The government is optimistic of ecotourism being among the driving forces for comprehensively implementing a green economy to boost Indonesia’s economic revival.
Ecotourism can be defined as tourism that is conducted responsibly to conserve the environment and sustain the well-being of the local people. Its benefits comprise promoting environmental awareness, offering direct financial benefits for conservation, and monetarily benefitting and empowering the local people.
Deputy Minister of Environmental Affairs and Forestry (LHK) Alue Dohong affirmed that the management of nature tourism areas can generate income for the region and society in addition to creating jobs whilst abstaining from damaging and exploitative actions.
West Java has several ecotourism destinations, such as the Gede Pangrango National Park, which can boost local economic activities, and the Situgunung suspension bridge that has become a popular tourist attraction.
In West Nusa Tenggara (NTB), the LHK ministry has reopened Mount Rinjani on Lombok Island and Mount Tambora on Sumbawa Island in West Nusa Tenggara to climbers and tourists since April 1, 2021.
Climbing tourism activities at the two sites had earlier been closed since January 1, 2021, due to inhospitable weather in the mountains that endanger human life.
“Climbing activities at Mount Rinjani are still limited to a maximum quota of 50 percent of the normal capacity, and the length of the climbers’ stay is only three days and two nights,” Head of the Mount Rinjani National Park (TNGR) Dedy Asriady remarked.
Tourists keen on conducting climbing activities are required to place an order for climbing tickets through the e-Rinjani application downloadable via the Playstore.
The TNGR officers also enforce stringent COVID-19 health protocols on tourists, right from the entrance, at the tourist sites and while leaving the national park area.
Moreover, three COVID-19 green zones in Bali are planned to be opened from July this year amid a marked decline in the number of Indonesia’s daily coronavirus disease cases and the nationwide mass vaccination campaign.
“I see that in the province of Bali we want to concentrate on three designated green zones, specifically Ubud, Sanur, and Nusa Dua. We are optimistic of these becoming green zones, green areas that we can fully open to tourists,” President Joko Widodo remarked while witnessing a mass vaccination campaign at Puri Saren Agung, Gianyar District, Bali, recently.
Ubud is located in Gianyar District, Sanur lies in Denpasar City, and Nusa Dua is situated in Badung District. The Bali authorities had administered COVID-19 vaccines to tourism workers, Balinese religious leaders, and cultural and youth representatives, among others.
“Hence, later, they (tourists) will feel safe and comfortable to stay in Bali. With our focus on these three zones, revival of the tourism sector in Bali Province will start,” he affirmed.