Australia and New Zealand

by Linda  

Eco travellers heading off on a round-the-world-trip will no doubt be heading to Australia, New Zealand or one of the South Pacific islands. Maybe you’ve been saving for that one-off trip down under or have simply been blessed (or cursed) with itchy feet and are jetting off to your dream destination. Whatever the reason for your trip to Oceania, you’ll be sure to find plenty of ecotourism opportunities.

Australia

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Considering Australia is difficult and expensive to reach for most travellers and vast to traverse once on land the country is rarely short of visitors, and ecotourism is booming.

Covering the same area as the US, minus Alaska, Australia offers varied landscapes over distances too hard to comprehend from looking at a map. Visitors to the country often think they can see it all in a few weeks and leave seeing very little, so if you’re planning a trip there plan wisely.

Each state offers something different and offers an abundance of eco-friendly options for travellers. An array of eco hostels, lodges, resorts and tours can be found online and will be display the Ecotourism Australia certification if accredited by the organisation.

Ideas for Your Eco Trip to Oz:

New Zealand

franz-josef-glacier2.jpgKnown to native Maoris as Aotearoa, or The Land of the Long White Cloud, New Zealand is made up of two main islands – the North Island and the South Island, nice and easy to remember, and several small islands.

The country may be smaller than neighbouring Australia but what it lacks in size it certainly makes up for in diversity.

The North Island is a hive of thermal activity because of its position on two tectonic plates; volcanoes and geysers dot the landscape. It’s also home to the majority of native Maori who boast a rich heritage and culture and are always keen to educate visitors on the history.

The South Island is generally cooler than the North Island but the landscape is just as distinctive. The bays and beaches of Abel Tasman National Park in the north contrast starkly with the snow covered Alps to the south. Dense, lush rainforest can be visited on the same day as ancient glaciers and adventure enthusiasts visit in droves. After all, it was a New Zealander who created the hair-raising bungee jump, or rather the hair-raising-flattening-raising-almost-did-a-wee-bit-of-sick-in-my-mouth bungee jump.

Kiwis have been champions of ecotourism for decades so there is no shortage of green places to stay on both the North and South Islands. B&Bs, camping sites and holiday parks are extremely popular and are great value for money.

Ideas for Your Eco Trip to New Zealand:

  • Kayak around Tui Nature Reserve in Malborough Sounds
  • Get with the locals and shear some sheep on a Farmstay
  • Try a “Taste of Volunteering” with Hands Up Holidays
  • Learn about the Maori culture at Ohinemutu Maori Villlage in Rotorua
  • Stay in one of the hand-built cottages at The Flying Fox B&B
  • Sail around Milford Sound or Te Anau
  • Take a coach trip to Franz Josef and Fox Glaciers

Don’t forget to check out BootsnAll’s Australia Blog and Small Group Adventure Tours, and check back here from time to time for new tours and breaking news on ecotourism in Australia, New Zealand and islands of Oceania.

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