An intact nature and landscape form the basis for attractive tourist experiences. Conversely, sustainable tourism can contribute to their preservation through conscious travel and leisure behavior. For every tourist destination, this holds many opportunities, but also challenges and impairments that can have serious consequences for the region.
Germans take around 70 million longer trips a year. The tourism industry makes a significant contribution to total gross value added. A total of 2.9 million people were employed in tourism in 2016 (see: Tourism Policy Report of the German Federal Government, 2017). Worldwide, tourism even provides a job for one in eleven people.
What does sustainable tourism mean?
Sustainable tourism has been on the agenda of tourism professionals in Germany for over 30 years. It is often referred to as soft, intelligent tourism or tourism with responsibility. Sustainable tourism not only meets the demands of tourists and the local population, but also uses resources in a way that satisfies economic, social and aesthetic needs while preserving cultural integrity, ecological processes and biodiversity.
Political and institutional authorities of a destination can create the basis for a sustainable development of the tourism region with favorable framework conditions and strategies. Networking within the service providers of the destination additionally favors the implementation of the corresponding measures. The concept refers to all forms of tourism, niche products as well as mass tourism offers.
Why is sustainable tourism important?
What can I do as a traveler?
✔ Give preference to destinations nearby.
✔ Avoid air travel and cruises.
✔ Give preference to travel providers or offers with binding environmental and social standards.
✔ Behave as environmentally friendly on vacation as you do at home.
✔ Be considerate of sensitive habitats, animals and plants & observe the behavioral guidelines
✔ Discover environmentally friendly vacation options
✔ Look out for certified offers - an overview of the most common seals can be found on the website of the Federal Environment Agency
✔ Choose environmentally friendly leisure activities and use existing offers at the vacation destination (bus and train, e-bikes, bicycles, etc.) to get around.