REAL AUTHENTIC EXPERIENCE
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Tourism is not only regarded as an important economic activity, but is also recognized as an essential tool to promote mutual understanding and tolerance through the interactions that take places between tourists and host communities. This enable participants to learn about each other’s culture, customs and day to day living. The rural tourism initiative will create real experiences for travelers and give them the opportunity to see ‘the day in the life of local.
Due to the growing interest in rural tourism, urban pressures have given rural tourism an opportunity to surface as an option, thus realizing the tourism growth potential that it symbolizes. South Africa’s tourism trends also compliments the worldwide trends towards harnessing rural tourism as an unconventional yet authentic form of tourism. Every traveler has a different view and expectation of an ‘authentic experience’. The opportunity we are creating and the experience we are providing is as authentic as it gets. It is a participatory process through which rural people learn over time, through their own experiences and initiatives, how to adapt their indigenous knowledge to their changing world and allow this particular knowledge to form part of the tourism products with the context of their own time, space and conditions.
Heritage can be packaged as a tourism experience only as it is placed in its location of origin to provide a sustainable attraction known for its authenticity and therefore a draw card for local tour operators and tourists. Rural tourism should be the vehicle to give visitors personal contact with a taste of physical and human environment of the rural areas as far as possible, allow them to participate in the activities, traditions and lifestyles of the local people.
TAHS-SA provides a platform for growth opportunities that will ensure inclusive participation of local and international travelers, but will also provide a platform for young entrepreneurs, elderly woman, youth and woman in business, skills development, assisting startups SMME’s, small business management, bursary opportunities, maintaining and addressing existing environmental challenges and the improvements of infrastructure.
TAHS-SA will ultimately address the challenges of unemployment, poverty, inequality and lack of skills development in rural villages by using tourism as a vehicle for change. The Rural Homestay initiative will provide employment opportunities which will increase income, enables development and is compatible with other economic activities within the immediate and broader areas of Limpopo. It is therefore believed that as the programme develops, there will be meaning increase in local benefits, particularly within host communities living in areas where tourism potential exists. The successful implementation of the TAHS-SA principals will create awareness and provide a blueprint that can be replicated throughout the country for all-inclusive growth.
TAHS-SA Rural Homestay initiative is the provision of Responsible Tourism services by the local community to the tourist in their actual place of stay and such include accommodation and the provision of food and other services. In this instance the tourists shares everything with the community that relates to their day to day living
The TAHS-SA Rural Homestay initiative is Community Based Tourism project that creates opportunities by means of enabling rural homestays in a small village situated in the heart of Venda land.