In the remote area of Egypt’s southern Red Sea is the pristine region of Marsa Alam. Regarded by many as the Red Sea’s final frontier; this delicate and biologically diverse eco-system is now under grave threat. Miles and miles of fringing reef coastline and associated eco-systems like mangrove and wetlands may soon be destroyed in one of the Red Sea’s last remaining sanctuaries.
After 20 years of “tourism boom” in the Red Sea region, we are now facing the reality of the utter depletion of the world-renowned eco-systems of the Red Sea. Hotel projects continue springing up along the last remaining strip of Red Sea coastline, in one of the world’s most important repositories of marine bio-diversity.
The region of Marsa Alam currently represents a critical junction in the Red Sea’s fast evolving tourism industry. A window of opportunity is upon us to position this destination as a leader in environmental conservation, resource management, and community based activism. This tourism model is the basis of HEPCA’s campaign for the southern Red Sea, which aims to develop & re-position the overall tourism performance and competitiveness of the Marsa Alam region.
This tourism model has been over 20 years in the making and represents an unprecedented cooperation between the stakeholders, the local community, and the hundreds of thousands of international tourists that are visiting this region on a yearly basis. With so much economic potential for this newly developing community, resource management is of the utmost importance to preserve the very resources that are attracting guests here in the first place.
As of 2011, HEPCA is spearheading a tourism campaign encompassing the natural heritage and biological diversity of the southern Red Sea. This is a multi-faceted projects that includes; awareness raising campaigns, destination re-branding, education, and community mobilization. Through this tourism model we are ensuring a healthy and sustainable future for this developing community and long term profitability for its citizens and stakeholders.