Page 1

Thai version (2017)

ข้อมูลผูจ้ ดั ท�ำ

: Knowledge Management Division, Office of Strategic Management

English version : International Ralations Division, (2018)

Office of Strategic Management

Designated Areas for Sustainable Tourism Administration (Public Organization) 118/1 Tipco Tower, 31st Floor, Rama 6 Road, Phayathai, Phayathai District, Bangkok 10400 TEL: 02-357-3580-7 FAX: 02-357-3599 Website,,

Produced by

COCOON & CO COMPANY LIMITED 32, Chokchai 4, Soi 84, Chokchai 4 Road, Ladprao, Ladprao District, Bangkok 10230 TEL: 02-116-9959, 087-718-7324 FAX: 02-116-9958 E-MAIL:


Preface “Tourism…for Whom?” illustrate the on-going mission of DASTA to develop the sustainable tourism for the benefits of local communities all over Thailand. The framework, under the guideline of the self-sufficiency theory of the late King Bhumibol, is to distribute tourism income for the well-being and economic improvement of local communities. The book also includes the case studies of top countries in the global happiness rankings such as Denmark and Bhutan. DASTA hopes that this educational book series- Tourism…for Whom?” will encourage all relevant sectors to prioritize sustainable tourism and to be more concerned about the potential tourism resources in the country. We also hope that the series will portray a clear picture that DASTA is not only working on tourism industry development, but is also transforming tourism as one of the major channels for local communities to gain benefits in terms of income-creation, community unity, resilience to changes, and self-reliance. As the result, the communities will act as the hosts to welcome tourists to visit their attractions with warm-hearted spirit. “Tourism…for Whom?” points out the essentials to prioritize income sharing and economic distribution to local communities and their outlying neighborhood when establishing sustainable tourism development. In regard to the core principal of tourism management, all communities and members should walk together and no one should be left behind. Thus, the answer to the question “Tourism…for Whom?” is ultimately for the well-being of the local communities.

(Col. Dr. Nalikatibhag Sangsnit) Director-General of DASTA

Introduction Page 6

Current state of global tourism Page 8

Pro-poor Tourism Page 12

Case studies Page 40

The role of DASTA in sustainable tourism development Page 14

Article and photo contest Page 60

The King’s philosophy Page 44

Tourism industry, the hope of the world Page 10 CBTT and ‘We Receive & We Distribute’ Tool Page 32

Interview Page 40

References Page 64

Introduction Tourism, a development tool for sustainability It is undeniable that Thailand’s inequality is considerably high. According to a recent survey by Oxford Committee for Famine Relief (Oxfam), Thailand ranks third in inequality after Russia and India. All agencies involved are now speeding up in resolving the issue through mutual cooperation to reduce the inequality among the Thais. As for DASTA, we have been prioritizing and committed to the tourism development, hoping that the tourism industry will generate income for the local community members through employment and help improve their quality of life. This will result in them becoming an important workforce for the development of the country and will also “make tourism part of the income generation and reduction of inequality among the Thais�.

Tourism as part of the income generation and inequality reduction for the Thais Fine Thai arts, culture and traditions attract tourists from various nations into the country. They visit, admire and are exposed to the Thai lifestyle which is the distinctiveness that all Thais should preserve and cherish while pursuing sustainable tourism. The beneficiaries of sustainable tourism are the locals who own the communities. They will earn from tourism grounded on fine arts, culture and traditions and become empowered, equal, and able to live better lives.

Current state of global tourism Nowadays, tourism is playing a very important role in the socio-economic situation of Thailand as it attracts an increasing number of tourists into the country each year. In 2016, 32.59 million international tourists visited Thailand, generating 2.51 trillion baht in revenue for the country which was 1.5 trillion baht more when compared to 2011. However, the impact, apart from an increasing number of tourists, is the changing socio-cultural situation and the degradation of tourism resources in the country. This is

because too much attention was given to the volume of tourists and the revenue they generate rather than considering the true potential of the resources. The demand has been increasing while the supply has been deteriorating. Therefore, there is a need for preparation to tackle forthcoming risks. Every sector should realize and prioritize the remaining tourism resources in the country as nowadays we have beautiful attractions which are still lacking proper maintenance to preserve them for our next generation.



Tourism industry, the hope of the world

Tourism, a development tool for sustainability The development that covers economic, social, cultural, and environmental aspects through various tourism activities.

Tourism industry = the hope of the world Information from the United Nations World Tourism Organization (UNWTO) and the World Travel & Tourism Council (WTTC) in 2016: 1,236 tourists travel globally Global tourism revenue is as high as US$7.6 trillion. The contribution of tourism sector to world GDP is 10.2%. Tourism sector supports as high as 292 million people in employment (1/10 of global workforce is in tourism sector). In 2030, the UNWTO estimates that there will be as high as 1,800 million tourists travelling globally. 10

Economic Generate income, stimulate the local economy, create local employment opportunities

Revive traditional way of life, create social learning activities through community-based tourism




Revive culture and traditions so that they are part of tourism resources, such as through cultural tourism

Create motivation to preserve tourism and environmental resources, such as through eco-tourism


Pro-poor Tourism

Forms of Pro-poor Tourism Eco-Tourism Emphasize on the importance of environment in the aspect of tourism and preservation of environment as it is considered a cost in tourism.

Community-Based Tourism A form of tourism which empowers local communities and enable them to be self-reliant and resilient to changes.

Pro-poor Tourism A form of tourism under the framework of sustainable tourism

Pro-poor Tourism

Pro-poor Tourism in Thailand

Pro-poor Tourism is the development of tourism industry to create employment opportunities and income generation and to improve the quality of life of the locals. It can also reduce poverty and economic inequality while at the same time promotes social and environmental development which paves the way for sustainable tourism development.

Tourism is one of the main sources of national revenue. The number of tourists visiting Thailand is increasing each year. However, they are often concentrated in convenient attractions and generate income to only middle to high income group of people and not to those with lower income in remote areas. For this reason, the government is promoting sustainable tourism, focusing on building a connection between the tourism sector and local communities to facilitate income distribution through enhancing inclusiveness of low-income communities. Thailand has been conducting a pro-poor tourism policy in many projects such as the ‘One Tambon, One Product’ (OTOP) and the community enterprise promotion. All these projects aim at the same objectives which are poverty alleviation and creation of economic opportunities for the poor who are the majority of Thailand’s population.



DASTA and Sustainable Tourism Development

The role of DASTA in Sustainable Tourism Development Designated Areas for Sustainable Tourism Administration (Public Organization) or DASTA coordinates, promotes and supports the conservation of designated areas for sustainable tourism. It focuses on tourism which retains fine culture and traditions, lifts up the quality of life, and distributes income to the people in the communities for them to have a happy and self-sufficient living. 14


Pro-poor Tourism

Economic profit Employment, income,and wage, including the expansion of enterprises from small to medium size.

Quality of life improveme Tourism in most developing countries is driven by community-based management as the community know best about the resources in their own locality so they can narrate their history and tell their needs better than outsiders. This paves the way for sustainable tourism by means of Pro-poor Tourism which can be dissected into these three aspects.

Strengthening the capacity of local communities and managing the balance between housing and environment.

Participation in management Enabling the poor or low-income earners to participate in the planning and the development of local tourism.



The concept of Loss is Profit

The late King Bhumibol’s work principles can be applied to the development of Pro-poor Tourism. It is worth investing in any operations that may incur costs or even losses but at the same time bring solutions and happiness to the people. For 14 years, DASTA has been mentoring local communities on sustainable tourism and community-based tourism management and supporting activities that lead to even income distribution. This is because tourism development does not aim at benefitting any specific individuals but the community members who own the tourism resources. Thus, it can be said that sustainable tourism development, according to the principles of DASTA, is indeed the kind of tourism development that leads to poverty eradication.



Social disparity and even income distribution


Social disparity means income inequality between the rich and the poor. The tool used for measuring inequality is the Gini Coefficient which is the indicator of inequality. It is calculated from the area between the Lorenz curve and the perfect distribution line, divided by the total area of the diagonal line. The calculation of the Gini Coefficient is based on the assumption that all people have non-negative income. The Gini Coefficient rages from 0 to 1. Its value near to 0 signifies perfect equality, while its value near to 1 signifies social disparity or high inequality.


Valuation of tourism resource in DASTA’s designated areas in the aspects of economic, social and environmental values for sustainable tourism development

Economic value Socio-cultural and environmental tourism resources, positive socio-cultural and environmental impact

Valuation and Analysis of economic value of tourism resources in 6 of DASTA’s designated areas were done in 2 dimensions (socio-cultural and environmental). Each dimension was evaluated based on willingness to pay in 5 aspects.

Direct use value Indirect use value

Option value Existence value

Designated area of Pattaya City and related areas 1,894,000 million baht (Socio-cultural dimension 843,054 million baht/ Environmental dimension 1,050,946 million baht)


Designated area of Loei Province 611,731 million baht (Socio-cultural dimension 166,477 million baht/ Environmental dimension 445,254 million baht)


Designated area of Sukhothai - Si Satchanalai - Kamphaeng Phet Historical Parks 383,355 million baht (Socio-cultural dimension 179,668 million baht/ Environmental dimension 179,668 million baht)


Designated area of Koh Chang Islands and related areas 163,962 million baht (Socio-cultural dimension 83,797 million baht/ Environmental dimension 80,165 million baht)


Designated area of Nan Old City 123,829 million baht (Socio-cultural dimension 71,982 million baht/ Environmental dimension 51,847 million baht)


Designated area of U-Thong Ancient City 46,534 million baht (Socio-cultural dimension 31,229 million baht/ Environmental dimension 15,304 million baht)

Bequest value

6,150 samples were collected in the survey and the summary of economic valuation of tourism resources in the 6 designated areas is as follows:




Multiplier Effects of Tourism

Income from tourism is widely distributed throughout the economic system due to the movement of tourists which creates expenses in terms of transportation, food, and accommodation. Income from these expenses is not concentrated in one particular place but is rather distributed to local communities such as those with souvenir shops selling local handicrafts. Even though this income may seem little, but in an accumulated amount, it could have an impact on the economic and promote more local employment opportunities. This phenomenon is called the “Multiplier Effects of Tourism�. Results from an assessment showed that the amount of income obtained by tourism business entrepreneurs who partnered with DASTA in sustainable tourism development multiplied on an average of 2.09 times while the amount of income of non-partner entrepreneurs operating in the designated area in general multiplied only 1.38 times.



Transportation and facilities

Tourists’ happiness Tourists’ happiness according to the DASTA’s definition is pleasure, impression and satisfaction of tourists visiting attractions in its designated areas. The concept of tourists’ happiness can be divided into 5 aspects.

Convenience in travelling and easily access to attractions Sufficient amount of public toilets Recreation spots such as viewpoints and coffee shops Free Wi-Fi internet connection

Economic development of local communities Admiring and purchasing local goods Reasonable spending Tipping local guides

Socio-cultural Eating local food prepared by the locals Listening to folk music played by the locals Participating in local traditions Resources and environment Visiting attractions that are abundant in natural resources and clean Visiting attractions that are quiet and offer sense of privacy Travelling to places with beautiful landscape

Experience and knowledge sharing Posting status and pictures showing life styles Posting status and pictures of natural scenes Having time for themselves and thinking about their close ones



Warm family

Local community members’ happiness Local community members’ happiness is the living condition of local community members who are in good mental and physical health while living in the designated areas of DASTA. Their happiness is comprised of 6 elements.

