Interested in sustainable travel and ecotourism? E-Visa have written up this post on why Tasmania is a great and green example, plus how we can incorporate more sustainability into our travel.
Ever since the first explorers began to expand our horizons, the world has become a more open place to travel around.
With modern-day technology blurring borders even more, travellers and eco-tourists alike have the world at their feet.
But this can bring with it negatives as well as positives. It’s now just as easy to order things from across the globe as it is from our own local towns and cities.
Behind the scenes of a pair of shoes or sweet exotic fruit lies a world of transport, emissions, exploitation, deforestation and unsustainable production.
Big corporations have long been taking profits away from local businesses with money being made to the cost of people and our environment.
Tourism has also had a great impact on the planet. But we have the power to override negative impacts by developing ecotourism, sustainable travel habits and by learning from sustainable societies, like the indigenous folk of Tasmania.
Why Tasmania is a green eco example for us all
In many ways, the Western world is a wonderful example of the many achievements of humankind. We have made ourselves experts at modifying our surroundings to suit our own comforts.
On the flip side, this advancement has also brought with it ignorance to our past and our continual reliance on the natural world.
There are however some people and groups in the world who still have an entirely different way of living compared to the fast-paced, excessive consumption habits of the western world.
Great examples of sustainable living come from Tasmania, other areas of Australia and New Zealand.
Many people here live entirely from their surroundings. The Aboriginals and Maori people have been doing this successfully for thousands of years.
The remote areas of these countries are home to some of the freshest ingredients in the world thanks to the fertile soil, clean air and clean water. Even Gordon Ramsay, the infamous chef, was amazed by Tasmania when he was there for his latest television series Uncharted, as seen on National Geographic.
In the episode on Tasmania, he is taught to cook exclusively with local ingredients by the local Aboriginals. Some of these ingredients included sea urchins, crayfish, honey from wild bees, wild cherries and wallabies. Without a single imported product, Gordon Ramsay was able to create a world-class dish.
This way of life may seem simple. And it is. But the innovative habits show us that we have a lot to learn from the Aboriginals, Maori, and all other people around the world when it comes to a more sustainable way of living with limited worldwide food importation.
It shows that together we can create a better, cleaner world with more appreciation and care for the natural world. Together we can prioritise the preservation of our indispensable environment.
On a positive note, the younger generation already has a lot of awareness on this topic.
Anyone can now travel around the world, to places like Tasmania and New Zealand, to experience this lifestyle, witness a different mindset and find inspiration for new developments back in the more densely populated areas. With a visa for Australia or a NZeTA you can visit these exotic countries. Both visas are easily applied for online.
Incorporating sustainability in travel
Travelling to the other side of the world has never been easier. However, forms of mass tourism have shown negative consequences in countries whose economy is largely dependent on tourism.
Large hotels and resort complexes are built in foreign countries, destroying forests, damaging local environments and untouched beaches with concrete based infrastructure. Hotels also generate huge amounts of waste and use an awful lot of energy.
Fortunately, countries around the world are trying to reverse the negative impacts by making tourism and travel in general more eco-friendly and sustainable. As ecotourists, it is our responsibility to leave only a positive footprint in the countries that we visit.
How can we make a difference?
If we were to abandon tourism altogether, many countries would suffer a great economic crisis.
Sanctuaries and conservation efforts who depend on donations and eco-tourists would also suffer.
It’s therefore crucial that tourism is done in an eco-friendly way. This is easier than you might think.
There are three key concepts to sustainable travel:
1. People and economy
It’s important that local communities can directly benefit from tourism. This can be by booking your stay at an accommodation that is owned by locals, or who employ local residents. There’s a big movement nowadays for improvements to hotel sustainability.
Another way is to stay at locally run smaller accommodations, or even with inhabitants who offer their homes for home-stays. When travelling through the country, there are plenty of local guides who are more than happy to show tourists around, and they will know to find you the best local restaurants with food from the area. What better way to get to know a country, than by living with its residents?
The better known goal of sustainable tourism is to protect the environment. The untamed growth of mass tourism had almost wiped out The Great Barrier Reef of Australia, and New Zealand’s nature had to be protected from tourists.
Tourism should never harm wildlife or nature in general. Now many organisations are committed to limiting the carbon footprint left by tourism.
3. Taking responsibility
This can be done in many ways. For example, don’t litter and respect the people and nature around you. It can also mean that you choose to travel through Australia by train instead of by car or flying.
Tourists could limit their number of long flights, and try to book as many direct flights as possible. To avoid an overflow of tourism in the high season, they should try to travel in the lower seasons.
Travel for inspiration
We have the world at their feet and could learn a lot from Aboriginals in Tasmania, Maori in New-Zealand, and many other people around the world.
Residents of the UK, Ireland, or EU countries can apply for the e-visitor visa for Australia, and the NZeTA for New Zealand. Both visas are suitable for tourists and can easily be applied for online.
The e-Visitor visa for Australia is valid for 12 months, whereas the NZeTA is valid for 2 years. Both visas allow a maximum period of stay of 3 consecutive months.
When applying for a visa, it’s possible to make a contribution to the compensation of CO2 emissions of the trip via E-Visa, so that the actual journey there can also contribute to a more sustainable future. You can also offset your travel emissions using great platforms such as Ecologi.
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I’m the Creator and Editor of Tiny Eco Home Life. I write and publish information about more sustainable, environmentally friendly living in and around the home. Alongside this website, I love spending time in the natural world, living a simple life and spending time with my young family (Murphy the dog!) I round up my thoughts and recent blogs on the Eco Life Newsletter.