaysia is home to four designated UNESCO World Heritage Sites, of which the majestic triple crown sites Kinabalu Park and Gunung Mulu National Park showcased the splendour of pristine biodiversity. Langkawi Island and Kinabalu Park were recognised as UNESCO Global Geoparks, while the historic cities of Georgetown and Melaka unfolded the captivating narratives of Malaysia’s cultural diversity and heritage. UNESCO admiration was also extended to Malaysia’s rich mosaic of intangible cultural heritage, which includes Mak Yong, Dondang Sayang, Silat, Pantun, and Songket, all recognised as valuable components of the Intangible Cultural Heritage of Humanity.

Kuala Lumpur was set to welcome key lifestyle and full-service hotel brands such as Park Hyatt Kuala Lumpur at Merdeka 118, The Waldorf Astoria, and The Conrad between 2024 and 2025. Additional hotel openings included the Hilton Burau Bay in Langkawi and the Intercontinental Resort in Penang.

The harmonious blend of breathtaking nature, modern metropolises, and rich cultural heritage made Malaysia one of the world’s leading destinations for an unforgettable visit. As travelers worldwide sought eco-conscious options, Malaysia stood ready to offer eco-heritage experiences. The forthcoming Visit Malaysia Year 2026 has set an ambitious target of 35.6 million foreign tourist arrivals. At the same time, for 2024, there was a lineup of State Visit Year by Melaka, Kelantan, Perak, and Perlis.

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