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Eco-tourism: A Cure to Tourism Pollution?

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Tourism is the world’s biggest industry, and it is strengthening the economy while breaking barriers through infrastructure development. However, it is majorly responsible for environmental degradation also and hence eco-tourism is the future of the tourism industry. Ecosystems consist of beaches, rainforests, and coral reefs which happen to be on the bucket list of every tourist. Such places face plastic pollution, soil degradation, and water pollution at the same time. Eco-tourism is set to create a gateway to these issues by not harming the ecosystem and creating opportunities for sustainable development. Let’s sneak a peek into what explicitly it is about.

What exactly is Eco-tourism?

The eco-tourism is a kind of tourism that focuses on the environment and its protection to bring sustainable development. It involves activities based on natural experiences like hiking, bird watching, deep sea diving, etc. It also helps to enrich your knowledge regarding local cultural activities, and their historical background while enjoying the natural scenery. The eco-tourism destinations are fragile, untouched, and preserved, for example, islands, densely biodiverse reserves, and significant cultural landmarks. It’s an innovative way to make sure the ecosystem and local communities are protected and remained unspoiled. 

The Activities involved in eco-tourism:

Eco-tourism is an exciting and trending aspect for wanderlust people. If you are one, it is natural to be curious about the activities included in it. You can try the following exercises on your next trip to make your travel environment friendly:

  • Tree Planting Holidays
  • Eco-friendly safaris in wildlife sanctuaries
  • Kayaking and sailing
  • Trekking
  • Water Rafting
  • Meditation
  • Village Homestay
  • Bungee Jumping

The Importance of Eco-tourism:


The major reason behind the popularity of eco-tourism is tourists interested in experiencing scenic beauty while exploring places of wildlife existence and unique local culture. It is also beneficial for local economies because it creates jobs and boosts income for locals and ultimately contributing into the Gross Domestic Product (GDP) of national economy. Here are some ‌of the benefits of eco-travelling:

  1. Supporting the Environment

One of the important benefits of ecotourism is that it helps to protect the environment. When people visit such environmentally sensitive areas, they develop understanding and importance of nature and prevent things like deforestation, habitat destruction, plastic and water pollution, etc. As a result, the tourism industry and governments of various countries are becoming more mindful about nature and adopting the behavior to limit the damage caused to the environment.

  1. Unique experiences to travelers

Activities like camel safaris give travelers insights and develop an appreciation for wildlife, or strengthen the ones they already have. This is how natural areas receive more value for their landscapes, atmosphere and indigenous culture. It will adopt the positive behavior in their daily lives by taking conscious efforts to stop exploiting the nature, for example not throwing garbage on the roadside.

  1. Education Goals

It’s not enough to educate your children regarding climate change through making it a part of their school syllabus or just watching a documentary while sitting on a comfortable couch. They will only learn and get familiar with the sounds and beauty of nature by experiencing it in a real life manner.

  1. Cultural Significance

Ecotourism also aids in gaining cultural advantages for the locals. By travelling to parts of the region, eco tourists will learn about their culture and ethical values. They will collect the information about local culture and pass it to the outside world; this will help regional culture to get the global recognition. It would be beneficial to uplift their identity on broader platform and will instill the confidence in tribal societies after getting in touch with the outside world, resulting in their advancement.

  1. Economic Growth

Eco-tourism is famous where nature provides beauty to your eyes and peace to your mind. But living standards of residential people are lagging‌. Even if such areas have enough potential for growth, they lack infrastructure because of financial shortages. To sustain with revenues, government will build various hotels for the ecotourism accommodation, which will create new job opportunities for locals. It will train the locals in hospitality and also in marketing.

  1. Transportation

The underdeveloped areas of tourist places lack proper transport facilities. Since such regions have little connectivity to metro cities, the living standard of residents is also underdeveloped. Ecotourism establishments will bring trains and buses to these regions so that residents will get accessibility to education and healthcare services and eco-tourists could enjoy the beauty of nature.

Disadvantages of Eco tourism


Ecotourism can have major disadvantages to the environment if it is not managed properly. Even though tourism leads to economic development, a lack of regulation and monitoring methods can be a disaster for local communities and wildlife. Here are some disadvantages of ecotourism:

  1. Destruction of natural resources

Eco tourist place gets famous due to movie shoot or social media post recognition and overcrowding becomes common at such places.  It leads to a toll on existing limited resources like water, land, and energy. In order to meet the rising requirements, more trees need to be cut down. The extensive use of such materials can create shortages in the longer duration.

  1. Damage to natural and marine areas

If tourists are not educated properly about any code of conduct, then damage to natural and marine areas is inevitable. Plastic pollution and water pollution are the major causes of tourism and can also happen in eco-tourist places if not monitored properly. The carbon emission from transport facilities is a cause of concern for wildlife as well as marine animals as air pollutants will be a part of their food chain.

  1. Land Use and Infrastructural Development

Tourist places need to be well connected through airports and railway stations. The and goes under tremendous pressure that results in land denudation. Coastal tourist places face sand runoff when they lack vegetation. It affects the lives of coral reefs badly. A similar thing happens when constructing ports and the consequences of sand mining create dangers for marine animals and disturb the natural geography of the region.

  1. Displacement of Localities

Local people have to displace from their hometown because of infrastructure development. It makes them deprived of growing benefits of eco-tourism industry which brings alienation from their cultural values too. The compensation received by these people as rehabilitation is not enough. At times, tourists who do not respect their cultural traditions and customs mistreat local people.

Final Words

Although it is a fact that eco-tourism has created a sustainable alternative to conventional tourism, there is a long way to go. Since a large portion of society is not even aware of it and the technological development is still under process. So it grows into another difficulty of inability to leverage benefits of eco-tourism for environment conservation. Eco-travel can satisfy your urge to travel while taking care of Mother Nature and let upcoming generations get the perks of it. We hope this blog will help you understand eco-tourism and its advantages and disadvantages.

Trupti Munde

ALSO READ: Top 5 Museum-Visits you should add to your bucket list



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