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Neither militarization nor legalization can end poaching This year there has been a steady stream of self-congratulatory announcements of successes from the bloody "war on poaching" undertaken by security services led by merciful mercenaries, drone fleets etc. But conservation should not be inhumane or trample on human rights. Nor should it be used as a geopolitical pretext to put troops on the ground where there are not enough drugs or religious fanatics. As long as there is demand for ivory and rhino horn and as long as possession of such is legal there is no chance of stopping this trade. Some therefore propose to focus on demand. Tackling demand can involve education and peer pressure but it is very likely that the affluent and powerful buyers of such "works of art" are not so sensitive. Perhaps a global campaign to pressure key and powerful governments to make holding ivory (all ivory, not just "illegal") and rhino horn pieces...
Our second Thai villa, Green Gecko, reflects traditional Thai architectural design, and equally enjoys a very private and peaceful setting in the Thai countryside. This Thai pool villa is centered around its own very private pool. Holidaymakers enjoying a family holiday in Thailand can relax to the utmost here, as daily breakfast, lunch and dinner are included - an excellent way to get to know Thai food. Many of the ingredients are grown organically on the grounds, from rice to fresh herbs and fruit and a wide variety of vegetables.   Like our sister property, Green Gecko harvests rainwater, has a recycling programme, and is involved in reforestation of old rice paddies.   The villa sleeps up to four guests on a full board basis.     ...

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Sustainability Communications for Destinations TrainingAid and Respondeco are hosting a free online training session "Keep It Real for Destinations: 7 Common Mistakes to Avoid When Telling Your Destination's Sustainability Stories" on December 8th, 2014 (4pm GMT), sharing practical examples of why effective sustainability communications can benefit your destination, and how to avoid common sustainability communication mistakes. The session will be led by Dr. Davina Stanford, Senior Lecturer at Leeds Beckett University and a responsible tourist behavior and destination management expert.   This session is for anyone who's involved in promoting, marketing or managing tourism destinations, and we invite everyone - whether you can watch the live session or not - to share your questions about destination marketing and sustainability communications. Please post your questions by commenting here, or by posting them on Facebook, Twitter, or Google Plus with the hashtag #TourismTL.   We'll be monitoring the questions before and during the event, and will try...
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Exploring the rich tribal cultures and nature of India's Chhattisgarh The newly carved state of Chhattisgarh lies in the heart of the India and is still charting its destiny. Many pleasant surprises await the visitor, in a land where mysteries unfold at every step, where history awaits to be discovered at every turn and where nature pours forth its bounty as the journey progresses. Its remoteness made Chhattisgarh one of the least known parts of the India that, incidentally, still remains relatively unexplored.   In this land you can do countless things but we have chosen the best five for you!   1. Tribal life The state prides itself on a tribal culture that dates back several millennia and the music, culture and craft of the tribal communities that can still be experienced across the state. There are as many as 42 tribes in Chhattisgarh and make up around a third of the population. The highest tribal concentration is in the...

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Australian Ecotourism Development Opportunity An exciting opportunity exists to create an ecotourism product on Miriuwung Gajerrong (MG) Aboriginal traditional lands close to Kununurra in the far north of Western Australia.   Tourism Western Australia (Tourism WA) is seeking interest from suitably qualified and experienced tourism operators with the capacity to develop exciting new visitor experiences in an essentially untouched area of the Kimberley. All interested parties are invited to discuss proposals with Tourism WA by firstly filling out the ‘Investor Response’ at the back of the attached brochure.   Kununurra offers a range of accommodation types for its more than 84,300 annual visitors and is a great launching point for extraordinary Kimberley experiences. A short scenic flight can deliver visitors to the awesome Lake Argyle and on to the World Heritage listed Purnululu National Park (Bungle Bungles), and the eastern gateway to the Gibb River Road is only 70km to the northeast of the Town....
New TAEC Boutique opens in Luang Prabang, Laos In July, we opened the new TAEC Boutique on the main street in Luang Prabang featuring the Heirloom Collection of one-of-kind textiles and other handicrafts. Each piece is made of the highest quality materials by the most respected artisans of their craft.   We hope the Boutique will allow more tourists to support fairly-traded handicrafts from ethnic minority artisans, and discover the cultural diversity of Laos.   The TAEC Boutique is open daily from 9am - 9 pm.   In addition to reaching more visitors in Luang Prabang, TAEC made new friends and important contacts for future sales by sending Khoun and Alai to the International Folk Art Market in Santa Fe, New Mexico last month. With over 150 artists from 60 countries and 20,000 visitors, this three-day event is the largest folk art market in the world, and we were pleased to participate in it once again.   For more...
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Dear All, Chitral Association for Mountain Area Tourism (CAMAT) welcomes its guest to participate in Broghil festival 2014. The event, which will continue from Agust 22-24, comprises of traditional cultural music, folkdances, folksongs apart from traditional sporting event such as buzkashi, yak polo and free style polo. Your participation is welcomed. Please view CAMAT's banner, which has been uploaded to this website. Thanks!  ...

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PAKISTAN: Chitral Association for Mountain Area Tourism (CAMAT) organized a 6-day cooking training for selected guesthouse owners from Broghil—the beautiful plateau in the extreme northern of district Chitral—in a local hotel of  Chitral where 8 selected youths participated.   The training was arranged through the financial support of Aga Khan Rural Support Program’s Market Development (MD) section under its Employability and Leadership for Youths (EELY) project with CAMAT as implementing partner.   The purpose of the training was to develop cooking skills of the selected trainees largely focusing on better hospitality management and food services with improved hygiene quality in their indigenous guesthouses. This will ultimately lead to creating self-employment opportunities for youths in the said destination.   The training focused on cleanliness, better hospitality management and high service quality. The expert chef in Pakistan Tourism Corporation (PTDC) Chitral transferred his cooking skills through ‘learning by doing’ or ‘learning by cooking’....

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Circuses without Bread Today another mega-event circus is about to open in Brazil at a USD 11bn cost (mostly at the benefit of monopolies and oligarchs) but there are clear signs that the organisers have forgot about the bread bit of the old appeasement equation ("panem et circenses" in Latin): Rio airport workers are on strike, there are numerous planned marches while 200,000 troops are mobilising across Brazil to prevent(?) rioting. Preparations have also involved the displacement (forced or induced eviction) of many thousands of Brazil's homeless. A good article documenting the injustice and inequality reproduced by the preparations for this mega-event in Brazil is at   There are also big worries about the Qatar World Cup, and a campaign to re-run "the vote" due to serious worker rights abuses. A people's sport has been slowly hi-jacked by a powerful and allegedly corrupt international monopoly and turned into a commercial, consumerist spectacle. Some telling numbers:...

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Twitter Chat on European Ecotourism Friend of mine, Chris Milnes ‏@reallifepr0ject is organising a 30 min chat on European Ecotourism this Wednesday at 15:00 CET.   Add #euroeco to follow along! More info: