CHIANG MAI, 31 January 2018: A pepper farm in Cambodia and a tree-top explorer attraction in Laos were among the projects recognised by ASEAN’s brand new awards that attempted to promote sustainable tourism practices.

Seventeen winners were honoured at the inaugural ASEAN Sustainable Tourism Awards, during the closing session of the ASEAN Tourism Forum last Friday.

The new awards will be presented every two years with the next presentation scheduled when Brunei hosts ATF in 2020. Brunei was the only nation not represented in the inaugural awards process.

Nine winners – Rural sustainable products:
Sothy’s Pepper Farm, Cambodia;
Desa Wisata Nglanggeran, Indonesia;
Tree Top Explorer, Lao PDR;
KOPEL Kinabatangan Wildlife Corridor, Malaysia;
Pindaya Region, Myanmar;
Walk on the Wild Side, Philippines;
Kranji Countryside, Singapore;
Kao Yao Noi Community Based Ecotourism Club in Thailand;
Stay with Tay Ethnic Village, Vietnam.

Eight winners –Urban sustainable products:
Wat Phnom Historical and Cultural Site, Cambodia;
Nusa Dua, Bali Indonesia;
Phousi Mountain, Lao PDR;
KL Forest Eco Park by KL Tower, Malaysia;
Kayin State’s Natural Limestone Caves, Myanmar,
Palina Greenbelt River Cruise Experience, Philippines;
Marina Bay Precinct, Singapore;
Phuket Natural Experience, Thailand.

Entries were assessed by national tourism organisations in each ASEAN country. Judging criteria and scoring was standardised throughout the nine ASEAN countries that participated in the awards project. Brunei for reasons not stated was absent from the process. Auditors, not identified, took inspection visits to all short-listed sites.

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