Are you interested in supporting local communities when you travel, interacting with local culture, or getting off the beaten path? If so, community tourism may be for you.
A community tourism venture is owned and run by members of a community. They choose what attractions and cultural activities to share with tourists and coordinate programming. Although these initiatives are often small, they add tremendous benefits to the community and region. By using their services, you are helping reduce poverty in these communities.
Community tourism opportunities are popping up throughout Guatemala’s Rio Dulce region and Ak’ Tenamit actively supports their efforts.
In Guatemala’s Rio Dulce area, community tourism provides a boost for rural communities whose members are depend on subsistence farming. Most survive on less than $2 a day and are 100% dependent on agriculture. They can only hope a flood or drought doesn’t wipe out their crop…
Tourism initiatives create alternative sources of income and provide jobs as tour guides, in restaurants, as artisans and program administrators. They also stimulate entrepreneurship and economic growth.
Community tourism plays a key role in preserving natural resources.
Community tourism helps conserve Mayan culture and strengthen community services.
Ak’ Tenamit supports local efforts to develop a community tourism industry in the Rio Dulce region it serves. It works directly with communities that are developing themselves as tourist destinations by providing training and logistical support.
Ak’ Tenamit has helped two villages start a community lodge and organizes workshops with communities to teach them to run a successful tourism project. In addition, our vocational school’s Sustainable Tourism degree program prepares students to become leaders in their communities’ tourism efforts; students graduate with 3,000 hours of job experience through apprenticeships in restaurants, hotels, as tour guides, and in administrative offices.