What is Ecotourism?

A responsible way to travel

For the purpose of the Zanzibar.eco website, we would like to present the ecotourism definition given by The International Ecotourism Society – TIES (2015).

‘Ecotourism is “responsible travel to natural areas that conserves the environment, sustains the well-being of the local people, and involves interpretation and education” (TIES, 2015). Education is meant to be inclusive of both staff and guests.’

The International Ecotourism Society has also defined ecotourism principles for all of the ecotourism market participants:

  • Minimize physical, social, behavioral, and psychological impacts
  • Build environmental and cultural awareness and respect
  • Provide positive experiences for both visitors and hosts
  • Provide direct financial benefits for conservation
  • Generate financial benefits for both local people and private industry
  • Deliver memorable interpretative experiences to visitors that help raise sensitivity to host countries’ political, environmental, and social climates
  • Design, construct and operate low-impact facilities
  • Recognize the rights and spiritual beliefs of the Indigenous People in your community and work in partnership with them to create empowerment.

There are many different terms which are related to similar or equivalent principles such as responsible travel, green travel, ethical travel, conscious travel, and many more. We believe that not the wording but the actions behind each concept are important and should all be in line with the core principles described above.

On this website we are rating accommodation in certain ecotourism criteria. You can learn more about our rating system and how data is evaluated here.

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