Asosiasaun Turizmu Koleku Mahanak Ataúro (ATKOMA) is the Destination Management Organization for the island of Ataúro, Timor Leste. The region has been working towards building sustainable tourism and promoting the island of Ataúro in the eco-friendly travel itineraries of Southeast Asia.
The island’s success story is rooted in reviving an ancient practice called Tara Bandu to protect marine biodiversity. Through working with cultural traditions instead of against them, the DMO helped to translate marine management into a language that can be easily grasped by all islanders and create a more participative method of conservation. The determined Tara Bandu areas are formally recognized as a Marine Managed Area (MMA) that comprises a core “no-take” zone where it is strictly prohibited to fish or transit, surrounded by a buffer zone where regulations are less strict. So far, these zones have translated into revenue for the locals as tourists who would like to swim in the Tara Bandu areas are invited to pay a small fee.
ATKOMA is working towards the following UN Sustainable Development Goals:
ATKOMA is a sustainable area designated by the Government of Timor Leste.