Zela adventure lodge offers a picturesque, tranquil setting with their private bungalows and truly unique Field Research Station which conducts essential marine research and has established protected areas involving local villagers. Today it is a fascinating tourist attraction.
Guests enjoy unobstructed views of the surrounding pristine lagoon. Simply spend hours of relaxation on the decks taking in the amazing views and experiencing first hand its natural beauty, or involve yourself in conserving the Eco-environment and learn about the cultures and tradition of the Roviana lagoon.
The research and guest station is on customary land and the resort is owned by Dr. Shankar Aswani, who is an Associate Professor of Anthropology and the Interdepartmental Graduate Program in Marine Sciences at the University of California in Santa Barbara. Dr. Aswani has conducted research in the Western Solomons Islands since 1992 having spent over five years in the Roviana and Vonavona region, and more recently in the Vella Lavella, Rendova, and Marovo areas. His projects have focused on a diversity of subjects including property rights and common property resources, climate change, marine indigenous environmental knowledge, cultural ecology and human behavioral ecology of fishing, demography, ethnohistory, political ecology, economic anthropology, and applied anthropology. He also has developed a network of locally managed Marine Protected Areas (32 MPAs) and small-scale rural development projects in the Roviana, Vonavona, and Marovo Lagoons with funds provided by a number of donors. As a result of this effort, a Pew Fellowship in Marine Conservation was awarded to Aswani in 2005, the first time in its 20-year history that the world’s premier award in marine conservation has been given to an anthropologist.
This accommodation provider has taken action to address one or more issues (whether environmental, social or cultural) which will contribute positively to the long term viability of the destination and hence their site displays a Caring for the destination rating.
Main area of focus in Caring for the Destination:
The station development is based on a philosophy of allowing visitors to actively participate and experience climate change research, hands-on conservation, and cultural and subsistence activities.
Detailed description of the Caring for the Destination Initiative:
The Zela Field Research and Guest Station is a nonprofit endeavor designed to fund local research on social and ecological processes, establish marine and terrestrial protected areas, and assist local communities with sustainable development. The goal has been to create a network of Marine Protected Areas in the Western Solomon Islands in a culturally, economically, and ecologically appropriate fashion.
The fees paid by visitors are to fund conservation and research activities, help local communities with sustainable development, and to improve the research station. Therefore, tourists not only enjoy a true paradise but contribute to something meaningful while on holidays.