We are developing ecotourism as part of a green economy in the region!
To accomplish its objectives, ARK is focused on the following priority areas:
- Creating an extensive network of marked hiking trails that will encourage travellers to explore the region and bring exposure to the unique natural landscape while promoting meaningful engagement with local communities along the way.
- Establishing eco-camps stationed along these trails, designed with permaculture standards and made from recycled material, as bases for tourist and volunteer accommodation, local gatherings, environmental seminars, fitness activities, etc.
- Attracting enthusiastic volunteers from within and outside of Armenia to come to Kapan and help build a sustainable future for the region while exploring the beautiful nature first-hand.
ARK BRIDGE PROJECT
ARK Armenia's ambitious new project is to professionally mark and map 45 km of hiking trails linking the famous attraction of Tatev Monastery to Kapan and onwards towards Shikahogh State Forest Reserve. This trail network will include an information support system and 2 eco-camps stationed along the way where hikers can rest and relax.
Through leveraging the appeal of Tatev Monastery to promote ecotourism, this trail is part of ARK's mission to help provide direct economic benefits for rural communities in the region while also preserving and fostering appreciation of the natural landscape that surrounds them.
ARK firmly believes that ecotourism in the region can be built on a sustainable platform that provides economic and environmental benefits to everyone involved.
We are currently crowdfunding for this project on Indiegogo! Every single dollar you contribute to our campaign will go directly towards making this project a reality and developing ecotourism from the bottom up!
WHAT WE'VE ACCOMPLISHED
In only one year, ARK has been able to accomplish quite a lot!
To kick things off, ARK has built the first eco-camp in the region! Located a 15-minute walk from Kapan's city centre, the camp is made from 80% recycled material and offers all the necessary facilities (kitchen, bathroom, bungalows, electricity, water). The camp will incorporate permaculture design in an adjacent plot of land so that organic food can be sustainably grown for volunteers and tourists. We hope that this is the first of many eco-camps in the region, stationed along our hiking trails and offering tourists an eco-friendly alternative that encourages a deeper connection with nature.
On top of that, we have marked 6 independent hiking trails in the areas around Kapan, totalling over 30km! These trails allow visitors to explore some of the region’s most unique cultural features (Vahanavank Monastery, Halidzor Fortress, Baghaberd Fortress) while experiencing first-hand the beautiful nature that makes the area unique.
We've even marked a hiking trail that takes you all the way from our eco-camp to the magnificent Mount Khustup, which overlooks Kapan and offers breathtaking views!
Our accomplishments so far couldn’t have been done without the enormous help from international and local volunteers as well as our large network of supporters, contributors and friends! In addition to several agreements for cooperation that we’ve made with other local NGOs, ARK has received letters of support from governmental authorities at the local and state levels because they see the value in promoting ecotourism to the region.