The New Forest is a great place to visit under any circumstances. These days things are even better as the popular tourist destination is looking for ways to decrease the impact of all of its many visitors. The advantages are clear. Cleaner air, sustainable resource use, and a healthier forest are only a few of the easiest to name.
When visiting the New Forest, tourists can choose to demonstrate their environmental consciousness in a number of different ways:
o They can take mass transit, walk, or bike
o They can choose green accommodations
o They can choose green restaurants and dining
o They can choose to visit green attractions
o They can choose to eat locally produced foods
No matter which option they choose, visitors will be pleasantly surprised to discover that they can make that choice effortlessly and save money doing so. Eco tourism in the New Forest is designed to enhance the experience for everyone.
Leave the Car
One of the most important of the eco tourism initiatives in the New Forest is the effort to get visitors to leave their cars at home. By travelling to and within the forest without cars, tourists can substantially cut down on their impact to the area. There is no need for large parking lots and the air that the trees clean, stays clean. Proponents also point out that the best way to experience the forest is to enter it either on foot or by bike. Within the New Forest you can travel by bike, boat, bus, hoof, and foot. Just use the green leaf scheme to plan your trip.
Green Tourism Businesses
What makes a business eligible to receive the green leaf? The New Forest District Council and the Green Leaf Tourism scheme have come up with a rough set of guidelines. These are intended to focus in on the ways that businesses can reduce their and their customer’s carbon footprint within the forest while still remaining true to their standards of service.
o Car Free Tourism-establishments that offer discounts and other incentives to visitors in order to discourage drivers from bringing their vehicles to the New Forest.
o New Forest Marquee Produce-establishments that sell or use seasonal locally produced food products, thereby cutting down on the supplies that are brought in from other areas and supporting local growers and producers.
o Energy Waste and Recycling-establishments that have committed to be as energy and resource efficient as possible.
o Landscape Conservation-establishments that are contributing to efforts to support local wildlife, putting up bird and bat boxes for example.
o Forest Friends-Visitor Stewardship-establishments that send their managers to training that equips them to better help staff and guests enjoy the forest without damaging it.
o Community Tourism-establishments that work with the community to establish the best possible relationship between the two.
There are also business that have gone even further to protect the New Forest. Seven of the New Forest’s businesses have joined a program called the Green Tourism Business Scheme and have gone on to be awarded all sorts of conservationist prizes.