Tourism villages have paved the way in developing tourist facilities across Indonesia. As expected, the government is showering more and more attention to this novel concept, training and educating village residents to become competent hosts and tour guides and developing more villages with attractive tourist spots as tourism villages.
To quote Arief Yahya, Tourism Minister in a statement on Tuesday (30/05), ‘we will help open 20,000 new homestays this year, 30,000 in 2018, and 50,000 more in 2019.’ Tourism Awareness Groups, or Pokdarwis, operating under the Tourism Ministry’s deputy for tourism destination and industry development provide hospitality training to the village residents. Arief singled out Pulesari, or Dewi Pule (“Pule the Goddess”), a tourism village in Sleman near Yogyakarta. Once the villages used to be only known for its salak, or snake fruits.
To quote Arief, ‘but the [local residents] have become smarter in developing new attractions for their village.’ The government has supported the village with its One Homestay One Toilet, or OHOT, program which was initiated by the village’s own Pokdarwis. The Pokdarwis gave village residents Rp 2 million ($150) to create new toilets for few homestays. The ministry further explained that the concept of tourism village is a perfect example of tourism management from the people, by the people and for the people.