Ecotourism efforts are not only aimed to benefit tourists and the local communities, but also the environment. It allows countries to build their economies without harming their environment, meaning visitors can enjoy the natural beauty of local wildlife and natural landscapes. With a lot of tourists visiting many countries each year, areas need to do what they can to preserve their culture and environment from damage that can result from mass tourism. That is why TAT created the Thailand Tourism Awards in 1996 as a gesture of recognition that builds awareness of responsible and sustainable tourism in the country.
On September 27, 2019, the Tourism Authority of Thailand presented 94 Thailand Tourism Awards, which recognizes the best of Thailand’s travel industry for its excellence in delivering remarkable service and experiences to both local and international tourists. Ban Laem in Nakhon Si Thammarat, Laem Sak in Krabi, and Koh Klang in Krabi won Thailand Tourism Awards in community-based tourism and ecotourism. Here’s why these three destinations have been recognized for their sustainable and eco-friendly efforts.
Twenty kilometers from downtown Nakhon Si Thammarat, the peaceful riverside community of Ban Laem is the perfect place to experience community-based tourism and sustainable tourism in Thailand.
Some sustainable measures that the Ban Laem Mangrove Forest Conservation Community is taking to preserve the ecosystem include planting in the mangroves, fishing, fermenting rice in mud, cloth dyeing, and artisanal crafting.
If you want an immersive community-based tourism experience, you can explore the possibility of home-stays with Thai families. During your stay, you’ll learn about what locals do daily, get to enjoy authentic homemade food, and build relationships with families. There’s no better way to learn about Thai culture than living amongst the locals.
Whether or not you opt for a home-stay experience, you will be enlightened by the warmth and genuine friendliness of the Thai people in Ban Laem. They show appreciation to everyone who takes an interest in their culture and lifestyle. You will also learn a lot about yourself during your visit.
In the Krabi province, Laem Sak is a quiet place blessed with a tranquility that is hard to find in other places in the world. The village is about an hour away from Krabi airport by car. Limestone cliffs grace the area, which is the perfect spot to meditate on the complexities of life. The district is also one of the best places in Thailand to experience authentic and mouth-watering Thai cuisine.
If you’re seeking a unique community-based experience, you’ll find it in Laem Sak. The area has been home to Muslims and Buddhists who have been living peacefully together for many years. The harmony amongst the locals and a love for traditional ways of life in the community is the reason why the environment is cleaner than usual.
Because locals look after both the land and sea, tourists have been able to experience all kinds of community-based activities like learning how to grow seaweed, plant orchids, and enjoy some of Laem Sak’s local products like Ao Nam shrimp paste and Batik cloth dyeing.
If you are interested in knowing how Thai people create their beautiful clothes and accessories, take a workshop with one of the locals. Find a local person who knows how to create one of these famous Thai crafts, like the Batik handkerchief. The best part is that you get to keep what you make! Let your imagination run wild!
Thailand islands are among the most beautiful and inspiring in the world. The majestic island of Koh Klang graces the Western coast in the South of Thailand and offers a wealth of activities for ecotourism trips.
When planning your trip to Thailand, its islands should be at the top of your list of places to visit. Koh Klang is the closest island to Krabi town and can be reached by long-tail boat from Chao Fah Park Pier in less than 10 minutes. It is one of the most exceptional islands in Thailand and is a great place to engage in community-based tourism. The Koh Klang Community by Anda Krabi Sea Tour Co. have guides that are both knowledgeable and experienced who will take care of tourists like family. They develop community tourism activities to participate in, such as morning fishing, model long-tail boat making, or Batik cloth production.
Thailand Travel, Plan the Trip of a Lifetime
Whether you’re interested in ecotourism, community-based tourism, or both, Thailand has it all. Sustainable tourism in Thailand offers a glimpse into the future of the tourism industry as a whole. The world is growing more environmentally conscious as well as being more sensitive, curious, and respectful towards other cultures.
Even though we just highlighted these three destinations, there are many locations that have been recognized for their eco-friendly and sustainable efforts.
To see the other Thailand Tourism Awards winners, click here.