Ecotourism Tips and Etiquette

Ecotourism is all about traveling to natural areas and preserving the environment and limiting impact. When on an eco tour you want to do your best to not be wasteful and to protect the environment. You want the nature to be conserved and for it to be the same as you leave as when you arrive.

Eco tourism is also about improving the life of the locals and sustainable living. It is protecting the locals economically and socially. For example, eating locally grown produce to support the local farmers.

To sum it up, ecotourism is responsible tourism with no negative impacts and there are many simple things you can do for your ecotour.

Here are some tips for your Ecotour:

Packing

  • Pack light.
  • Bring a plastic water bottle that you can refill with water instead of using many water bottles that will end up in the trash.
  • Pack a cloth sack so when you go shopping, you can eliminate the use of plastic or paper bags.

At the hotel

  • Reuse your towels instead of having them washed everyday. This will save a lot of water.
  • If you are going to be gone for the day, turn off the air conditioner and lights. Don’t leave anything on that uses power.
  • Don’t overuse water in showers. When you are using an outdoor shower, or indoor shower don’t stand under the water too long. Just use as much water as you need to and no more. Fresh water is a valuable resource on islands.

Other Tips

  • Ask about recycling and recycle when you can. Be sure to recycle your cans and bottles.
  • Eat locally grown food.
  • If you’re going to rent a car, choose the smallest car you can.
  • Walk instead of driving when possible. This will also allow you to see more of the beauty on the islands and it’s good exercise.
  • Don’t walk on coral since it’s made of living creatures and you or they can be harmed. Don’t take anything from the coral, or damage it. It’s a living organism.
  • Watch the wildlife responsibly.
  • Don’t feed the wildlife, because this can upset the natural order.
  • If you shop and get plastic bags, you can reuse the plastic bags to reduce trash.
  • Power is high in some areas, so do your best to use as little power as possible.

And lastly, remember to respect the local people and their culture. If you are respectful, they will show you respect. The locals are generally very warm and friendly people. Try to learn about their customs and culture so you don’t accidentally insult them. What may be appropriate in your country, may not be appropriate in their town. And the customs vary from island to island. Just don’t act like you are better than them and you’ll be fine and have a good experience. Also remember, don’t take pictures of people without first getting their permission.