The Blue Mountains will soon become a certified ECO Destination through a funded partnership with Ecotourism Australia and WWF-Australia.

The ECO Destination Certification Program is a world-first initiative that certifies destinations that are committed to sustainable practices and delivering quality, nature-based visitor experiences.

As one of 8 bushfire-affected regions to be awarded a place on the ECO Destination Certification program in 2020, it is anticipated that the Blue Mountains will achieve ECO Destination certification in late May 2022.

What is Ecotourism? Why do we want to attract Ecotourists to our region?

Over the past few decades, travellers around the world have become increasingly aware of the environmental and social impacts that large scale visitation can have on tourism destinations. 

With this heightened awareness has come an increased demand for ‘Ecotourism’ destinations which aim to reduce the carbon footprint not only of visitors, but of the tourism industry itself. 

Following this trend, regions are seeking ways to attract new kinds of visitors - those that will stay longer, explore more, and in doing so, have a richer, more authentic visitor experience while making a far greater financial and emotional investment in the region.

Why gain ECO Destination Certification?

Gaining ECO Certification is a way for local tourism operators to demonstrate to visitors that the high quality, nature-based experiences they offer are backed by an industry-certified commitment to sustainability.

This program benefits our whole community in that it helps us promote our region as a world-class destination for environmentally aware visitors. 

Image: Visitors view The Three Sisters from Echo Point, Katoomba at sunset.  

Interested in becoming an ECO Certified business?

Blue Mountains City Council are currently offering up to 10 Blue Mountains based tourism operators who are interested in gaining ECO Certification the following benefits and incentives:

  • A $500 cash subsidy to offset the first annual Certification fee 
  • One to one business coaching through the certification process
  • Listing and promotion on Green Travel Guide once the business is certified. 
  • Successful businesses will join an established global network offering visitors an easy way of finding genuine and authentic ecotourism experiences. 

To apply download this form and email your completed form to: council@bmcc.nsw.gov.au.

Want to find out more?

In June 2021, Ecotourism Australia hosted a 30 minute online information session for anyone interested in gain ECO Certification. You can view a recording of the ECO Certification webinar online.