Community-based ecotourism in 25 sites.

In keeping with the Tamil Nadu State Policy on Ecotourism, 2010, this subcomponent is intended to comprise a series of low-input, low impact, sustainable initiatives that involve active community participation. In contrast to other ecotourism initiatives, the Forest Department plans 2 cheats to show case a variety of natural features located at 25 sites within their Reserve Forests and Protected Areas, develop nature trails and make available facilities for trekking and overnight camping. Such initiatives will be managed and facilitated by local communities, whose capacity will be developed to provide a range of services including hospitality, catering, tracking wildlife and guides.

For the first time in Tamil Nadu, resource and educational material for tourists will be produced under the auspices of the Project. This instant network will ensure that authentic yet aesthetic ‘take home’ material will be made available to visitors. Importantly and uniquely, the Project will take a leading role in the development of community-based ecotourism, with all aspects relating to food, accommodation, transport and sightseeing, awareness and learning will be handled by local communities. Potentially, this is key strength of the Project, whereby ecotourism becomes a sustainable livelihood option for local communities. To ensure that women are not overlooked in this initiative, provisions will be made to develop and implement activities 2 wiki that involve their active participation through formation of SHGs.

In order to provide visitors with a variety of experiences and maximize benefits for local communities, ecotourism strategies are required to integrate the provision of a range of activities and facilities at a given destination site and village. This should include a range of accommodation including tents, hut to meet the needs of different types of visitors, while not sacrificing ecotourism principles in order to meet unsustainable expectations of environmentally unaware visitors. Thus, there is provision for the development of eco huts in strategic locations through different parts of the Project area. The eco huts will have attached bathrooms, along with a central common dining area. All buildings should be constructed from renewable resources, with walls of sun-baked bricks, bamboo frames, and corrugated bamboo roofs overlain with thatch for insulation from the sun or cold in winter.

Given that the Forest Department has been given the lead in the State’s Ecotourism Policy for developing destinations, with local community involvement, it is particularly important that ecotourism principles are observed, high standards are adopted and best practices are demonstrated. A number of guiding principles should underpin the promotion and development of ecotourism by the Project as follows:

  • Nature and culture focus, providing visitors with the opportunity to personally and directly experience nature and local culture.
  • Interpretation to provide opportunities to experience nature and local culture in ways that enhance understanding, appreciation and enjoyment.
  • Environmental sustainability, demonstrating best practice in selection and use of materials and payday 2 review pursuit of activities.
  • Contribute directly to the conservation of natural areas.
  • Benefit local communities by direct employment and use of their services.
  • Cultural sensitivity and respect towards local people and traditions in the area.
  • Customer satisfaction, ensuring that visitor expectations are consistently met direct payday lenders (within environmentally sustainable norms).
  • Responsible marketing, based on honest and accurate promotion so that realistic expectations are formed.

It will be crucially important for all ecotourism initiatives to 2 masks be developed under the auspices of community institutions, usually EDCs or VFCs supplemented with SHGs will probably be the best alternative, rather than owned by individuals or groups to ensure that benefits are shared to some extent among all members of the community. For this purpose, the communities living in villages located in sites falling in and around sanctuaries will be constituted into EDCs and those in the forest divisions as VFCs. These institutions will be registered under the Societies Registration Act. Those managing facilities or leading activities s should be employed by the community corpus, so that profits accrueto the benefit of the community.

Target Area

Seven sites that are located around four Wildlife Sanctuaries, and 18 other sites in 12 forest divisions

Action 1 Documentation and Interpretation Preparatory Work Capacity building and skill development for stakeholders Development of tourism related infrastructure Participatory Assessment of impacts of interventions