FAO Regional Office for Latin America and the Caribbean

Cristo de los Milagros Sanctuary tourist route in Bayaguana and Salto Alto

History and location of the experience

The tourist route is located in the municipality of Bayaguana with around 150 participants, of whom 60 percent are women, with 40 percent are under 35 years of age. The municipality is located in the province of Monte Plata, in the southeast of the Dominican Republic, which includes protected areas such as the Los Haitises National Park, the Salto de Socoa Natural Monument and the Salto Grande Natural Monument.

Although the development of the different stops along the route has developed spontaneously through private initiative, local authorities and church representatives play an organic leadership role in the route. The participation of these entities has helped to generate collaboration among local businesses.

What does it offer?

What does it offer?

The tourism activity in the municipality is based mainly on the religious pilgrimage to the sanctuary, complemented with ecotourism and accommodation services. Both activities are carried out during the weekends and on pilgrimage dates. The ecotourism products offered are associated with spas, the main tourist attraction being the visit to Salto Alto. In addition, there are markets where visitors can buy religious products and enjoy traditional cuisine. The sanctuary's market is coordinated by the Catholic Church, in conjunction with the municipal Mayor's Office, and with the participation of several producers' associations, women's groups, artisans' associations, and small-scale agricultural producers and tourism operators.

Most of the businesses on the route have been using social networks for 10 years to promote their services. Regarding accommodation services, Online Travel Agencies (OTAs), such as Booking.com, Expedia.com, and Airbnb, are increasingly used to manage reservations.

All the entrepreneurs have at least one or two smartphones, and in some cases, they also have tablets or computers. The use of WhatsApp and mobile phones to coordinate business logistics is common among the participants of the experience. In some cases, laptops and basic business accounting and billing programmes are also used.

Location

  

Samaná tourism–agriculture–fishing production chain, Las Galeras

History and location of the experience

The Samaná chain is part of the Cibao Northeast region and is surrounded to the north, east and south by the Atlantic Ocean, while to the west it borders with the provinces of María Trinidad Sánchez, Duarte and part of Monte Plata. The experience was created in 2018 due to the need to develop a sustainable tourism destination, promoted by different local, national and international actors, which work to ensure the destination remains low-impact, sustainable, and environmentally responsible in terms of biodiversity and the community of Las Galeras.

The experience benefits around 250 people from the Las Galeras municipal district and the communities of Rincón, Los Tocones and Loma Atravesada, of whom 40 percent are women and 30 percent of the total are young people.

What does it offer?

What does it offer?

The area has beautiful unspoiled beaches, and the local restaurants serve fish and seafood, as well as international cuisine. Other services offered include lodging and excursions during which it is possible to appreciate the beaches and landscapes of Samaná.

The vast majority of the participants use mobile phones and are knowledgeable about digital tools. The local businesses usually use WhatsApp and social networks to promote and sell their products and services.

Accommodation and excursions may be reserved through social networks, as well as on websites such as Booking.com, Expedia.com and Airbnb. These resources are widely used by the owners of hostels, beach houses, and hotels in the municipality.

Location

  

Ecotourism community in Laguna de Oviedo – Pedernales

History and location of the experience

Community ecotourism is part of the Enriquillo region and is bordered to the north by the Independencia province, to the east by the Barahona province, to the south and west by the Caribbean Sea, and to the west by the Republic of Haiti. Around 80 people participate in the experience from the communities of El Cajuil, Los Tres Charcos, La Altagracia, Banano, Las Mercedes and the municipalities of Pedernales and Oviedo.

The productive chain is made up of families of artisanal fishermen and boat owners, producer associations, youth groups, tour guides, and hotel and restaurant owners. It is estimated that 30 percent of the members of the experience are women, and 40 percent of the total are young people.

What does it offer?

What does it offer?

The ecotourism experience offers activities such as bird watching, hiking, boat trips, Taino archaeological sites, nature photography and wildlife observation, including turtle nesting and hatchling release. In addition, lodging is available at a few small hotels and restaurants that have high quality seafood, which comes from fishermen in the province. Among the most recent activities are camping and glamping, which offer alternatives for those who do not want to stay in traditional accommodation.

The use of computers and smartphones is common among the members of the experience, with a large number of the businesses using WhatsApp and social networks to promote and sell their products. In the case of tour guides, several of them have specialized bird watching applications, as well as georeferencing. Reservations for accommodation and restaurants are managed on the website. However, due to lack of funds, the website, Twitter account and Facebook page (created in 2017) have not been updated.

In order to promote the adoption of digital tools by micro, small and medium-sized companies, the Mayor's Office, in partnership with the Department of Digital Economy of the Ministry of Industry, Commerce and MSMEs, held an open day called “Mi Municipio Digital” (My Digital Municipality).

Location


Informe Final Diagnóstico y Prioridades Digitales de las Experiencias de Turismo Rural República Dominicana