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BAIKAL - BURYATIA: tourism and recreation

official website of the Republic of Buryatia in the field of tourism development


In 1992-1994 there was a series of Russian-German conference "Development of sustainable tourism in Russia", in which attempts were made to understand the potential of ecotourism development at lake Baikal, to pass on German experience in this area, to find opportunities for cooperation. The organizers of the conference were the Federal, Ministerto the environment, nature conservation and nuclear safety of Germany, Federal research centre for nature conservation and the ecology of the landscapes of Germany, the High economic Council under the Presidium of the Supreme Soviet of the Russian Federation, the Ministry of environmental protection and natural resources of the Russian Federation, the Ministry of culture and tourism of the Russian Federation, Siberian branch of the Russian Academy of Sciences. One result of the conferences was the fact that German tourists are the most frequent guests on lake Baikal, ahead of tourists from other countries.

In 1993, it was developed by a joint Russian-American project "Baikal region in the 21st century. A comprehensive program for sustainable land management policies for the Russian territory of the Baikal basin". This work was carried out at the expense of a number of international funds and the Government of the United States Agency for international development (USAID) at the request of the Government of the Republic of Buryatia, the Irkutsk and Chita regions. On the lake were active joint working group under the auspices of the main implementing organization of the U.S. “Davis Associates”. The program became known as "the Davis Program" eco-tourism was given a major role as one of the instruments of sustainable development of the Baikal region. Co-executors of the project was the international centre of socio-ecological problems of the Baikal region (Russia), Russian Academy of Sciences, Centre of civil initiatives (USA).

In 1993-1997, in the framework of the Program, Davis was the Project "Development of ecotourism in the Baikal region. Ecotourism - tips, motivations and principles of business." The project was carried out a number of tasks, including: initial assessment of ecotourism potential of lake Baikal, the description of the local tourist services, publishing guide.

1994-1995-Japan Foundation of the development of political and humanitarian resources of humanity (PHRD Fund) through the world Bank funded the development of "General plan of development of ecotourism in the region of lake Baikal". The draft Plan was developed by British consulting firm Environmental Resources Management (ERM). In the course of the project a research was conducted and the assessment of the development potential of ecotourism and recommendations for development. Was selected five best ecotourism areas. The recommendations of the Plan cover the following aspects: the development of the transport sector and road network development projects on construction of hotels, the establishment of a regional tourism Board, development of strategy of development of region taking into account the priority of market relations, resolving personnel problems, development of investment program, development of legal framework, improving monitoring and increasing the efficiency of management of protected areas, the deployment of an advertising campaign involving the public. The plan was developed for the period of 5 years, the need for investment was 11 million dollars. Particularly useful was the fact that as a result of the research resources of lake Baikal was determined by the capacity of reception of 2 million people a year. The full plan was not accepted for execution in the absence of the necessary funds, some of its fragments are now used in the preparation of regional tourism development programs and bills.

In 1997-2000 on lake Baikal was performed several projects related to ecotourism, support for which was provided by the Programme ROLL (Dissemination of experience and results of environmental projects) at the expense of the Government of the United States Agency for international development.

One of them, the project "B&B&B" was carried out in 1997-1998 and involved the implementation in the Baikal region English experience hosting tourists in private houses with services "Bed and Breakfast", as well as training local residents in the basics of the organization of the reception. The project was carried out in the Buryat regional Association on lake Baikal.

The second project, "PDI - a way to balance on Baikal" was carried out in 1998-1999 and provides a number of training events and implementation in the territories of Zabaikalsky and Pribaikalsky national parks methodology "Limits of acceptable change", used in the planning and organization of tourism in the national parks of the United States, Canada and Europe. The project also performed Buryat regional Association on lake Baikal.

The third project "Implementation of the Seville strategy in protected areas of the South Baikal region" was implemented in 1999-2000 and included the development of partnerships protected areas and the local population of the Baikal region, prevention of conflicts of nature management, the establishment of zones of cooperation, the development of ecotourism, employment, development and a flexible business plan. The project was carried out in the Baikal state biosphere reserve.

In addition, with the support of the ROLL was completed a few projects aimed at the development of a network of nature trails, study ecological traditions and publishing environmental literature. Among them:

"The creation of a network of nature trails in the Baikal Area of the UNESCO World Heritage", 1999 provided for the establishment and improvement of ecological trails in the three districts of Buryatia: Tunka, the Severobaikalsk, the Barguzin. The project was implemented ecotourism club "Firn".

"Legal zoning of recreational territories on the coast of Baikal in Buryatia Republic", 1999, involved an evaluation of the legal framework, description of tourist resources and creation of GIS in the three districts of Buryatia: kubanska, the Barguzin, the Baikal. Performed Buryat regional Association on lake Baikal.

"Barguzin valley. The study and dissemination of ecological traditions of the Evenks", 1999, involved the collection of ecological folklore, publishing children's textbooks.

In 1999, under the auspices of the Paris headquarters of UNESCO on lake Baikal was held the international seminar for the study of Baikal experience of ecotourism development experience of North American national parks and the results of the implementation of the "Limits of acceptable change" for managers of specially protected natural territories - Sites of World Heritage. This methodology was recognized as promising, however, it was recommended to continue work on its adaptation to the conditions of the Russian legislation.

In 1998-1999 was the project "Baikal informational and consultative center of tourism". The project is aimed at establishing the foundations of information support of tourism, encouraging the development of partnerships tour operators of the Baikal region with tour operators of Russia and foreign countries. The project was first created by the Bank of information necessary for the organizers of tourism was provided technical assistance to local governments in the development of tourism, initiated the publication of special newsletters highlighting the progress of the development of tourism, conducted a series of training seminars on the basics of tourism for the local population of the Baikal region. Also was published the first in the Baikal region complete Directory of tourist companies and accommodation facilities. Support for the project was provided by the Eurasia Foundation. The project was carried out in the Baikal regional tourism Association.

