Quantum Temple Champions Regenerative Tourism Through NFTs

Startup Quantum Temple uses the Sui network to create authentic, dynamic travel experiences, give back to local communities, and revolutionize the travel industry.

Quantum Temple Champions Regenerative Tourism Through NFTs

From finance to art, gaming to wireless, a broad range of industries have seen a flood of startups working to disrupt the status quo using blockchain technology. But the travel industry, which evokes visions of crowded airports, whirlwind tours, and luxury cruises, might seem too legacy-driven to embrace blockchain innovation. One startup thinks it’s high time that changes.

Quantum Temple's digital platform brings transparency and community empowerment to travel through blockchain technology. Sui technologies like zkLogin, NFTs, and sponsored transactions provide the infrastructure that facilitates Web3 functionality in what is traditionally a very low-tech, consumer-centric industry.

The company recently announced its new Water Civilization experience, the first ever Web3-enabled travel experience at a UNESCO World Heritage Site, in partnership with the Indonesian Ministry of Tourism and Creative Economy, Desa Manukaya Let, and Mysten Labs. Through this program, Quantum Temple gives tourists the chance to learn about Bali’s water heritage, water temples, and a ritual called water purification at Pura Tirta Empul, one of the most important and most visited sacred water temples in Bali. Powered by Sui technology, it is a one-of-a-kind experience that blends traditional tourism with innovative, blockchain-powered ticketing and NFT artifacts.

Quantum Temple partnered with the Indonesian Ministry of Tourism and Creative Economy to create the Water Civilization experience, giving tourists an opportunity to immerse themselves in a unique aspect of Balinese culture.

“We chose Sui because it was one of the only protocols that was really focused on consumer applications, which is very, very exciting because that is not the case in other ecosystems,” said Quantum Temple founder and CEO Linda Adami. “We’re trying to embed every single thing that can smooth the user experience so that my mom can use it without any difficulty.”

Though it might not be the first to come to mind, Adami sees travel as a path to mass adoption and onboarding of consumers into the Web3 world.

Regenerating the world through blockchain

The concept of regenerative tourism lives at Quantum Temple's core. Whereas many sustainable travel initiatives focus on offsetting the harm caused by travel, regenerative travel attempts to leave places and local communities better off than they were.

Unlike many of her peers, Adami didn’t come to blockchain technology through the cryptocurrency world. She was introduced to it while working with the Dubai government to find ways that pre-regulatory, cutting edge technologies–such as AI, 3D printing, and robotics automation–could be used for public good.

“I saw how blockchain infrastructure could be used to unlock public value and to address a lot of the inefficiencies that are trapped in legacy industries,” she said.

When Covid hit in 2020, she took a sabbatical in Bali, Indonesia, and that’s where she found the inspiration for her next big move: bringing equity and more rewarding experiences to the travel industry using blockchain technology.

Quantum Temple invites tourists to take part in the water purification ritual at Pura Tirta Empul, one of the most sacred Balinese water temples.

While in Bali, Adami learned that 70 percent of the local economy depends on tourism. When the pandemic shut down travel, the tourism industry in Bali came crashing down, and Adami saw that many people had to go back to farming just to put food on the table. 

“I spent a lot of time engaging with the local communities and understanding what was happening, what their life was like,” said Adami. “And I realized that even before the pandemic, tourism here was not fundamentally equitable.” 

Despite generating a great deal of income, revenue was not equitably distributed among the people serving the industry. In fact, the United Nations Tourism Organization estimates that for every $100 spent on a vacation in a developing country, only $5 stays in that country.

At the same time, she saw other problems with the traditional tourism model. For one, people increasingly crave authentic experiences during their travels but don’t always know where to find them. In addition, because so much of local travel is cash-based, local governments often struggle to access the data that could help them prevent overtourism.

Quantum Temple’s Water Civilization experience features a visual anthropology exhibit in a custom bamboo knowledge corridor. Local, specially trained guides introduce travelers to 14 hidden spots that are rarely visited by tourists.

So she put her blockchain expertise to work making tourism more transparent and equitable, beginning in Indonesia. She founded Quantum Temple with two missions: to use blockchain, NFT, and cryptocurrency technologies to help developing countries launch past the legacy systems traditionally used by the travel industry, and to connect travelers with unmatched experiences that marry the physical and digital worlds of art and culture.

