China has 1.9 billion travelers every year. 33 million of them visited Chinese natural reserves. As people’s concerns about the environment grow, more and more individuals are turning to ecotourism. If you’re planning to take a trip to China, take note that China is catching up to the trend.
China has a beautiful natural beauty that travelers yearn for, thanks to its diverse natural terrain and features. This article will look at China’s ecotourism so that you can use this informative write-up as a reference for your eco-friendly trip to China.
About Ecotourism in China
About your trip to China, you can discover the vast and diversified geography home to a broad range of species. Did you know China is one of the world’s 17 megadiverse countries, with 7,516 vertebrate species, including 4,900 fish species, 1,270 birds, 562 mammals, 403 reptiles, and 346 amphibian species?
There are currently 225 national parks where you may expect to see breathtaking landscapes. As well as cultural landmarks, unique plants and wildlife to support your vacation in China. For example, the Multicolored Mountain Lakes in Jiuzhaigou National Park is famed for its colorful lakes, waterfalls, snowy peaks, forested slopes, and Tibetan communities. It’s a national park with 40 percent of China’s flora species, as well as over 140 bird and animal species, including the giant panda and the Sichuan takin. So, you can enjoy great biodiversity of nature during your trip to China.
The Yinggeling Nature Reserve’s “Eco Action” in Hainan, Daoyi, China, is a product of Kadoorie Conservation China, an NGO, together with China’s government. The project aims to get as many locals to take proactive and long-term measures to defend their area. Eco-Action also includes environmental education for all local participants while promoting mountain conservation consciousness.
This action plan is to train nature reserve employees and local rangers as guides to enhance their capacity to welcome eco-travelers. The purpose is to assist locals in converting traditional handcrafts into souvenirs, safeguard natural resources, maintain culture and discover the benefits of learning ecotourism so that youngsters can incorporate their learnings for the sake of China’s future.
China Ecotour Initiatives
Despite substantial international organizations such as the World Wildlife Fund to carry out conservation projects, the development of nature reserves has stalled. However, on May 16, 2019, WWF China and Ctrip, Asia’s largest online travel operator signed a Memorandum of Understanding in Shanghai to launch a strategic relationship. The two parties announced a sustainable ecotourism effort with over ten other partners on the same day.
With approximately one million animal and plant species threatened with extinction, Ctrip and WWF China want to raise biodiversity awareness and make environmentally beneficial travel products.
Although, ecotourism is not a Chinese phenomenon but rather an international trend borrowed from elsewhere. There are misunderstandings about this concept, and China needs to educate more about environmental protection and sustainable travel. Especially among the younger generations, according to Tian Zhu Zhang, an environmental science professor at Tsinghua University.
According to Professor Xue Hua Liu, a specialist in environmental systems at Tsinghua University, “The Chinese concept of ecotourism is still a work in progress, and it is frequently confused with nature-based tourism, which ignores low-carbon transportation or the economic benefits of increasing income to the local people. Land is a limited resource in China, and bringing a large group of people to a nature reserve defies the goal of limiting influence on the natural resources.”
Additionally, access to natural reserves is also problematic for private travel operators without authorization from the Ministry of Environmental Protection. In time, the Chinese government will soon weigh their lofty environmental aims against economic goals. However, as of today, the path to ecotourism will be long and difficult to apply and adapt. And so, we will expect more from China’s ecotourism initiatives when traveling to China in near future.
Unique Ecotours in China
When you travel to China, take a detour to Sichuan Province, near Chengdu. And check out the Dujiangyan Panda Base, a panda hospital, lab, and monitoring enclosure. Here, travelers can pay a certain amount to experience taking care of Pandas. And help clean or feed the pandas as part of the “Panda Volunteer Program.”
And yes, although it says “volunteer,” being a panda volunteer costs travelers’ money because it’s a research center with a funding endeavor. However, during the volunteer experience, travelers will be accompanied by an English-speaking guide who will assist you in taking photos and films of your volunteer experience.
Since travelers can serve as panda keepers for a day and see them behind the scenes, travelers can learn and spend time with these endangered animals. This makes your eco-friendly trip to China worth more!
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