Ecotourism defined as travel experiences that focus on a destination’s social, economic and environmental characteristics starts off as a fantastic option for families, couples or solo travelers.  But, confusion quickly sets in as various questions come up for exactly how a traveler can support organizations and companies that exemplify the traits of ecotourism in an authentic way. 

How can you ensure that your travels increase accessibility to a community’s heritage, expand opportunities for local economic development, and balance local needs with the environment? 

We’ve consolidated our eleven best tips here.

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What are the Principles of Ecotourism?

One of the reasons that there is no globally agreed upon ecotourism definition is that there are different interpretations of what constitutes a natural or wildlife habitat, what characterizes local prosperity, and what amounts to environmental degradation.  Wherever you may be in the world, ecotourism will take on completely different characteristics…read more about the principles of ecotourism.

How Is Ecotourism Different From Other Types of Tourism?

Ecotourism is different from other types of tourism simply because its distinct clarifications have been incorrectly applied to sustainable tourism nature tourism, green tourism, cultural tourism, adventure tourism, and responsible tourism…read more about the differences.

What is Greenwashing?

Greenwashing is the insincere promotion of green business practices that are advertised as reducing carbon emissions or limiting the use of scarce resources, for example, when the actual objective is to increase profits by implementing some easy, cost-saving measures…read more about the five sins of greenwashing to look out for.

How is Ecotourism Defined for Hotels?

How can one tell the difference between an eco-hotel and a hotel that employs greenwashing practices?  The good news is that there are some reputable green hotel certification programs, which allow for an occasional inspection of a hotel’s sustainable operations in over 20 different areas.  The unpleasant news is that presently some of these eco-certification programs are self-administered assessments with intermittent on-site inspections…read more about the 21 typical criteria for eco-hotels.

Portrait of happy multi ethnic friends enjoying US ecotourism

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How does Carbon Offsetting Work?

Unlike years ago when the mantra reduce, reuse, recycle, reclaim was in vogue and hailed by people, especially those in developed countries, who wanted to do their part to stem climate change, the de rigueur standard is now carbon offsetting. But does carbon offsetting really work to reduce energy dependency or to create local jobs? The answer largely depends on what type of projects one supports…read more about finding reputable carbon offsetting projects.

How do Children Benefit from Ecotourism?

Ecotourism benefits children in six ways as it is filled with teachable moments that capture a child’s interest in culture, wildlife, and conservation…read more about how ecotourism mark milestones for a child’s personal growth and development.

Which Countries Benefit Most from Ecotourism?

83% of developing countries rely on ecotourism revenue while others, such as Costa Rica, Ecuador, Nepal, Kenya, Madagascar, and Antarctica, also rely on ecotourism revenue as the major contributory factor in their gross domestic product and employment level calculations…read more on eco-destinations that have the most to gain (or lose) with the rapid rise of ecotourism.

Is Ecotourism More Expensive?

As the popularity of environmentally-friendly products has grown over the years, consumers have been conditioned to believe that green goods or eco products equate to more expensive merchandise. In the specific case of ecotourism, this is simply not the case.  Indeed, it is possible to participate in ecotourism and stay well within your vacation budget. The options for ecotourism travel range from the luxurious to the rustic, so your standards do not need to be adjusted for a responsible travel experience….read more about your economical ecotourism options.


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What are Some Common Ecotourism Pitfalls?

While travelers want to make responsible vacation purchasing decisions based on ethical environmental standards for sustainability and conservation rather than marketing tactics, some common ecotourism pitfalls befall most…read the five most common ecotourism pitfalls.

How Can Families Pay-it-Forward with Ecotourism?

It may be tough to plan an extraordinary family vacation these days given that you have to be conscious about activity and meal preferences — as well as your budget. In addition, if you are tying in the aspiration to have a pay it forward vacation that is educational or experiential may overwhelm the planning process altogether. However, that need not be the case with these four vacation planning tips…read how to make ecotourism planning easy.

Ecotourism’s Impact on Local Communities

As a final thought, we designed an infographic was to convey the economic benefits of ecotourism, define the terminology used in the travel industry, and describe the differences in how local communities specifically benefit from ecotourism versus traditional (mass) tourism…read and share this infographic.

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