International Forest, & Environmental Development

Forêt Internationale, et Développement Environnemental

MFE 401: Ecotourism and local development

Course Details

Country: Kenya
Eco geographic and tourist presentation

Kenya is a country located on the Equator which consists of high mountain ranges, mainly to the
west, and to the southeast of coastal plain which faces the Indian Ocean. The highlands (Nairobi)
are mainly a region of forests while the lowlands (Mombasa) present a savannah landscape.
Several ethnic groups including the Kikuyu (1/5 of the population) and the Maasai coexist with
Indian, Arab and European minorities. The population is 75% rural and exhibits one of the highest
growth rates in the world. The country lives mainly from its agriculture (coffee, tea, fruit, etc.),
livestock and tourism offered by beaches of the coast and the numerous natural parks in the
country harboring various species of wildlife

The two official languages of Kenya are English and Swahili, English being considered the official
language and Swahili as the national language. However, since these two languages are not
the mother tongue of most Kenyans, you will also hear many tribal languages- such as Kikuyu,
Luo, Masai, Samburu, etc.

Kenya is a traditionally tourist country which receives around 1 million visitors per year,
especially in summer, coming mainly from England and Germany. Tourism remains very
concentrated in the parks and on the coast and is organized mainly from Nairobi from where
there are safaris departures to nature reserves (more than fifty), including that of Masai Mara.
The national museum, the African rift valley, its escarpments and views are a possible stage
before the Masai Mara via Narok. In the town of Mombasa, of Swahili origin, is Fort Jesus,
dating from the Portuguese period (late 16th century). The old town is charming there. From
there, going to Malindi, you will discover the ruins of Gedi, from the 13th century, remains of a
Swahili city.

Educational objectives and articulations

The objective of this module is to allow nature lovers to discover the eco-geographic and tourist
wonders of Kenya. Throughout the module, participants will familiarize themselves with the
challenges of ecotourism and its relationships with sustainable local development, the fragility of
natural spaces and the need to protect them. The articulations of this module include:

✓ Eco-geographic and tourist presentation of the country;
✓ Fundamental notions of ecotourism and sustainable development;
✓ Fragility of natural landscapes and the need to protect them;
✓ Ecotourism issues and its relationships with local development;
✓ Discovery of ecotourism sites in the country (protected areas, cultural heritage, etc.);
✓ Discovery and brief stay in eco-lodges;
✓ Meetings and exchanges with managers, local guides, visitors and local communities;
✓ Ecotourism circuit;
✓ Safari photo, fishing and partaking in cultural events.

Register Online!

MFE 402: Forest ecology – Eco-tourism

Course Details

Country: Tanzania
Eco geographic and tourist presentation

The United Republic of Tanzania is located on the east coast of Africa. It is bordered by Kenya
and Uganda to the north, by Burundi, Rwanda and the Democratic Republic of Congo to the
west, by the Indian Ocean to the east and by Zambia, Malawi and Mozambique to South. The
continental part of Tanzania is divided into several well-defined regions: the coastal plains which
vary in width from 16 to 64 km, provided with lush and tropical vegetation, the Massaï Steppe
in the north, located between 213 and 1,067 m above sea level , and finally a high plateau in
the southern part, towards Zambia and Lake Nyasa (Lake Malawi). Savannah and steppe cover
more than half of the country and semi-desert vegetation covers the rest, except for the coastal
plains. The interior areas cover over 53,000 km², mostly in the form of lakes that have formed
in the Rift Valley. The United Republic of Tanzania is also made up of the islands of Zanzibar
and Pemba, located approximately 45 km from its coasts, in the north-eastern part of the
country.

Tanzania is a country whose territory is twice as large as that of France. It shelters immense
savannas punctuated with Acacia and Baobas, mountains, volcanoes, large lakes (Lake
Tanganyika, Lake Victoria), wild and free animals (some always threatened like rhinoceros and
elephants), herds by the thousands (by the millions in the case of wildebeest).

The parks, fewer in Tanzania than in Kenya, are more extensive and give an impression of
infinite space: the animals born, grow and reproduce there as in a kingdom where the visitor is
a host. And what about Kilimanjaro, the highest mountain in Africa? Except for Dar Es Salaam,
its economic capital, the rest of the country gives the image of a territory largely preserved from
human intervention. Many sites have also integrated UNESCO World Heritage, such as the
Ngorongoro conservation area, located in the north of the country, the ruins of Kilwa Kisiwani,
which respectively include the great mosque of Kilwa, the Mkutini palace and that of Husuni
Kubwa, but also the ruins of Songo Manara, the Selous reserve or the rocky art sites of Kondoa,
covering some 200 caves decorated with paintings spanning a period ranging from 40 000 to
3000 years.

The list would not be complete without its national parks, in particular Serengeti or Kilimanjaro
the mountain which rises to 5,895 meters above sea level. The observation of animals in the wild,
especially if you opt for the safari, seems to be one of the essential activities to practice in these
parks. The Serengeti contains around 4 million animals including many birds and species such as
lions, leopards, buffaloes, rhinos, but also hyenas and zebras which roam freely under the
amused eye of the tourist.

Educational objectives and articulations

The objective of this module is to allow nature lovers to discover the eco-geographic and tourist
wonders of Tanzania. During this module, participants will familiarize themselves with the
challenges of forest ecology and ecotourism and its relationships with sustainable local
development. The articulations of this module include:

✓ Biophysical and tourist presentation of the country;
✓ Fundamentals of forest ecology and ecotourism;
✓ Fragility of natural spaces and the need to protect them;
✓ Visit of national parks;
✓ Ecotourism issues and its relationships with local development;
✓ Discovery of ecotourism sites in the country such as Lake Tanganyika, Lake Victoria, etc.;
✓ Meetings and exchanges with managers, local guides, visitors and local communities;
✓ Ecotourism circuit;
✓ Safari photo, fishing, taking part in cultural events.

