UK national parks Lake District and New Forest are amongst tourism spots that have been named in the Sustainable Destinations Global Top 100. Despite scoring well across a range of categories, the findings suggest both destinations should work on a green tourism policy.
The top 100 list was launched to celebrate the management efforts of the most sustainable destinations in the world. The initiative was set up by TravelMole.com, Vision on Sustainable Tourism, Totem Tourism and Green Destinations, all of which are global players in the sustainable travel market.
“The Global Top 100 aims to recognise tourism destinations that have worked hard to make a difference and take sustainability seriously. Nevertheless, no destination is sustainable for the full 100%,” says Albert Salman, director of GreenDestinations,info.
He added that the rankings do not take into account the carbon emissions from travelling and recommend that travellers also consider this when planning trips. Next year the rating system plans to factor in emissions.
The list doesn’t provide a simple ranking from 1 to 100, instead giving destinations a score across six categories – nature, environment, cultural, social, green economy and green tourism policy. The top 100 are also split into four different parts of the world – Europe, America, Asia-Pacific and Africa.
Overall the destination that was considered the most sustainable is the Portuguese Azores archipelago.
Dr Randy Durband, CEO of the Global Sustainable Tourism Council, commented, “These 100 destinations stand out for making meaningful and measurable progress in their individual journeys towards greater sustainability.
“Measuring sustainability is not simple and straightforward. This list recognises those destinations that are moving in the right direction to the assessments of neutral experts utilising objective criteria.”
Two locations are situated in the UK, the Lake District and the New Forest National Park. Both of these destinations scored eight out of ten in four categories – nature, environment, cultural, and social – and seven for green economy. The scores also flag up where both destinations need to work, as they both scored zero for green tourism policy.
Photo: Juan Llanos via Flickr