By Liliana Usvat
Tourism in the Amazon rainforest is increasing, although it doesn’t play a major role in the economic life of the region. There are some reasons that keep the regular tourist away from the Amazon rainforest. The most important is the lack of reliable information making it much harder to plan a trip to the Amazon than to other places.
There is a fear of crime and violence created by drug dealers and other criminals, but this is shouldn’t be a fear, as the Amazon rainforest is relatively safe place to travel. Rio de Janeiro and Sao Paulo are much more dangerous places. There is fear from the wildlife, some people panic just to think of being in a place where even the frogs can be poisonous. There are crocodiles, giant snakes and predators like the Jaguar, but chances are you won’t have any problem with wildlife except for the mosquitoes.
Ecotourism a leading way for developing countries to generate revenue by preserving their rainforests. Eco-tourists pay to see a country’s natural beauty, not the destruction caused by short-run exploitation. Money spent directly in the local economy helps put a monetary value on forest preservation. Local people, along with the government, can see the importance of keeping the forest intact. And many tourists are willing to pay directly for preservation in the forms of park entrance fees and donations.
Ecotourism can provide local people with economic assistance by offering employment opportunities as wildlife guides, park rangers, and service workers in hotels, restaurants, and lodges. With eco-tourism, income is earned from preserving the ecosystem, and forest clearing is discouraged because it is detrimental to income. Similarly, ecotourism can reduce the need for poaching and hunting of forest animals for income.
For example, in West Africa, former poachers are hired as park rangers since they have intimate knowledge of local animal wildlife. Ecotourism also provides opportunities for education that might not otherwise be available, both directly in the form of training and indirectly through conservation funds contributed to local schools.
The Forest Tourism Initiative is a collaboration between Scottish Enterprise, Forestry Commission Scotland, VisitScotland and Highlands & Islands Enterprise.
An estimated 18 million visits are made to Scotland’s woods and forests every year (GB Day Visits Survey 2003). Research, due at the end of the year, is currently underway to ascertain accurately the value of the different types of forest visitors, but the information currently available implies that this is worth approximately £100 million annually to the Scottish economy.
World Tourism Day
At the end of September 2011, the occasion being the World Tourism Day (27th September), the Collaborative Partnership on Forests (CPF), an organisation of which the UN Food and Agriculture Organisation (FAO) is also a member, promoted its view on the positive influence that ecotourism has on forestry. Moreover, an increasing number of governments are considering ecotourism as a means to promote sustainable forestry management and support local communities.
Ecotourism involves responsible travelling to natural areas, with the purpose to educate the traveller without the environmental and cultural impact that may come as a negative consequence of traditional tourism. By definition, the more preserved a tourist site or object is, the more attractive it will be for potential visitors.
And as forests and their wildlife are among the primary settings for ecotourism activities, it is only natural to assume that promoting forest preservation and investing in ecotourism would be the way to attract more ecotourists.
Black Forest – Germany’s Forest Tourism – a sample of Tourism in the Forest
Black Forest Tourism Board provide tips and information on more than 250 holiday destinations in Germany’s most beautiful region for prospective visitors, a region that has vineyards, river valleys, sunny peaks, wide panoramic views, calm forests, revitalising spas, exciting family destinations and a cuisine that is the most elaborate in Germany.
In the 11,100 square kilometre holiday region, tourists will be delighted by a wide range of natural landscapes, sporting challenges, a wide range of culinary offers for gourmets, cultural tourist attractions, authentic customs and living traditions.
At the beginning of the year, you will hear dogs barking and bells jingling everywhere in the southern Black Forest: If the snow conditions are good, more than 1,000 sled dogs and experienced “mushers” from all over the world will compete for trophies at the “International Dog Sledding” in Todtmoos on26th and 27th January and in Bernau on 2nd and 3rd January.
In summer, Black Forest locals celebrate culinary festivals such as the “Oberkircher Erdbeerfest” (Strawberry Festival) on 25th and 26th June and the “Kaiserstühler Kirschenfest” (Cherry Festival) in Königsschaffhausen from 24th to 27th May. Enzklösterle, in the northern part of the Black Forest, is famous for its wild blueberries – also known as “blue gold”. The village celebrates a traditional “Blueberry Festival”on the 20th and 21st July. The “Bühler Zwetschgenfest” (Plum Festival) is celebrated in Bühl from 6th to 9th September in honour of the sweet, blue regional fruit. From 10th October to 11th November, the city of Lahr is transformed into a marvellous colourful sea of flowers consisting of glowing chrysanthemums on the occasion of the “Chrysanthema” festival.
Lovers of classical music can plan in numerous concert dates: From 10th to 24th July, the “Rossini in Wildbad” will be held again. From 13th July to 6th August, the “Internationale Domkonzerte” (Cathedral Concerts) will fill the Cathedral of St. Blasien. The “Altensteiger Sommermusik” (Summer Music) will offer a number of classical concerts in the Oberes Nagoldtal (Upper Nagold valley) from 30th July to 8th August. The “Schwarzwald Musikfestival” (Black Forest Music Festival) from 9th to 20th May and from 20th to 29th September will also offer a wide range of concerts across the entire Black Forest area.
Romanian Forest Tourism
Romania has represented an important tourism destination in Eastern Europe, promoting coastal tourism, spas, mountain resorts of Prahova Valley, Dracula’s theme and the painted monasteries of Bucovina.
For longer thematic tracks through large forest areas local, specialised guides can be used and a forest guard can be created that can serve several forest owners. They have created points of general and special information for forest tourism, in townhalls and at the entrance on the property through large boards, written in two languages, one of
international circulation and the national one, for a good development of tourism activities.
In the Alba County, the County Forest Department has provided for tourists all the chalets (40) which are in administration, with rates smaller than those of hotels. They are classified with daisies and have an average of 6-8 rooms, being open all year round.
Through these facilities many tourist routes are capitalized, which cross important forest areas in the county; in addition fishing and hunting, biking and climbing activities are organized. The chalets lying in the Iezer Ighiel, Canciu, Vapchina-Tau Curmături, Splane-Oasa areas are most requested by tourists.
In the Bistrita area, the Forest department has included in the tourist circuit 8 forest chalets, thesebeing demanded by tourists to spend religious holidays or short stays, close to nature.
The Maramures County is known for the Rodnei National Park, and the Maramures Natural Park, where their administrations are interested in developing a sustainable tourism.
As they own large forest areas, they wish to support forest tourism. Thus, the Forest department has classified all the chalets and 1/3 are already modernised. More than that, it tries to capitalise also the forest fund in the Forest ranges administered by Romsilva.
Blog 77 – 365
- Fire Chief: Black Forest Fire Human Caused, Likely Intentional (kktv.com)
- What 11 Billion People Mean for Earth’s Animals (livescience.com)
- Sheriff Lashes Out Against Black Forest Chief’s ‘Shocking’ Report (denver.cbslocal.com)
- Can Zoe and Mike Hammond repeat last seasons raid on Black Forest Lodge? (p2phorseraces-dc.com)
- The Importance of Ecotourism in Hawaii (ustravel.answers.com)
- Makiling: Ecotourism’s ‘sleeping giant’ (newsinfo.inquirer.net)
- El Paso County sheriff blasts Black Forest fire chief for comments (denverpost.com)
- Amazon rainforest more able to withstand drought than previously thought (sciencedaily.com)
- The Finest Driving Destinations in Europe (epicatravel.com)
- Animals That Live in the Rain Forest Canopy (forestry.answers.com)