• Natural Greece
  • Natural Greece
  • Natural Greece
  • Natural Greece
  • Natural Greece

About Us

Sustainable Tourism Rating System

The Sustainable Tourism Rating System makes it easy for you to travel in a sustainable and responsible manner. It informs you about cultural, ethical and environmental issues and it shows you exactly how your trip is making a positive impact.

Make Travel Positive!

All of the carefully selected Travel Experiences are rated with the following 3 criteria:

  • celebrate ecological diversity
  • celebrate a diversity of place & culture
  • travel with low environmental impact
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From the highest peak of Mount Olympus to the southernmost semi-arid island of Gavdos, and from the wetlands in Northern Greece to the lush green Ionian Islands, Greece boasts many different ecosystems that represent an enormous ecological value! It has more unique (endemic) plant species then any other European country and this makes it a true botanist’s paradise. In Greece, you can have an underwater encounter with the Monk Seal, follow the traces of the European Brown Bear in the wilderness of Northern Greece or hear the spooky bird sounds of the Shearwaters aboard your ship at night! Many trips on offer intend to promote this rich natural heritage. Most of all: travel inspiration leads to a desire to act and to conserve nature!

The Sustainable Tourism Rating System shows you for each trip in what way Ecological Diversity is respected and celebrated.

Criteria (based on the Global Sustainable Tourism Criteria by the Global Sustainable Tourism Council) used to rate the trip are for example:

  • Wildlife species are not harvested, consumed, displayed, sold, or traded, except as part of a regulated activity that ensures that their utilization is sustainable, and in compliance with local and international laws.
  • No captive wildlife is held, except for properly regulated activities, in compliance with local to international law. Living specimens of protected and wildlife species are only kept by those authorized and suitably equipped to house and care for them humanely.
  • The trip supports and contributes to biodiversity conservation, including natural protected areas and areas of high biodiversity value.
  • Interactions with wildlife, taking into account cumulative impacts, do not produce adverse effects on the viability and behaviour of populations in the wild. Any disturbance of natural ecosystems is minimized, rehabilitated, and there is a compensatory contribution to conservation management.
  • Information about and interpretation of the natural surroundings is provided to travelers, as well as explaining appropriate behaviour while visiting natural areas.
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Celebrate Diversity of Place & Culture

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The trips on offer by Natural Greece are all about respecting place & culture, whilst delivering you rich and authentic experiences at an affordable price.

Celebrate Greek culture - Greece is a true paradise for cultural tourism, a large journey into history and art. Visit ancient archaeological sites, monuments and museums and see for yourself that Greece is the cradle of Western civilization.

Celebrate local customs and festivals - Visit unique local festivals with roots dating back thousands of years ago!

Celebrate local traditional cuisine – Greece has a richly varied cuisine, as diverse as the individual regions of the country. Prepare Ancient Greek food, collect fruit and make marmalade with the local women’s cooperative or learn how to make delicious traditional Greek food with your local chef!

Celebrate local traditional architecture –Hotels and settlements in local traditional style use local material and energy flows and tend to be more attractive. This forms a stark contrast to the usual “one-size-fits-all” hotel with pool displayed in the tourism brochures. Stay at an 18th century mansion that has maintained the traditional style and look of the Pelion architecture. Or marvel at the world famous Cycladic style on Santorini Island, with the whitewashed walls and blue roof and windows.

The Sustainable Tourism Rating System shows you for each trip in what way a Diversity of Place & Culture is celebrated. Criteria (based on the Global Sustainable Tourism Criteria by the Global Sustainable Tourism Council) used to rate the trip are for example:

  • Information about and interpretation of the local culture, and cultural heritage is provided to travelers, as well as explaining appropriate behavior while visiting living cultures and cultural heritage sites.
  • Local services and goods are purchased and offered, following fair-trade principles.
  • Supporting local small entrepreneurs to develop and sell sustainable products that are based on the area’s nature, history and culture (including food and beverages, crafts, performance arts, agricultural products, etc.).
  • Historical and archaeological artefacts are not sold, traded or displayed, except as permitted by local to international law.
  • Contribute to the protection and preservation of local historical, archaeological, culturally and spiritually important properties and sites.
  • Trips contain elements of local art, architecture, or cultural heritage; while respecting the intellectual property rights of local communities.

 

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Travel with Low Environmental Impact

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In 2013 Greece expects to welcome some 17 million international visitors! Apart from the expected positive economic impact for this country hit hard by the crisis, it is vital that the negative environmental impact is not being ignored. Just try to imagine the impact of the expected 70 cm seawater level rising in the next 10 years will have on life on the Greek Islands!   The good news is: we all can participate by reducing energy consumption and reducing carbon emission during our trip. One way of doing so is by flying less, flying direct and neutralizing your carbon emissions by offsetting your flight. We encourage you to offset the harmful carbon emissions of the flight. The carbon footprint calculator on the homepage is a tool that will assist you in calculating your carbon footprint and it offers carbon offsetting suggestions too. We are always happy to assist you with this process.

The carefully selected trips by Natural Greece all contain some elements that help to diminish negative impacts on the environment.

The Sustainable Tourism Rating System shows you for each trip in what way you Travel with Low Environmental Impact.

Criteria (based on the Global Sustainable Tourism Criteria by the Global Sustainable Tourism Council) used to rate the trip are for example:

  • Purchasing policies favour locally appropriate and ecologically sustainable products, including building materials, capital goods, food, beverages and consumables.
  • The purchase and use of disposable and consumable goods is measured and the organization actively seeks ways to reduce their use.
  • Energy consumption is measured, sources are indicated, and measures are adopted to minimize overall consumption, and encourage the use of renewable energy.
  • Water consumption is measured, sources are indicated, and measures are adopted to minimize overall consumption. Water sourcing is sustainable, and does not adversely affect environmental flows.
  • Use of hotel(s) and other tourist providers with a sustainability certification system like Travelife or Green Key.
  • A patchwork of local transportation methods has been used:
    • from sailing boats using wind power,
    • biking and hiking and horse riding using muscle power
    • to public transportation (trains, metro, buses, tram, ferry boats).