Sustainable tourism gains popularity

When tourism is sustainable, it can definitely have positive effects on nature and the landscape. In Germany there are a variety of offers for low-impact tourism.


Relax, switch off from the bustle of daily life and simply regenerate: this is what most people want from their holidays. And for many people, holidays and nature belong together. Unlike most other sectors of the economy, tourism is highly dependent on the level of intactness in nature and the environment. Admittedly, tourists also consume resources and have adverse effects on the environment when they travel.

But tourism can have positive effects on nature and the landscape, if it is designed sustainably, and if holidaymakers develop their awareness for sustainability by changing their behaviour when travelling. This kind of low impact tourism has less damaging effects on the ground, the water and the atmosphere, whilst environmentally friendly means of transport are used for getting to and from the destinations. In the case of tourist facilities, such as hotels, restaurants and leisure centres, sustainable tourism also means that conservation technologies are used to save energy and water.

In Germany, the so-called biosphere reserves are a good illustration of how environmental protection and tourism can be combined. They are model regions, where the aim is to create greater harmony between the long-term sustainability of natural resources and a better quality of life for people. For instance, in the Upper Lusatia region of eastern Germany, there are so-called biosphere hosts who offer environmentally friendly accommodation in the heath and pond landscape, ranging from camp sites to eco hotels.

Some protected areas also offer the opportunity to actively participate in environmental and nature preservation during your holiday. For example, the Mountain Forest Project organizes voluntary ecological work in the forests. The participants plant trees, help with forest care or re-naturalize mountain streams. The Internet portal Viabono provides help in your search for low impact holiday destinations and sustainable tourism offers in Germany.