...is an insightful, mindful and participatory travel experience
to natural and cultural environments, assisting the economic well being of the
local cultures and environments for future generations.
Being an eco-tourist is easy. Before you travel, choose a safari
operator that provides direct financial assistance toward the environmental areas
and people you will visit. Ask your safari operator which accommodation choice
uses alternative energy sources, reflects the local culture and heritage, was
built with local materials and offers a variety of excursions and educational
materials to natural and cultural sites.
As you plan your trip, ask your tour operator for a list of background
reading books and learn a few words of the local language, especially "please"
and "thank you". Knowing the culture and language of your host area will help
break down any cultural barriers and create an instant rapport with the people
When actually on safari, give the wildlife space, stay on the
roads and keep your voice low. Keep your trash in the vehicle and dispose of it
properly at your campsite or lodge.
When purchasing your souvenirs and handicrafts, purchase the work
of local craftsmen and artisans. Woven baskets, beadwork, jewelry, woodwork and
cotton cloth are some of the more common handicrafts. Most tribes have traditional
designs, shapes and sizes, providing a wide variety from which to choose. Check
that your carvings are made from neam or jacaranda wood, rather than endangered
Ecotourism continues after your return home. Tell your friends
and family of your experiences and encourage other visitors to consider alternative
ways to travel. As you spread the word on how easy it is to contribute to the
preservation of wilderness and traditional cultures while traveling, you'll help
create the win-win situation for everyone involved: travelers, wildlife and local
Copyright Anne Loehr of www.eco-resorts.com