New Delhi: With increased awareness of the environmental impact of travel, sustainability and conservation have become increasingly important among travellers. New Zealand invites visitors to become kaitiakitanga, or place guardians.
Assuring that it is maintained and treated in such a way that future generations can enjoy it. The Tiaki Promise, an initiative launched by Tourism New Zealand and close partners, invites and encourages visitors to care for the country alongside Kiwis.
Many businesses in New Zealand’s tourism sector are already implementing sustainable practises. Here are the top four New Zealand tourism businesses with conservation at their core, whether they are carbon-neutral, carbon-positive, or simply doing amazing things for the environment:
Carino Wildlife Cruises, Northland
The World Cetacean Alliance (the world’s largest marine conservation partnership) has awarded Carino the only Responsible Whale Watching Certificate in the Bay of Islands. They provide a variety of cruises for guests to enjoy and be inspired by the natural environment. They actively collaborate on conservation and research efforts with a number of research universities. Carino also organises beach clean-ups on a regular basis and uses biodegradable or non-toxic cleaning products. They also use wind power whenever possible and have started a local tree-planting programme.
Ziptrek Ecotours, Queenstown
In 2019, Ziptrek Ecotours became the first company in Queenstown to achieve Zero Carbon Business status. Some of their community and environmental initiatives include planting 5000+ trees, shrubs, and grass on its zipline site at Gondola Hill and around the local area over the last ten years through the Wakatipu Reforestation Trust, sponsoring Paper4Trees, a waste minimisation and native tree planting programme for NZ schools and preschools, and more.
Dive! Tutukaka, Northland
Dive Tutukaka is based at the Tutukk Marina in the Bay of Islands and focuses on the Poor Knights Islands. It is New Zealand’s largest dive charter company, transporting over 12,000 people to the Poor Knights Islands each year on five boats.
The company has received numerous national and international awards for its environmental and business practises, and it was a finalist in the 100 per cent Pure New Zealand Experience Awards in 2021. This company was a key player in advocating for the exclusion of recreational fishing from the marine reserve, and every tourist who books with the company helps to preserve the beautiful Poor Knights Islands.
Kaitiaki Adventures, Rotorua
Kaitiaki Adventures is a well-known adventure tourism company that specialises in white-water rafting and sledging on the Okere section of the historic Kaituna River. Because of their priorities in sustainable tourism, Mori prosperity, and environmental wellbeing, they won a Qualmark 100 per cent Pure New Zealand Experience Award in 2021.
Management of wilding pines, guardianship of Mt Tarawera, protection of the endangered Dabchick in collaboration with DOC, and maintaining a 100 per cent zero waste business operation are all conservation projects.