Study Material | Test Series
Drishti IAS
call1800-121-6260 / 011-47532596
Drishti The Vision Foundation
(A unit of VDK Eduventures Pvt. Ltd.)
prelims Test Series 2019
बेसिक इंग्लिश का दूसरा सत्र (कक्षा प्रारंभ : 22 अक्तूबर, शाम 3:30 से 5:30)
Apr 21, 2015

The term ecotourism was coined by Hector Ceballos-Lascurain in 1983, and was initially used to describe nature-based travel to relatively undisturbed areas with an emphasis on education. The concept has, however, developed to a scientifically based approach to the planning, management and development of sustainable tourism products and activities. Ecotourism is an enlightening and participatory travel experience to environments, both natural and cultural, that ensures the sustainable use, at an appropriate level, of environmental resources and, whilst producing viable economic opportunities for the tourism industry and host communities, makes the use of these resources through conservation beneficial to all tourism role players. 

The term has been broadly defined as tourism which is ecologically sustainable. The concept of ecological sustainability subsumes the environmental carrying capacity of a given area. The International Ecotourism Society defined Ecotourism as the "responsible travel to natural areas that conserves the environment and improves the welfare of local people". The Australian Commission on National Ecotourism Strategy defines ecotourism as "nature-based tourism that involves education and interpretation of the natural environment and is managed to be ecologically sustainable".

Most tourism in natural areas today is not ecotourism and is not, therefore, sustainable. Ecotourism is distinguished by its emphasis on conservation, education, traveller responsibility and active community participation. Specifically, ecotourism possesses the following characteristics:

♦ Conscientious, low-impact visitor behaviour.

♦ Sensitivity towards, and appreciation of, local cultures and biodiversity.

♦ Support for local conservation efforts.

♦ Sustainable benefits to local communities.

♦ Local participation in decision-making.

♦ Educational components for both the traveller and local communities

Focus of Ecotourism:

  • Eco-tourism focuses on local cultures, wilderness adventures anvolunteering,
  • Personal growth and learning new ways to live on our vulnerable planet.
  • On cultural artifacts from the locality.
  • Travel to destinations where the flora, fauna, and cultural heritage are the primary attractions.
  • Minimizing the adverse effects of traditional tourism on the natural environment, and enhance the cultural integrity of local people.
  • Evaluating environmental and cultural factors, initiatives by hospitality providers to promote recycling, energy efficiency, water reuse, and the creation of economic opportunities for local communities.

Principle to be followed in ecotourism activities:

♦ Minimize impact.

♦ Build environmental and cultural awareness and respect.

♦ Provide positive experiences for both visitors and hosts.

♦ Provide direct financial benefits for conservation.

♦ Ecotourism include local communities in the activities of planning, development and operation, and it contributes to their welfare.

♦ Environmentally educative.

♦ Raise sensitivity to host countries' political, environmental, and social climate.

♦ Support international human rights and labour agreements.

♦ Ecotourism is intended mainly for individual visitors and small organized groups.

♦ Generates tourist satisfaction.

♦ Ecotourism actively contribute to the conservation of natural and cultural heritage.

Characteristics of Ecotourism:

According to Patterson (2002), characteristics of an ecotourism business are that it:

  • Have a low impact upon a protected area’s natural resources and recreation techniques.
  • Involve stakeholders (individuals, communities, ecotourists, tour operators and government institutions) in the planning, development, implementation and monitoring phases.
  • Limits visitation to areas, either by limiting group size and/or by the number of groups taken to an area in a season.
  • Supports the work of conservation groups preserving the natural area on which the experience is based.
  • Orients customers on the region to be visited.
  • Hires local people and buys supplies locally, where possible.
  • Recognizes that nature is a central element to the tourist experience.
  • Uses guides trained in interpretation of scientific or natural history.
  • Ensures that wildlife is not harassed.
  • Respects the privacy and culture of local people.

How Ecotourism different from Mass Tourism:

Characteristics of mass tourism.

Characteristics of ecotourism

Larg groups of visitors.                       

Small groups of visitors.



Touristic general marketing activities.

Eco-marketing activities.

Average prices for purposes of market penetration.

High price with purpose of filtering the market.

Impact on natural environment.

Little impact on the natural environment.

Advanced control options.

Limited possibilities of control.

Management based on macroeconomic principles.

Management based on local economic principles.

Anonymous relationship between visitors and local community.

Personalized relationships between visitors and local community.

General development goals.

Local development objectives.

Behavior-oriented leisure activities/entertainment, opponents to education and training actions

Loyalty in the process of training and education for appropriate conduct for the natural environment

Intensive development of tourism facilities.

Reduced development of tourism facilities.

Helpline Number : 87501 87501
To Subscribe Newsletter and Get Updates.