Housing security Young people learning through their family members and visitors to the community Occupational training for young people

Good community management Safe Community about life and properties Having prevention for unforeseen circumstances Having community’s guidelines on tourism


Good environment

Eating a balanced diet Having knowledge about the use of local medicines or herbs Exercising regularly

Living free from air pollution Being part of natural resource conservation Adding value to natural resources

Democratic community

Strong community Having sufficient income Saving part of the money obtained from tourism activities in the community Forming groups to conduct occupational development and community product development


Taking active participation in community’s public hearings Participating in public tourism activities Taking responsibility and benefitting from the operations in the community


Average Happiness Level of the local community members living in the designated areas is 72.79 The results of the survey on happiness of the local community members in the designated areas during 2015 – 2017


Happiness of the community members in the designated area of Loei Province


Happiness of the community members in the designated area of Pattaya City and related areas


Happiness of the community members in the designated area of Koh Chang Islands and related areas



Happiness of the community members in the designated area of Sukhothai - Si Satchanalai-Kamphaeng Phet Historical Parks area


Happiness of the community members in the designated area of U-Thong Ancient City


Happiness of the community members in the designated area of Nan Old City 31

CBTT and ‘We Receive & Distribute Benefits’ tool

We Receive & Distribute Benefits Community Benefitting through Tourism (CBTT) is a concept of benefit distribution from communities conducting tourism activities to their neighboring communities. “We Receive & Distribute Benefits” is an important tool in calculating expenses made by tourists in order to identify the receivers of income from those expenses.

Participation of the local community members

Mutual planning on conducting tourism development among community members is crucial in the sustainability of community tourism. The participation can be divided into three roles.

Facilitators They promote, support or facilitate community-based tourism development.

Market coordinators They coordinate between local communities and the tourism market through popularizing local products and tourism activities of the communities. Tourist liaisons They liaise and publicize tourism activities of local communities to tourists and also take their bookings and facilitate them in travelling to the communities.



Factors that prevent revenue leakage in local communities

The role of groups promoting community-based tourism

The community-based economic development will succeed only when the people in the community can equally benefit from such development and also when very little revenue leakage is present. This is for the circulation of income in the community. These are 3 methods which can help prevent revenue leakage.

These are groups of people who play an important role in driving the development and the marketing of community-based tourism. For the efficiency of these groups, there should be systematic organization, clear vision and specific role assignment.

Entrepreneurship of the community members


Local entrepreneurs often lack skills and experiences in running tourism business. Therefore, there is a need to improve the capacity of both the entrepreneurs and the community. This improvement together with the support from different government agencies will help prevent revenue leakage.

A facilitator facilitates communication and participation of the locals both within and outside the community.

Director Local employment Although employment generates income for the community, for certain positions, the locals are still lacking qualifications due to the absence of experiences and language skills. For these reasons, entrepreneurs need to employ people outside the community. Therefore, people in the community should always learn new things for self-development.

A director sets rules and regulations and makes sure that all stakeholders follow them. He or she also creates reward and punishment systems.

Guide A guide explains about local resources (cultural, social, and environmental) and conducts activities.

Local materials Importing materials or goods from external sources for distribution can be one of the reasons causing revenue leakage. Thus, producing locally owned materials or goods is another way to prevent this leakage in the community.


Market connector

A Market connector connects the community with the tourism market through popularizing local goods and activities.


“We Receive & We Distribute� Tool

Community-based tourism creates income distribution

This tool enables a community to examine the benefits received from tourists

What are good practices in community-level income distribution? Income distribution within community Income distribution is fair and accountable because there are clear rules and regulations set by the community members through a discussion on how to distribute the obtained income to different stakeholders taking part in the community-based tourism and on how much money is going be spent on food, activities, and funds for community development and dividend payment etc. Income distribution to neighboring communities Community-based tourism can be beneficial to neighboring communities even though they may not be the entrepreneurs themselves. These communities see indirect opportunities emerged from community-based tourism and understand about marketing and connection. These neighboring communities can benefit from community-based tourism in various aspects as follows:


Production of souvenirs, travel services, and food offered to tourists. These neighboring communities can act as a material source for the community that the community-based tourism takes place.


Activities that will help preserve and enrich the environment of the tourist attractions and their nearby areas.


Mutual assistance among the communities through activities




Food Activities

Souvenirs Attractions


We receive

We distribute




Interpreter Guide


“We Receive & We Distribute” Tool can identify the expenditures occurred when purchasing goods and services within a community. The revenue distribution is divided into the following categories. Revenue means the full amount of money earned from the expenditures

Leakage Leakage of income that should be the fund for production, marketing of goods and tourism services can be divided into 3 categories.

made by tourists when purchasing goods and services concerning their travel, food, accommodation, activities, souvenirs, fee/entrance fee, and

Internal leakage

guide/resource person fee.

This is caused by importing goods and services that cannot be found locally. The leakage is the result of the spending of tourists already arrived at the destination.

Income means the amount of money which is made by tourists in a community and generates income within that community.

External leakage

This means services that need to be paid to agencies that provide advanced booking of tickets and accommodation before the tourists arrive at the destination.

Expenditure means the amount of money received from tourists and spent within and outside the community.

Unnoticeable leakage

This is caused by opportunity losses which cannot be properly measured but can have cumulative effects such as degradation of local resources and thus, external resources will need to be imported.

Instructions Write down the amount of money earned from tourists in designated sections.

Revenue and benefit management system

Combine the amount in all “We Receive” sections. The total amount is the direct revenue.

Revenue management of model communities can be divided into 2 types.

Combine the amount in all “We Distribute” sections. The total amount is the income distributed to communities.“ “Leakage” is the amount of money spent on purchasing goods and employing labors from the external sources. When combining all the “Leakage” sections, the result is the total income leakage. 38


This type of management has only one service point which acts as the center of communication, appointment with tourists, activity management, accommodation, and food. This centralized revenue management deals with income, expenditure and also profits that will be used as common funds.


This type of management is jointly done by all community members. Each group provides services according to their expertise and is allowed to manage their own income.


Socio-cultural impact Tourism creates employment opportunities for women Tourism promotes cultural inheritance by the youth. Tourism creates a warm family. Tourism brings good health to family members. Tourism makes people understand about cultural diversity. Tourism brings back local history. Tourism creates equality in giving opinions among people of all genders and ages. Tourism encourages the learning of local history. Tourism brings happiness to the elderly. Tourism creates pride in one’s own community.

