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ESTC 2011 Presentation by Masaru Takayama, Spirit of Japan Travel, Community Projects

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Ecotourism and Sustainable Tourism Conference (ESTC) (http://www.ecotourismconference.org/) presentation by Masaru Takayama, Director, Spirit of Japan Travel (Japan), presented in September 2011. ...

Ecotourism and Sustainable Tourism Conference (ESTC) (http://www.ecotourismconference.org/) presentation by Masaru Takayama, Director, Spirit of Japan Travel (Japan), presented in September 2011. Organized by The International Ecotourism Society (http://www.ecotourism.org), the ESTC is a unique annual conference providing practical solutions to advance sustainability goals for the tourism industry.

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ESTC 2011 Presentation by Masaru Takayama, Spirit of Japan Travel, Community Projects ESTC 2011 Presentation by Masaru Takayama, Spirit of Japan Travel, Community Projects Presentation Transcript

  • This presentation was presented at the Ecotourism and Sustainable Tourism Conference 2011 (ESTC 2011) , held in Hilton Head Island, South Carolina, USA, from September 19 th -21 st . Organized by The International Ecotourism Society (TIES), the ESTC is a unique annual conference providing practical solutions to advance sustainability goals for the tourism industry. Learn more about the ESTC: http://www.ecotourismconference.org ESTC on Twitter: http://www.twitter.com/ESTC_Tourism ESTC on Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/ESTC.Tourism The International Ecotourism Society | web www.ecotourism.org email info@ecotourism.org | tel +1 202 506 5033
  • The fine balance between community motivation and empowerment ESTC 2011 Masaru Takayama www.eco-tourism.jp
    • Travel differently from others
    To learn more about the people of Spirit of Japan Travel, take a picture of this 2D bar code with your smart phone or visit our webiste eco-tourism.jp/aboutus.php . QuickMark code scan application recommended. About Spirit of Japan Travel We specialize in Japanese community-based ecotourism & cultural heritage tourism offering a collection of unparalleled private tours within the ancient island country of Japan. Travelers will experience and encounter Japan's rich culture and fascinating people. Visit unspoiled countrysides as guests of friends and leave nothing but good memories with the new friends you made. Our destination tours offer a privileged few the finest local guides and personalized services, and all the benefits of being away from big concrete cities. We do not believe in superficial, multi-destination mass tourism where local economic contribution is limited. Our commitment to offer responsible tourism products especially in ecotourism and cultural heritage tourism stands firm. Trains and buses or non-motorized vehicles are prioritized modes of transportation on all our tours. Our nationally certified guides are well versed in both national and local issues and are dedicated to making the most of your vacation. One party, with a maximum of five to eight people at a time, unrivaled privacy, and harmony with nature’s magnificence help you unwind in the retreat you’ve always dreamed of. Your participation to the tour revitalizes business at local stores and empowers the local community to feel proud of what they have. More importantly, spirits of Japan will be passed on to the next generation with your presence, generating local employment and production.