In 1999 within the framework of the TACIS project "Strengthening of public administration bodies in the Baikal region", was completed subproject "Creation of jobs for rural youth through the parallel development of ecotourism and traditional crafts". The project was described by the tourist resources of the Tunka and the Barguzin districts of the Republic of Buryatia and created a CD-ROM. The project was carried out by the Baikal Institute of nature management with the involvement of French experts in the field of ecotourism.

In 1998-2002 gg Global environment facility (GEF), in the framework of the Programme "biodiversity Conservation in the Russian Federation", financed several projects related to ecotourism.

The project "preparing the conditions for the organization of the natural Park "sissy COP" was carried out in 2000-2001 and was aimed at creating conditions for the preservation of natural resources in the most unfavorable environmental Bay of lake Baikal – Bay Embassy Sora and the organization is the first in the Baikal protected recreational areas of local significance. In the course of the project for the first time at lake Baikal was developed the management Plan for tourism development in protected areas of local significance using the methods of Limits of Acceptable Change and the recommendations of the WCO conducted marketing research in the areas of tourism, given the status of recreational and protected areas two areas of tourism "BAYKALSKIY Priboy – Kultushnaya" and "Lemasovo" landscaping carried out.

The project "Creation of the Baikal information system of ecological tourism" was carried out in 2001-2002 and was aimed at creation of information system of ecological tourism with the use of modern electronic technology, the development of partnerships tour operators of the Baikal region with tour operators of Russia and foreign countries, promote services to tourism markets, the textbook on ecotourism. The project was initiated and supported development of 15 information centres, tourism around lake Baikal, the created information system "BISTER" Internet make it easy to find the desired information, and conducted a number of seminars on the organization of ecotourism for the local population of the Baikal region.

Both projects were carried out in the Baikal regional tourism Association with the support of the State Committee of the Republic of Buryatia on Affairs of youth, tourism, physical culture and sport.

In 2001-2002, he carried out a project to develop "Rules of the organization of tourism and recreation in the Central ecological zone of lake Baikal". This project was aimed at implementation of Article 12 Of the RF law "On protection of lake Baikal", included the development and introduction of ecological passports on the whole territory of the Central ecological zone of lake Baikal and implemented NGO "Civil information initiative".

In 2001-2002 was carried out the project "Creation of the Atlas of protected natural territories of the Baikal basin", providing for its printed and electronic versions. The Atlas contains information on existing (9 reserves and strictly protected areas, 9 national parks, 27 zakazniks and nature reserves, 154 monuments) and planned PROTECTED areas as of 2000 the Project was carried out by the NGO "Civil information initiative".

In 2001-2002, he performed the project "the Price zoning of biological resources of the coastal areas of the Republic of Buryatia (Kabanskiy, Baikal, Barguzin and Severobaikalsk districts of the Republic of Belarus)" as a tool for biodiversity conservation in lake Baikal basin", which was also carried out economic evaluation of tourism resources. The project was carried out by NGO "Baikal learning center" from 1 January 2001-1 November 2001

In 2001-2002 was carried out the project "the Baikal Coordinating Council as a model of inter-regional and intersectoral cooperation in solving problems of nature and conservation of biodiversity". the project involved the creation of organizational conditions for realization of the goals and objectives of the Baikal Declaration in the coastal districts of the Irkutsk region and the Republic of Buryatia, the problems of forest management, tourism, the creation of 7 public reception, the publication of the regional environmental Bulletin "Baikal. Nature. Society."

The project "Great Baikal trail" provides for the use of the lake of experience of the organization of the Appalachian Trail, having the status of national scenic trails of the United States. According to the plan of the Great Baikal trail should be the longest pedestrian route, and to obtain the status of a national trail Russia. Its length more than 2000 km, the Project is under construction.and execution.

Some of the projects that received recognition in the Baikal region, and also in some regions of Russia are currently being implemented at the expense of local resources, which significantly limits the possibilities of implementation and results of projects. However, organizations that initiate these projects, work is under way to seek funding for their full implementation.

The project "Great Tea road" involves the use of historical and cultural heritage caravan trade route that linked 17-19 V. Russia, Mongolia, China and Alaska (USA), to create a new international tourist destinations. By design, the project should be used the experience of large, successful international project "Great silk road", "Road of slaves", "Wine route" and others. The project has a multidimensional character and its own development plan. The most important about him is that he is a partnership project for governments of countries and regions, and enterprises of tourist industry, to find my place in it and get good results. "Tea road" has a chance to become the long continental route in the world (9000 km), allowing tourists to explore the tremendous natural and historical-cultural resources of many countries and peoples. However, the project has potential for development as a major tourist destination, linking Russia with countries of the Asia-Pacific region and in this form it claims the role of a national tourist project of Russia. This does not preclude the division of the path into several components and creating them is an original tourist product. In the course of the project has passed several international conferences and meetings, outline practical steps for its implementation, and tourist firms of Moscow, Siberia, China and Mongolia created the program for "Tea route". Given the fact that the culture of production and consumption of tea in many countries is an integral part of national cultures, having attractivelys for tourists features and rich history, potential participants of the project can be any of them. Currently suspended "tea countries" is about half of the countries of the world. The project was initiated by the State Committee of the Republic of Buryatia on Affairs of youth, tourism, physical culture and sport and the Baikal regional tourism Association, under the auspices of the Interregional Association of the regions of Siberia "Siberian accord" (Russia). Its geography and number of participants gradually expanded.