Economic impact

Environmental impact

Tourism creates local employment. Tourism increases sales of agricultural products through tourism activities. Tourism increases annual revenue. Tourism draws the younger generations to work in their community. Tourism creates new products that are new inventions by the locals. Tourism encourages forming of groups to develop new products from local wisdom. Tourism reduces the number of waste. Tourism promotes efficient use of water. Tourism reduces plastic use. Tourism encourages use of natural materials. Tourism encourages efficient electricity use. 40

Community Benefitting through Tourism (CBTT) should be comprised of the following 4 main concepts.

It should be community-based management with participation of all members, not only of any particular members. It should reserve and promote natural resources, local way of life, fine customs and traditions to a wider public. For the community development to reach the goal of sustainability, it should foster good relationship among community members.

Its end goal should be improving the lives of the community members.

Benefits and changes from community-based tourism

Building leadersh ip

Tourism creates new local businesses. Tourism brings in local craftsmanship as part of tourism activities. Tourism encourages purchase of local craft products from neighboring communities and uses them as part of tourism activities. Tourism reduces household debt.

Tourism creates more green space. Tourism makes people more environmental-conscious. Tourism makes the young people understand climate change. 41

Tourism encourages listening to find common ground and to prepare for providing services. Tourism creates visions and management control. Tourism encourages teamwork. Tourism enables effective communication. Tourism enables systematic thinking and a holistic view. Tourism enables people to dare to change. Tourism leads people. Tourism makes a good coordinator.

Tourism creates understanding about sustainable management among community members. Tourism encourages better household waste management.

Case study: Denmark Model Denmark Model, the development that creates happiness for the people

Denmark is ranked first as world’s happiest country, followed by Switzerland, Iceland, Norway, Finland, Canada, Netherlands, New Zealand, Australia and Sweden

Factors that make Denmark the happiest country in the world 1 2

The Danish act in the public interest ahead of their personal interest.

Denmark gives educational freedom to its students.

The Danish are the kindest people among the citizens of the developed countries.

7 8


The Danish are not jealous of others’ success.


Denmark has accountable military that is suitable for its people.


The Danish believe that money cannot buy happiness.


The Danish government emphasizes on providing social services.


There is no legal drinking age but the minimum age for purchasing alcohol is 16.


The Danish understand and agree to pay different kinds of taxes.


Denmark does not support violence.


The Danish are health-conscious.


Denmark has high social equality both in terms of social status and gender.


Case study: Bhutan Model Bhutan Model, the improvement that creates happiness for the people

Bhutan is a small country in Asia whose population, about 91.2%, are happy, according to its Gross National Happiness Index in 2015. The number has increased by 0.743% from 2010. Factors that create happiness

The results from the happiness survey 1 Men are happier than women.

1 2

Work-life balance


Participation in cultural activities


Satisfaction towards the government’s performance in equality, education, health and

2 Urban dwellers are happier than country dwellers.

Higher education


3 The single and the married people are happier than people who separate or divorce.


Good relationship among the people in a community which creates community vitality

4 Higher levels of education increase happiness.


Ideal living condition without harms

5 Farmers are the least happy compared to other professions.


Sufficient income to cover cost-of-living expens



The King’s philosophy and sustainable tourism development The late King Bhumibol Adulyadej has invented a development approach for the maximum benefit of the people which should be adhered to and followed.

The King’s Philosophy 46

DASTA has adopted the work principles according to the King’s philosophy as its work approach in all of its designated areas. DASTA does not wish for the people to abandon their existing livelihood and way of life and turn to tourism. However, DASTA focuses on developing tourism as an extra source of income for the people. This way, in the absence of tourists, the people will still be able to continue their lives with their main source of income. According to “Self-Immunity in the King’s sufficiency economy philosophy”, the traditional way of life and environment need to be preserved. ” Participation of community members must be the basis of development. “Social Geography” has to be taken into consideration when evaluating readiness and willingness of the community in taking part in development. The development itself should cover social, economic, and environmental aspects while preserving cultures, traditions, beliefs, and identity of the community

where its members are not willing to change. Development should create values and promote identity of that community. Once the community members realize that the value of their sociocultural capital can be transformed into substantial extra income through tourism activities, they will feel proud and want to preserve their way of life, cultures, and traditions. They will feel “happy” and then social, economic, and environmental sustainability will happen.

“Tourism development does not require only an increase in the number of tourists but it requires attentive tourists who are genuinely interested in local wisdom, identity, and way of life.


The work principles of the late King Bhumibol Adulyadej can be applied to sustainable tourism development. Work principle: Internal Explosion

The King has said that “Internal Explosion” means that we should first, focus on strengthening the capacities of the people in the community before bringing development into the community as many communities are not prepared and therefore cannot adapt to changes. Reversing the order will lead to destruction.

Work principle: Not Going By The Book

This is the type of development that does not tie itself to any academic theories or technologies that are not suitable for the Thai way of living. The development that is conducted in harmony and compassion will last forever, unlike the one that is always done according to academic theories. Once you do not know what to do next, you will then need to start over from the first page and thus, the development is going backward. It is better if you use the academic theories with flexibility.

Work principle: Participation King Rama IX gave chance for all stakeholders including, the public and officers of all ranks to voice their opinions before giving his guidance to any particular projects. He adhered to the principle of common best interest and gave priority to the people’s voice through “public hearing” to avoid conflicts. Work principle: Loss is Profit

Work principle: Social Geography

The King has given guidance on “giving” and “scarifying” that these are profitable actions. They are an investment for the wellbeing of the people. He considered that he gained profits on any operations that bring solution and happiness to his people even though they may incur high costs or even losses. Especially, if the operations are done to increase productivity or common interest, they are considered worthwhile.

Any types of development will need to take the environmental, economic and social aspects including different customs, traditions and ways of life into consideration. Doing so will lead to suitable planning and success. Also, the needs of the community members will be met.

