AUGUST, 2014 —- Green Stone Journeys and Ecotourism
Green Stone Journeys at the International Ecotourism Conference in Bonito, Brazil
Sustainable travel and eco-tourism are hot topics in the travel industry and are appropriately being assessed and re-assessed to adjust to the fast paced industry of travel and tourism these days. Green Stone Journeys (GSJ) is a company that blends our policies and foundation on such principles, but what does it really mean to be sustainable? What can a company do to become sustainable and encourage responsible travel and be represented as truly an eco-tourism company? We consider these questions often and being able to attend a global conference related to such issues was a valuable experience.
Green Stone Journeys attended the annual Ecotourism and Sustainable Tourism Conference (ESTC) in Bonito, Mato Grosso do Sul, organized by The International Ecotourism Society (TIES) in collaboration with their Brazilian partners in April, 2014. TIES are committed to promote sustainable travel and improve people’s lives through education, training, global outreach, partnerships, and membership services. The organization has partnerships with individuals and companies around the world and hosted the conference in Bonito with hundreds of global travel trendsetters attending.
The conference focused on sustainable policy-making, new models for ecotourism, managing destination places, parks and protected places and conservation and other issues. Meeting professionals, educators and stakeholders of different capacities and groups was a great way for us to connect and understand what’s happening with recent ecotourism initiatives. Promoting sustainable travel is fundamental in the travel industry and as GSJ continues to emerge as an innovative travel company and encourage wellness experiences with a conscientious and ecological mind-set, we were delighted to share our stories and meet people of like-minds.
Creating awareness about the value of yoga travel adventures is an important goal for Green Stone Journeys and we are becoming the popular choice for travelers seeking a wellness travel style. We established many connections including partnerships in some amazing ecotourism destinations such as the Pantanal with operators who offer tours in line with our wellness based initiatives and we are in the process of creating yoga adventures throughout this stunning region, including the hidden secrets of the Chapada dos Guimaraes.
These ecotourism destinations will give amazing lifetime experiences to people who want to combine wellness with sustainable travel in some of the most exotic and beautiful places of Brazil.
Green Stone Journeys is committed to international ecotourism initiatives and to promote sustainable travel to natural areas, conserve and bring awareness to environmental issues while offering unique tours with a wellness twist. We realize that it is through the experience of travel that we naturally become engaged with a journey of self discovery as we visit new places and cultures and this experience of self alsos encourages an understanding and application of ecotourism philosophies. To travel means to encourage a learning experience by receiving awareness about global cultural and environmental issues that affect the daily lives of people around the world and influence our own understanding of the impact we have on the environment and where we go as we travel.
The opportunity to travel and experience a new place and culture is a valuable experience. We were reminded of that on our trip to Bonito and how we enjoyed the journey and were engaged in lively discussions and interactions and we once again realized that the experience of travel is truly a gift, not only to our personal lives and for gaining new perspectives, but also for the human spirit. The experience of a travel journey operates as an experience from within, tapping into our own deep rooted set of belief structures and having that momentary experience of breaking away from our regular lives and familiar patterns.
While traveling, we develop a deeper understanding of our selves and our human connectedness simply by having the experience of relating to new people and cultures in different environments. As a result, travel becomes a journey of self-discovery through reflection of our interactions and awareness with new people and places. As we travel, our perceptions shift and expand as we relate to these situations and environments around us.
Through this process of engaging our senses and experience with something that is ‘other,’ we naturally begin to develop a greater comprehension of our inner sense of place and have a deeper understanding of not only our own impressions of who we are but also, of the different cultures, environment and people. Having the opportunity to travel, grants us the freedom to step out of our ordinary lives and experience a world so completely and utterly different from our own that a question may often be formed such as “Who are we and, how do we fit into the global society?”
It is through this experience of self-reflection and awareness that we can begin to notice a comprehension emerging as part of our own self identity and the experience of travel as seeing a new part of the world. A sense that as travelers in a global community, we are really not separate but rather living together in different places. Once that connection is made, our higher awareness and consciousness unfolds as we may realize that our individual experience of each moment has an impact on who we are and what we are all about within our environment around us.
Connecting and identifying with our own selves during a travel experience creates the awareness to connect with others and our environment and in the long run, encourage an understanding that our own well-being is in direct connection with the environment in which we live. Sustaining ourselves is just as important as in sustaining our ecological environment in the present and for the future.
Sustainable travel and ecotravel is just that, connecting with the essence of our personal understanding and identifying ourselves within the environments and cultures where we live and visit. We are all present in this ecological village living in different places and at different speeds but with patterns that affect us all. How can we unite these patterns to have less harmful impact and grow more cohesively as societies with respect for cultures and environments? Travel is the key to creating this awareness and consciousness.
The experience of travel is a gift that can connect us not only to a deeper understanding of our personal lives but in the world where we live and in this way, Green Stone Journeys is an ecotourism company responsible for encouraging our own well-being and environmental awareness. We live to experience life to its fullest and that is what travel offers us, an unrivaled experience of our own personal understanding and realization of our connectedness to each place that we go.