The definition of Ecotourism adopted by Ecotourism Australia is:
“Ecotourism is ecologically sustainable tourism with a primary focus on experiencing natural areas that fosters environmental and cultural understanding, appreciation and conservation”.
Walking Country is in the process of having all Trek Tours assessed with the intent of gaining ‘Advanced Ecotourism Certification’, the premier level of accreditation within the Eco Certification Program.
Various products of sister company Wayoutback Desert Safaris are presently Advanced Ecotourism accredited. Wayoutback is one of the very few Tour Operations located in the Red Centre (Alice Springs) visiting Uluru (Ayers Rock), Kata Tjuta (the Olgas), Watarrka (Kings Canyon), Palm Valley & the West MacDonnell regions with the premier status level.
WHAT IS THE ECO CERTIFICATION PROGRAM?
The Eco Certification Program is a world first. It has been developed by industry for industry, addressing the need to identify genuine ecotourism and nature tourism operators in Australia. The Eco Certification Program is now being exported to the rest of the world as the International Ecotourism Standard.
The Eco certification program has three levels which are:
|Nature Tourism: Tourism in a natural area that leaves minimal impact on the environment.|
|Ecotourism: Tourism in a natural area that offers interesting ways to learn about the environment with an operator that uses resources wisely, contributes to the conservation of the environment and helps local communities.|
|Advanced Ecotourism: Australia’s leading and most innovative ecotourism products, providing an opportunity to learn about the environment with an operator who is committed to achieving best practice when using resources wisely, contributing to the conservation of the environment and helping local communities.|
WHAT DOES IT MEAN TO THE CONSUMER?
Ecotourism and nature tourism certification provide industry, protected area managers, local communities and travellers with an assurance that a certified product is backed by a commitment to best practice, ecological sustainability, natural area management and the provision of quality ecotourism experiences.
WHERE CAN I LEARN MORE ABOUT ECO-TOURISM?
Eco Tourism Australia is a non profit Organisation. For more information, feel free to visit their website at www.ecotourism.org.au.