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Cordillera villages hope to emulate Punnuk revelers as best tourism village

BEST TOURISM VILLAGE. This year’s Best Cordillera Tourism Village will be known on September 27 during the celebration of World Tourism Day, said Department of Tourism – Cordillera director Jovita Ganongan. Here Ganongan and DOT – CAR and local chief executives during the launching of the search recently. Neil Clark Ongchangco/PIO Baguio

This year’s Best Cordillera Tourism Village will be known during the World Tourism Day on September 27, the Department of Tourism – Cordillera (DOT-CAR) announced recently.

The search was launched recently in an effort to boost the growth of the region’s tourism industry and provide added attractions for foreign and domestic visitors, DOT – CAR director Jovita Ganongan.

The winner will join the Hapao-Baang-Nungulunan Clustered Tourism Village in Hungduan, Ifugao which was named as the Best Tourism Village last February.

The Hungduan village won a cash prize of PhP1 million as well as a trophy and a token. The clustered barangays are host of the Punnuk Festival that marks the end of the harvest season.

Through the search, the DOT would also be able to provide direct assistance to potential villages to become tourism villages and for existing tourism villages to become sustainable and profitable.

Ganongan called on local chief executives and the other tourism stakeholders to rally behind the tourism villages and continue to campaign to bring back the tourism industry in the country and in their respective localities.

She said that tourism villages are rural tourism destinations with recognized cultural and natural assets that preserve and promote rural and community-based values, products and lifestyle and have a clear commitment to innovation and sustainability in all its aspects such as economic, social and environmental.

Further, community-based tourism is a means of empowering communities to manage tourism growth and achieve community aspirations relating to their wellbeing.

It is also a concept of developing a tourist destination through empowering local communities, where the community contributes in planning, managing and delivering opinions.

Last February, Ganongan awarded also In is the Pidlisan Village in Sagada, Mountain Province composed of barangays Fidelisan, Aguid, Bangaan, and Pide for second place and received P500,000.00 as cash prize.

The Naneng Village in Tabuk City, Kalinga is in third place and won P200,000.

Runners up with cash prize of P 100,000  are  the Bila Tourism Village in Bauko, Mountain Province; the Pasil Slow Food Community in Dangatan, Pasil in Kalinga; the Marag Tourism Village in Marag, Luna in Apayao; the Balbalasang Proper “Pasual” in Balbalasang, Balbalan in Kalinga; and the La Diyang Haven in Tuba, Benguet.

Also recognized for last year’s launching competition were: Guinzadan Tripartite Tourism Village in Bauko Mountain Province; the Nagacadan Open Air Museum in Kiangan, Ifugao; the Abra Village Community in Santa Marcela, Apayao; and the Maligcong Village in Bontoc, Mountain Province.

This year’s world tourism day has tourism and green investment as theme. Pigeon Lobien

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