Local economic development (LED) and job opportunities for youth (JOY) are widely accepted as the cornerstones of creating sustainable tourism. And, while often honored more in principle than in actual practice, a laudable exception to this situation is the newly inaugurated Bayad Eco Resort and Bali Eco Adventure in Banjar Bayad located on the outskirts of Tampaksiring.
The General Manager of the trekking-oriented nature park is "local boy," I Ketut Sunarta, a former tour guide who sees the park as a veritable "land bank" allowing Balinese to hold onto their diminishing land resources.
Working with local investors, Sunarta has managed to establish eco-friendly bungalow complex, a restaurant and spa that complement a series of nature treks along the banks of the sacred Penatu river covering the lands and producing supplemental revenues for 34 local farming families.
The brainchild of Sunarta and Swiss-investor Peter Studer, the park aims to leave a minimum footprints on the pristine hill environment while creating a sustainable business model that provides tangible benefits to people of Banjar Bayad. Investors who pay approximately US$40,000 are given an initial 25 year lease on an attractive tree-top villa that they can occupy for 100 days a year. An additional one-hectare lot is also under development for use in animal husbandry and plantings as part of an overall plan to make the project self-sufficient in food production. Among the plants currently being cultivated are passion fruit, mangos, ginger and a whole range of local fruits and vegetables.
Profits from the project are allocated 50% to investors, 30% for land owners and 10% to the local community.
[Bali Eco Adventure: Sustainable Tourism in Bali's Highlands]
[Bali Eco Adventure]
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