The concept of development of the state national natural park “Charyn” was presented in Almaty, the correspondent reports Tengrinews.kz . The document was prepared by the Ministry of Ecology, Geology and Natural Resources.
According to the ministry, at the moment there are four tourist routes in the park: these are Charyn canyon, Valley of castles, Kurgan burial grounds and Temirlik small canyon. Last year they were visited by more than 20 thousand tourists, and about 17 million tenge were transferred to the special account of the national park.
“The ecological tourism of national parks is not developing due to the lack of conditions for recreation and infrastructure. Now the Charyn National Park has parking lots, observation decks, gazebos, benches, toilets, signposts, information stands. But they do not meet modern requirements and do not cover the needs of visitors for their comfortable stay, “said Deputy Minister of Ecology, Geology and Natural Resources Yerlan Nysanbayev during an online discussion of the concept of the national park with public figures.
“And the low interest of investors is explained by the long payback period, lack of developed infrastructure, remoteness of land plots from large settlements, lack of mechanisms to support investments in the development of ecological tourism,” he added.
Therefore, the ministry studied international experience and determined conceptual approaches in the development of ecological tourism in the national park. The main emphasis will be on the development of tourist routes and trails. It is also planned to create modern visitor centers, campgrounds, ethno-villages and places with the use of easily erected structures.
“Practically today, no visitor will think that there are ecological paths and that one can drive along them. We must first of all popularize the main things – tourist routes and paths. We plan to change the approach to the development of the infrastructure of the national park,” Nysanbayev said.
According to him, the Charyn National Park wants to develop ecotourism by attracting private investment. Namely: two modern visitor centers will be located, four hiking tourist routes will be arranged, ethno-villages will be created, three observation decks, glamping sites, campings, caravanings, catering points and souvenir sales points will be installed. To reduce the load on the canyon, all objects will be located only outside the canyons in the upper plains.
“A person, entering the visitor center, receives information about the territory, in particular on the routes. We have identified hiking and cycling routes. It is planned to arrange three observation platforms on the Charyn Canyon route, with a distance of a kilometer between them. The overview will be very extensive. We will cover an area of three kilometers along the canyon, where it will be possible to view the canyons from different angles, “he said.
“We have ruled out the proposal for a helicopter route. Because it will actually harm the ecosystem of the canyons. Before descending into the canyon, there will be bike rentals, toilets, a first-aid post,” added the vice minister.
In addition to hiking and cycling trails, it is planned to organize a gas-powered car route for older people to visit the canyon.
“If anyone has been there, a new road has been built there, there will be a check-in from the main road. Passing through the barrier, you will find yourself in the visitor center. There will be a fully expanded public catering for 50 seats, an eco-hotel for 50 seats, a cafe with national cuisine, an ethnic village, a parking lot for 100 cars. All this will be in the semi-desert steppe part. Here will be the beginning of the tourist route, “Nysanbayev summed up.
The approximate budget for the development of the national park is about 3.7 billion tenge. To carry out tourist activities in the zone of a specially protected natural area, the sections of the park can be transferred on a short-term lease for a period of up to five years and a long-term lease for up to 45 years.
The Ministry of Ecology noted that a Public Council is being created to discuss the project for the development of ecotourism in the Charyn National Park within the next 10 days. Anyone can enter it: scientists, industry experts, eco-activists, public figures. All potential investors who are interested in the development of ecotourism in national parks are also invited to work on the project. Representatives of the ministry assured that this process will be as open as possible.
Earlier, eco-activists said that helicopters fly in the area of the unique Charyn canyon and threaten the natural monument. From the noise pressure of aircraft, the sandy landscape can collapse, say public figures.
Information taken from the site tengrinews.kz