Destination Maya Ka'an initiative aims to minimize tourism's impact on environmental resources and diversify tourism in Quintana Roo with ecotourism, rural tourism and adventure tourism activities linked to Mayan communities.

Implemented in

  • Latin America / Caribbean
  • Mexico

Sector of activity
Tourism

Type of initiative
Capacity Building & Implementation, Education & Awareness Raising

Type of lead actor
Civil society

Objectives

The Biosphere Reserve of Sian Ka’an in the state of Quintana Roo, Mexico, is one of the most biodiverse sites in the world that showcases Mayan culture, history and communities.

Back in the early 1990s, Amigos de Sian Ka’an - one of the leading NGOs in Mexico dedicated to environmental conservation and sustainable development - started a boat tour in the Sian Ka’an wetlands to obtain funding for its conservation.

This activity eventually inspired the creation of an entire ecotourism destination within Sian Ka’an that led to the Destination Maya Ka’an initiative, which aims to minimize tourism’s impact on environmental resources and diversify tourism in Quintana Roo with ecotourism, rural tourism and adventure tourism activities.

Activities

As collected through the One Planet Reporting

Output level

Training for SCP

  • Diversification of productive activities in coastal communities, Cabo Pulmo and Punta Herrero, Exchange of experiences on the way to sustainability.
  • Exchange of experiences between community tourism companies of Quintana Roo and Oaxaca, México.
  • Formative process for the community enterprises in Maya Ka'an

Knowledge resource and technical tool

  • Acciones, logros y retos del destino de bajo impacto ambiental en Quintana Roo, México: Maya Ka'an.
  • Manual de consumo responsable. Langosta espinosa del Caribe Mexicano (Panulirus argus).

Outreach and communication for SCP

  • Consolidate, promote and disseminate Maya Ka'an destination in collaboration with the municipal and tourist authorities.
  • First Children Bird Festival in Maya Ka'an
  • Intercambio de experiencias entre representantes de los destinos de Maya Ka'an (México) y Caribe Maya (Guatemala y Honduras).

Impact and Results

Destination Maya Ka’an has already generated a Return on Investment of approximately USD500,000 and is anticipated to increase even further, promising long-term social and economic benefits for the communities of Maya Ka’an. The success of the project has been realized through the collective vision of multiple stakeholders supporting conservation and sustainable development of the area.