Ecotourism Experts of IPB University Shares the Challenges of Natural Tourism during the Pandemic Mode

Nature is now one of the best attractions that can be enjoyed by the tourists. Aside from being able to enjoy the beauty of its nature, natural tourism is also a means of joyful recreation for tourists  in order to be back in fresh and creative.

Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, the development of natural tourism is facing a new heavy challenges. The hope is about  to make our natural tourism can actually still further developing in accordance with the health protocols.

Prof. Dr. Harini Muntasib, Professor of IPB University from the Department of Forest Resources Conservation and Ecotourism, Faculty of Forestry and Environment (Fahutan) said that, the biggest challenge of todays world in the field of ecotourism is about the common perception of tourism actors, stakeholders and the market.

 "There needs to be a fundamental change in the niche of tourism actors and stakeholdersn, that is through a mindset. The national target should not be from comprehended by the number of visitors but it has to targeted on the amount of funds that was obtained by the community, managers and government. Our innovation is about to encourage the regions to intensively facilitate regional tourism actors based on a good governance scheme that can be understood and implemented consistently, "She added.

For instance, innovations for the public travel. Tourist destination areas that were previously concentrated solely in a certain location, it can be more spread aglomerate to the nearby locations. Therefore, the surrounding locations must also be developed & equiped with the excellent service at the same level as the main destination location. With that being said, the role of the local government is very much needed in order to facilitate the development, so that the tourist locations will become more better prepared.

 "Likewise with other several facilities such as restaurants, souvenirs market and so on. In the Division of Nature Recreation and Ecotourism of Faculty of Forestry and Environment, now is developing the existing resources to be ready to become a natural tourism area. The strength of IPB University is in the niche of resources, hence we are mandated in developing these natural resources to become an extraordinary natural tourist attraction. Innovations in areas that were developed for natural tourism can also be more varied but still it has to be in accordance with the excellent service, "She said.

According to her, tourism activities in general are fully crowds. Though the tourism in essence doesn't have to be crowded, especially during this pandemic era. Take a look In the nature tourism activities, actually the main destination is a nature in itself.

 "When we come to a place, then we also get the noble meaning. For instance, we look at the beauty of the Puncak is coming from the view or scenery of the tea plantation. And of course, every other natural tourist spots also has its respective advantages as always. Even more so, if the interpretation of natural tourism were heavily developed, then the nature in fact can talk to anyone who comes, "She added.

During this pandemic, the tourism managers must understand the landscape, the uniqueness and comparative advantage of its tourism area which is used as natural tourism. The more tourist attractions that are opened and focus on their advantages, the more choices that the visitors can actually get. In the end, the new paradigm of this natural tourism will reduce the issue of mass tourism which will lead to mass societal crowds. (SMH / Zul)

Published Date : 23-Feb-2021

Resource Person : Prof Harini Muntasib

Keyword : Prof. Harini Muntasib, Nature Tourism, Tourism during the pandemic, IPB lecturers