5 ecotourism activities around the world

terrasse culture riz ecotourisme dans le monde

Would you like to see the world differently, while respecting the environment and local culture? Then discover the 5 best ecotourism activities around the world!

Unlike traditional tourist activities, ecotourism is primarily focused on the discovery and preservation of nature, and the enhancement of local cultures. Over the years, this concept has become increasingly popular. The aim of this form of travel is to remind us just how beautiful nature really is. But it also aims to encourage (eco)tourists to protect the environment and preserve local cultures. Interested in ecotourism?

Then discover 5 ecotourism activities to do around the world! And, best of all, we also give you some charming destinations where you can enjoy these activities.

1. The bike

Cycling is one of the world’s best ecotourism activities. With a good bike ride, you can discover hidden places and natural treasures. It’s a great way to visit national parks or unspoilt valleys, populated by picturesque villages, at your own pace!

Netherlands

vélo pays bas

Photo credit: Shuttertsock / Paolo Gallo

The Netherlands is known as one of the best cycling destinations in the world! In this country, everything is done to ensure the greatest safety and comfort for cyclists. It’s the ideal country to discover by bike. Among the best places to visit by bike are the great Ijsselmeer lake to the north of Amsterdam, or South Holland and Zeeland to the south. The former will take you through pretty fishing villages, past polders and bird-watching sites. The second plunges you into a very green region, where the famous Gouda cheese is made!

France

velo france

Photo credit: Shutterstock / Rocksweeper

In France, there’s no shortage of places to enjoy cycling in all its forms. Numerous cyclo-tourism itineraries are now in place, allowing you to discover beautiful regions at your own pace. The best-known are the Loire Route, the Via Rhona and the Rhine Route. Each of these routes allows you to visit different regions of France. If you’re more sporty, you can also tackle the French mountain ranges. The Vercors or the Pays des Écrins in the Alps, for example, offer mountain bike trails for all levels. If you want to combine extreme sport with the discovery of picturesque villages and fantastic landscapes, mountain biking is definitely one of the world’s best ecotourism activities!

New Zealand

velo nouvelle zelande

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New Zealand and its natural treasures are best discovered by bike. One of the country’s best bike tours is the Great Lakes of New Zealand. From the foot of Mount Cook, New Zealand’s highest peak, you can follow the Alps 2 Ocean Trail down the foothills of the Southern Alps. This 301-kilometer trail follows the great lakes and rivers of the Canterbury plains. And if you follow it all the way, you’ll finally reach the Pacific Ocean at Oamaru!

2. The trek

Trek sur le Chemin de l'Inca, Machu Picchu, Pérou

After cycling, one of the world’s best ecotourism activities for discovering nature and local cultures is obviously walking! And when we say walking, we obviously mean trekking and other sporty hikes. This activity will take you from the highest mountains to the thickest jungles and magnificent deserts.

Costa Rica

trek costa rica

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Costa Rica is an ecotourism paradise! This destination is ideal for nature lovers or those who dream of being close to wildlife. Magnificent treks through the jungle and mountains await you. We particularly recommend Carara National Park, famous for its many species of birds, or Manuel Antonio Park! You can also trek the Cerro Chato volcano or climb Cerro Chirripo (for experienced hikers).

Nepal

trek nepal

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When it comes to trekking in dream settings, we can’t forget to mention Nepal! The country is famous for its gigantic and legendary peaks. Fortunately, there are numerous treks accessible to all levels. Some of the finest are the Gokyo trek, which takes in the famous sacred lakes of the same name, and the Mustang trek, which takes you through a magnificent arid region!

Spain

trek espagne

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Located 200 kilometers west of Bilbao, the Picos de Europa offer some of the oldest and most spectacular scenery on the Iberian Peninsula. Declared a Unesco Biosphere Reserve in 2002, this natural area is home to 27 well-marked short hiking trails (PR), 2 long hiking trails (GR) and 4 high mountain circuits.

3. Snorkeling

snorkelling poisson

Photo credit: Shuttertsock / Tropical studio

Snorkeling is an excellent way to discover marine flora and fauna. All you need is a mask and snorkel, or even a pair of fins, to visit some superb marine paradises. And don’t forget to use non-polluting sunscreen to respect the environment and the local reefs. Not sure where to go snorkeling? Here are some of the best destinations for this activity.

Thailand

snorkeling thailande

Photo credit: Shutterstock / Tropical studio

In recent years, Thailand has been developing a number of ecotourism activities. The aim is obviously to counterbalance the ravages of the country’s mass tourism. On the Andaman coast, you’ll find some of the best snorkeling spots in the world. Among the most interesting are Koh Surin National Park and the small fishing village of Ban Talae Nok.

Belize

snorkelling belize

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This small Central American country, cradled by the Caribbean Sea, is an exceptional snorkeling destination! Here, you can swim among a school of nurse sharks, explore the edge of a mangrove or fly over coral gardens teeming with colorful fish. We recommend Hol Chan Cut, Shark Rey Alley and Coral Gardens. All are located near the island of Caye Caulker.

4. Natural Parks

loger parc naturel national de yosemite falaises

Photo credit: Shutterstock / Simon Dannhauer



Visiting natural or national parks is obviously one of the world’s best ecotourism activities. Whether on foot or by mountain bike, discovering these preserved areas will be a real plunge into the heart of nature!

United States

parc national de yellowstone

Photo credit: Shuttertsock / Dancestrokes

When it comes to nature parks, the United States is a must. The country boasts some of the most beautiful in the world. June is undoubtedly the best time to take a trip to America’s wilderness. Temperatures are pleasant, and the parks are not yet crowded with tourists. We particularly recommend Yellowstone, the world’s oldest national park, and Yosemite, which will delight hiking and climbing enthusiasts!

Kenya

girafes kenya kilimandjaro

Photo credit: Shutterstock / Ivan Mateev

This East African country is known for its impressive natural wealth. Kenya’s major natural areas include Amboseli National Park, famous for its pachyderms, Kilimanjaro, Africa’s highest peak, and the Samburu National Reserve with its endemic species.

Costa Rica

costa rica volcan arenal

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By Tanguy de Saint-Cyr

As an ecotourism paradise, Costa Rica has many natural parks to discover. As we’ve already seen, the country is home to some lovely treks. If you prefer shorter hikes or other activities, then we recommend a visit to Parque Nacional Manuel Antonio, known for its tropical rainforests, white sand beaches and coral reefs, or the fantastic Isla del Coco, known for its unique endemic flora and fauna!

5. Canyoning

canyoning

Photo credit: Shutterstock / Paulo Resende

This outdoor sport combines several sporting activities in one! It’s a mix of caving, hiking, climbing and mountaineering, as well as whitewater activities. Thanks to this activity, you can immerse yourself in nature and discover magnificent National Parks!

Portugal

canyoning riviere teixeira portugal

Photo credit: Shuttertsock / Paulo Resende

Portugal offers a wide range of ecotourism activities: cycling, hiking, trekking and, of course, canyoning. For this exceptional activity, we recommend the Ribeiro de Carcerelha canyon. Located in the heart of the Peneda-Gerês National Park, you’ll discover gorges, natural pools and waterfalls!

Morocco

canyoning maroc

Photo credit: Shutterstock / Jerome Scholler

Morocco is increasingly establishing itself as one of the best destinations for ecotourism! You can now enjoy a wide range of ecotourism activities, from desert treks to the discovery of magnificent canyons and waterfalls. We recommend the canyons and gorges of the central High Atlas in the Zaouiat Ahansal region, or the canyons of the Rif, such as Oued Ferda and Oued Kelaa.