THE Provincial Government will develop eco-tourism sites in seven local government units (LGUs)to promote responsible tourism and help communities earn.
The seven LGUs are Aloguinsan, Pinamungajan, Balamban, Asturias, Tuburan, Tabuelan and Toledo City, all in the province’s midwest.
Through this project, the Province and the LGUs can develop tourism products, stimulate their economies and teach people about environmental conservation.
Joselito Costas, consultant on ecotourism projects in Capitol, said they chose to develop the ecotourism sites of these areas because they are located along Tañon Strait, the country’s largest marine protected area.
“This is to promote responsible tourism, to conserve natural sites and to promote well-being of the host communities,” Costas told reporters.
One can say that an area is an ecotourism site if a place there needs conservation and community sectors are involved, like fishermen, farmers and housewives.
Costas said the area can be an ecotourism site through commerce and culture.
The Capitol and Provincial Tourism Council partnered with the seven LGUs, Department of Environment and Natural Resources, Department of Tourism, people’s organizations and the private sector to make the project possible.
Costas said the northern towns receive help from the National Government and non-government organizations to revive their tourism industry while the southern towns have been making strides in tourism development.
Government officials think that this time, the midwest towns should be assisted.
Officials also plan to organize clustered destinations to be packaged for tourists.
In Aloguinsan, Costas said there’s dolphin watching that has been in existence since 2009. There’s the Bojo River cruise, too.
Visitors can see different kinds of dolphins like spinner, bottlenose and spotted dolphins and dwarf sperm whale.
Pinamungajan has the Campalabo sandbar and a marine sanctuary managed by the LGU while Balamban has a river and spring.
Costas said the area in Mt. Manunggal where the late president Ramon Magsaysay died in a plane crash can be developed into a museum.
Toledo City has Malubog Lake while Asturias has Buswang Lake.
Tuburan has Molobolo Spring, a river and a mangrove area.
Costas said they have already assessed the six towns except Tabuelan, which will be visited next week.
“While we are conserving resources in the tourism industry, we are also helping families earn supplemental income,” Costas said.