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News & Updates
WASHINGTON, DC -- Effective January 1, 2015, The International Ecotourism Society (TIES) has revised its Definition and Principles, created by the founding members in 1990. Leading up to the 25 year anniversary celebration in 2015, ecotourism experts from around the world connected to re-evaluate TIES principles of ecotourism as an initiative led by Hitesh Mehta, Judy Kepher-Gona, and Dr. Kelly Bricker. TIES has implemented small changes and additions to both the principles and the definition to provide more clarity, eliminate the ambiguity, and therefore reduce the greenwashing and...
The History of Surfing This original post can be found on the Gondwana Ecotours Blog. Surfing was not invented by the Beach Boys, nor a group of teenage, mutated reptiles, surprisingly. The origins of surfing cannot actually be pinpointed to a single place and time, but the first written records of the hobby come to us via the diary of Lieutenant James King aboard the Discovery in 1779. He writes: “The Men sometimes 20 or 30 go without the Swell of the Surf, & lay themselves flat upon an oval piece of plank about their Size and...
The Moon and I: A Look at Cultural Celebration This blog first appeared on the Gondwana Ecotours Blog. Thailand's Lantern Festival Celebrating the Moon While visiting a friend in Ireland this summer, I had the luck of being at her home on August 10th. On this auspicious day, I had the good fortune of witnessing a “Supermoon”, a wonderful natural phenomenon that is maybe only slightly less amazing than the name, “Supermoon”, itself. However, it is still a highly noteworthy instance of the Moon’s elliptical orbit bearing it...
Little Fishing Villages, Big Vision of Ecotourism in Brazil by Felipe Zalamea The original blog first appeared on the Sumak Travel Blog. As you might have noticed when browsing this website, we support a business model chosen by local communities who want tourism to provide a complementary, rather than the sole source of their income. The difference is critically important. We believe that mass tourism is unsustainable and prefer an approach focused on more diversified livelihoods. We wrote recently about how community-based tourism can be a tool for...
Travel Storytelling: How Can Stories Help Destination Marketing? This original article first appeared on TrainingAid. It seems that everyone - from corporate marketers to non-profit campaigners - are talking about how important storytelling is nowadays. In the travel and tourism context, it's not hard to imagine the positive impact of good storytelling: after all, memorable travel experiences are all about stories - stories of the local communities and their cultural traditions, stories told by the expert local guides, and stories about the travelers...
Tales of the Aurora by Jared Sternberg This original blog first appeared on the Gondwana Ecotours Blog. My last post inspired me to research other mythologies about the Northern Lights because the fact why it is called Aurora borealis: it was named after the Roman goddess of dawn, Aurora, and the Greek god of of the north wind, Boreas. This lead me to ask the question, before science how did people make sense of the mysterious lights? The Sami people (also known as Lapps or Lapplanders) live North of the Arctic Circle in Norway, Sweden and Finland....
Community-based tourism: a tool for sustainable development by Felipe Zalamea This original article can be found on the Sumak Travel Blog. Mass tourism can be an incredibly destructive activity with wide reaching consequences. However, fortunately for all, local communities across the developing world have and are setting up eco-tourism projects; a truly viable solution to some of the most urgent problems faced by human kind today, such as global warming, deforestation and land speculation. Community-based tourism (CBT) is not something new; it is...
Responsible Tourism: Whose Responsibility is it to Educate Travelers? by Ayako Ezaki This original article first appeared Nov 26, 2014 on TrainingAid. During last week's Responsible Tourism Twitter Chat (#RTTC), which was around the theme "Indigenous communities and responsible tourism", I came across and discussed this question: Who’s responsible for educating travelers about responsible behavior? We All Need to Be Responsible, But Are We Doing Enough? In our mini-chat about this question that happened within the #RTTC chat, I...
ECOVENTURA partners with Ecology Project International in Galapagos Ecology Project International or EPI is a non-profit organization whose main goal is to inspire conservation in young people through education and field science programs. EPI develops field-based academic courses for 15-17 year old students who live in Galapagos, focusing on experiential learning in three main areas: science, conservation and intercultural exchange. From February to August, several groups of 12 students and two teachers spend 50 hours in the field and then design and carry-...
Why llamas? Because they are a native and highly eco-friendly animal Llamas are indigenous animals perfectly adapted to pack labor in high altitudes and mountain trails, unlike foreign carrier animals introduced to Peru such as donkeys, mules and horses, whose use results in trail erosion and ecosystem degradation. Llamas have a high value for our cultural landscape since they are the emblem animals of Peru. They are present in a great variety of local cultural expressions. Their feet are like cushions, which do not erode or...
