There are a growing number of eco resorts popping up around the globe to cater for the many people who want to travel sustainably. It is easy to find resorts that carry the ‘eco’ label but harder to find one that truly embodies the environmental and cultural ideals of a true ecologically friendly resort. Here are some things that will distinguish a good eco resort, so when choosing your sustainable travel accommodation you should consider whether your choice offers the following:
Accommodation is made from reclaimed or natural materials:
Sometimes huts may be made from mud, for example, and crowned with thatch, or built entirely from drift wood or timber from sustainable forestry- though more unusual examples which recycle items such as the fuselage from a plane can also be found.
Water use is considerate and rainwater systems used where possible:
The best eco lodges use rainwater systems at least for non-potable water needs. Some have excellent filtration systems. Composting toilets may have been used as an excellent off-grid option, particularly in areas of water shortage.
Organic food is grown on site or nearby:
It is a good sign when food production is an integral part of the set up of a holiday accommodation provider as this shows that the site could in principle be self-sustaining. You can also rest assured that you will enjoy high-quality organic produce during your stay.
Energy for any heating or lighting is from renewable sources:
Energy is one of the biggest areas when considering the carbon footprint of a resort. One that has its own renewable energy sources is best.
Waste systems are considered and rubbish recycled where possible:
The best eco concerns think through the sustainability of their tourism project from beginning to end. If they have a truly sustainable system then waste will have been considered and recycling will be a big part of their plans.
They employ and engage local people and give back to the local community:
People care is an important part of sustainable travel. An eco resort should always have its roots firmly embedded in the local community and culture. Those that do not will never endure in the long term and could cause discord and resentment.
They protect the surrounding environment and are low impact:
The best eco resorts tread lightly and have measures firmly in place to ensure that the beautiful natural surroundings and wildlife are preserved in pristine state for future generations to enjoy. Any tours offered are considered carefully and ecology programmes implemented to prevent decay or degradation.
If you are looking for an eco resort then there are plenty to choose from. But just be sure not to fall for unscrupulous people within the tourism business who misapply the label ‘eco’ in order to cash in on this lucrative green industry. But don’t be put off by the proliferation of fakes and would-bes. An eco resort can be one of the best ways to have a luxury holiday without costing the planet too much.