Francis Coppola Travel Summit
Francis Ford Coppola’s Apocalypse Now was filmed in the 1970s on the now-surfing destination of Baler Bay in Aurora. Credits to Francis Ford Coppola Instagram.

Hollywood’s iconic director Francis Ford Coppola talked about surfing in the Philippines during his keynote speech at the Condé Nast Traveler’s (CNT) Second Annual Travel Summit.

The multi-awarded film director of The Godfather and owner of the Family Coppola Hideaways was the guest at the CNT conference on October 7 to discuss trends in the travel industry.

Coppola, widely considered to be one of the greatest filmmakers of all time, was presented to the audience by CNT editor-in-chief Melinda Stevens.

“Coppola had the audience’s attention from the start, sharing how the rise of surfing in the Philippines can be credited to the local children who saw it for the first time during the filming of Apocalypse Now,” wrote CNT writer Louis Cheslaw in his Inside Points of View report.

Coppola’s film Apocalypse Now is a Vietnam War epic filmed in the Philippines featuring Baler Bay in Aurora and released 40 years ago in August 1979.

Francis Ford Coppola was the keynote speaker at the annual CNT Travel Summit. Credits to CNT.

International surfing enthusiasts have visited the Philippines for its wave scenes, among them, Baler in Aurora, Siargao Island, Lanuza Bay in Surigao del Sur, and San Juan in La Union.

CNT had earlier cited Siargao in Mindanao as its Top 3 choice travel destination for 2019 owing to its legendary Cloud 9 for surfers, clear waters for snorkelers, island-hopping spots, and luxe accommodations.

“This teardrop-shaped island has long been a surf mecca, with more than 15 world-class breaks (including the legendary Cloud 9) and a handful of locally run surf schools to keep beginners busy. The see-your-toes water is heaven for snorkelers, with healthy coral reefs teeming with life,” wrote CNT.

The CNT summit also noted efforts to curb the effects of overtourism as the future of sustainable travel. “The modern traveler’s desire for authenticity lends itself beautifully as a solution to overtourism. If you’re looking for locals, you’re not going to find them in the crowded center,” Jerry Mpufane of South African Tourism said.

The Philippines has embarked on several efforts to protect and preserve Siargao and its renowned travel destinations from such overtourism, among them, Cebu Pacific’s Juan Effect initiatives for sustainable travels to Siargao which has been championed by Philippine celebrities, Globe’s work with Save Philippine Seas to protect marine biodiversity. Nas Daily had also recently featured the Philippines’ rehabilitation efforts for world-famous Boracay, Palawan, and Manila Bay.

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