Register Online!

MFE 403: Environment and ecotourism

Course Details

Country: South Africa
Eco-geographic and tourist presentation

The Republic of South Africa (official name) is the southernmost country in Africa. It is a large
country with an area of 1.2 million square kilometers, equivalent to 2.2 times the area of France
or 3.4 times that of Germany. South Africa is one of the largest countries in Africa alongside
countries such as Algeria, Congo-Kinshasa, Libya, Chad, Niger, Angola and Mali.

The country is bordered to the northwest by Namibia, to the north by Botswana, to the northeast
by Zimbabwe, to the east by Mozambique and Swaziland. In southeast, South Africa is bordered
by the Indian Ocean and in the west by the Atlantic Ocean. Lesotho located in the center eastern
part is not a province of South Africa, but a small independent state with an area of 30,355
km², which is merely equivalent to that of Belgium (32,545 km²).

South Africa has a very condensed biodiversity. Indeed, the diversity of its landscapes made up
of forest, savannah, beach, mountain, desert and its diversity of animals make South Africa a
complete ecotourism destination. Each end of the country offers a different landscape. In the
North, the Kalahari Desert extends over several countries, including South Africa. The decor is
arid, the rivers are dry, which gives the impression of being alone, at the end of the world. In
the rainy season, the vegetation revives and the trees bloom. It’s a good time to go on a safari
and admire the flora and fauna. In contrast, Cap-Town is a port city, where you can get high on
the cable car and admire the 360° view. From up there, you will see Robben Island, which has
become famous for Nelson Mandela detention. Its remarkable beaches and its view of the
mountains make Cape Town a must-see on a South African trip. Johannesburg is a great place
to learn about apartheid and the history of South Africa. Here, local cooking will awaken the
taste buds of travelers. When it comes to Safari, the must-see Kruger Park is the largest animal
reserve in Africa. It is in this park that the visitor has the chance to observe the Big Five which
are lions, leopards, rhinos, elephants and buffaloes. The lodges provide the opportunity to stay
in the heart of the park and admire the flora and fauna until nightfall. The Zulu region, the wild
land of South Africa, has an unusual setting. Located in the east, it is home to one of the most
important ethnic groups in the country. Shakaland immerses you in this culture full of songs, dances
and traditional crafts.

Educational objectives and articulations

The objective of this module is to allow nature lovers to discover the eco-geographic and tourist
wonders of South Africa (Rainbow Nation). Participants will familiarize themselves during this
module with the challenges of the environment and ecotourism in this country. The articulations of
this module include:

✓ Biophysical and tourist presentation of South Africa;
✓ Fundamentals of the environment and ecotourism in South Africa;
✓ Ecotourism issues and relations with sustainable development in South Africa;
✓ Visiting townships, national parks and hiking on the trails;
✓ Explore major issues, analyze and propose solutions;
✓ Meetings and exchanges with managers, local guides, visitors and local communities;
✓ Safari photo, fishing, partaking part in cultural events

Register Online!

MFE 404: Environment, climate change and REDD +

Course Details

Country: Ghana
Eco geographic and tourist presentation

Ghana is a country located in the center of the west coast, in the west part of Africa, bounded
to the west by Ivory Coast, to the north by Burkina Faso, to the east by Togo and to the south
by the Atlantic Ocean. A former British colony on the Gold Coast, Ghana was the first country in
black Africa to gain independence in 1957, led by pan-Africanist Kwame Nkrumah.

Ghana covers five ecological zones which are the Sudanese savannah, the Guinean savannah,
the forest-savannah transition, the forest and coastal savannah. The first three are the most prone
to desertification. Plant cover includes pastures, shrub and tree savannah, semi-deciduous forest,
and finally mangroves along the coast. The Keta Lagoon complex (in the Volta Region) and the
Songor lagoon are among the RAMSAR sites found in Ghana. With more than 5% of Ghana’s
land officially protected by 16 national parks and conservation areas (Monkey sanctuary), the
country is an ideal destination for nature lovers to observe a multitude of bird and other wildlife
species. Ghana has become a pioneer in community eco-tourism. Tourism is Ghana’s fastest
growing industry and the third largest source of foreign exchange behind gold and cocoa.
According to the rural Ghana travel and ecotourism office, tourism grows by around 15% per
year in Ghana. Ghana, with its political stability and low crime rate is one of the safest places
to visit in Africa. The capital Accra is home to many sites that have marked the history of slavery
in Africa and is therefore a must-see cultural tourist destination. Kakum National Park, a tropical
forest area located 176 km from Accra, has an air passage that allows the visitor to observe
nature from the canopy. There are also many animals such as elephants, monkeys, antelopes,
etc. The Mole National Park, located 686 km from Accra in the savannah area allows you to
visit animals such as buffalos, monkeys, antelopes, lions and elephants.

Educational objectives and articulations

The objective of this module is to allow nature lovers to discover Ghana by visiting ecotourism
sites. Participants will also familiarize themselves with the challenges of climate change and the
reduction of emissions from deforestation and forest degradation (REDD+) in Ghana. The
articulations of this module include:

✓ Biophysical presentation of Ghana;
✓ Environmental, climate change and REDD + issues and challenges in Ghana;
✓ Visits of natural parks, ecological and ecotourism sites;
✓ Meeting with stakeholders of sustainable management and the national REDD+ strategy;
✓ Visit land degradation and natural resources sites;
✓ Visits of local communities to discover local cultural practices;
✓ Visits fort such as Elmina to discover the remains of the slave trade.

Register Online!

Click the map to interact