Radio interview with Ecolodge General Manager Bobi Chandra
YEL’s Director of Alternative Energy Suherry Aprianto and Ecolodge Bukit Lawang General Manager Bobi Chandra were guests of Radio Lite FM 92.8 Medan on Sunday 20th March. Unfortunately, there is no podcast of the interview, but we have prepared a brief summary for you.
The popular tourism destination Bukit Lawang was the main topic of the talk. Suherry Aprianto pointed out the importance of tourism for the region: «After a statistic of Gunung Leuser National Park (GLNP), 16,700 tourists visited Bukit Lawang in 2013 and numbers are increasing.» While the destination is popular for international tourists, domestic tourists represent still a small minority of around 3700.
Lack of domestic tourists
Suherry Aprianto holds the government partially accountable for the lack of domestic tourists. «Domestic tourists are indisposed to come to Bukit Lawang because of the very bad road conditions and the lack of street infrastructure on the way to the village.» He urges the government to act, so the number of domestic tourists grows.
Bobi Chandra agrees and stresses the importance of local tourists for the conservation of the rainforest: «Sustainable tourism facilities like the Ecolodge Bukit Lawang offer, raising awareness of the importance of the Leuser Ecosystem.»
PPLH Bohorok is regularly visited by students in the region, Suherry Aprianto explained the value of the programme. «Among other things, they learn about renewable energy, recycling, farming, water living, composting and bamboo construction practices. We want to develop their awareness, attitudes and practices so they know how to preserve and respect nature.»
Bobi Chandra is confident that the upcoming local promo the Ecolodge Bukit Lawang is offering, will attract more domestic tourists. «Between April and June 2016 Indonesian guests get a special price reduction of 33% for two persons, including accommodation and breakfast.»