Ecoclub Member Blogs

Crete's Culinary Sanctuaries September 2016 Seminar in Crete, Greece in partnership with Center for Responsible Travel

Crete's Culinary Sanctuaries September 2016 Seminar in Crete, Greece in partnership with Center for Responsible Travel
Crete, Greece, September 19-25, 2016: Crete's Culinary Sanctuaries Educational Network in partnership with The Center for Responsible Travel is hosting a unique program in Crete: Discovering the Culture, Nature and Cuisine of Crete. During this program we will meet many residents working on action programs to protect and celebrate their cultural and culinary heritage. Space is limited to 20 people. Registration Deadline July 15, 2016. More information http://www.cookingincrete.com/Schedule.html    
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The Sultan of Strings

The Sultan of Strings
Sultan Ghani, 63, is Chitral’s celebrated sitar player. He was the founding member and an indispensable figure of Al-Fatah Music Group, named after Fatahuddin, a reputed Khowar singer, who fanned alive the dying ambers of Khowar folk music back in 1980s. Here goes the story of Mr. Ghani in his own narration. I started strumming fifty years back when I was only thirteen year old. In pursuing the passion, I was virtually impressed by my father Abdul Ghani and uncle Purdom, both fine-tuned instrumentalists of the time. They used to play sitting around the central hearth of traditional Chitrali house ( baipash ) and basking the warmth of oak fire during the long cold winter nights, and I intently listened and observed them. Gradually I felt the urge to touch sitar, caressed its strings and made up mind to play it secretly since children were then discouraged to look at musical...
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Are motorhomes an eco, responsible way to travel?

Are motorhomes an eco, responsible way to travel?
As usual, it basically depends on one’s own attitude. To start with, follow the basic “Leave No Trace” rules, pay attention to any special limitations of the place you visit (e.g national park), respect local culture, and shop locally. Energy (and water) supply is limited in motorhomes (compared with your home or a hotel room). So, unless you are stationed at an organized camp site, you’ll have to reduce your consumption even if you are not so eco-sensitive—this already puts you in a different mindset, which is a good thing. But note that most motorhomes nowadays come with solar panels, which are typically enough to keep you autonomous. Moreover, with a motorhome, you can drive less, as you can see everything you want, without having to return every night to some “base”. There is also plenty of space to carry bicycles, so that you may casually drive around the area and...
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4th edition online course "Ecotourism: Design & Marketing Products"

4th edition online course "Ecotourism: Design & Marketing Products"
STIPA Consultancy&Ecotourism  with Superior Institute of Environment  present the fourth edition of the course "Ecotourism: Design and Marketing Products". STIPA's team and  Gonzalo de la Fuente del Val  in collaboration with the  Superior Institute of Environment  (ISM) have designed this course which the aim to develop ecotourism products that follows innovation, competitiveness and sustainability objectives. We want to open new perspectives of ecotourism business in Spain and Latin American countries, such as ecotourism in protected areas or not, or ecotourism linked to private areas through land stewardship agreements.  Always under the premise of creating ethic products and work collaboratively to improve the brand of a destination. The course of "Ecotourism: Design and Marketing of Products" beginning  on June 15 , is taught entirely ON LINE through the ISM Campus. 80 hours; Spanish language.  
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When To Mountains Comes the Spring

Snow ebbed with snow glory abloom Mirth returned, withdrawn the gloom From wintry anchor breaking free Children on colleting spree, Of the gift so coveted to bring To herald and welcome spring   Thru chimney they hand the ‘glory’ A tradition telling wonderful story Receiving walnut gift, dry fruits and sweet With occasional reward of homespun tweet Elders enjoy peacefully sitting To herald and welcome spring   ‘Happy spring’ the hamlet’s abuzz A ripple of jubilation that it cause Children with snow playing foul Nature prevails stirring the soul Elders drum, kids doing swing To herald and welcome spring   Wears the earth green garments Refreshing aura, the soil ferments Thick is the air with butterfly And a group of dove overfly Juniper scent lightly wafting To herald and welcome spring   Sloughed into flute a branch of willow Rocking atop the rock looking below Engrossed as if in the midst...
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Biodiversity Strategies for Cities?

