Ecotourism – responsible and sustainable tourism


Responsible tourism means any tourism directly dependent on the use of natural life, such as wildlife and landscape. Nature-based tourism includes ecotourism and mass tourism. Uncontrolled mass tourism continues to contribute to the degradation of natural and cultural significance (commercialisation of culture), leading to or resulting in the loss of biodiversity and cultural diversity and important sources of income. Nature-based tourism offers a way to finance the unique protection of ecosystems. This gives communities living in the vicinity of protected areas the opportunity to reap economic benefits, e.g. employment opportunities. However, nature-based tourism and nature-based travel, while maintaining the ecosystem, also degrades it. A large part of nature-based tourism is not able to fulfil its social responsibility towards the local community.

Sustainable tourism is developed and managed in such a way that all tourism activities focus on cultural, natural and cultural heritage resources that can be continued in the near future and that these resources are preserved forever.
According to hector Ceballos-Lascurian (1983), ecotourism means ‘tourism which consists of travelling to a relatively undisturbed natural area in order to admire, study and admire the landscape and its wild plants and animals, as well as the cultural features found there’.

Ecotourism comprises four basic elements
– Environment as a main attraction and cultural environment playing a secondary role
– Sustainable use of the ecological and cultural environment.
– Focus on education and interpretation of resources
– Ensuring benefits for the host community
Tourism is about people and places where one group of people leave, visit and pass through places, people who make the journey possible and people they meet on the way, travellers, host communities and governments.

In the tourism industry, the destination is probably one of the most important elements. The destination region is the raison d’tre for tourism and the tourist attraction at the destination generates the visit. The tourist product is consumed where it is produced (destination). Therefore, the destination is under considerable pressure from the high level of demand concentrated both over time and in specific locations, for example in warm East Africa, on the beaches of the Indian Ocean during the winter in the northern hemisphere.

Tourist pressures can lead to changes in tourist resources, and as tourist resources and tourism demand continue to increase, many destinations around the world are deteriorating in terms of the environment. The impact that some forms of tourism development have had on the environment has raised concerns among ecologists and other components. Professional management and planning of destinations is therefore crucial if tourism is to contribute to their preservation and be seen as an acceptable industry in a world whose survival is under threat.

Tourism requires an unpolluted environment in which it is to operate. It is important that tourism activities are developed and managed in such a way as to protect natural resources. We agree that the extent to which tourism is developed, planned and controlled in an orderly and coordinated manner will affect the long-term quality of the tourism product and, consequently, the success of the hotel industry. While tourism can be a catalyst for development, it is important that government agencies carefully plan and develop tourism so that the benefits can be optimised without creating social and environmental problems.

The low impact of forms of tourism counteracts the effects of mass tourism, which poses a number of challenges to the resource base, i.e. the environment, society and the economy. Low impact of forms of tourism creates a balance between the quality of the environment and the use of resources. This is primarily aimed at strengthening the position of local communities in the management of natural resources, which is an incentive to protect biological resources in the environment by enabling the filtering of beneficial effects from tourism to individual families and households.

Alternative tourism is seen as a form of tourism compatible with natural social and social values that allow both the host and guests to enjoy a positive and valuable interaction and sharing of experiences; it is also known as ecotourism, sustainable nature tourism, environmentally friendly tourism, environmentally sensitive, ecologically friendly or ecologically friendly or Ecological and ecological excursion, such as hiking, birds, etc.

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