NEW DIMENSIONS OF ECO-TOURISM
All the wild life enthusiasts have heard about the Africa’s big five- African lion, African elephant, Cape buffalo, leopard, and rhinoceros. There are several other countries or areas in the world which have successfully cashed in on its natural heritage, wildlife and have been popular destinations for eco-tourism and also for viewing exotic wildlife.
Australian outback, Galapagos Islands, Amazon rainforest have been popular destinations for people who want to view some of the rarest and exotic wildlife.
Even India is a known destination where wildlife enthusiasts come from all over to explore the Indian jungles with a hope to spot the majestic tiger. It is fair enough to say that tiger is a brand ambassador of Indian eco-tourism.
This ever growing eco-tourism can be easily seen as an opportunity to not only generate revenue but also to resolve human animal conflict and create employment opportunities for the people living in forest areas.
Even in our neighbouring state of Karnataka, the Jungle Lodges & Resorts, a unit of Government of Karnataka’s Department Of Tourism, has set up resorts and adventure camps in the vicinity of its wildlife sanctuaries to facilitate the tourists and wildlife enthusiasts.
These resorts provide a complete package which includes activities like safari inside the forest accompanied by an experienced guide, kayaking, and a bird watching trip. The package also includes delicious breakfast, lunch and dinner.
Goa, a popular tourist destination known for its unique culture, customs and traditions as well as its historic sites and also nightlife along the coastal areas should also try and cash in on the eco-tourism through its natural heritage.
During monsoons there is a massive inflow of tourists in forest areas who rush to enjoy the cascades and small waterfalls which come to life due to rains. It is evident that people, not just nature admirers, are looking forward to explore the beauty of wilderness and also to spot unique animal and bird species.
In Goa, if the government invests to setup wildlife resorts to facilitate people interested in wildlife and eco-tourism, it will not only generate revenue but people residing in these areas will be provided with much needed employment opportunities. People dwelling in forest areas, gainfully employed through eco-tourism, will also be able to help in conservation and preservation of wildlife.
This initiative can also prove to be a small move in saving our natural heritage for future generations.
The government has already started activities such as rafting and hot-air ballooning to attract people interested in adventure tourism. Setting up of such eco-tourism resorts will help in making Goa a tourism destination which has something in store for anyone and everyone.