Travel | Feb 09

Aomori's Rising Fame on Chinese Social Media

Aomori, Feb 09 (News On Japan) - As the Spring Festival approaches in just two days, Aomori Prefecture's official account on Chinese social media is experiencing unprecedented popularity, with a staggering 1.3 million followers, surpassing the population of Aomori itself. We delved into the secret behind this surge in interest.

Aomori's Nebuta Festival and Winter Attraction Draws Global Eyes

Visiting Aomori's "Nebuta" reveals not just the summer spectacle of the Nebuta Festival but also a winter attraction that captivates tourists from Hong Kong, Taiwan, and beyond, noticeably more than Japanese visitors.

A tourist from Hong Kong shared, "She has visited Japan 30 times," indicating the deep fascination with Japan, including Aomori's famous apple pies.

Global Recognition Amid Spring Festival Travel Surge

With the Spring Festival heralding an 8-day holiday in China, an estimated 9 billion trips are expected, spotlighting Aomori like never before. Aomori's account on Weibo, a Chinese social media platform, boasts 1.3 million followers, dwarfing the followings of Osaka and Kanagawa, highlighting its unique appeal.

Already, Aomori's markets are welcoming Chinese tourists, engaging them with the local delicacy of "Aomori Nokke-don," where visitors can enjoy the freshness of local seafood, including possibly Oma tuna.

Cultural and Winter Attractions Fuel Interest

Aomori's appeal extends beyond cultural attractions to include winter sports at Hakkoda Mountain, a prime destination for Chinese tourists seeking Japan's snowy landscapes.

Despite the absence of direct flights from China to Aomori, the allure of Japanese culture, combined with the unique winter experiences of snow and hot springs, draws significant interest. Efforts in local hospitality and targeted social media engagement have played a crucial role in attracting a following that exceeds Aomori's population.

Challenges and Concerns Amid Rising Tourism

However, with the rise in tourism, concerns about over-tourism and environmental impact, such as increased litter in ski areas and natural sites, have emerged. The surge in interest from Chinese tourists, especially post-Beijing Olympics, has highlighted the need for sustainable tourism practices and infrastructure to accommodate the growing influx without compromising the local environment and community.

As Aomori prepares to welcome more international visitors, the balance between promoting tourism and preserving the natural and cultural heritage remains a critical consideration for the future.

Source: ANN


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