Nowadays, tourism is considered as a spiritual need more than an entertainment. The modern tourists pay close attention to all the details, and experience and satisfaction is more important than before, and gaining knowledge is one of the motives and reasons of traveling for them. Since the tourists travel with knowledge and experience and it is a tool for spiritual refining, the role of tourist guides is of great importance.
The tourist guides are not merely leaders. In fact, they are cultural ambassadors who introduces culture, history, civilization and hospitality and also they present a comprehensive picture of the country creatively. The role of tourist guides is very important in getting experience, satisfaction and cultural understanding of tourists. They present information, facilitate social relations and cultural foundations, preserve values of a community, interpret natural and cultural environment and practical training, create security, and also they are trustworthy people for tourists. Tourist guides play the role of a mediator in social environment, and in cultural interaction between the tourist and the host country.
Above all, Iran’s hosting of 17th Tourist guides World Convention is an opportunity in order to introduce Iran and its various capacities to all the valuable cultural ambassadors and also proves that not only climatic variation, cultural and ethnical diversities are not a threat, but also are opportunities which should not be ignored.
Expressing satisfaction with holding an international event and presence of dear board of directors of World Federation of Tourist Guides Association, (WFTGA) and also tourist guides from different countries, it is a great honor for Islamic Republic of Iran to host the most important world tourism international event due to the credibility of tourism in the country.
Certainly, holding this international convention in Iran with the presence of tourist guides throughout the world can inform all the facts of modern Iran and also the potentials of the tourism industry to exterritorial mass media. I deem it necessary to appreciate all of authorities and participants for their struggles in order to hold this important event.
Zahra Ahmadi Pour
Head of Cultural Heritage, Handicrafts and Tourism Organization of Iran