A Celebration of Ecotourism Excellence: Where in the World is Great Ecotourism?

A Celebration of Ecotourism Excellence: Where in the World is Great Ecotourism?

The International Ecotourism Society's Celebration of Ecotourism Gala Features Eco-Holiday Experiences from around the World


TIES Press ReleaseWASHINGTON DC, May 4, 2004 – The International Ecotourism Society (TIES), together with the Costa Rican Mission to the Organization of American States (OAS), is hosting a cocktail party, dinner, and auction of holiday trips to outstanding ecotourism destinations around the world.

The silent and live auction features dozens of vacation packages, each for two persons, offered by tour operators, lodges, hotels, and safari camps committed to sound social and environmental practices. Destinations include Costa Rica, South Africa, the Galapagos Islands, Australia, Thailand, Belize, Honduras, Nicaragua, St. John, Mongolia, Peru, Fiji, the United States, and elsewhere. They include a wide range from luxury and moderately priced vacation packages.

This event coincides with TIES Annual General Meeting, which is being held for the first time in Washington, DC, and its international Board of Directors will be present at the event.

A sampling of the dozens of ecotourism packages in the May 15 Silent and Live Auction include:

Kenya: A 5-day deluxe safari with Micato Safaris, 2004 winner of Travel + Leisure Magazine’s “World’s Best Tour Operator & Safari Outfitter” Award. Stay in luxury tented camps in Kenya’s most famous game park, the Maasai Mara National Reserve. This is big game country, where prides of lions, including the majestic black-manned male, share the savannah grasslands and watering holes with elephant, giraffe, buffalo, cheetah, leopard, black rhino, scores of other species, and hundreds of thousands of migrating zebra, wildebeest and gazelles. Game drives, bush walks, and even an optional balloon ride over the Mara Plains.

Costa Rica: View toucans and macaws, enjoy nouvelle Costa Rican cuisine, and hike in the rainforest during a six day stay at the country’s most famous lodges, Finca Rosa Blanca Country Inn (hailed as the world's "preeminent boutique hotel") and Lapa Rios Rainforest Ecolodge, (rated by CondeNast as one of the top 10 hotels in Latin America.). These are the country's only lodges certified with the highest eco-rating of "5 Green Leaves” for their outstanding environmental and social practices.

The Galapagos: Choice from three distinct tours to the Galapagos Islands and view Darwin’s enchanted isles aboard luxury boats (“floating hotels”), run by leading ecotourism operator, Lindblad Expeditions, Ecoventura, and G.A.P. Adventures. Only in this unique set of islands can you find wildlife that wander freely, even fearlessly, snorkel with penguins and sea lions, and enjoy the crazy courtship dance of the blue-footed boobies.

Belize: On this 11-day holiday, explore the natural, cultural, and archeological wonders of tiny Belize, with stays at four luxurious and distinctive ecolodges. Enjoy bird watching, canoeing, hiking, exploring ancient Mayan temples, snorkeling the Barrier Reef, and relaxing at a luxury spa, as well as the world’s best permit fishing in both salt and fresh water.

South Africa: See South Africa’s ecotourism projects first hand in Kruger National Park. Here is a one of a kind trip safari package, complete with roundtrip airfare from New York to Johannesburg, a stay in South Africa’s most famous game park, and unique meetings with local communities. Stay in a six star lodge and view the Big Five game while learning about the groundbreaking agreement between the Makuleke people and the South African National Parks Board to permit limited ecotourism on community owned land within Kruger.

Australia: In this two-week trip to Queensland, you’ll stay at three leading ecolodges and explore the rainforest, waterfalls and wildlife of the famous Lamington National Park (a World Heritage Site), enjoy spectacular mountain views, and then venture up the coast and take a catamaran to Fraser Island, the world’s largest sand island. Fraser Island, also a World Heritage Site, is paradise for boating, fishing, swimming, beachcombing and bushwalking.


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As the world's oldest and largest international ecotourism association, TIES seeks to be the global source of knowledge and advocacy uniting communities, conservation, sustainable travel..




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The Ecotourism and Sustainable Tourism Conference will highlight global challenges and local opportunities, supporting sustainable development of tourism and promoting solutions that balance conservation, communities and sustainable travel.

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