Purpose – The purpose of this paper is to provide an overview of the tourism sector in Suriname drawing attention to some key initiatives for conservation and protection of the rainforest in Suriname. The paper also identifies the principal prospects, challenges, and weaknesses that attend both the planning and management of tourism in Suriname. Design/methodology/approach – The paper analyzes and draws evidence from articles, research papers, scholarly publications and official documents and supplements those findings with interviews with key officials and actors in the tourism sector. The paper reflects a balance of multiple perspectives in its investigation of the role of sustainable tourism initiatives in the effort to protect the rainforest of the Amazon region of Suriname. Findings – Suriname has been making strong efforts to expand the management of the area of forest that is under protection despite the increasing encroachments from mining activities. Apart from those challenges on the ground, there are also challenges of an institutional nature in the weak regulations and legislative framework necessary to conserve and protect rainforests through sustainable tourism activity. Practical implications – As the tourism authorities of Suriname plan to accelerate growth in the tourism sector and to double arrivals within the next three years, the issues addressed in this paper relating to sound rainforest management and most sustainable tourism practices should not escape the attention of tourism planners in Suriname. Originality/value – Suriname promotes itself as “the beating heart of the Amazon.” This paper reveals some of the strong sustainability credentials of Suriname that have also received world recognition even as it presents a sobering picture of the clear and present threats to that sustainable future.
Worldwide Hospitality and Tourism Themes – Emerald Publishing
Published: Apr 13, 2010
Keywords: Tourism; Tourism development; Sustainable development; Conservation; Forests; Suriname