How often do you walk into a travel agent and ask for an eco-friendly holiday? The answer is probably never. 

 

You may be imagining living in a tree house for a week, with another four families all sleeping on the floor under hessian blankets. However eco-friendly in terms of holidays simply means that many tour operators are doing more to help the environment they offer holidays in, putting money back into local communties and being more aware of the impact they have. It doesn?t necessarily mean swapping your luxury beach holiday, and if an eco-friendly holiday is the same price as the ones you already go on, then why not? 

 

Travelmaker work closely with a company called Porini Camps who provide eco-friendly safaris in Kenya. They are committed to helping preserve the local wildlife and environment by supporting local communities. Through sustainable eco-tourism ventures, there are plenty of options for people looking for something close to the wild. 

Cheetah Safari 

This 7-night safari for big cat fans, offers accomodation in a new lodge in Samburu, deluxe tents on the banks of the Ewaso Nyiro River and the game reserve at Lake Nakuru. Combining some of the best wildlife areas in Kenya, enjoy floodlit game viewing at night and the Masai Mara which is famed for its vast numbers of plains game and spectacular big cats. 

 

Nairobi, Samburu, Lake Nakuru, Masai Mara from £1,619 per person travelling on selected dates 1 Nov – 8 Dec 09.

Includes return scheduled flights, safari and 7 nights? accomodation with 7 breakfasts, 6 lunches and 6 dinners

 

National Geographic Gorillas & Golden Monkeys

Everyone knows of the National Geographic brand. But did you know they did tours? Well they do and they are environmentally focused. 

 

If the closest you have been to these fascinating creatures is Durrell then this one is for you. This small group (max 15 participants) tracking adventure in Rwanda and Uganda gives you a chance to see them in their natural environment with the company of the finest guides. Stay in luxurious hotels and lodges after a strenuous day?s walking. 

 

10th July £4,998, 7 August £5,698, 

27 November £5,598, Both Travelmaker Costa Rica 

One of, if not ?THE? eco-tourist hot spot in Central America; Costa Rica is a haven for those of you wanting to explore more of Mother Nature?s beauty. Bordered by Nicaragua and Panama the ?Rich Coast? is ranked 5th in the world in terms of the 2008 Environmental Performance Index and in 2007 their government stated they wanted Costa Rica to be the first country to become carbon neutral by 2021

 

One of Costa Rica?s national treasures is the amount of natural diversity. The rainforests have created unique habitats, with a microclimate all of their own and a plethora of colourful wildlife. We hear canoeing through the watery forest of the Tortuguero National Park is a must or trekking through the Manual Antonio National Park with its gorgeous beaches. There is a whole host of jungle-based activities including cycling, horse riding, canopy tours, or if you just fancy looking for monkeys and crocodiles, that can be done too.

 

There are also the cloud forests which cover the higher slopes of the mountains and volcanoes. The volcanoes themselves are considered one of the main tourist attractions, which supportsthe forests around it. Arenal is the most famous and active volcano in Costa Rica, pumping out ash and glowing red lava almost every day, with some lively bubbling mud pools too. 

 

If you are just looking for a relaxing holiday though, there are a number of luxury resorts, golf courses and beaches.  For thrill seekers, there is great diving, world class white water rafting and the surf is also good here all year round.