  • Always a right trip for you. Every trip. Every time. Director's message Welcome to Spirit of Japan Travel. I believe you have come this far for a reason, not just because you are dreaming of Japan, I hope. There is a myriad of travel destinations and operators in this world to choose from, but when it comes to a journey that improves the well being of the community while helping to protect the environment and foster cultural and historical assets, the number of qualified operators is drastically less vastly because ordinary tour operators concentrate on cost effectiveness. I strongly believe a responsible tour operator ought to make conservation efforts in the surrounding environment and for assets peculiar to the region; and this is only made possible with the community integration and interaction. Minimization of negative impacts on culture, society, and the environment when bringing in international travelers is pivotal to achieving a status as a responsible and sustainable operator. Many of our guests choose us for this reason, and play a crucial role in maintaining sustainability. We cordially invite you to experience the ancient island country of the rising sun. Share the unforgettable moments and embrace the excitement with us. Sincerely, President, Masaru Takayama
  • TOURS
  • IMMERSE YOURSELF IN ADVENTURE Hiwasa is the sleepy fishing village with a well-protected beach where turtle often come to nest during spring and summer. Stroll through the town past traditional minka houses, making stops at places of interest, i.e. sweets shop, seafood store, artisan’s gallery, etc. When you are tired of walking, there is a natural hot spring footbath next to a market where locals gather to chat and catch up with stories. For energetic individuals, join a weekly Awa-odori folk dance practice at the municipal hall. Within a stone’s throw, there is a Hilltop Yakuoji (deity of medicine) temple, home to worshipers and day visitors making their 28th stop on the 88-temple pilgrimage circuit henro ; that pilgrims have followed since the early 800s in the hope to expel evil spirits and misfortune. Due to its proximity to the ocean and mountains, numerous adventurous opportunities are available to satisfy the visitors’ curiosity in exploring the area. Sea kayaking along the rocky shore with ‘paddle-thru’ natural arches, mountain biking in town or in the woods, trekking along a photogenic coastal trail… these are just among a few of the adventures that Hiwasa offers. This area is also a food lovers’ paradise. Sample today’s catch and locally grown organic vegetables prepared with a touch of local seasonings in more-than-a-century-old private dining establishment. Our traditional style inns boast straw-mat tatami rooms that are cleverly positioned to allow you to luxuriate within view of a Japanese garden. Weather and season permitting, local farmers assist you in planting and harvesting rice and seasonal vegetables in a lush-green valley. To learn more about the tours, take a picture of this 2D bar code with your smart phone or visit our webiste eco-tourism.jp/tours.php . QuickMark code scan application recommended. HIWASA
  • Seaturtle conservation and community in Hiwasa 4 DAYS HIWASA - EXPLORE THE BEST KEPT SECRETS OF HIWASA HIWASA TK01 From JPY135,000 to 269,000 per person Duration: 4 days Group size: minimum 1, maximum 5 Departs: between April and December except Blackout dates* ITINERARY Day1 : Kyoto - Tokushima - Hiwasa Meet at JR Kyoto Station or your ryokan or inn. Escort on a train to Osaka and transfer to highway bus ride. Upon arrival, walk to a hundred-year-old -plus Tani residence to check –in. Enjoy Japanese tea and sweets to soothe yourself before heading for lunch at a local diner. The rest of the afternoon is set aside for a guided stroll about Hiwasa , beach, castle, temple, etc. Enjoy the sunset in the public open-air bath overseeing the Pacific Ocean. Dinner at Tani residence inn. Day2 : Hiwasa An hour cycling on mountain bikes along Hiwasa River to Souringama pottery atelier where nothing but bird chirps and the chatter of the river can be heard. The surrounding lush bamboo forest makes you relax and get you ready for the pottery class. Enjoy an easy downhill ride on mountain bikes along the river for a house-cooking-style lunch at Hotarumura Asobijuku , which literally means ‘private school for pleasure in a village of fireflies’. After lunch activities include the incredible traditional street performances such as top-spinning, taiko drum play, and a dance with bead curtains. Try for yourself if you think it is as easy as it looks. Cycle back to Hiwasa. Late afternoon is free time, relax or go shopping for local crafts as your heart desires. Enjoy hot springs before a potluck dinner party with the local community at a neighboring traditional house/outdoor center. Day3 : Hiwasa - Kaifu Walk to a nearby Seaturtle Museum and participate in a morning briefing with the museum staffs for instructions on seaturle cleaning and feeding. Learn on seaturtle behaviors and species in the museum through the duties as a volunteer staff. After lunch is an exclusive visit to an old merchant's private house by a comfortable local train ride. The community comes into this place to welcome you with traditional music. Day4 : Kaifu - Tokushima - Kyoto Try the morning indigo dying class (closed on Mondays and months Jan.