Leveraging Sui technologies, Quantum Temple is transforming a highly consumer-focused industry in such a way that many people don’t even know they’re using the blockchain for the first time.

Modernizing the travel experience

For now, Quantum Temple predominantly focuses on experiences, meaning all the tours and activities people do once they arrive at a destination.

“Eighty percent of this particular segment of the value chain of travel is offline,” said Adami, “so there’s an opportunity to help local communities and providers leapfrog directly to the future into a blockchain infrastructure.”

The starting point for users is the Quantum Temple Passport, a decentralized loyalty program that unlocks access to a whole suite of products and services, including in-person tours and experiences in Bali, NFTs and physical art, and crowdfunded programs benefiting local communities.

Behind the scenes, signing up for the passport creates a non-custodial Sui wallet, and the passport is a dynamic, soulbound token on Sui. Easing entry, zkLogin lets people sign up using an existing account from services such as Google or Facebook. New users may not even know they now own an NFT, just that their QT Passport can only be used by them. This ability to serve Web2 users in a streamlined, intuitive way is crucial to Quantum Temple’s success in an industry where both users and providers are often not familiar with blockchain technology.

“We were able to integrate zkLogin in four days,” said Adami. “And when we did that, we doubled our user base in less than one month.”

QT Passport holders can book one-of-a-kind travel experiences in Bali, with NFT tickets being claimed on Sui. These NFT tickets are digital assets that function as collectible memories that are saved to users’ wallets. 

Angela Herliani Tanoesoedibjo, Indonesia's Vice Minister of Tourism, uses an NFT as a ticket for the Quantum Temple experience. These NFT tickets allow governments to better understand where tourists are going.

At least 70 percent of the money generated by these experiences stays in local Bali communities. When a trip is over, users see the local impact their experience had, onchain and displayed in their personal profile. Quantum Temple users can also contribute to the Impact Fund, a crowdfunding platform that supports a variety of local programs. 

Introducing NFT and phygital souvenirs

A uniquely modern element to travel created by Quantum Temple is the inventive mix of physical and digital assets that tourists can collect. Travelers can purchase physical souvenirs, such as wooden sculptures handmade by local master craftspeople and commissioned by Quantum Temple. In addition, Quantum Temple created an NFT collection, the Nagas of Bali, which they offered as a drop in partnership with Tradeport. Two lucky recipients win a trip to Bali, and all proceeds of the NFT program to towards regenerative tourism and cultural preservation in Bali.

Quantum Temple is working to expand its art offerings, collaborating with local institutions to build a catalog of high-quality products crafted by locals, using blockchain to provide authenticity and provenance for the products. 

“We’re going hardcore with phygital in a serious way, where we’ll embed NFC chips, so it’s really about connecting physical with digital and digital with physical and guaranteeing provenance through embedded systems and hardware,” said Adami.

Tearing down data silos to ease overcrowding

Another way Quantum Temple seeks to benefit local communities is by working with governments to collect data that can be used to improve the visitor experience and ease overcrowding.

“We’re trying to solve a pretty difficult data silo problem for local authorities,” said Adami. Right now, in the majority of emerging markets, 80 percent of cultural attractions are offline and completely undigitized. Even for the most popular destinations, including one Bali temple that receives an estimated 2 million visitors per year, visitation data is not reliable. And because on-site ticketing systems are typically cash-based and don’t communicate with each other, it’s impossible for local institutions to know how tourism flows from one cultural attraction to another.

“Overtourism is a big problem in many parts of the world,” said Adami, “so one of the most exciting things Quantum Temple wants to do is connect the cultural landscape by embedding blockchain infrastructure into a lot of these sites to redistribute traffic to places that are not frequently visited.”

An ambitious itinerary

For now, Quantum Temple is running programs in about 10 communities in Bali, with plans to triple that in Bali this year, as well as expand to new destinations within Indonesia and five other countries in the near future. The company is also in talks with a global travel technology infrastructure company about ways to expand Quantum Temple’s decentralized, blockchain-based loyalty program to include airlines, hotels, and other hospitality companies. 

Adami sees all of this as an opportunity to help blockchain reach regular consumers.

“I think we’re demonstrating to a lot of people that we can actually build user experiences that are for mass adoption and that anyone can use without worrying about the technicalities,” said Adami. “Ultimately, we want to change industries for the greater good, and we are showing how blockchain can unlock value and redistribute it for greater purposes in an industry.”