Amerindians are best tourism stewards – GTA Director

Guyana’s tourism treasures and unique experiences are nestled within the landscapes of Indigenous villages, where Amerindians excel as impeccable hosts, ensuring unforgettable adventures and unmatched comfort.

This is according to Director of the Guyana Tourism Authority (GTA), Kamrul Baksh, while presenting at the recently concluded National Toshaos Conference (NTC), at the Arthur Chung Conference Centre (ACCC), at Liliendaal.

Director of GTA, Kamrul Baksh, presenting at the National Toshaos Conference

“The Indigenous peoples are the best stewards and best ambassadors for tourism and for the type of tourism that we hold very closely, that is eco-tourism, nature-based adventure, and culture-based tourism,” the director expressed.

Baksh said that tourism in Guyana is extremely unique, given that the country is the only one in the world that allows communities and their leaders to take charge of tourism sites and experiences.

“They are leading this work, they control the assets, the land, they run the enterprises themselves. And these three communities…Caiman House in Yupukari in Region Nine, Rewa, and Surama, both in Region Nine in the North Rupununi circuit, are real models for that community-led and own tourism,” the Baksh explained.

The organisation aims to develop comparable models across all regions, a goal that will be achieved by leveraging the authority’s concentrated efforts on various circuits.

Some of the Toshaos that were in attendance on Wednesday

“The potential is extremely high in these areas and we are going to build out community tourism enterprises within all of these circuits. So, support will be given in training and capacity building and through a number of tourism and hospitality programmes,” Baksh disclosed.  

Additionally, the director stated that establishing tourism in Amerindian villages is good for the environment, as it promotes good zoning, and conservation which results in sustainability.

So far, GTA has worked with several Indigenous communities to diversify tourism products.