Eco-tourism is a relatively new concept in the past 20 years. It is most popular in the developing nations due to tourism and low impact on the environment. It focuses on local cultures, volunteering and wild adventures, in addition to your personal growth. Eco-tourism also teaches us how to live in a friendly manner in our already battered planet. One of the focus areas of this is also the encouragement of local cultural artefacts. Eco-tourism also gives us an opportunity to be closer to nature’s flora and fauna. Compared to general tourism, eco-tourism minimises its adverse impact on nature and the environment. It also gives a chance to the local communities to benefit economically and restore balance. It also makes way for the hospitality providers to use energy efficiently. Eco-tourism also helps promote great awareness for reuse of water and recycling waste materials.
PROS of Eco-Tourism
Information about the biological factors
Ecotourism promotes greater learning about a specific location’s biodiversity, ecology and geography for both common tourist and environmentalists. If you know the different things about an environment, then you will understand better how to conserve it. It will also help enable common tourists to be more environmentally friendly and protect nature better. It promotes the directness of experience among people to know about eco-friendly living and sustainable practices.
Betterment of local economy
Eco-tourism also helps in the growth of local economies through the promotion of local activities. Many countries rely on this form to tourism to give a needed boost to their revenues. Compared to regular tourism, eco-tourism gives back a more significant chunk of revenue back to the community. Eco-tourists can also avail great coupon offers on travel, stay and safari from CouponHub. Eco-tourism also helps to sustain the local communities better. Many countries have implemented eco-tourism as a strategy to reduce unemployment and poverty.
The growth of community culture
Eco-tourism promotes the sustenance of community traditions and also creates local job opportunities. There is a great bond created between the tourists and the locals. You can buy locally grown food and crafted goods and establish a good connection with the locals. Eco-tourism does not change these traditions in any way, compared to general tourism. Thus it is probably the best way to end ignorance and fear amongst the tourists.
CONS of Eco-Tourism
Impact on indigenous cultures:
Eco-tourism often leads the indigenous cultures to relocate, threatening their traditions and practices. It may lead to locals to discard their traditions just for the sake of survival. The main reason behind this is because they might not get enough resources to sustain themselves. The high number of tourists also puts a damp in the local’s expression of their culture. The natives are often ignored due to the presence of tour guides, and this leads to cultural stereotyping. In some cases, we interact with the locals, and it causes a change in their cultures. They shift more and more towards behaviour like us the tourists leading to loss of culture.
Location shifting of locals:
Locals are often shifted from their native places for construction of hotels and eco-resorts. The major causes of this also include mining for natural resources and expansions of ecotourism. Most of the times the locals get no benefit regarding relocation or economy. Moreover, on top of harming them, the only profit goes to other people.
The harm of Environment:
Eco-tourism often becomes the cause of environmental harm instead of its preservation and protection. It aims to take tourists to ecologies that are relatively untouched by humans. This process often leads to further damage to this ecology since it promotes a harmful change. You can seriously scare off a predator off its hunting grounds, or destroy the nesting places of birds. People going in large numbers also add to soil erosion, and habitat loss is involved. Your needs for natural resources like food and water also stresses out the environment.
Impact of travel on the ecosystem:
People often travel great long distances to visit exotic ecosystems. For this, you have to travel via many modes of transport to reach there. Air travel involved in this causes air pollution as well as pollutes the place you are going to. If you use cars and boats to travel, you are contributing more to the harm of ecosystem as well.
You should promote eco-friendly practices and sustainable methods as an eco-tourist while you venture on eco-tours.