“Ecotourism involves visiting natural areas with the objectives of learning, studying or participating in activities that do not bring negative effects to the environment; whilst protecting and empowering the local community socially and economically." (Cristina, 2004)
By encouraging travellers to behave in an environmentally responsible way. EcoTour operators offer relevant information and advice on how travellers can minimise their impact on the ecosystem as well as how they can contribute to the protection of fragile ecosystems.
By offering travellers the opportunity to participate in conservation or preservation projects. An important element of this type of project is education. The goal is that through participation, eco travellers will return home with increased awareness and concern for environmental issues and therefore continue to behave in an environmentally conscious way.
By involving the local community in aspects of planning, decision-making and management of ecotourism. This encourages the empowerment of individuals.
By educating travellers through leaflets, interpretation and advice from Tour operators or guides about the culture, customs and etiquette of locals. This prevents conflict or offence between local and traveller interactions that may be caused through misunderstanding or ignorance.
By employing local people whenever possible and paying fair wages. This prevents exploitation and benefits the local economy by preventing leakages of the revenue acquired through tourism.
Many Ecotour operators are involved in working on initiatives and projects with the local community such as training and education programmes.
A few of the places subscribing to the principles of ecotourism