KAZAN, December 6. /TASS/. The Russian Volga region of Tatarstan has started developing industrial tourism to promote local products.
Kamaz, Russia’s largest truck producer, opened its doors to tourists in 2016. Tours to the factory, which produces 43,000 trucks a year, are organized once in a month. In 2017, some 3,000 tourists from Russia, Germany, Cuba and Hungary visited the giant factory in the town of Naberezhnye Chelny, which stands some 225 kilometers east of Kazan, Tatarstan’s capital.
"Tourists can climb into the cabin of a new truck, which has just rolled off the conveyor. Everyone is impressed with the factory’s size and our production system," Alexander Chukhontsev, the director of the Kamaz museum, told TASS.
Visitors are taken to the engine, founding, pressing and assembling departments of the Kamaz factory. The 1.5-hour excursions take place only on workdays to show the whole production cycle.
"Our purpose is to raise the attractiveness of the Russian industry and to show that it keeps developing," said Kamaz spokesman Oleg Afanasiev.
Another local industrial tourism destination is the Tatspirtprom distillery located in Kazan. The company has opened a museum at its flagship store Arysh Mae.
"Visits to this store are included in two popular tours of the capital: Kazan for Real Men and Kazan with Five Senses," the company’s press service said.
"We also organize tours for shop managers and assistants, owners of bars and restaurants, and everyone who is promoting our products," the press service said.
The development of industrial tourism helped the distillery triple its sales in two years.
Melita, a fur factory from Kazan, takes its visitors to the museum displaying its unique equipment and products. Tourist are shown the full production cycle from tanning to sewing of fur coats.
Sergei Ivanov, the head of Tatarstan’s committee for tourism, told TASS that cheese factories and bakeries have also become popular industrial tourism sites.
"Our task is to create industrial tourism products and establish dialogue between producers and tour companies," he said.