Sustainable tourism is the tourism promoted by those who commit themselves to use a particular attention to the relationship between tourism and nature, so that this relationship respects the environment and nature itself. It is a tourism capable of meeting the needs of today’s travellers but above all it is a tourism that looks to the future, made of practises and choices which protect the environment and foster sustainable economic development, safeguard local social processes and ensure that local communities benefit and not fall victim to tourism development.
Today tourism is one of the main economic activities in the world and employs 1 in 15 people all over the world. At the same time, the tourist industry is one of the most polluting industries. It is therefore clear that this is a phenomenon which, on one hand can contribute to the development of the socio-economic situation of countries, but on the other hand it can become a cause of loss of local identities and environmental degradation. Sustainable tourism, on the other hand, is born to preserve our surround dings, because it is based on three fundamental principles: ethics, economics and the environment.
The responsible traveller is not the one who gives up comfort, in fact any kind of travel, regardless of budget, can become an eco-sustainable trip, starting from the choice of destination. Here are 8 of the greenest destinations in the world, which are making sustainable tourism their strong point and where you can play your part, for example by staying in hotels with zero impact (or almost zero) and buying eco-friendly tours.
Green Capital of Europe in 2016, Lubiana is the largest city in Slovenia, known above all for its immense green spaces including several protected nature areas, which cover approximately 542 m2. Ljubljana is now a model of sustainability and is the ideal destination for those who love cycling but not only. The old town in particular is closed to car traffic and the only exceptions are the electric vehicles Kavalir and the tourist train Urban.
Bali is a small tropical island south of the equator. In addition to the sea, this island is rich in forests, rice paddies and active volcanoes. Also known as "island of the gods", Bali is the ideal place for green travellers who want to immerse themselves in nature and discover local cultures. It is in Bali that the first zero impact luxury hotel is born: the Bali Net Zero Resort & Spa is the first fully green facility capable of producing sustainable energy also for the benefit of neighbouring communities. Don’t miss the Bali Barat National Park: between mangroves, marshes and coral reefs, the park is home to a rich biodiversity including several endangered species.
The capital of Denmark is one of the most liveable cities in Europe and in the world. In recent years, Copenaghen has focused on organic food, clean technology and renewable sources, demonstrating that sustainability can go hand in hand with economic growth and development. The city is becoming greener and richer and is perfect to discover by bike. Also, did you know that Copenhagen aims to become the first zero-emission city by 2025?
Among the sustainable destinations of 2019 we find Villasimius, a small sea town in the south of Sardinia. The city is increasingly committed to the development of environmental sustainability, in particular a bike path with solar panels inside the road surface is planned in order to produce clean energy for the whole Sardinian city. The aim is to preserve the intense colours of the sea, clear and bright waters, granite rocks, delightful coves, long stretches of sand, lagoons and green hills... Scenarios that infuse unique emotions!
In recent years, Costa Rica has gained a prominent place among the most eco-friendly destinations, focusing on renewable energy, reforestation programs and the zero emissions target by 2022. 25% of its territory is covered by nature parks: on one side there is the Caribbean Sea, on the other there is the Pacific Ocean and at the centre there are active volcanoes, rivers and tropical forests. Here the travellers can enjoy beautiful tropical beaches, thrilling adventures, wonders of nature and an interesting cultural and historical heritage.
Palau is an archipelago of about 500 islands that is part of the Micronesia region of the Western Pacific. Palau is a true paradise, full of dense forests and an extraordinary coral reef. Since 2020, the archipelago has abolished sunscreens harmful to corals, but this is only one of the actions taken to protect nature: all international visitors must sign a commitment, printed on their passports, to act responsibly towards the natural and cultural heritage of the archipelago.
Declared a World Heritage Site by UNESCO, the Amalfi Coast is a stretch of 50 km of coast to the south of the Sorrentine Peninsula. It is characterised by steep cliffs and a jagged coastline full of small beaches including the Bay of Ieranto, a stretch of land that goes from the seaside village of Nerano to almost touching Capri. Today Ieranto is recognised as a Site of Community Interest, included in the Marine Protected Area of Punta Campanella and the high level of biodiversity makes it an ideal destination for those who love contact with the most unspoiled nature.
Chumbe Island Coral Park is a private marine protected area established in 1991 and recognised by the government in 1994, comprising Chumbe Island, a small island in the Zanzibar archipelago and the surrounding waters known for their coral reefs. Here you will have the opportunity to stay in zero impact facilities, equipped with solar panels, rainwater harvesting systems and a composting toilet. I mean, you are going to experience nature like never before.
Sustainable tourism is growing exponentially and many more travellers prefer, for example, to choose a green destination rather than book a zero-impact facility. There is still a lot to do and each of us can do our part to make tourism less polluting and harmful. The World Tourism Organisation in 2017 has chosen the perfect hashtag for the International Year of Sustainable Tourism, which sums up the true meaning of responsible travel: #TravelEnjoyRespect, because each of us can represent the positive change we want to see in the world and each of us can be an ambassador for a better future.
Search by categories
Sign up now and get a 10% discount to use when you want on one of our You Know! signature tours. Keep up to date on the trend news of You Know Life on Travels, Made in Italy and Green Economy delivered straight to your inbox.
Sign up with your email address to get exclusive offers and the trend news of You Know Life on Travels, Made in Italy and Green Economy delivered straight to your inbox.