What does eco-travel mean to us?

by | Dec 6, 2018

What is Eco-Travel, and what does it mean to me?

The term ‘eco-travel’ arose back in the 1990s, and at the time, it was revolutionary. Eco-Travel was conceived as a low-impact form of travel with social and environmental responsibility at its core.


Sustainable, Responsible or Eco-Travel – is it all the same?

Nowadays, the terms ‘Responsible’ or ‘Sustainable’ Travel have largely replaced the ‘eco-travel’. The shift took place in the late 90s, after the Rio Summit. At the time, high hopes were pinned on the travel industry as a positive force for sustainable development, particularly in developing countries.

Perhaps, ‘Eco-travel’ evokes images of rugged outback camping but even large brands like the Hilton, Hyatt, or Marriott can subscribe to ‘responsible’ travel values. Obviously, the spectrum is wide, and no two companies follow the same guidelines.


Sacred Earth’s Values

We are committed to responsible, low-impact, nature-based and immersive activities, such as wildlife observation, birdwatching, nature cruises, and soft adventures, such as snorkelling, hiking, and kayaking. Community-based tourism is a vital aspect of our catalogue. We encourage authentic cross-cultural communication between travellers and host communities – for it is individuals, who change the world, one friendship at a time.


Who do we partner with?

Our travel partners and tour operators share our values and commitment to the social and natural environments in which they work.

Every destination is unique, and it is impossible to apply generalized standards. Ecological awareness has grown hugely since the early days, and ever more operators and hotels understand the value of sustainability, but not all apply the standards equally.

For example, a lodge may not be especially ecological in its operation, but is attached to an organic, shade-grown coffee plantation, uses a majority of food from its own organic farm, supports the local community through fundraising assistance for the local school and also supports the work of scientists working on conservation research or field projects in their area. A large hotel chain only supplies biodegradable soaps, has a social responsibility charter for its workforce, and supports local restoration projects or community arts. Larger organizations can have a considerable impact simply due to their size, but smaller ones have a more direct effect that can make a huge difference in individual families’ lives. Ultimately, you decide where you want to spend your money. 


Learn more about Sustainable Travel at the Sustainable Travel International website.