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Tuesday, September 9, 2008

NO to mass tourism!

And YES to ecotourism. In my opinion, tourism has more cons than pros, especially in a country like Mongolia, where the ecosystem is very fragile and there are people that lead a lifestyle preserved for thousands of years. I remember reading somewhere that after the premiere of The Story of the Weeping camel, hordes of tourists arrived there to see the family that stars in the film. The family members were extremely tired of receiving a bunch of people in their home, being photographed and observed like some exotic animals. I can only imagine how stressful it was. Plus, because of the traditional hospitality and generosity of the Mongolians, they had to feed all those people and be nice to them , I suppose. So, I am posting this piece of news (in French) that talks about a French tourist agency that does ecotourism. The key to successful tourism is developing responsible tourism. Practice responsible tourism by bringing small groups of people and organizing no more than 1-2 visits to the same family of nomads per week. Respecting the local customs is also very important to preserve the culture. Educate the tourists... So, I wish all the tourist agencies behaved in an ethical manner, because they make money thanks to this culture and nature and if they disappear, so will their income.

This is a very beautiful praise song to Mongolia:
Mongol Orny Magtaal - Uyanga 1

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