Ministry of Tourism's next target: Bringing gay and lesbian tourists to Israel. The means: A campaign featuring a same-sex couple on a camel, two men in yarmulkes kissing in Jerusalem
Nurit Felter (ynet.news.com, 29-5-2007)
The proudest campaign ever was launched by the Tourism Ministry in cooperation with the Association for Civil Rights and the Israeli Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual and Transgender Association ( the "Aguda"). The goal: To encourage GLBT tourism to Jerusalem.
For the past few years, Tel Aviv, along with Berlin, Barcelona, and San Francisco, has established itself as a GLBT friendly city and a popular vacation site for the community's members.
As a result, the Tourism Ministry decided to launch a new campaign aimed at attracting "proud visitors" to the Holy Land. The campaign focuses on scenes from the Israeli gay community's lifestyle.
Representatives of Israeli travel companies will distribute thousands of brochures to participants in pride events worldwide.
The photos for the campaign was taken in many sites throughout Israel, including Jerusalem and the Dead Sea. "I chose sites that represent the country," said Eitan Tal, the campaign's photographer, "in Jerusalem the models wore yarmulkes for the religious GLBT crowd. In the Dead Sea I shot the models floating in the water holding hands with tiny trunks on. I am happy I was able to assist in the effort to improve the country's economy."
Campaign managers also launched an internet site with information about clubs, bars, restaurants, hotels and airlines offering service to Israel. In the future, they plan to add "Proud" travel packages especially designed to fit the needs of the gay visitors.