Work principle: Sufficiency Economy Work principle: Holistic Approach

The King viewed everything as dynamic and interconnected. In order for him to give his guidance for any particular projects, he will consider the situation and give solutions that are interrelated. In helping his people find solutions to problems, the King always see both the big and small pictures in all aspects. 48

Sufficiency Economy is comprised of three parts. The first one is “moderation” which means moderate needs that are suitable for one’s economic status. One must not exploit oneself or others. The second one is “reasoning” which means decision making and operations that are done with sufficiency and in accordance to theoretical, legal, moral and cultural principles. The third one is “strong immunity” which means the preparation for any adverse economic, social, environmental and cultural events both occurred domestically and internationally. 49

Presenting the truth of the communities

The global trend of tourism is the truth. DASTA helps bringing out the truth and present its. We will not beckon the tourists to come but instead, we will enable them to tell the stories themselves. Therefore, what they remember should not be the things on the advertisement banners but it should be the things they have seen, been exposed to, learned and practiced which made an impression on them and made them want to tell the stories to others. This is what we want the most in the tourism industry. The true culture that the local brings out creates deep profundity and brings back co-existence among the nature, the community, and the visitors. This co-existence will enable the city people who are the new generations/ the majority of the population realizes the “profundity” through their experience.

It’s better for the community to take it slow.

Weerasak Khowsurat Community-based tourism for “all”

“The King’s Philosophy of sufficiency Economy” is a compass that directs our operation to move forward efficiently and in accordance to our desired objectives. Mr. Weerasak Khowsurat, Chairman of the Board of Designated Areas for Sustainable Tourism Administration (Public Organization) or DASTA, together with community members and different agencies is the head in pushing forward the initiative of community-based development which brings happiness to all on the basis of self-sufficient living. 50

Each group of visitors has their own limitation. Some travel with elderly people, children, women or pets. Some travel on weekdays and do not experience a lively atmosphere in terms of tourism services, such as that the restaurants are closed. However, we do not wish for a lot of visitors when it comes to community-based tourism. We recommend taking it slow because you will put pressure on the communities by having high expectation. If you come without any expectations, the communities will not be pressured because they will also have to adapt themselves as they develop, except for those communities that are already ready. We want the visitors to tell the impressive stories.

Creating opportunity for both community members and visitors

Let the communities learn to develop and manage the community-based tourism by themselves and let them serve the 51

growing industry properly. Let them adapt to the changing environment while creating opportunity for their visitors in being exposed to the truth of the community and learning to adapt themselves to the community. This will give them a memorable experience.

Let tourism serves the community

Community-based tourism is important because it is a learning process. There are no ready-made solutions as all communities are different. This means that we have to understand the learning process, accept the differences, and create work from the strong points of each community. DASTA does not intend to make the communities serve tourism. On the contrary, we want tourism to serve the communities. However, in saying that tourism should serve the communities, it doesn’t mean that visitors are coming because they feel pity or because of certain policies. They should come because they want to know this truth and this truth is the reason why the middle-class people are still spiritually frustrated. Once they expose themselves to this truth, they will experience a learning process on the basis of “convenience, cleanliness, safety, and identity”

A good base makes the structure sustaina

Moving forward with pride

“DASTA is the first agency to work on this. This sustainability mentioned has to start from the base which is the community members because they own the resources, way of life, and wisdom. However, in the past, they lacked participation and did not receive benefits. Therefore, DASTA coordinates, supports, and promotes the participation of community members in the local development and ensures that they receive economic and social benefits. Once they participate in tourism, they will feel proud and want to reserve their natural resources and pass them on to their next generations. This will lead to sustainability in the future.

Giving knowledge with attention

Suthep Kuasang Driving community-based tourism with heart

With the spirit of a development practitioner who has more than 30 years of experience in community-based tourism, Mr. Suthep Kuasang, a deputy director-general of Designated Areas for Sustainable Tourism Administration (Public Organization) or DASTA, is considered one of the important persons in strengthening the capacities and community-based management of the 14 model communities and the 6 designated areas of DASTA. He enables these model communities to act as mentors for other communities. He is working very hard to push forward sustainable community-based tourism. 52

“The people in the localcommunities who own the resources are mostly farmers and fishermen. They don’t have the tourism DNA. Therefore, we have to view their way of life as a valuable asset and adding its value through tourism. We should prioritize the people and make them commonly understand about the concept of sustainability. Even though the goals of each community are different, we have to create a space to bring them together for a discussion on what they will receive or lose from practicing community-based tourism. We have to find a balance and then find a way to make the development sustainable. DASTA wishes for every community to be able to move forward by themselves and to be a role model to share their knowledge to other communities. 53

“At present, DASTA is working as a coordinator between communities and more than 30 tour operators who will act as mentors in sharing the knowledge on marketing. We bring our knowledge and experience into the designated communities and create 39 activities in which visitors should take part in the communities. We are also working on the CBT Academy, a place where people can learn from our knowledge and pass it on to others. These initiatives do not only conform to the missions of DASTA but also to the government policies regarding grassroots economy, local employment creation and income generation. The tourists visit the communities not because they feel pity for them but because they want to learn valuable lessons that they have never experienced and the community members will also feel proud of what they have.

Turning crisis into opportunity

During the time of bubble economy, we set up a housewife club by jointly putting in the money every month to set up a fund for soap and herbal shampoo production and sell products to community members. When income from the production increased, we allocate some for the community members to take as education loan, medical treatment loan, and loan for paying off loan shark debt etc. We set very low interest for them. Once the Municipality knew about this, they appointed us a Strong Community. Many people visited our community on a study trip until one day we met DASTA and obtained knowledge and recommendations. From then on, we decided to start community-based tourism by finding out good things and strong points of our community, which include our way of life, food and historical buildings. Finally, we decided to go on with community-based health tourism.

Explore the local way of life through tourism activities

Supan Inthachai Community vitality through cooperation

The Tom Yum Kung Crisis in 1997 forced many businesses to close down. Many workers were dismissed from their jobs and became unemployed. This is the reason why Maeluang Supan Inthachai created a housewife club to generate income for the people in Ban Rai Kong Khing, Chiang Mai. Nowadays, the club has developed and become a community-based health tourism club which continuously draws a number of tourists to the community. 54

As Ban Rai Kong Khing Community has abundant herbs, we teach people on how to process them and make different products such as balm for fire persons, turmeric balm, pandanus rose, and herbal compress. Apart from this, we also offer a workshop on Tung flag making, which is the Northern Thai culture and a workshop on making local snack and food by using organic vegetables. Moreover, we also have homestays for visitors who wish to stay overnight at the community. However, the community only takes 4-5 groups of visitors per month and each group not exceeding 250 people (day visit) and 50 people for overnight stay. If you come in a group of only 2-3 people and wish to do all the activities, the cost will be high. So, recommending forming a group of about 10 people, the cost will be lower.