TIES member TIME Unlimited Tours has been nominated for a GreenTec Award, Europe's largest environmental and business competition. Help them win! Vote Green now! http://www.greentec-awards.com/en/competition/online-voting-2015.html And visit their Profile
Croatia: Sustainable Travel by Rhea Franjetic, owner of Cosmopolitan Adventure Tours This blog was originally posted in the Cosmopolitan Adventure Tours Blog Aerial View of Dubrovik Those who have visited Dubrovnik, the most famous city in Croatia, and walked the old town between 10am and 2pm were probably disappointed with this Tourist Trap. The beautiful limestone paved Stradun street was hidden behind multicolored T-shirts guided by even more colorful umbrellas. How do we practice...
This press release originally appeared on the IUCN World Parks Congress website. Sydney, Australia, Wednesday 19 November 2014 (IUCN) – The IUCN World Parks Congress 2014, the once-in-a-decade global forum on protected areas, closes today with the release of The Promise of Sydney. The Promise sets out an ambitious agenda to safeguard the planet’s natural assets, ranging from halting rainforest loss in the Asia-Pacific and tripling ocean protection off Africa’s coasts to a business commitment to plant 1.3 billion trees along the historic Silk Road. ...
This original press release appeared on the IUCN World Parks Congress website. Sydney, Australia, 14 November 2014 (IUCN) – Increasing the number of visitors to protected areas can be an effective tool for conservation and community development, provided well-functioning management systems are in place, according to a new report unveiled today at the IUCN World Parks Congress taking place in Sydney, Australia. Highlighting a global collection of case studies from Machu Picchu in Peru to the Damaraland Camp in Namibia, the IUCN report, Tourism and Visitor Management in...
by Marcelo Merlo Ecuador es un país que se encuentra posicionándose como una potencia turística. Ya son varios los galardones que han puesto su nombre en los más alto dentro de la industria, sin embargo en el 2013, este país recibió el galardón al “World Green Destination”, un importante reconocimiento al enorme esfuerzo que se está llevando a cabo para proteger la naturaleza, diversidad, cultura, tradiciones y variedad de este gran destino. Actualmente el turismo representa la tercera fuente de ingreso en el...
by Marcelo Merlo Ecuador is a country that is positioning itself as a strong ecotourism destination. There are already several awards that have recognized the country, such as the "World Green Destination" award, an important recognition of the tremendous efforts being undertaken to protect nature, diversity, culture, traditions and the variety that characterizes this great destination. Currently tourism is the third largest source of income in Ecuador, and it is gradually achieving a step up to become the third economic source. There is a great desire to make...
Give Green Gifts this Festive Season! Ditch the kitch! Compensate for the carbon footprint of your holiday travel this year. Gift green this festive season with Greenpop’s holiday tree drive! Sponsor an indigenous tree (or two or three) for your friends, family, staff, or clients and Greenpop will plant it on their behalf in Africa's southernmost forest - the Platbos Forest, Overberg Region, South Africa, where Greenpop has planted 18,000 trees in reforestation efforts to date! You will receive a personalised e-card which you can forward on to your gift...
Borneo Eco Tours awarded as Winner in the “Best in Community Engagement & Development” category by Wild Asia Responsible Tourism Initiatives in ITB Asia, Singapore Mr. Albert Teo (Managing Director of Borneo Eco Tours & Sukau Rainforest Lodge, Chairman of BEST Society) receiving the Wild Asia Responsible Tourism Award for Borneo Eco Tours Malaysia. “Based in Malaysian Borneo, Borneo Eco Tours has been a pioneer in responsible nature tours since 1991. Two of their most popular destinations in which they operate includes...
In September 2014, Southwind Adventures Travel Specialist Cynthia Ord embarked on the M/V Aria, a 32-passenger deluxe vessel, for a five-day Peruvian Amazon river cruise. The voyage departed from Iquitos, the largest city in the Peruvian rainforest. For me, cruising the Peruvian Amazon in the luxury of the M/V Aria had its obvious perks. The experience felt almost like spectating a grand performance. In my cabin I had a floor-to-ceiling panoramic window framing an unbeatable view of the river, and a California king-sized bed with fine Peruvian cotton linens where I could curl up and...