One of the latest things my husband and I have fallen in love with is eco-tourism. Basically, instead of visiting a new town or city, staying in a high-rise downtown hotel and sampling cuisine and cocktails, we find a place and truly explore that place. Through eco-tourism we are seeking to better understand a place’s history and environment, while ensuring we are protecting the environment and not contributing urban sprawl that is often a large part of popular tourist destinations.
We recently visited Savannah, Georgia on an eco-tourism trip. While the city is best known for its charming historic district, upscale seafood restaurants and beaches – we decided to go a different route.
We stayed at a local Air B & B and planned our trip entirely around the experience of Savannah. We wanted to learn about the true beauty behind the coastal region, with its expansive stream and river system.
On day one, we took a kayak tour that weaved in and out of the pristine marshes, down tiny tidal creeks and into what can only be defined as a swamp. This was called a Nature Discover tour and we truly felt that we experienced so much more of the area’s culture and heritage just on this 4-hour excursion than we had in every other town we visited.
We did visit a beach, but it was part of our kayak tour and called a “Wild Island Adventure.” During this adventure we visited a little known beach at low tide and were surprised to find not another soul in sight. We truly took in the ecosystem, from the dead trees that twisted in the saltwater, to looking at the flora and fauna of the region – I feel like we came back with so many wonderful memories than a simple meal could have afforded us.
We became involved with focusing on eco-travel through the story of Wild Ark. The company was founded by Mark and Sophie Hutchinson with the goal of creating research and experience opportunities for people to reconnect with the gorgeous natural surroundings of our world, while looking to protect the planet for the future so that others may enjoy it.
To learn more about Wild Ark and their incredible mission and story, you can visit their website http://wildark.com/our-story/