Tuesday, August 15, 2006
Mayon volcano is a money maker for some people!
Printed on the posters were the word: "Visit Legazpi: Mayon Eruption 2006."
Legazpi City councilor Cerilo Chan was the brainchild of the poster after realizing the tourism potential of the volcano. He said he wants to exploit this year's eruption to bring some cash to the over 40,000 people evacuated since the volcano started acting up two weeks ago.
At least, people here will have income opportunities even as a major disaster looms ahead of them.
Local officials say since the volcano started emitting lava on July 15, the city saw an influx of both foreign and local tourists arrivals. Some of the tourists were even venturing near the lava flow to take pictures or record the phenomenon.
It was the increased tourist arrivals that prompted Chan to come out with the posters and distributed them at places where there were heavy concentration of people such as public places, airports, hotels and at tourism district in Manila.
He said, "I just noticed many foreigners were arriving. But that there were not enough people attending to them,"
He said he has received several inquiries. At least 120 employees of the Philippine Central Bank visited the city to watch Mayon put on a fireworks show at night, from a safe distance, of course.
Mt. Mayor is one of the major attractions in the Philippines because of its near-perfect cone shape and its history of eruptions.
Local officials say tourists can watch the eruption, which is best viewed at night, at the comfort of their hotel rooftops.