Jamaica ... The Home of

Community Tourism

 "Community Tourism" was the brainchild of the late Desmond Henry and Diana McIntyre-Pike, who coined the phrase as their brand name in 1978. It's goal in Jamaica is to offer visitors the opportunity to explore Jamaica safely, to visit village communities, and to enjoy meeting our people in their own communities, while conserving our national heritage, protecting our environment and contributing to an improvement in the quality of life in our local communities.

All development, and all product offerings, including tours are therefore designed to be environmentally sustainable and beneficial to communities. It offers communities of all sizes a unique opportunity to develop socially and economically, while minimizing the negative impacts.

Jobs are created, new money comes in, local businesses, shops, restaurants, recreational facilities, natural attractions, the infrastructure, and the transport network all benefit. Communities are educated in all aspects of managing the business of tourism ensuring visitor satisfaction, and communities are trained to understand the importance of welcoming and taking care of visitors in a hospitable manner, and keeping the main areas clean, environmentally friendly, and safe, with no drug pushing, crime or other harrassment.

Communities are taught that hospitality in the community is everybody’s business, and not just where the visitor stays.

All the special interest types of tourism are included ...

  • Cultural Tourism
  • Heritage Tourism
  • Eco-Tourism
  • Educational Tourism
  • Recreational TourismSpiritual Tourism
  • Christian Tourism
  • Adventure Tourism
  • Health Tourism
  • Agro Tourism

While tourism in general is undoubtedly important from a national point of view, particularly in terms of foreign exchange and international trade, development of the mainstream tourist industry in any area or community should not exploit or cause destruction of the natural habitat and resources in that area, including cultural and heritage resources.

Community, or village, tourism is not an alternative to mainstream tourism. It needs to work hand in hand with mainstream tourism, and it can to lead the way for the future development of any country's tourism product.

Organizations Supporting
Community Tourism in Jamaica

In Jamaica, the Sustainable Communities Foundation (SCF) was formed specifically to assist Jamaican communities to take responsibility for their future, through education and training in business management and tourism etiquette, and developing their entrepreneurial skills.

The Jamaica Community Tourism Project has the responsibility of developing Community Tourism in Jamaica. It was proposed and designed by the Sustainable Communities Foundation in association with Countrystyle Community Tourism Network (CCTN), and co-ordinated by the St Elizabeth Homecoming Foundation.

The project has recieved the backing of ...

  • The University of the West Indies
  • The Jamaica Hotel & Tourist Association
  • HEART - the National Training Agency of Jamaica
  • Jamaica Tourist Board
  • The Ministry of Industry and Tourism
  • Tourism Product Development Company
  • and more recently the Social Development Commission

The Countrystyle Institute For Sustainable Tourism trains of communities, and offers Study Tours to groups from other countries.

The Countrystyle Tourism Network provides consultancy services locally and internationally.

Countrystyle Tours markets community and village tours in Jamaica, and other Caribbean islands.

Sun Venture Tours markets environmentally friendly tours to communities throughout Jamaica.

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