The Protected Area Management Boards (PAMB) for Bangan Hill Natural Park (BHNP) and Dupax Watershed Forest Reserve (DWFR) recently inaugurated the rehabilitated and improved ecotourism facilities.
The inauguration was led by DENR Assistant Secretary Nonita Caguioa and Regional Executive Director Gwendolyn Bambalan,
local chief executives, and PAMB members.
"These improved facilities will help the protected areas attract more tourists bringing both ecological and economic benefits to the communities within and nearby the PAs," said Asec. Caguioa.
She commended the collaborations made by the DENR, local government units, PAMB, and other stakeholders that made the establishment of the facilities possible.
While the PAs were closed to tourists during the pandemic, the DENR rehabilitated the access roads, parking space, gate, guardhouse, water system, and riprap landscape of the two PAs.
The view deck and kiosk at BHNP were improved while overflow bridges and step ladders in DWFR were also reconstructed.
"We initiated the installment of ecotourism facilities to provide convenience to our tourists and so they can have something new to see," said Director Bambalan as she noted the upcoming Lenten season where tourists look for places to visit.
Aside from enjoying the scenic views of the protected areas, Director Bambalan encouraged the governing boards of the PAs to conduct orientation to visitors before they tour around.
"We need to inform them of the importance of our natural resources so we can encourage them to conserve our environment as well," she added.
For the part of the local government, Bayombong Mayor Ralph Lantion through Municipal Administrator James Baluyan
committed to help boost Bangan Hill's ecotourism and will support the equitable distribution of economic benefits to the
"We thank the DENR for bringing development to DWFR for years now. The protected area plays a huge role in our municipality since it provides water supply to our households," said Dupax del Sur Mayor Ruben Basconcillo as he pledged to preserve the PA for the benefit of the next generations.
Also present in the inauguration in Bangan Hill is Ruth Padilla, president of Nueva Vizcaya State University and chair of the
provincial ecotourism council who expressed her support to the development of ecotourism industry in the PA.
DENR Assistant Regional Director Marcos Dacanay, PENR Officer Giovannie Magat, Conservation and Development Chief Enrique Pasion, and the CENR officers of the province also joined the activity.#