1. opening dance at the launch of Karnival Citrarasa Homestay Malaysia 2016

1. opening dance at the launch of Karnival Citrarasa Homestay Malaysia 2016

With the theme “For Our Culture, Nature and Future”, Karnival Citrarasa Homestay Malaysia 2016 was launched on 5th November, 2016, with much fanfare by guest-of-honour, Deputy Minister of Tourism and Culture Y.B. Datuk Mas Ermieyati Samsudin.

2. Deputy Minister of Tourism and Culture YB Datuk Mas Ermieyati binti Samsudin hits the drum to signal the launch of Karnival Citrarasa Homestay Malaysia 2016

2. Deputy Minister of Tourism and Culture YB Datuk Mas Ermieyati binti Samsudin hits the drum to signal the launch of Karnival Citrarasa Homestay Malaysia 2016

The homestay carnival, which was hosted for three days from 4th to 6th November, at Jalan Kota, Bandar Hilir in Melaka, for the first time brings the product of homestays to the people.

3. Deputy Minister of Tourism and Culture YB Datuk Mas Ermieyati binti Samsudin and other officials give the thumbs up to some traditional delicacies

3. Deputy Minister of Tourism and Culture YB Datuk Mas Ermieyati binti Samsudin and other officials give the thumbs up to some traditional delicacies

Locals and foreign tourists were able to see for themselves what a “homestay” is, and why it is an alternative to get to know Malaysia and her people better, rather than just sticking to the tried and tested tourist attractions.

4. a representative from Negeri Sembilan receives a prize for one of the contests organised in conjunction with the carnival

4. a representative from Negeri Sembilan receives a prize for one of the contests organised in conjunction with the carnival

Although registered with the Ministry of Tourism and Culture Malaysia are 193 homestays from 341 villages all over the country, only about 180 of these homestays exhibited their products at the carnival.

5. a singer belts out the official 'homestay' song

5. a singer belts out the official ‘homestay’ song

Besides promoting their various homestay packages and interesting activities that one could indulge in while staying in the village, they also showcased their cultural dances and songs through performances, as well as traditional delicacies via cooking demonstrations.

6. a batik painting of Persatuan Kampung & Homestay Malaysia

6. a batik painting of Persatuan Kampung & Homestay Malaysia

During the carnival, other side events included seminars for product owners, games, quizzes as well as MaTiC FM radio deejay search and mini concerts.

7. some of the booths at the carnival

7. some of the booths at the carnival

The homestay programme is community-based tourism that is growing in importance for the economy of the country. From January to October 2016, homestays have generated a revenue of RM17.05 million, an increase by 9.5% from RM15.57 million over the same period last year.

8. some of the homestay exhibitors

8. some of the homestay exhibitors

Speaking from personal experience, I would say that homestays are an acquired taste. I have visited many homestays around the country. While I do enjoy the setting and they make wonderful photography backdrops, I am too much of a city girl to willingly forgo the conveniences of modern amenities, which are not always available in a village.

9. one of the strategic partners of the carnival

9. one of the strategic partners of the carnival

Nevertheless, I would suggest to gain a homestay experience at least once. It doesn’t have to be at a village in a far-flung state. It could be at your own backyard, because homestay programmes are offered by all thirteen Malaysian states, and also the Federal Territory of Labuan.

10. horse carriage rides are one of the attractions in the area

10. horse carriage rides are one of the attractions in the area

Event: Launch of Karnival Citrarasa Homestay Malaysia 2016
Venue: Jalan Kota, Bandar Hilir, Melaka
Date: 5th Nov, 2016
Time: 5pm

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