Ecotourism: Eco-Friendly Summer Vacations

Summer is a time for vacations, ideally a time for travel, renewal, and personal growth. While most of us think of vacations as going to conventional resorts or visiting theme parks, there is another way to spend your vacation: ecotourism. Yes, one way to have fun on your vacation is to plan on some ecotourism.

What Is Ecotourism?

The International Ecotourism Society, an organization launched in 1989 in Florida by Megan Epler Wood, is a movement dedicated to ecotourism. They define ecotourism as, “Responsible travel to natural areas that conserves the environment and improves the well-being of local people.”

Some Ecotourism Options

Ecotourism is all about connecting with yourself, other like-minded people, and the earth during your vacation.

One idea on how to go about becoming an ecotourist is to become a volunteer, and there are many ways that you can volunteer for your vacation.

Volunteer For The National Forest

If you like to hike and be outdoors you can volunteer to maintain a National Forest Trail.

Volunteer For An Animal Shelter

Another volunteer job you can do on your vacation is to work with animals in an animal shelter. By finding a local animal sanctuary, you can help animals heal from the trauma of being abandoned or abused. The work consists of cleaning, feeding, and playing with different domesticated animals. For example, you may be asked to play with the kittens as part of their rehabilitation.

Volunteer To Work On An Organic Farm

You can find organic farms that will offer you food and accommodation in exchange for work. This will give you a chance to learn about how to farm organically to create a sustainable environment. You will also learn much about nutritious foods. In the United States, you can contact an organization to get in on such an exchange program. It’s called World-Wide Organization Of Organic Farming, or WWOOF. You can also volunteer for a small farm in Hawaii or New England that grows organic crops.

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