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Sustainable Tourism Advice

solar panels in Porlock

In the past ‘Sustainable Tourism’ has been seen purely as an additional marketing tool by some. Today it is widely recognised as a strategic goal which aims to improve tourism for the benefit of all – both now and in the future.  We're not referring solely to environmental sustainability but to genuine sustainability which is great for business, great for the place and great for visitors too.

Tourism on Exmoor is largely dependent upon the stunning natural environment so whilst saving costs and cutting margins too it makes sense to protect the asset. In 2007 Exmoor became the first National Park in England to gain the European Charter for Sustainable Tourism.

For practical advice, help, support and motivation check out Visit England's Better Tourism,  COaST One Planet Tourism, South West Tourism Alliance and Devon Tourism Advice.

Below are some simple actions that you can take to make your business more sustainable:

  • Source your products locally – this will add to the experience of visitors and it is estimated for every £10 spent on local products £25 is put back into the local economy, as opposed to just £14 when the same is spent in a supermarket!
  • Provide simple information on how your visitors can Keep Exmoor Special through simple initiatives such as leaving the car behind and reducing, reusing and recycling waste.
  • Consider running a paper free business – invest in online marketing and information.
  • Use a towel agreement with your guests – washing laundry only when the request – one hotel in the South West saved over £1000 a month doing this!
  • Use low energy bulbs- these are now available in a variety of shapes and sizes and will save you an estimated £7 a year for each and every bulb replaced.
  • Remember that day light is free and ensure windows and skylights are clean and unobstructed. At night reducing your lighting and ensuring it shines where needed will save you money and protect our dark skies.
  • Use environmentally friendly cleaning products.
  • Consider contributing to CareMoor for Exmoor.
  • Look out for Exmoor Awareness courses in the spring and learn about the special qualities of Exmoor direct from professional National Park Authority staff.
  • Demonstrate your sustainability credentials through certification with the Green Tourism Business Scheme or the David Bellamy Conservation Award for holiday parks