Contribution of Mt. Elgon Ecosystem to Transboundary Tourism between Uganda and Kenya
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The study was about the Contribution of Mt. elgon ecosystem to transboundary tourism between Uganda and Kenya. The objectives were to examine the tourism attractions at the Uganda –Kenya border that are part of the Mt Elgon ecosystem, assess the activities participated in by tourists and to document the challenges faced by managers of Mt Elgon National Park which may hinder cross border tourism. This research adopted a research design that was descriptive in nature. This design was suitable for this study because it elucidates facts regarding the nature and position of a circumstance, as it occurs at present time of study. It also sheds light on the prevailing relationships and practices, values and processes that are occurring, effects that are being felt or trends that are developing. The sample size selected for the study was 50 respondents. The researcher used both purposive and simple random sampling techniques to collect data from UWA staff , tour guides, park managers, local people, tourists and the department of Antiquities Official. The study employed questionnaire and interview method during data collection because of its flexibility. The analyzed data was presented in frequency distribution tables and percentages. The data collected were coded and analyzed inform of frequencies and percentages which were presented in tabular form. The findings revealed that protecting National parks results in tangible and significant economic benefits for local communities and regions, as well as Ugandans in general. Job creation increased spending in local economies, firewood, controlled soil erosion, increased rain fall, and increased government revenues can all occur as a result of protected areas. These benefits are in addition to the underlying economic value of a broad range of ecological services from protected areas, such as clean water and air, health benefits from outdoor recreation, or the harvest of wild plants and animals. In view of the findings, there is need to build and diversify the Uganda‟s economy by completing and investing in a network of protected areas including those at the boundaries. Further, there is need to provide support and incentives to communities to generate local economic benefits from the cross-border protected areas.