Cultivating participation and transparent profit sharing

The goal of community-based tourism is community development for better quality of life of the community members. Money is only a by-product. Therefore, we should cultivate the notion 55

that money is not a priority. However, at the same time, when it comes to financial matters, there should be transparency. Everything should be accountable. The income from community-based tourism, after deducing the expenses, will be deposited in a savings account. At the end of each year, we will withdraw that money and discuss on how to spend it. The money will be spent on preserving natural resources or doing maintenances, such as that of the agricultural farm and the bicycles etc. The rest of the money will be shared among members working in different sections. Each member will log their work time and they will receive their share according to that time sheet.

Tourism makes community members happy.

After having been practicing community-based tourism for 5-6 years, I realize that the people in the community are happier. They get to meet and do activities together. They get to interact with outsiders. Another obvious improvement is on the capacity building. Some women used to be a shy housewife. They were too shy to talk or express their opinions. However, after going through the training, they can talk and has become a good local interpreter. Apart from this, the community members also benefit from income distribution.

Sustainable development approach together with preservation of culture and traditions

For the future, I intend to focus on herbal processing and creating new products. However, I need to go slowly, at the same pace of the community. I don’t want to rush them too much. I also want to encourage young people in the community to participate and learn about traditional culture of our community in other aspects too, such as the Tung flag cutting and cone-shaped floral receptacles making.

Everyone must have rights and voice of their own. They should be able to voice their opinions according to the reality and community interest. They cannot let any particular individuals do all the work; otherwise, they will never be successful in community-based tourism. Apart from beautiful attractions, The Thai way of everyday life is another charm that visitors want to explore.

competition because each community is unique in their own way. They have different resources and environment which creates options for visitors. However, if they all do the same thing, they will not be able to sell anything. So, they need to find out their selling point and have a good management plan and they will succeed in a long run.

If the community members find out their selling point and are able to manage and run the tourism business, all the lives in the community, whether it be humans, animals or natural resources will be benefitted. However, for the community members, a substantial benefit is the increase in income, improved quality of life, employment, more happiness etc. This can be said that tourism brings infinite benefit to the community.

When doing community-based tourism for the benefits of the community itself, community members need to be able to tell the net profit (triple bottom line) they receive. They build and use human capital in their work, so there should be capacity development through just business operation. They use natural capital which doesn’t belong to any particular individuals. Therefore, there is a need to set rules and regulations to preserve and restore the natural resources. The profit cannot only be viewed in terms of economic aspect but the community should also think of the mechanisms and tools that will lead them to capacity building. Community members should have a holistic understanding about tourism and able to manage the benefits and tell their triple bottom line that stays and widely distributed within their community. Sustainable cultivation of benefits is the concept of Community Benefitting Through Tourism (CBTT Model) which sees tourism as a value chain. Community members should be able to tell the benefits received from having tourists in their community and how to maximize, maintain and distribute these benefits to the community. They should work together and be aware of leakages and linkages in order to add value to them and maximize benefits.

Community-based tourism for the community Tourism brings infinite benefit to the community. itself

Asst.Prof. Dr.Jutamas Wisansing Participation is the success factor

Nowadays both Thai and foreign tourists are getting more interested in community-based tourism and this creates awareness for the communities on this type of tourism. There is several success factors involved in sustainable community-based tourism. Asst.Prof. Dr.Jutamas Wisansing, academic who works for community-based tourism, has given interesting ideas and her view on community-based tourism as follows.

Start by a having a community conscious mind

Participation is an important factor

Before starting community-based tourism, the community members must be proud of their community, their country lifestyle, their wisdom, and their history first. Then they can mix these with modernity. Without the pride in their community, it is very hard to start community-based tourism. 56

Community-based tourism means the kind of tourism that the community members operate, manage and share profits. Therefore, in order to create sustainable community-based tourism, participation of community members is considered very important. The people in the community must together create it, starting from organizing a meeting, planning and arranging everything.

The trend of community-based tourism in the future Community-based tourism has long been under cultural tourism. The reason that people travel is because they want to see different cultures. They want to see and learn them. If you ask me about the popularity of community-based tourism, I have to say that it is now just another option in tourism. Tourists turn to communities because they don’t want to visit main attractions like Pattaya, Phuket etc., whose natural resources are all depleted. So, they turn to visiting communities to see their culture and learn about their ways of life. Nowadays, Thailand is making community-based tourism a trend and popularizing it.

Business competition among communities are considered a good thing. If all the communities in the country will get up and start community-based tourism, it is considered a good thing to have such


The view of academics, community members, entrepreneur, and blogger towards community-based tourism

Wanvipa Phanumat

Head of Community Capacity Building (DASTA)

Community-based development should not focus on volume; instead, it should focus on quality. Each community has their own resources and uniqueness, such as their way of life and food. The real way of life is the charm of community-based tourism. Each community needs to find out their identity and know the characteristic of their community including their selling point. This will make them benefit from the tourism in terms of employment and revival of traditional cultures etc. Visitors also receive happiness and are able to bring back new experience.

Noppadon Jindatham

Strategic Management Officer (DASTA)

I want the tourism development to give more economic benefits to the community members while helping to preserve their identity, way of life, and traditions which can be passed on to their next generations. These things are the charm and are considered as cultural value which creates true uniqueness in tourism. People in the communities are the basis of sustainable tourism development. We need to strengthen their capacities. The more we develop our economic as we are moving towards the industrial era, the more we will observe income inequality, cultural regression, migration to the cities. Nowadays, we have to accept that the fact that tourism is main source of the country’s revenue. The big question for the people working in the tourism industry is how to make tourism resources sustainable. Every sector should focus on tourism development which is the social foundation and should prioritize the people in the communities. We should all concern about the social, cultural and environmental aspects as these are all relevant to creating sustainable development. All in all, this is because “Tourism development does not aim at the benefit of any particular individuals, but at the benefit of the community members who own the tourism resources. 58

Ponglert Chalermsrirot Sukhothai Historic Town Community

Community-based development gives extra income to the community members and they get to develop their capacities and share their experience with visitors. The selling points of the community are the Celadon ware, Buddhist art, such as carving and Buddha image casting, and famous local food like the egg soup that every visitor must try.


