Eight counties join tourism Web site

BELVIDERE—Taking a leap to keep up with advancing technology, Northern Illinois Heritage Tourism Allliance has developed a new interactive tourism Web site. Launched this summer, the Web site has the potential to bring in major tourism dollars to the area. Via www.northernillioistours.com, NIHTA’s main goal is to increase visitation and visitor expenditures for the benefit of the participating businesses in the region. A continued strength of NIHTA is to link the natural, cultural, historic and recreational resources of northern Illinois (eight counties—Boone, Carroll, Jo Daviess, Lee, Ogle, Stephenson, Whiteside and Winnebago) with the quality tourism businesses and services of the region.

NIHTA hopes to accomplish this by creating, branding, marketing, distributing and selling Tour Packages online. The highly unique aspect of this tourism-packaging program is that visitors plan their own itinerary, based on a theme of interest. “This is an exciting step forward in the tourism industry,” said Director Jennifer Mateus. “With the convenience of creating and booking a customized getaway at their fingertips, visitors will appreciate the ease of discovering northern Illinois.”

There are several theme-based packages that people may choose from: Romantic Getaways, Antiques, Family Fun, Americana, Biking, Rock River Fishing, Living History, Dinner Theatre, Arts & Culture.

For more than 17 years, NIHTA, formerly Northwest Passage Heritage Corridor (NWP), has strived to bring more attention and visitors to its culturally rich eight-county area. With the name change come new opportunities. Currently, more than 100 businesses participate in the Web site program, and more are welcome to enroll.

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