Bangkok, 15 March, 2018 – The Moken village of Tung Dap on Ko Phra Thong in Phang Nga province has been named one of the world’s top sustainable destinations, in the ‘2018 Sustainable Destinations Top 100’ competition by Green Destinations.
The winners were announced at ITB 2018 in Berlin earlier this month. Tung Dap village was among the best three entrants in the ‘Best of Cities, Communities & Culture’ category, which recognises global leadership in protecting local culture and tradition, social fabric and sense of place while involving the local community in tourism and avoiding exploitation, human rights violation and disruptive mass tourism.
Mr. Yuthasak Supasorn, Governor of the Tourism Authority of Thailand (TAT), said: “It’s wonderful to see tourism initiatives like the Tung Dap village programme be recognised on the world stage for their commitment to community and environment. Even more so, when you consider this type of experience is precisely what TAT’s ‘Open to the New Shades’ marketing concept is about – discovering Amazing Thailand from new and different perspectives.”
Tung Dap is a rural homestay initiative in which visitors are welcomed into the village where they can learn about and get involved in the local community’s lifestyle. Cultural and nature-based activities; such as, fishing and vegetable foraging are some of the unique Thai local experiences they get to enjoy, while the villagers themselves benefit from fair employment opportunities and a secondary source of income.
TAT has included Tung Dap village in its new Zodiac-based collection of award-winning tour programmes, in which travellers can choose a tour that matches their astrological sign (TAT takes travellers on Zodiac-based magical mystery tours). The visit to Tung Dap represents a Pisces tour option, and is named the ‘Surin Moken Experience’.
Also, the award-winning community-based tourism initiative Andaman Discoveries offers a three-day/two-night tour programme to Tung Dap village called Moken Immersion.
In related news from ITB 2018, the TAT’s ‘Amazing Thailand Pavilion’ was awarded 2nd Best Exhibitor among the top 10 from Asia, Australia and Oceania. At the 540 sq. m booth, TAT showcased the ‘Open to the New Shades’ concept by way of cultural performances and arts and crafts demonstrations.