Sustainable tourism is another way of paying for ecosystem services, which encourages the conservation of natural as well as cultural resources. Business, including many forms of tourism, can be destructive to the environment, but since ecotourism and community-based tourism are based on the destination’s resources and therefore it’s interesting from a business point of view to maintain those resources in order to generate income over the long term. Often, tourism creates pride amongst the local population in their surroundings and their culture, providing an incentive to take an even more active role in conservation of their nature and culture.

One of the ideas for developing sustainable livelihoods that provide an alternative source of income is supporting sustainable eco-tourism projects across the Guiana Shield with local ecosystem managers.

A desk study on patterns of eco-tourism across the Guiana Shield was carried out during phase I of GSI, including:

An inventory of the current status of eco-tourism in the Guiana Shield region

An analysis of criteria for the development of sustainable eco-tourism with local community involvement, including possibilities for equitable benefit sharing.

During phase II of GSI, we will take a further look into the possibilities of developing and marketing ecotourism in the GS Region, and analyse the ways to do this in the most sustainable way.

For copies of ecotourism-related documents check the 'Documents' section.