I think that community-based tourism should be done for the benefit of the community before that of tourism. Income is a by-product. Takientia Community tries to preserve our fine traditions and cultures, such as antiphonal singing and paper flower cutting including way of life of the people in the coconut orchards. We also have a lot of delicious food, such as chicken curry with young coconut shells, traditional sweets “Thong Pub”, traditional coconut and peanut candies etc. Now I wish for more participation from the community members in strengthening the community.

Chert Singkhampong The president of the Tourism Promotion Club of Plaba Communit

Wandee Prakobtham Tambon Takientia Community

Blogger of the Facebook Page “I Roam Alone”

Thanawut Supangkharat Managing director of SiamRise Travel


CEO and founder of Local Alike

Monthon Kasantikun

Community-based tourism has created more happiness, harmony and strength for the community. The selling point of Plaba Community is the restoration of forests. We jointly afforest every year to give back the natural space to the nature. When the tourists visit our community, the community members can exchange their opinions and way of life with them. In the future, I want the government to encourage more communities to do community-based tourism so that the people can have a better life and the country’s development will also progress.

It’s good to have community-based tourism. Personally, I think food is the selling point that draws visitors to our communities to learn about our way of life. We will also get to exchange experiences with these visitors. In the future, more advertising should be done if the communities want to expand their tourism businesses.

Somsak Bunkham

The shifting focus of the government to tourism makes the tourism industry more active. In the past, it might just be a study trip, now it’s more about tourism. The selling point of community-based tourism is the variety of food. However, the charm that visitors to the community will observe is the internal management of the community. If the community has a good planning and allocation of tasks, the visitors will receive a good experience. For the tourism development to be sustainable, more awareness rising needs to be done for the people to understand and together make it successful.

First of all, communities need to be strengthened. They have to know what they have, what they need and then they should take it slow, no need to rush. They don’t have to change themselves too much for the tourism. The selling point of community-based tourism is their identity that will be explored and learned by the tourists. Once the community is strong enough, then it’s the duty of the government agencies to share knowledge and recommendations and let the community members take care of the management. If everything is done right, this will be an important part in community development. 61

Article Contest Tourism… for exploring the life on Doi Papae Hi. My name is Hong. I’m 22 years old. I want to tell a story about tourism (camping). It’s a life exploring camp on Doi Papae, Lamphun Province, where Pakakayo hill tribe people are living in different villages. I went there during winter. It was drizzling all day up on the mountain which made it even colder. The mist was beautiful (but sometimes prevented us from having a clear vision). Because the weather was really cold, I never thought of taking a shower. I thought that it wasn’t dirty because I didn’t sweat so I only took a shower every two days. Every morning I was taken up by the chickens. The chicken that were fed by my host family all cooed at the same time. So, I woke up for a breath of fresh air, then washed my face, brushed our teeth, got ready to learn new things. Doi Papae in Lamphun Province divides its accommodation areas into different sections. The goal of this trip was to learn and live with the locals without money which can be used as a social classifier and mobile phones that prevents us from observing the reality in front of us. The family that I stayed with has four members. I called them Grandpa, Grandma, Mom, and Dad. Everyone took a good care of me. They provided me all the 3 meals. In the morning I helped them prepare breakfast and then ate local food that didn’t seem appetizing but was amazingly delicious. It was the taste that one cannot experience in Bangkok, such as the taste of fresh eggs that have just come out from the hens and can be soft boiled or fried instantly. In the late morning of each day, I learned a lot about their way of life. The first thing was harvesting the coffee beans and selling them. Because the weather on the mountain top was mostly cold, the coffee trees grew well and yielded lots of fruits. I walked around the house and also went into the woods to collect the coffee beans. I ended up collecting many kilograms of them. Then Dad would drive to sell them to the roasting factory for them to make arabica coffee. The next day I got to pound the paddy rice. The pounding tool was made by the locals from wood. I gave the paddy rice to the chickens. On the last day, I climbed up the mountain with the children of the locals as my guides. We started at the village school where every child in the village attended. There was a playground in front of the school so I and my friend stopped by to play. It was a travel back in time. Then we proceeded to a temple in the village which can be reached only through walking up the mountain. On the way everyone was getting tired but the children encouraged us and grabbed our hands so we made it to the temple. They also helped support us so that we could walk down without having shaking legs. Because the weather was cold and it was raining, we didn’t get to weave. Normally, when Grandma and Mom were free forming their work, they would weave. If I had free time, I and my friends would walk to visit other families. Every family would always welcome us with a smile. At dinner time, I would sit and talk to the family around the bonfire which was lit inside the house. Apart from taking its warmth, we could also cook with it. We would talk about the way of life that we had experienced and ask questions that we wanted to know the answers. It was the time of the day that we got to exchange our ways of life and knowledge. I’m a bit chubby so Grandma and Grandpa always called me Tui (Chubby). The fact that I’m fat made them laugh throughout the time of the conversation. Moreover, they also encouraged me to eat more than the others. They both might want me to stay “Tui” forever. The last day had come, before departing, I gave the children some books for them to read. Mom gave me a hand woven and embroidery bag. Before leaving, Grandpa and Grandma gave me and my friends their blessings. It was considered a fun ending of our camping trip. We learned the way of life of the Pakakayo hill tribe people very intimately and experienced the cold whether that one cannot find in the city. My time on the mountain was truly a quality time. From this trip, I realized that I really love the nature on the mountain. When I was tired, the trees acted as a good source of oxygen and the destination made me forget about the tiredness. Most of all, the smile of my companions and the people I met along the way made me happy and wish to return to the mountain again.

