In a special agreement between GSTC and Sernatur Aysen, Chile, which hosted the GSTC2017 Aysen in September, the Chelenko Destination began a new process to start their path to the sustainability.
For 2 weeks during November 2017, the Chelenko Destination went through a destination assessment and training by Natalia Naranjo, GSTC Trainer and Destination Assessor.
Located in the south of Chile, in the Region of Aysen, Chelenko covers the basin of the General Carrera Lake (the second biggest lake in South America) and its surroundings. Chelenko is home to the famous Marble Caves of Puerto Tranquilo and Puerto Sanchez, the Jeinimeni National Park and part of San Rafael National Park.
For such a destination, developing sustainable tourism is more than a vision or an objective, it is a necessity due to the huge increase of tourists over the past two years, while the local people and villages were not prepared to receiving them.
In Puerto Ibañez, a small village in Chelenko Destination, GSTC conducted a 2-day training, applying the Sustainable Tourism Training Program (STTP) and teaching different stakeholders in the destination about the GSTC Destination Criteria. This training also included different stages in the process of implementing the GSTC Criteria.
After the training, the GSTC Assessor, Natalia Naranjo, began the assessment of the destination, meeting with the mayors, and with the many representatives of tourism business such as hotels, tour operator, guides, etc. The visit ended on November 29th in Chile Chico village, with a presentation of the preliminary results of the assessment.