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Is Eco-tourism the way forward for countries such as Ecuador?

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Introduction

Is Eco-tourism the way forward for countries such as Ecuador? The Republic of Ecuador is located on the Western Hemisphere, on the northeastern corner of South America. The neighbouring countries are: Colombia in the North and Peru in the South. Ecuador is one of the smallest countries in Latin America (roughly same size as Britain). Despite its size, Ecuador offers great variety of places to visit, many different cultures, and many activities to enjoy such as nature tours, mountain climbing above 6000 meters, paragliding, white water rafting, or scuba diving. Ecuador overall has a population of 11 million people, with an annual population growth rate of 3%. Ecuador formerly is a developing nation, evidence that can be used to establish this is for starters the GNP level is depleted being $3,000 (2001), when compared to a country such as USA $36,300 (2001) or UK $24,700 (2001) it shows that Ecuador is a developing country. The diagram on the next page shows the GNP level through the years passed for Ecuador. Other aspects that show that Ecuador is a developing are the birth rate and the infant mortality rate. The infant mortality rate of Ecuador reaches up to 30.69% in comparison to United Kingdom's infant mortality rate, which is 5.78%. ...read more.

Middle

Therefore more and more LEDC's have started to familiarise them selves with another type of tourism, ECO-TOURISM. Eco-Tourism Eco-tourism comes from a concern about the natural ecosystems of places and from a concern that the local ways of life and the environment or wildlife can be damaged or destroyed by commercial tourism. As commercial tourism has extensive negative effects on the beaches, local cultures and the environment, the idea of developing eco-tourism is to encourage smaller scale developments with visitor coming and staying with the indigenous people and learning about the environment. This type of tourism also supports the idea that holidaymakers will spend time learning about the wildlife and the environment. It can also include bird watching and sight seeing. The main scheme of eco-tourism is to make tourism less damaging and more in tune with the environment. The main obvious advantage of eco-tourism is that it helps the environment enormously and also the wildlife. The other advantage of eco-tourism is that the money made would go straight to the actual indigenous population by small groups performing in front of tourists or acting like guides. The Quicha people are able to use their expert knowledge of the plants and animals of the forest as the basis of tours, which again will bring money straight to the people them selves. ...read more.

Conclusion

The final question really is "Is eco-tourism the way forward for countries such as Ecuador?" After going through all the advantages and disadvantages and what the indigenous people think, my answer would be, yes eco-tourism is the way forward for countries such as Ecuador. I have decided this because, it helps the environment without destroying it, it does not hurt the wildlife in anyway, and it also brings in a reasonable amount of money straight to the indigenous people. However these all are very important factors on why I have chosen eco-tourism, but there is one more imperative factor which I think is vital, it is that the Quichua tribe are happy with it, they believe eco-tourism is the way forward, it does not destroy their environment and the wildlife are safe and the Quichua people are satisfied in occupying jobs such as tour guides. The main argument I would believe which is against eco-tourism is the economical problem; people believe that eco-tourism will bring in less money than commercial tourism. However the way I see it, I believe that every industry when it starts of in the beginning has less people, in spite of this there are small groups going to countries that follow the eco-tourism scheme and slowly that group will be expanding as people will be telling others about their holiday and slowly the eco-tourism industry will begin to rise. ...read more.

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