Ecological tourism or ecotourism is a new touristic trend, different from traditional tourism by its focus on activities in which sustainability, preservation, and the appreciation of natural and cultural environments are the protagonists. It promotes the well-being of the local people, reflected in the way the companies dedicated to these services work.

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”. True ecotourism must follow these seven principles, both for those who offer these services and its beneficiaries:

  • Minimize the activities’ negative impacts on the environment and the community
  • Build environmental and cultural awareness and respect
  • Provide positive experiences for both visitors and hosts
  • Provide direct financial benefits for conservation
  • Provide financial benefits and strengthen the local community’s participation in decision-making
  • Raise sensitivity to host countries’ political, environmental and social climates
  • Support human rights and labour laws

It is a group of organised touristic services. A guarantee of these touristic services provided by the Club and the system regulating their use for the consuming tourist. An organisation of entrepreneurs who provides the consumer with these services.

A method of touristic and promotion planning. An strategical alliance of planners, service providers and institution that manage the resources in which the product is based in order to develop, with the best guarantees, a combined effort to create and manage a sustainable tourism product: planification, promoting, commercialisation and evaluation.

The Tourism Product Club of Spanish Biosphere Reserves (TPCSBR) is an initiative of the Secretary of State for Tourism which aims to establish a method to create a tourism product that stands out from others by its location in a selection of territories: the Spanish Biosphere Reserve Network, where it is possible to visit and enjoy the natural heritage developed by human activity and the unique samples of ethnographic heritage.

The method is unique and common to the Spanish Biosphere Reserve Network (SBRN), and the subsequent tourism product revolves around the diverse heritage of these territories declared by UNESCO and its possible touristic interpretations and enjoyment. It features the participation of the actors involved in it, fundamental agents of the biosphere reserves, tourism companies and sectors of the local population connected to the unique use of their heritage, parting from the local development.

Any entrepreneur, association, cooperative, et cetera, that carries out activities in Lanzarote’s Biosphere Reserve, has a coherent and ethical attitude towards the BRs, fulfils the necessary requisites for this purpose, and belongs to the subsectors selected to be part of this Club: lodgings, agro-food industry (wine cellars, cheese factories, et cetera), specialised shops, restaurants, and companies specialised in complementary activities. There are no specific requisites for craftsmen or primary producers in the Club, since they have been integrated as components through the local product stores.

The requisites are as follow:

  • Fulfil the membership document
  • Submit the documentation requested based on the activities carried out
  • Attend the formative courses offered by the Biosphere Reserve for the TPCSBR
  • Get visited and counselled by a personal technician in charge of managing the TPCSBR
  • Contact the Biosphere Reserve Office by email ecoturismo@lanzarotebiosfera.org or by phone 928/810100 (ext. 2440 or 2342)
  • Fulfil the membership document
  • Submit the documentation requested
  • Receive the information offered by the Biosphere Reserve Office for the TPCBR
  • Attend the reunions organised by the Club
  • Get visited by the technicians in charge of the company’s installation project
  • Get national and European recognition
  • Get new commercial opportunities
  • Get touristic offers oriented towards discovering the destination, different from those that are not
  • Get information about the destination’s demand
  • Improve the quality of your services using a diverse number of available tools
  • Improve your environmental efficiency
  • Contribute to the local sustainable development and get recognition from consumers
  • Get counselling by the public administration (Biosphere Reserve Office)

Joining and being part of the TPCSBR is completely free; the membership process has neither preliminary nor future expenses.

It is a project managed by the Biosphere Reserve Office and any expenses stemmed from being part of a responsible and innovative ecotourism business group in the TUREBE Biosphere are paid for by the Island Council of Lanzarote through the Biosphere Reserve Office.

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