Purpose – The purpose of this paper is to provide an overview of the tourism sector in the Amazon regions of Bolivia, Brazil, Colombia, Ecuador, Guyana, Peru, and Suriname and then discuss the manner in which tourism activity assists the protection of the Amazon rainforests. The paper also describes the manner in which the first World Hospitality and Tourism Themes Roundtable on Tourism in the Amazon is organized in 2009. Design/methodology/approach – Teams of researchers from the Ministries of Tourism, the private sector and academia in the Member Countries of Treaty for Amazon Cooperation collaborated to address, in ten-page papers, the question “Does sustainable tourism offer solutions for the protection of the Amazon rainforest?” Findings – The paper provides valuable information on the current state of tourism policy and practice in the Amazon Member Countries. It also articulates the challenges that attend the development of sustainable tourism as a mechanism for the protection of the Amazon. Practical implications – Tourism policy officials and managers, should benefit from the discussions of the prospects and challenges that attend the practice of sustainable tourism in the Amazon region. They will also find interesting guidelines and recommendations for action based upon the many destinations and tourism regions under examination. Originality/value – The issue of sustainable tourism and the rainforest is very topical and this paper will be of immense value to scholars, researchers and tourism practitioners.
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