Community based ecotourism is one of the most rapidly growing industries in the world, and also an economic activity that can encourage local people in developing countries to protect and preserve natural resources. This study aimed to evaluate the potential of Wunania Konoye for conservation and community-based ecotourism development. Cross sectional study design with both quantitative and qualitative methods was used to describe the existing situations. A total of 200 participants completed a questionnaire and interviews were conducted with key informants. Data were analyzed by using SPSS Version 20. The three kebeles in the study area (Chirambezo, Kosoye Ambarsa and Gunda Chugie) were rich in natural and cultural attraction, though there was significant difference between Chirambezo and Kosoye Ambaras in this respect. In terms of accessibility, there is significant difference among the three kebeles. The human resources, accessibility and infrastructure were sufficient to develop and promote an ecotourism destination. The area has huge potential to develop community-based ecotourism, but amenities were either poorly developed or nonexistent. Therefore, amenities such as electricity, water supply, security and information centers should be developed based on ecotourism standards.
Key word: Conservation, ecotourism, Ethiopia, tourism resources, Wunania Kosoye.
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