-Mar.) to make your own handkerchieves or noren, traditional Japanese fabric divider between rooms or walls. Enjoy the stop in Tokushima city for shopping until the bus departs for Kyoto. Kyoto arrival around 6pm. REMARKS physical rating : (2/5) meals included : 3 breakfasts 4 lunches 3 dinners transport: train, bus, bicycle, walking carbon emission : 28.9kg (transportation 16.7kg, inns 12.2kg) *tour includes guide-interpreter and/or escort service except for the bus rides between Tokushima and Kyoto or Osaka. Make your own transfer to JR Kyoto Station or request an escort from your inn for a fee. Upon arrival in Kyoto, escort service is available to our selection of premium inns. *the order of activities is subject to change with weather or sea conditions and may be substituted with indoor activities to ensure the safety of travelers. WHERE DOES YOUR MONEY GO? 24.4% goes to food, accommodation, directly to local community 41.8% goes to local employment 13.4% goes to our salary, insurance, and office expense 9.8% goes to transportation 1.9% goes to corporate social investment projects 8.8% goes to taxes and other transaction fees *based on double occupancy BLACKOUT dates Apr.29-May.12, October 10-12, Nov.21-23. Dec.30,31. Please make a booking request first for months 6-9 as blackout dates for this particular tour vary with local conditions. From Kyoto, Osaka, and Kobe
  • Other highlights in Hiwasa Stay longer to enjoy or pick what you want to do and make it into a package Trail Running from JPY 5,000 per person Beginners welcome. Must be 20 years of age or older. Available months : 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 10, 11, 12 Coastering - move along the intertidal zone of a rocky coastline on foot or by swimming from JPY 7,000 per person Beginners welcome. Must be 20 years of age or older. Full rental gear for 3,000yen. Available months : 3,4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11 Trekking from JPY 7,000 per person Beginners welcome. From a few hours to multi-day. Mountain, Coast, Waterfall, etc. Available months : 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 10, 11, 12 MTB from JPY 6,000 per person Beginners welcome. From a few hours to multi-day. Mountain, Coast, downhill, etc. Available months : 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 9, 10, 11, 12 Includes: helmet and bike rental Seakayaking from JPY 7,000 per person Beginners welcome. From a few hours to multi-day. Mountain, Coast, downhill, etc. Available months : 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 9, 10, 11, 12 Includes : full gear rental Pottery from JPY 5,000 per person Beginners welcome. Make your own tea cup, rice bowl, and many more! Available months : all year, subject to availability Includes : instruction and clay Indigo Dying from JPY 5,000 per person Beginners welcome. Make one-in-the-world handkerchief, hand towel, etc. Available months : all year except cold months Includes : instruction and cloth
  • Initial Stage
    • Find a ‘right’ community leader
    • Publicly announce the project
    • Consensus to implement the project
    • Create a calendar of events
  • Initial Stage
    • Find existing projects on the local level
    • Kindly approach to talk about the past
    • Compare with the present situation
  • Transitional Stage
    • Periodic meetings – 4 seasons, 4 maps
    • Invest overtime, late nights
    • Build bonds and trust
    • Start talking on potential merits under specific conditions
  • Community Motivation
    • Rural area – 73% mountains, 50% lives in 14% of flat land, 6,852 islands
      • No employment
      • High aging
      • Depopulation
      • Severe weather
      • Lack of infrastructure, entertainment
    • Money is often the last thing they want
  • Community Motivation
    • Silent ending is a virtue
    • Employment opportunity for young people
    • Good transportation - shopping, hospital
    • Periodic visit to houses
    • Mutual internationalization
  • Trusting the community
  • Challenges
    • Split community by our presence
    • Understand their life cycle (on/off season)
    • No or no adequate accommodation in the village
    • Equal opportunity (seniority, male-dominated society)
    • Talk turkey (from a guest to a reliable business partner/friend)
  • Key to success
    • Become and think like a cloud
    • No black or white solution
    • Go where others go, but not blown away
    • Can be close, but never get caught
    • Bring shades to give a break
    • Bring sun to bright up
    • Bring water to grow
  • See you in JAPAN! www.eco-tourism.jp