Travel Rwanda, Sustainably!
Gondwana has been practicing sustainable travel since our beginning, and now the rest of the world is catching on! 5 publications have featured Gondwana’s Gorilla Trekking in Rwanda trip as an opportunity to practice eco-travel while seeing some of the world’s last remaining mountain gorillas. The Lady suggests to round up your friends and family, “and charm your significant other with something extraordinary” as you travel Rwanda.
Environment Impacts Travel
All of these publications write that the urgency to travel (in our case to Rwanda) increased because of environmental instability. When global warming, politics, pollution and man-made problems impact the physical earth, plants and animals become victims as well. MSN warns, “The landscape is changing and the big adventures you are planning for the future may have to reflect that.” Of course these changes happen slowly over time, but the permanent impact for future generations is very real. This makes eco-travel even more relevant, because the goal is to experience the world, while preserving it for the future. Do as Eat Love Savor suggests, and experience “trips highlighting natural wonders, wildlife and cultures… …before potential changes alter their access or existence.”The bonus is that your visit also helps support their preservation.
Mountain Gorillas in Rwanda
So how do the mountain gorillas in Rwanda fit into all of this? Let’s start with the numbers via Tours.com: “A study released this year shows that 75 percent of primate species have shrinking populations and 60 percent are threatened with extinction, with their decline being attributed to hunting, farming, ranching, logging, mining and oil drilling.”
Specifically, there are only around 700 mountain gorillas in the world, largely due to the reasons above. Conservationists and park rangers in Volcanoes National Park devote their lives to protecting the remaining primates, and have created a successful example of how ecotourism can positively impact these animals. In this case, a permit to see the gorillas ($750, included in the tour price) goes straight back to preserving the gorillas habitat and health. In 1985, duringthe days of Dian Fossey, there were less than 300 mountain gorillas remaining. This number has more than doubled because of conservation efforts made possible through funds received from nonprofits and ecotourism.
Fox News has also jumped on board , recommending that, ”No matter where you travel, be a responsible eco-tourist.” For Gondwana, this means ensuring that all of our tours positively impact the traveler and the destination. Through donations to nonprofits, carbon-offsetting, working with local businesses, recycling and other sustainable actions, we can help preserve our earth’s fragile ecosystem. Ecotourism works when people understand the impact of their actions, and make conscious, earth-friendly choices.