Rural mountain village homestay businesses draw nature-loving tourists

Updated: 2020-08-28

  Located on scenic Jiuling Mountain, Changshui village in Wuning county of Jiangxi province is an ideal place for a summer walk.

  About 93.7 percent of the village's 8,267 hectares is covered with forests and creeks, which helps lower temperatures, improve air quality, provide habitats for wildlife and create noise barriers against the outside world.

  But about 16 years ago, the village had a different view.

  "You could barely see trees in the village or surrounding areas, but only bushes and shrubs because local villagers bet on cutting trees and selling it to make a living," said Yu Diewen, an official with Changshui village.

  Changshui village has been promoting environmental protection and ecological preservation since 2004. Local officials believed that a good environment and enhanced ecosystem will open doors to more wealth, Yu said.

  Local government has launched a series of supportive measures to promote nature-based tourism, including offering free exterior decoration of houses for residents who wanted to do homestay service-related businesses, investing about 50 million yuan ($7.25 million) to renovate public restrooms, parking lots, and many other infrastructure features.

  Years of efforts have borne fruit. To date, villagers whose families were at the poverty level are able to earn money from tourism to support basic life necessities. Among the 21,600 yuan average income per person, nearly 9,000 yuan were earned from tourism.

  This year, the village has six newly-opened restaurants and saw 12 new homestay service providers. Over the May Day holiday, the village received 30,000 visits despite the challenges of COVID-19.

  Source: China Daily

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