UNWTO announces “Best Tourism Villages” list of 2021, Brgy. Bojo in Aloguinsan, Cebu bags award

The Best Tourism Villages by UNWTO (United Nations World Tourism Organization) initiative was launched to advance the role of tourism in safeguarding rural villages, along with their landscapes, natural and cultural diversity, and their local values and activities, including local gastronomy. A total of 44 villages from 32 countries across the five world regions were granted recognition in 2021.

UNWTO announces "Best Tourism Villages" list of 2021, Brgy. Bojo in Aloguinsan, Cebu bags award | CebuFinest
Climb aboard the boat and cruise the clear waters of Bojo River, one of the world’s beautiful rivers, and now a part of an award-winning destination by UNWTO. [Photo credit: Klook]

UNWTO announces “Best Tourism Villages” list of 2021, Brgy. Bojo in Aloguinsan, Cebu bags award

All of them stand out for their natural and cultural resources as well as for their innovative and transformative actions and commitment to the development of tourism in line with the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). With tourism promotion among local communities bearing fruit, a local suburb bagged the Best Tourism Village Award from the United Nations World Tourism Organization.

Tourism Secretary Berna Romulo-Puyat expressed her elation with the latest development, recognizing the “remarkable work” of the local community in Bojo through the Bojo Aloguinsan Ecotourism Association or BAETAS and the strong support of the municipality of Aloguinsan.

Tourism Officer-in-Charge-Undersecretary Verna Buensuceso and Philippine Ambassador to Spain Philippe Jones Lhuiller received the award in Madrid on December 2 (Thursday) on behalf of the Philippines.

Bojo is famous for its river, hills, underwater natural resources, mangroves, birds, and responsible locals with the Bojo River Eco-Cultural Tour as its main tourism activity–managed by the BAETAS.

BAETAS provides an eco-cultural river tour with mangrove ecology, bird and wildlife lectures–the profit from which was shared among the local government, community fund, barangay fund as well as the wages and payment to its suppliers.

The said Tour was ranked by Green Destinations among the Top 100 Global Sustainable Destinations in 2016, 2017, and 2018.

List of Best Tourism Villages by UNWTO 2021
Bekhovo, Russian Federation
Bkassine, Lebanon
Bojo, Philippines
Caspalá, Argentina
Castelo Rodrigo, Portugal
Cuetzalan del Progreso, Mexico
Cumeada, Portugal
Gruyères, Switzerland
Batu Puteh, Malaysia
Kaunertal, Austria
Le Morne, Mauritius
Lekunberri, Spain
Maní, Mexico
Misfat Al Abriyeen, Oman
Miyama, Japan
Mokra Gora, Serbia
Morella, Spain
Mustafapaşa, Turkey
Nglanggeran, Indonesia
Niseko, Japan
Nkotsi Village, Rwanda
Old Grand Port, Mauritius
Olergesailie, Kenya
Ollantaytambo, Peru
Pano Lefkara, Cyprus
Pica, Chile
Pochampally, India
Puerto Williams, Chile
Radovljica, Slovenia
Rijal Alma’a, Kingdom of Saudi Arabia
Testo Alto, Brazil
Saas Fee, Switzerland
San Cosme y Damián, Paraguay
San Ginesio, Italy
Sidi Kaouki, Morocco
Solčava, Slovenia
Soufli, Greece
Taraklı, Turkey
The Purple Island, Republic of Korea
Ungok Village, Republic of Korea
Valposchiavo, Switzerland
Wonchi, Ethiopia
Xidi, China
Yucun, China

Further, Brgy. Tenani in the Province of Samar has been selected to participate in the UNWTO’s Upgrade Programme of the Best Tourism Villages–receiving the Organization’s support in improving elements of the areas identified as gaps in the evaluation process.

List of Villages participating in the UNWTO Upgrade Programme
Ordino, Andorra
Khinalig, Azerbaijan
Koprivshtitsa, Bulgaria
Kaštelir Labinci, Croatia
Agros, Cyprus
Fuwah, Egypt
Western Samos, Greece
Hollókő, Hungary
Biei, Japan
Capulálpam de Méndez, Mexico
Godinje, Montenegro
Gornja Lastva, Montenegro
Oukaimeden, Morocco
Barangay Tenani, Philippines
Gasura, Rwanda
Gostilje, Serbia
Gorenja Vas, Slovenia
Cantavieja, Spain
Bo Suak, Thailand
Ruboni, Uganda

The UNWTO Best Tourism Villages 2021 | CebuFinest

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A total of 174 villages were proposed by 75 UNWTO Member States (each Member State could present a maximum of three villages) for the 2021 pilot initiative. Among which 44 were recognized as Best Tourism Villages by UNWTO. Another 20 villages will enter the Upgrade Programme of the Initiative. All 64 villages enter to make part of the UNWTO Best Tourism Villages Network.

The next edition will open in February 2022.

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