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The holistic betterment of our environment lies in how we preserve our planet's biodiversity. How we utilize our natural resources, whether for industrial or commercial activities, decides if we deplete them and damage the environment or keep them safe from the thorns of human behavior.
Village eco-tourism is a form of travelling wherein visitors invest time in the lap of mother nature’s most glorious and enchanting forms. You get the opportunity to explore delightful greenery and water bodies with the crispest air, cleansing your lungs with every breath.
While the Indian territory has made monumental strides in promoting eco-tourism in the seven sister states, Andaman and Nicobar Islands, Lakshadweep Islands, and Sikkim, here are three specific areas that take the crown in offering uplifting eco-tourism activities:
1. Dirang in Arunachal Pradesh
With monasteries, clearwater rivers, and trails with easy treks, Dirang is a fairy-tale destination in Arunachal Pradesh, allowing you to bask in the picturesque haven of might-misty peaks. Located in the West Kameng district of the state, this hidden gem is barely explored by tourists. As part of their eco-tourism efforts, they maintain a Yak Research Center ideating and analysing methods to improve yak products.
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In the surrounding vicinity, Tippi Orchard is known for its sublime oranges, and Sangti Valley is renowned for its outright scenic views with species of migratory birds such as rare woodpeckers or the Black Necked Crane.
Above this, you’ll spot herds of sheep with breeds imported from across India and countries as far as Russia.
Must Try: The traditional Brokpa (Shepherd) huts that keep occupants cozy in cold temperatures.
2. Auroville in Pondicherry
This tiny settlement is half amid organized woods, and the other half lies on either side of forested areas. The residents label Auroville’s goal as an ecological revolution with allocated territories for ground water recharging, green industries, cultural practices, green ecosystems, etc.
Since their mission is to break the chains of urban encroachment, you’ll come across magnificent signs of this eco-city being a symbol of hope for humanity embracing sustainability.
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With countless solar energy systems in place, structures built to consume less energy, organic eateries boasting of orchards, farms, dairies, and extensive reliance on renewable energy sources – Auroville’s our handmaiden of hope.
Fun Fact: 405 hectares of wasteland were transformed into a wholly green belt to promote the concept of an eco-village.
3. Mawlynnong in Meghalaya
Rightfully labelled as God’s Own Garden, Mawlynnong has officially been India’s cleanest village for almost two decades. Organizations such as UNESCO have also acknowledged Mawlynnong as Asia's cleanest village.
One walk in the village, and you’ll see bamboo structures, be it dustbins, poles, houses, shops, or staircases. Also, every step in this rural community culminates in the oozing scent of petrichor, filling your sense of smell with appreciation.
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Apart from eliminating the use of plastics, wax, and any ingredient nature doesn’t digest, they’ve literally built bamboo staircases at the height of 5 to 7 floors.
Fun Fact: Despite a village with a mere 800 people, their literacy rate is 90%.
Sum up the rich cultural pool of our country and endless lush green oasis in less explored nooks and crannies, and you’ll realize how sustainable technologies are promoting non-invasive farming and sustainable architectures in a multitude of ways.
All cumulative attempts toward eco-tourism take a quantum leap into a forthcoming society of environmental sustainability and responsible tourism.
For travellers seeking a rustic homestay setup with hints of folk tradition and handcrafted lighting, painting, and overall interiors, NotOnMap’s Mystic Village in Khajjiar, Himachal Pradesh, awaits your presence.
Traveler | Copywriter