Uganda’s tour operators urged to promote community tourism

Uganda’s Tour Operators have been urged to be innovative and think beyond the traditional tourism.

Sjon Haan a development consultant from PUM a Netherland’s development agency said Eco/community tourism is one of the areas that tour operators need to bring on board.

Sjon said things like coffee is one of the biggest products in Uganda that can be promoted to expand the country’s tourism potential.

“If you meet a tourist coming from Uganda and he/she doesn’t mention Uganda’s coffee, then know that he/she did not go to Uganda,” Sjon said.

He was on Saturday meeting different tour operators at Fairway hotel in Kampala. The meeting that was organized by Centre for the Promotion of Imports from Developing Countries (CBI), PUM Netherlands in conjunction with Uganda Coffee Ecotourism Association (UCEA) was convened to discuss with tour operators ways of integrating coffee in tourism. Sjon said, “Tourists drink coffee and they want to learn more about it.”

Guests in a coffee garden during their visit to Muga Eco Village in Bushenyi district. 

He explained that by adding coffee onto the tourism grid they will be growing and promoting Uganda’s rural communities. “It is one way of making sure that money stays in Uganda,” he noted.

He further listed the benefits of promoting coffee tourism as; bringing benefits closer to people, its fun, tourists interact with local people, its hands on and it’s affordable.

The tour operators were encouraged to lead the campaign of having a new trend of tourism. “Tourists are now minding much about conserving nature and you need to take them to communities so that they can see how they can pattern with the local people to bridge the gaps in nature conservation,” Sjon appealed.

Boys participating in milking cow at Muga Eco village.

The tour operators appreciated CBI and PUM for thinking about Uganda’s coffee to be a product that can boost community tourism.

Members of UCEA like Queen Coffee Africa-Bunjako, Muga Eco Village were given the opportunity to showcase their different agrotourism packages that they can offer to tourists. End.

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