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Sustainable Tourism Bogotá


What is Ecotourism?


The International Ecotourism Society (TIES) defines ecotourism as "responsible travel to natural areas that conserves the environment, sustains the well-being of the local people, and involves interpretation and education". 

Andes EcoTours promotes sustainable ecotourism activities by:


  • Empowering local communities through the support of community-based tourism projects

  • Generating financial benefits for local people and small businesses 

  • Assisting rural communities with product development and enhancement

  • Contracting the services of local campesino (farmer) guides

  • Providing language, environmental and cultural training programs and materials for local guides

  • Strengthening community relationships through team-building events

  • Visiting natural reserves with strong ethics and a committment to environmental preservation

  • Identifying problems and voicing concerns to environmental authorities in an effort to promote conservation

  • Building environmental and cultural awareness in both visitors and locals

  • Delivering memorable visitor experiences that help raise sensitivity to Colombia's environmental and social challenges

  • Offering support and assistance for sustainable development initiatives in the communities we work with


How can I be a more responsible tourist while participating in your tours?


  • Do your research on the destinations you have chosen to visit. In addition to detailed tour descriptions, we have developed a great ecosystem guide that will give you a better idea of what to expect when taking our tours, as well as a page which answers some of the most frequently asked questions we have gotten from visitors.


  • Read over our policies and procedures before taking the tour and take special note of the suggestions for proper hiking attire. These instructions have been carefully drafted to ensure that you have a positive experience. 


  • If you are given the chance to try local food, try to be open-minded and give it a try rather than turning it down right away. Imagine how you would feel if you proudly showed food off from your country but your guests did not even give it a chance. 


  • Do your best to finish your lunch. Colombians are easily offended when you leave food on your plates.


  • Don't leave trash along the trails. If you see trash left by someone else, it helps to pick it up and throw it away after the hike is done. You can also give it to your guide and he/she will take care of it for you.


  • Try not to accept plastic bags and other forms of unnecessary packaging when purchasing from stores. If you are at a restaurant we recommend asking for re-usable plates, cups and utensils rather than accepting one-time-use plastic. 


  • More than free hand-outs, what the communities need is to reactivate their economy. The amount you spend, however small, makes a big difference! Tip your local guide for good service, buy snacks from local stores and support local artisans when choosing souvenirs to take back home.


  • Even if your Spanish isn't that good, try to memorize some important words you can use to interact with community members. They won't judge you on poor grammar or pronunciation, but will actually appreciate your effort to communicate with them in their own language.


  • Colombians are working hard to promote the country in a positive manner, so try to be as culturally aware and sensitive as possible when asking questions. For example, it is ok to ask about current affairs like the War on Drugs or Guerillas Peace Talks, but make sure your questions are well informed and do not hurt national pride. With time, you will find Colombians to be extremely proud about their culture.

  • Andes EcoTours rejects the trafficking of local fauna and flora, which is why we remind you that it is not permitted to take any animal or plant material that you may encounter along the trail. Colombian criminal & environmental regulations prohibit such activities and offenders will be penalized. Any wild specie outside of its habitat is unlikely to survive (Ley 17 de 1981 & Resolución 1367 de 2000).

  • If you encounter any archaeological material during one of our excursions, please turn it in or inform the guide of your discovery. Andes EcoTours will turn in any found archaeological elements to local authorities. Removal of archaeological objects in Colombia is illegal (Ley 103 de 1991, ley 397 de 1997 & ley 1185 de 2008).

  • We reject the exploitation, pornography, sex tourism and any form of sexual abuse of minors. We ask that you communicate any evidence of this activity to us during your stay in Colombia (Ley 679 de 2001).


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