Luxury Eco-tourism Promises to Protect the Bolivian Rainforest
By Ronit Epstein
The sprawling Amazon rainforest is alive with sights, sounds and movement that cannot be seen anywhere else on our beautiful planet. Bolivian Amazon covers 59.6 million hectares, and more than 11 percent of Bolivia is officially protected. Anyone visiting this beautiful region will experience some of the world’s most stunning, strange and wonderful wildlife, leaving memories that are difficult to beat. It is precisely this reason, that Bolivia has become a leading ecotourism destination, offering many great accommodation packages and guided tours that provide travelers with luxury, without destroying the environment.
Indigenous Communities Protect Bolivia’s Natural Landscapes
One of the most popular parks Bolivia has to offer is the Madidi National park and Natural Integrated Management Area – with some of the most beautiful mountains and all the splendour that the Amazon basin has to offer. It wasn’t so long ago that this amazing beauty was threatened by illegal logging and plans for a hydraulic dam and other intrusions into the area. The plans have changed thank to the foresight by the government and indigenous people of the area. The future now looks set to be in environmentally conscious tourism.
One of the most fruitful ventures created to protect this landscape has been the Majapo Indigenous Community Ecotourism Company, who have all the tools to protect the landscape and show the world that tourism doesn’t have to be damaging to the local environment. The main founding for this company, was a community voice that wanted to create jobs and have a way of providing for their children’s future. The community got together, taking it in turns to cook, drive, sew and build luxurious lodges on their land where tourists can stay and spend a holiday within the community. You will find the lodges to be as comfortable as any other form of accommodation, but you cannot beat the hospitality of the Tsimane Mosetene people, they will provide you with food they grow in the gardens, amazing stories about the local fauna and flora and above all else, they will show you why their land is so special.
Nature, Ecotourism and Luxury in the Rainforest
There is so much that the rainforest offers to its guests that it is easy to understand why it is being protected so well by the people that live here. Many of the locals are trained guides and will take you through the jungles, to experience some of the wonders with your own eyes; drinking water from the trees, swinging on some of the biggest vines you will see and even getting up close to a tarantula or two – the possibilities are seemingly endless. This can all be enjoyed all the while staying in lodges with comfortable rooms, and all the services you needto make your stay enjoyable and comfortable. It’s a unique combination of ecotourism and natural luxury that is bringing a wide variety of eco-friendly tourism to the region.
There are also many tour companies vying for people to guide through the landscape, many that are highlighted for their backing for the protection of the environment, there are many itineraries for week long jungle hikes that can be found on the Madidi website.
All photos courtesy of Ronit Epstein