With one day to go until the London 2012 Games, Gulf visitors to the UK are anxiously waiting to witness the Olympic Park transform into the British countryside at the Opening Ceremony on Friday 27 July, said British tourism officials in Dubai.
While most picture the buzzing metropolitan capital city of London when they think of the UK, a lush countryside of mountains, forests, lakes and broads awaits visitors to Great Britain. The 80,000 spectators at Olympic Park will have the chance to witness how the wide, green spaces inspired the design of the introductory scenes of the Opening Ceremony.
"The UK's countryside is glorious and offers a serene escape for Gulf visitors," said Dubai-based Carol Maddison, UAE Manager, VisitBritain. "In addition to the historical sites to adventurous hikes, we are home to a world first: The Wales Coastal Path, which is the only place where it is possible to walk the entire coastline of one country in one path. Our more ambitious visitors can circumvent the entire nation, nearly 1,658 kilometres round trip!"
Locally, Dubai residents can celebrate the London 2012 Olympics as the UAE National Olympic Committee and Emaar are coordinating a series of events in celebration of the Games at Dubai Mall, said Maddison.
As the Opening Ceremony take place in London, an Olympics Flag Parade will take place at Dubai Ice Rink in Dubai Mall on Friday 27 July at 10:00pm. The parade will proceed through the Gold Souk, where a photo exhibition of the UAE Olympics Team is on display, pass the Waterfalls and then round back to the ice rink.
On Sunday 29 July, fans of UAE's Olympic Football team will head to the big screen at Dubai Ice Rink to watch live at 10:45pm as Al Abyad plays Great Britain at Wembley Stadium, which hosted the 1948 Olympics games and is known for its signature 315 metre long steel lattice arch, the longest single roof structure in the world. Wembley is the largest football stadium in England with a capacity of 90,000.
From outside the UK and across the Arabian Gulf, 22,000 Olympic and Paralympic athletes and officials from more than 200 countries are now in the final countdown to preparation for the greatest sports spectacle in the world. During the Games time, there will be more than 20,000 international media, more than 6,000 members of the Olympic & Paralympic Family and many more friends and relatives of the athletes arriving in the UK to experience the electric atmosphere and enjoy world-class British hospitality.
Gulf-based visitors to Britain this summer will find hundreds of options for sport and entertainment. Tickets to witness the Olympic Games are still available along with hundreds of related events and viewing opportunities, in addition to musical acts and world-class entertainment taking place across Britain.
VisitBritain officials have said that more than four billion people are expected to watch the London 2012 Olympic Games on television, including tens of millions across the Middle East region.
About VisitBritain VisitBritain is Britain's national tourism agency, responsible for marketing Britain worldwide and developing Britain's visitor economy. A non-departmental public body, funded by the Department for Culture, Media and Sport, we work in partnership with thousands of organisations in the UK and overseas, the Government, the industry and our strategic partners in London, England, Scotland and Wales and seek to ensure that Britain is marketed appropriately around the world.
Our priority is to deliver a four-year match funded global marketing programme, working with the private sector, which takes advantage of the unique opportunity of the Royal Wedding, the Queen's Diamond Jubilee and the 2012 Games to showcase Britain and attract new visitors from the tourism growth markets of Asia and Latin America and to reinvigorate our appeal in core markets such as the USA, France and Germany. This campaign aims to attract four million extra visitors to Britain, who will spend an additional £2 billion over the four years.
We also provide analysis and advice on the issues facing potential visitors, on Britain's competitive position and the barriers to inbound tourism growth. This is in addition to providing research; market intelligence and analysis to inform the British tourism industry.
The Mx Great Britain app and VisitBritain's Digital Strategy
The Mx Great Britain app is available to download for free on all major mobile platforms at www.mobiexplore.com/visitbritain. Where free Wi-Fi is not available, the app can be used in offline mode to help save on any roaming charges. It also helps users find the nearest free Wi-Fi hotspot.
VisitBritain's digital strategy is built to inspire international travellers and motivate them to travel to Britain. During the summer of 2012 Britain's national tourist office will continue to build innovative and engaging ways to explore the amazing range of content created in a wide-variety of different media types such as imagery and video.
VisitBritainShop.com buy before you fly
The official shop of the British national tourist authority, VisitBritainShop.com has over 150 products on Britain including travel and transport, sightseeing tours and attraction tickets. A one-stop-shop enabling the planning and purchase of products before arrival, VisitBritainShop.com ensures customers spend their time in Britain enjoying it and not waiting in a queue.
The VisitBritain shops are made up of 13 local-market websites giving customers the convenience of purchasing in their own currency and language. And with products and discounts exclusive to the international visitor and customer service support in 7 languages, planning a trip to Britain has never been easier.
London Travel Products from the VisitorShop buy before you fly
VisitBritain are the official international provider of the Visitor Oyster Card and London Travelcard. They are responsible for the Transport for London VisitorShop dedicated to providing customers worldwide with all their London travel products.
With customer service support and shipping to 58 countries worldwide, the VisitorShop ensures customers are able to make the most of their time in London.