The Ten Commandments of Eco-Tourism
How to have a great time and leave your destination in better shape
than you found it
provided by the American Society of Travel Agents
he Eco-tourism Society, a non- profit group based in
Vermont, defines eco-tourism as "responsible travel which conserves
environments and sustains the well-being of local people." Whether
your destination is as close as the Anza-Borrego State Park or as far as
the Australian outback, these simple rules will help preserve the local
ecosystems so they will be there for others to enjoy ... and for your
- Respect the frailty of the earth. Realize that unless all are willing
to help in its preservation, unique and beautiful destinations may not
be here for future generations to enjoy.
- Leave only footprints. Take only photographs. No graffiti! No Litter!
Don not take away "souvenirs" from historical sites and natural
- To make your travels more meaningful, educate yourself about the geography,
customs, manners and cultures of the region you visit. Take time to listen
to the people. Encourage local conservation efforts.
- Respect the privacy and dignity of others. Inquire before photographing
- Do not buy products made from endangered plants or animals, such as
ivory, tortoise shell, animal skins and feathers. Read Know Before You
Do, the U.S. Customs list of products which cannot be imported.
- Always follow designated trails. Do not disturb animals, plants or
their natural habitats.
- Learn about and support conservation-oriented programs and organizations
working to preserve the environment.
- Whenever possible, walk or utilize environmentally-sound methods of
transportation. Encourage drivers of public vehicles to stop engines when
- Patronize those (hotels, airlines, resorts, cruise lines, tour operators
and suppliers) who advance energy and environmental conservation; water
and air quality; recycling; safe management of waste and toxic materials;
noise abatement; community involvement; and which provide experienced,
well-trained staff dedicated to strong principles of conservation.
- Encourage organizations to subscribe to ASTA Environmental Guideline.
ASTA encourages organization to adopt their own environmental codes to
cover special sites and ecosystems