Eco-tourism is taking off in 2013 as more and more travelers want their vacations to come with a little learning, a little more respect for the environment, and a lot of concern for benefiting the local population.
Here are some of the coolest and best eco-tourism destinations for 2013.
Long recognized as one of the top diving destinations in the world, Palau is home to unspoiled jungles, beaches, and coral reefs. Almost 500 miles of its lagoons and reefs have been designated no-fishing zones, and sustainable development is encouraged. Because Palau is so remote, it has stayed off the tourist trail and allows its visitors a unique and pristine experience.
2. Costa Rica
With rain forests and beautiful beaches, Costa Rica is a close-by choice for the American eco-tourist. There are plenty of green hotels to choose from. With some of the most diverse ecology on the planet, visitors to Costa Rica will be able to spot jaguars, sloths, sea turtles and poison frogs.
3. The Greater Blue Mountains of Australia
Being convenient within driving distance of Sydney, these mountains range in terrain from swamps to canyons to bold rock formations. The “blue” name comes from the color cast upon the scenery by the Australian blue eucalyptus tree. Lovers of the outdoors can canoe, hike, mountain bike, and climb in these mountains, which are a UNESCO World Heritage site.
4. Norway’s Fjords
Norway has worked hard to protect its fjords, and the result is an eco-tourist’s dream. With beautiful snowy mountains towering over delightful villages, the fjords offer the traveler the choice of hiking, biking, or boating through the region. Plenty of wildlife welcomes the visitor, including eagles, porpoises and seals.
Those who are hoping to go on safari will find an eco-friendly alternative in Gabon in central Africa. With thousands of square miles of unspoiled national parks to choose from, Gabon invites the traveler to visit s chimpanzees, elephants and gorillas. The country is also home to hundreds of varieties of wild orchids.
6. The Galapagos Islands
The Galapagos Islands are one of the hot spots of the eco-tourism industry thanks to their fascinating history and their extreme restrictions on development. Visitors can swim with penguins and spot the famous tortoises. As a UNESCO Biosphere Reserve, the Galapagos will continue to be protected and unique for many years to come.
Taking off today and enjoy the world with the minimum carbon footprint. Using the newest technology like smart phone apps to ensure the pleasure on trips may also be a good idea for recent eco-tourists.
Image by Eugene of Norway