The Greenlandic communities of Maniitsoq and Kangerlussuaq offer unique experiences to travelers. The two communities have now developed Community Specific Guidelines to help visitors understand how they can make the most of their stay while being considerate guests.
Maniitsoq and Kangerlussuaq join the ranks of ten other Arctic communities that have developed guidelines for tourists visiting their community. The locally initiated and produced guidelines give a local perspective on what one wants visitors to experience and how to act when visiting.
Among other things, the guidelines advise visitors ask before photographing locals and to show respect for local wildlife. Visitors are also encouraged to shop and eat locally to experience the culture up close, while supporting the community. The guidelines provide maps with points of interest and gives practical information about local services and facilities.
The guidelines were created by the local business association Destination Arctic Circle using a template created by the Association of Arctic Expedition Cruise Operators (AECO) and partners with support from NORA.
“The community guidelines are a useful tool. The Arctic is a fragile, although sometimes harsh environment. The guidelines enable us to provide the visiting tourist with a basic understanding of the destination. For the tourist, it serves as quick guide to points of interest,” says Jeppe Ejvind Nielsen, hotel manager of Hotel Kangerlussuaq.
Ann Eileen Lennert, Community Engagement Specialist at AECO, says that community specific guidelines have proven to be a useful tool for managing responsible tourism in the Arctic.
“These guidelines are a useful way of informing tourists of how to be a considerate visitor. Community engagement is an important aspect of sustainable tourism, and Community Specific Guidelines is one way of facilitating information flow between communities and visitors, as well as ensuring positive interactions and meeting points. We are delighted to see that Maniitsoq and Kangerlussuaq have created these guidelines to educate visitors,” says Lennert.
Community Specific Guidelines have also been created for Sisimiut, Nuuk, Paamiut, Ittoqqortoormiit and Tasiilaq, as well as communities in Svalbard, Iceland and Arctic Canada.
Photo: Lasse Kyed
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