Visitors enjoy kayaking at a river in Baan Tha Din Daeng. KARNJANA AYUWATANACHAI
The Designated Areas for Sustainable Tourism Administration (Dasta) and its alliances have selected two local communities in Phangnga province to be role models for tourism development on the Andaman coast.
Nalikatibhag Sangsnit, director-general of Dasta, said Baan Sam Chong Nue in Takua Pa district and Baan Tha Din Daeng in Muang district will be developed as new destinations for locals and international tourists.
Dasta said the two villages have their own unique, rich culture and diverse way of living that can be highlighted as attractions.
The Dasta team visited Baan Sam Chong Nue this week to talk with community leaders and seek ways to develop the villages as models for others on the Andaman coast.
Dasta usually works to develop overlooked areas to become attractive destinations. It has been developing communities in many provinces such as Loei, Nan, Sukhothai, Ayutthaya, and Chon Buri.
This year it is moving to collaborate with tourism alliances, local administration and tourism businesses to develop and promote communities, starting with the villages in Phangnga province.
Mr Nalikatibhag said tourism on the Andaman coast will continue to grow, not only in mature markets like Phuket, but also spreading to emerging areas including Phangnga and Krabi.
“In order to cope with booming tourism on the Andaman coast, Dasta and alliances began to work with villages to provide knowledge and management for tourism attractions,” he said.
Last year, more than 4,000 tourists, both locals and foreigners, visited Baan Sam Chong Nue, generating income of 2 million baht for the village. Baan Tha Din Daeng welcomed similar levels of arrivals and income. Most tourists visited the villages as part of one-day trips, offering minor income compared with major tourist spots.
Dasta expects the number of tourists to the two villages will gradually increase in the future if they able to improve tourism management and service standards.
Phangnga is one of five provinces on the Andaman coast, along with Phuket, Krabi, Trang and Satun, where Dasta and alliances are set to promote local communities this year.
“The aim is to help communities meet the Global Sustainable Tourism Criteria. If the communities can get certified, it will certainly draw more visitors to the areas,” said Mr Nalikatibhag.
Nalikatibhag: All of Andaman to benefit