Pannaporn Kornnanthapat 62

“Betong” a magical town that one must visit… at least once in a life time When talking about the southernmost part of Thailand, many people may not know that the part is actually a town in Yala Province which was surrounded by mountains. This place is like a town in a basin, completely detached from the outside world. It’s like a mysterious town but once you get to explore it, you will see the charm of its beautiful way of life and nature just like its alias “The southernmost part of Siam, a beautiful border town”. This town is called Betong. The first second that you open your eyes in the morning, you’ll experience the cool weather and the mist which covers the town. You’ll hear the birds singing to welcome the new day and smell the aroma from the dim sum steamers. And after staying there for a while, you’ll realize that the life of the people starts when the clock strikes four in the morning. The door of each house is unlocked. The sound of the open door is like the signal that wakes up the neighbors to welcome the new working day, followed by the sound of the motorcycle’s engines of the people riding to the market. After that, the amazing way of life of the people in Betong then starts. The next second, you’ll see and get to explore the diversity of the people who all have different ways of life. They are Thai Buddhist, Thai Muslim and Thai-Chinese. It’s an obvious plural society. The people’s ways of life are never faded from the connection to their races and cultures, especially the Thai-Chinese as they’re still preserving almost all of their Chinese way of life, traditions and cultures. When you wonder around the town, you’ll hear conversations between the locals and the tourists that are mostly done in Chinese. Banners of shops and restaurants are often written in both Thai and Chinese. The Thai-Chinese still have their “Sae” (a Chinese surname). Every house has a small shrine inside to worship their gods. The house is decorated with red lanterns called “Hong Terng Lhong”. The people prefer to use the Chinese calendar to mark important dates, especially the Chinese New Year, the Chinese Ancestor Ceremony, and the Vegetarian Festival. Betong has more special holidays compared to other places. Visiting the town during these holidays, you’ll get to observe procedural cultural inheritance of the Chinese culture better than you will in any other places. Jongfa Foundation School in Betong is the oldest school of the town. The architecture of the school resembles that of the Great Wall. It was boldly decorated with sculptures of dragon heads. This school has been considered the center for Chinese education for more than 90 years. It’s a must see because it’ll make you feel as if you were living in Chinese civilization. The way of life of the Thai-Chinese in Betong has shown the existence of a strongly united racial identity which is different from other parts of the country. This has become the uniqueness which draws visitors into the town to explore and learn more about it. People from different cultures and races can also blend themselves into the Chinese way of life as you’ll observe the gathering of people in dim sum restaurants in the morning, in parties of the Chinese associations in the evening and in the tea shops at night. The gathering of people creates laughter for the tea shop and makes a lively atmosphere. The merchants are also friendly to the visitors. They are the ways of life that seem completely different. The picture of that moment shows the unity of civil society. This small town in the middle of a valley still has more to offer to its visitors. Everything in Betong remains charming just like the old days. The charm will always remain and wait for you to explore. Betong, the southernmost part of Siam, a beautiful border town.

Manatsawee Chawirawong 63

Photo Contest


The Friendship of Mon Br

Give alms to monks on the Chiang Khan Walking Street

Mon Bridge, Sangkhlaburi, Kanchanaburi Province

Chiang Khan Walking Street, Chiang Khan, Loei Province

Despite the differences, we, Mon, Myanmar and Thai, can all be friends. (The sun makes us feel warmer.)

The charm of Chiang Khan is giving alms of sticky rice to monks, a fine culture that attracts everyone to visit the place.

Panupong Nithikittikun


Prapaipat Pienprayot


References Page 6-7 Introduction

h t t p : // t h e m o m e n t u m . c o / s u c c e s s f u l datalab-thailand-inequality-2016-byoxfam

Page 8-9 Current state of global tourism

DASTA Forum “Sustainable or Destructive Tourism”

Page 10-11 Tourism industry, the hope of the world Series Sustainable Tourism

Page 12-13 Pro-poor tourism

DASTA Forum “Sustainable or Destructive Tourism”

Page 14-31 The role of DASTA in sustainable tourism development DASTA Forum “Sustainable or Destructive Thai Tourism”

Page 32 – 39 CBTT and “We Receive & We Distribute” Tool DASTA CBTT Model Tourism for Whom?

Page 40-41 Denmark Model

AFP, from World Happiness Report 2016 (Helliwell Layard, & Sachs, 2016) DASTA Forum Sustainable or Destructive Thai Tourism

Page 42 – 43 Bhutan Model

Ref: , GNH

Page 44-47 The King’s Philosophy

DASTA Forum Sustainable or Destructive Tourism Interview with the director-general of DASTA in the television program “Dern Na Prathet Thai” (Thailand Goes Forward): From the King’s Philosophy to a Sustainable Society, broadcast on October 16, 2017

Page 48-49

Weerasak Khowsurat, Chairman of the Board of Designated Areas for Sustainable Tourism Administration (Public Organization) or DASTA

Page 50-51

Asst.Prof.Dr.Jutamas Wisansing,Chairperson of the Pacific Asia Tourism Association

Page 52-53

Supan Inthachai, Ban Rai Kong Khing Community-Based Tourism Club, Chiang Mai

Page 54-55

Suthep Kuasang, Deputy Director-General of Designated Areas for Sustainable Tourism Administration (Public Organization) or DASTA

Page 56-59

Noppadon Jindatham, Strategic Management Officer (DASTA) Wanvipa Phanumat, Head of Community Capacity Building (DASTA) Ponglert Chalermsrirot, Sukhothai Historic Town Community Wandee Prakobtham, Tambon Takientia Community Chert Singkhampong, Plaba Community

Designated Areas for Sustainable Tourism Administration (Public Organization) 118/1 Tipco Tower 31st FL. Rama VI Road Phayathai Bangkok 10400 Thailand

“Tourism...for Whom?”  

“Tourism...for Whom?” illustrate the on-going mission of DASTA to develop the sustainable tourism for the benefits of local communities all...

“Tourism...for Whom?”  

“Tourism...for Whom?” illustrate the on-going mission of DASTA to develop the sustainable tourism for the benefits of local communities all...