Biodiversity Strategies for Cities?
My eyebrows reached my hairline when I heard my hometown had a biodiversity strategy. With over a million people, I hadn't thought of Calgary, Alberta as a biodiversity hotspot. True, it has the most extensive urban pathway network in North America and I've enjoyed watching owls and eagles along the Bow River in the city center but isn't a city a bad home for wildlife? Surprisingly, there are more opportunities for critters than you might think. Next to parkland, wasteland, railway yards and industrial areas have high numbers of rare and important species. Perhaps because those areas have open spaces and few people. Some animals don't coexist well with humans like the sharp-tailed grouse eliminated by off-leash dog use on Nose Hill but others adapt. Scientists have observed some urban birds adjusting their calls to be heard over traffic noise. The City of Calgary tabled its biodiversity strategy in March 2015....
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Panama Papers and Tourism: "Teachable Moment" for the Industry?

Panama Papers and Tourism: "Teachable Moment" for the Industry?
Live Session on Tourism Financial Accountability and Economic Growth With the aim of helping turn the Panama Papers scandal into a useful "teachable moment" for the tourism industry, TrainingAid is hosting a free and open live session on Thursday, April 14th featuring a presentation by Dr. Linda Ambrosie, the author of " Sun & Sea Tourism: Fantasy and Finance of the All-Inclusive Industry ". Dr. Ambrosie will share key insights into the impact of exploitative tax practices, combined with local corruption, throughout the global tourism value chain, and offer recommendations for tourism industry stakeholders - including multinational enterprises, tourism managers, destination organizations and policy-makers - on how to advocate for solutions and positive change. Register for free to join the live session and to receive access to the video replay.   Tourism Finance: Why Accountability Matters to All As the Panama Papers scandal has brought the world’s attention to the scope...
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What Sets Successful Community-Based Tourism Enterprises Apart?

What Sets Successful Community-Based Tourism Enterprises Apart?
Community-Based Tourism (CBT) can be a great way to empower communities and support sustainable local development by providing alternative livelihoods, expanding economic opportunities, creating a sense of pride, and supporting development needs in a way that is in line with long-term priorities. So why do so many CBT projects fail? In the upcoming TrainingAid Live Session , Kelly Galaski (Program & Operations Manager for Americas & Europe, Planeterra Foundation) will discuss key challenges with CBT initiatives, and share practical insights on how to develop market-ready and financially viable community tourism products. TrainingAid Live Session, March 31st, 2016 Title: Key Factors in Successful Community Tourism Product Development Presenter: Kelly Galaski, Program & Operations Manager (Americas & Europe) for Planeterra Foundation Date & Time: Thursday, March 31st, 2016 - 10am EST (New York), 4pm CET (Berlin), 10pm ICT (Bangkok) Registration: Sign up for free here   About the Planeterra Foundation Planeterra Foundation  is a non-profit organization established by global travel company G Adventures. Planeterra's...
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Malaysia: Embarking on experiential learning in nature escapades close to the urban spaces of Kuala Lumpur

Malaysia: Embarking on experiential learning in nature escapades close to the urban spaces of Kuala Lumpur
Sungai Chilling in the province of Selangor, Malaysia, is a nature reserve consisting of a picturesque waterfall and the Sungai Chilling Fish sanctuary, a project under the Selangor State Fisheries Department. This idyllic nature trove being located roughly at a distance of 75kms from the northern peripheries of Kuala Lumpur that involves about an hour and half drive via the town of Kuala Kubu Bharu, is one of the main eco-travel spots closest to the bustling spaces of Kuala Lumpur. For day-trippers and campers, Sungai Chilling provides a perfect setting for nature-based recreational opportunities within a convenient distance. The central attraction, the Chilling waterfalls, is located at a certain height that makes it necessary for visitors to cross the rapid flowing river 5 times and a trek uphill for almost 4 hours through the bushes and dense vegetation of Malaysian rainforests. The difficulty in negotiating with rapid flowing river are generally...
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New article on ecoclub.com Paper Series

By looking at ecotourism efforts around the world, there is continuous change: some best ecotourism practices fail to keep their status, or are even suspended after a period of time; other ecotourism practices appear, some of them reaching high standards. " Ecotourism in Protected Areas, A literature Review " on the ecoclub.com papers session is a conceptual paper based on our presentations in lectures, workshops and conferences for ecotourism and protected areas, in the last 10 years. The paper offers a better understanding of ecotourism, viewed as a continuously evolving process in the context of the particular environmental, social, cultural, economic, political and technological features of each area, which may change with time. Finding the right, dynamic balance, which can differ from case to case, is the key for proper ecotourism development in protected areas. Read the article here: https://ecoclub.com/library/epapers/38.pdf  
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