The eco-tourism industry is booming across the globe. And rightly so. Travellers are looking to consider the impact they have on the environment and local communities of the countries that they visit. This blog explores ways that visitors can enjoy a more responsible, eco-friendly trip to our beautiful island – with Lone Star’s Eco-Friendly Travel Guide to Barbados.
Barbados – an Eco-Island
With its idyllic beaches and abundance of native wildlife, gearing the benefits of tourism towards improving sustainability and protecting the environment always needed to be a priority for Barbados.
As far back as the 1990s, our government committed to safeguarding the island’s ecology as the number of visitors grew. A National Committee of Sustainable Development created policies to ensure economic development didn’t come at the cost of natural habitats and local traditions.
With 1 million visitors a year and half of the island’s GDP generated through tourism, this was an important step to futureproof the economy and protect the unspoilt natural world.
Eco and responsible travel can encompass a number of areas: from aiming to observe and preserve indigenous wildlife to respecting local cultures and buying from local communities. Here are some ways that tourists can get involved in the eco-tourism movement:
Choose Eco Tour Companies
An Eco-Friendly Travel Guide to Barbados is not complete without this.Swimming amongst the endangered sea turtles at Folkestone marine park is a top priority for many visitors to the island, as is snorkelling or diving amongst the many coral reefs. And for land lovers, the green monkeys at Barbados Wildlife Reserve are a must see.
By choosing a tour guide with good eco credentials, such as Eco Dive Barbados or Eco Adventures, you’ll learn all about how to protect the island’s wildlife and be assured your trip has the least possible detriment on the environment.
Attend Eco Events
Many of the island’s festivals and events promote a message of responsibility, and there are plenty of ways to get involved while enjoying the festivities. The well attended beach clean ups during July’s annual Dive Fest and the promotion of local culinary traditions at the food and rum festival are two good examples. The popularity of these events will mean they continue to do good for many years to come.
Despite the lush and fertile conditions of the island, Barbados spends a great deal on importing food. But local people are boosting the agricultural industry by promoting home-grown produce.
Hastings Farmers Market is well worth a visit, where anything home-made, home-grown and home created gets a top billing. And you can sample a wide range of authentic Bajan cuisine. http://hastingsfarmersmarket.com/
Organisations like Slow Food Barbados also protect culinary heritage while working against the dependency on imported food. They have a programme of foodie events and educational screenings as well as building relationships between farmers and local restaurants.
And of course, stay at The Lone Star
If you are looking to visit, make your booking at The Lone Star and be assured of our own efforts to source locally produced fruit and vegetables for our restaurant.
See the magnificent sea turtles that make their home on the beach just outside the hotel. Something unique to wake up to and a cause that’s very close to our hearts. We support the Barbados Sea Turtle Project to ensure these beautiful creatures continue to survive and thrive in their natural environment.
I hope that our Eco-Friendly Travel Guide to Barbados has helped you with plans to visit our island. Alongside the natural wonder of the landscape and clear, blue oceans, is the passion of the Barbados people to preserve the beauty of our environment.