Eco-Tourism and Community Empowerment
Quraishi, Nabila Sultana
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This report is based on ‘Eco-tourism and Community Empowerment’. I was appointed to survey the eco-tourism area of Srimangal. In this period, I have studied a lot on eco-tourism of Bangladesh, specially the eco-tourism of Bangladesh. It was a great opportunity for me. I gathered a vast knowledge on the eco-tourism sector of our country. My honourable faculty helped me lot in choosing the topic and overall research. Eco-tourism is a special kind of tourism which includes visiting relatively remote areas which are commercially not popular as mass tourism. It involves responsible travelling through experiencing the raw natural resources. People doing eco-tourism share their lifestyle, their traditions, and their beliefs with the tourist. It helps in community bonding and building relationship with outsider. Proper and responsible eco-tourism minimizes the negative aspects of conventional tourism and increase positivity towards locality. At present eco-tourism is getting more attention because it’s environment friendly criteria, especially in the rural areas which are economically insolvent. Bangladesh has an increasing tourism sector. The employment rate in tourism sector is increasing rapidly. Tourism sector has a great impact on the growth of country’s overall GDP. There are many government and private organizations that promote and preserve tourism sector. BTB is one of them. It is government organization which controls tourism sector in Bangladesh. There is also some international organization like UNWTO who works for the welfare of this sector. The growth rate of eco-tourism sector is not as good as conventional tourism. People are unaware of the depth of eco-tourism. There is less promotion of eco-tourism compared to conventional tourism. But the situation is changing now. Both the local community and tourist are getting more and more interest in tourism. Government has also come forward to help this sector by counselling the locals on the importance of eco-tourism; it’s social and economical benefits. They also improved the security of eco-tourism areas, which is a major step that attracting more tourists. Srimangal is one of the prime locations for eco-tourism in Bangladesh. The vast natural resources, tea garden, tribal groups and their age old tradition, all the ingredients which are ideal for eco-tourism are available there. The tribal are the main people who are doing eco-tourism. They are related with eco-tourism from long ago. This study finds out the people related with eco-tourism directly or indirectly and analyses how eco-tourism is related with community empowerment.
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