Ecotourism is broadly defined as sustainable tourism to less populated and undisturbed locations unlike mass tourism. It allows the traveler to become an effective element in the eco areas through practicing into the daily life of local communities and promoting their economic development as well as giving much care about the ecosystem of the areas.
Additionally, ecotourism aims at conserving and understanding what the local people are in need to so that the traveler has a great contribution in improving their quality of life and preserving the historical landmarks.
“Ecotourism is now defined as “responsible travel to natural areas that conserves the environment, sustains the well-being of the local people, and involves interpretation and education”
Importance of Ecotourism
1. Ecotourism is a strategic ally of environmental conservation.
2. Ecotourism champions are deeply rooted in local communities.
3. Ecotourism brings innovation and new skills in the tourism sector, delivering a multi-tiered economic impact.
4. Ecotourism is connected with nature in a respectful way to improve our collective health on a deeper, larger level.
5. Ecotourism is a driving force in support of nature & Ocean literacy.
At the end of the day, ecotourism is an act of self-love
Principles of Ecotourism
Ecotourism is about responsible travel to natural areas that promote conservation, bring harmony among communities, and sustains well being of local people. People who implement and participate in ecotourism activities should adopt the following ecotourism principles:
*Minimize physical, social, behavioral, and psychological impacts
*Build environmental and cultural awareness and respect
*Provide positive experiences for both visitors and local people
*Provide direct financial benefits for environmental conservation
*Generate financial benefits for both local people and private industry
*Deliver memorable interpretative experiences to visitors that help raise sensitivity to host countries’ political, environmental, and social climates
*Design, construct and operate low-impact facilities
The Benefits of Ecotourism for local communities
It is widely agreed that Ecotourism’s idealistic goal is to improve the world through responsible travel; while its effects will be reflected positively on local communities through benefiting from many things:
Ecotourism’s main goal is to fight the negative effects of human development. People in cities are looking sometimes for the beautiful and quite places (jungles, mountains and beaches..) to enjoy their beauty and keep away from the hustle of the city . As local communities begin to see their natural resources as sources of tourist income, the communities may work harder to protect those resources. Therefore many jobs can be created for locals.
As ecotourism in an area grows, the local government often recognizes the economic boom and seeks to maintain it.
The more local and traveler become educated about the importance of ecotourism, less likely to be environmentally destructive. In fact, education and awareness may be the true benefits of ecotourism and provide the most lasting effect. Eco-tourists meeting people who live more closely with nature may learn to live more simply themselves. Meanwhile, locals gain the funds and the ability to pursue more education of their own, giving them a better understanding of world issues like environmentalism through cultural exchange, both parties stand to benefit.