Eco-Friendly Travel: Sustainable Tourism in Huatulco

Did you know that Huatulco, a beach destination located on the southern coast of Mexico, is recognized as one of the most advanced tourism communities in terms of environmental protection? With its commitment to sustainable practices and eco-conscious travel, Huatulco has become a beacon of responsible tourism in the region.

In the 1970s, Huatulco embarked on a journey towards sustainability with the development of Integrally Planned Resorts. This visionary approach laid the foundation for responsible tourism practices. In 1983, the Master Plan for the Development of the Bays of Huatulco was implemented, which prioritized environmental preservation and sustainability. Today, seventy percent of the land in Huatulco is preserved as an ecological reserve, ensuring that the natural beauty of the destination remains unspoiled for generations to come.

Huatulco has implemented various environmental initiatives to minimize its impact on the ecosystem. The destination boasts modern water and sewage treatment plants, harnesses gray water for irrigation in golf courses and public parks, and has received the prestigious international Green Globe certification, making it the first tourism destination on the American continent to achieve this distinction. Additionally, Huatulco is designated as a Biosphere Reserve by UNESCO, further highlighting its commitment to environmental conservation.

Whether you’re exploring the pristine beaches, diving into the clear waters, or hiking through the protected natural areas, Huatulco offers an unparalleled experience of sustainable tourism in a truly picturesque setting.

Key Takeaways:

  • Huatulco is recognized as a leader in sustainable tourism and environmental protection.
  • The destination has achieved the international Green Globe certification and is designated as a Biosphere Reserve by UNESCO.
  • Huatulco’s commitment to sustainability is evident through the preservation of 70% of its land as an ecological reserve.
  • The area implements programs such as modern water and sewage treatment plants and gray water usage for irrigation.
  • Huatulco offers unparalleled opportunities for eco-conscious travelers to experience responsible tourism.

The Journey towards Sustainability

Huatulco’s journey towards sustainability began with the establishment of the Green Team Huatulco in 2004. This team, composed of representatives from various sectors, implemented actions and programs to position Huatulco as a leading sustainable tourism community.

The destination has adopted the EarthCheck Program for Environmental Administration to obtain international Green Globe certification. Huatulco has achieved various certifications and designations, including the EarthCheck Gold and Platinum Certifications. These accolades are a testament to our commitment to environmentally-friendly practices.

One of our key focuses is on sustainable accommodations in Huatulco, ensuring that visitors have the option to stay in eco-friendly hotels and resorts that align with their values. These accommodations prioritize environmentally-conscious practices such as energy efficiency, waste reduction, and water conservation.

At Huatulco, we believe in promoting green tourism practices throughout the community. We encourage tourists to engage in activities that have minimal impact on the environment and local culture. By supporting local businesses that prioritize sustainability, travelers can contribute to the preservation of our natural resources and the overall wellbeing of our community.

Our commitment to ethical travel in Huatulco extends beyond environmental initiatives. We strive to raise awareness and educate both visitors and locals about responsible tourism practices. This includes respecting local customs and traditions, supporting fair trade initiatives, and minimizing the use of single-use plastics.

Environmental Initiatives Sustainable Accommodations Green Tourism Practices Ethical Travel
Adoption of the EarthCheck Program Eco-friendly hotels and resorts Minimal environmental impact activities Respect for local customs and traditions
Obtained Green Globe certification Energy efficiency and waste reduction Support for local sustainable businesses Supporting fair trade initiatives
EarthCheck Gold and Platinum Certifications Water conservation efforts Minimizing single-use plastics

Our dedication to sustainability is an ongoing journey. We continue to explore new ways to reduce our carbon footprint, conserve natural resources, and protect the unique biodiversity of our region. By choosing Huatulco as your destination and supporting our environmental initiatives, you become a part of this important effort towards a greener future.

Huatulco’s Protected Natural Areas

Huatulco is blessed with an abundance of protected natural areas that showcase the region’s breathtaking biodiversity. These pristine havens, carefully designated and maintained, ensure the preservation of Huatulco’s unique ecosystems for generations to come.

Huatulco National Park

One of the crown jewels of Huatulco’s protected areas is Huatulco National Park. In 1998, the Mexican Government recognized the ecological significance of an expansive area spanning over 11,800 hectares, etching its place as a Protected Natural Area. This national park boasts a breathtaking variety of landscapes, encompassing dense forests, sparkling streams, and captivating coastal vistas.

Within Huatulco National Park, a remarkable array of plant and animal species call this sanctuary home. The park’s diverse habitats provide vital support for over 700 species of plants, including stunning orchids and towering trees. Animal enthusiasts will delight in encountering a vast array of wildlife, including vibrant birds, elusive mammals, and fascinating reptiles.

Scuba diving and snorkeling enthusiasts can explore the mesmerizing underwater world teeming with vibrant coral reefs, a true testament to the park’s commitment to preserving marine biodiversity. Whether you’re hiking through lush forests, observing captivating birds, or diving amidst the vibrant coral reefs, Huatulco National Park is a nature lover’s paradise.

Ramsar Site: Wetlands and Corals of the Coastal Zone of Huatulco

Recognizing the importance of Huatulco’s wetlands and coral communities, the Convention on Wetlands (Ramsar Convention) designated the “Wetlands and Corals of the Coastal Zone of Huatulco” as Ramsar Site 1321 in 2003. This prestigious designation affirms the significant ecological value of this region, spanning over 44,000 hectares of land and sea.

The Ramsar Site in Huatulco showcases a rare convergence of land and marine ecosystems. Its mangrove forests, swamps, lagoons, and vibrant coral communities make it a haven for rich biodiversity. Mangroves serve as critical nurseries for marine life, supporting a diverse range of fish, crustaceans, and other creatures. Additionally, these distinctive wetlands play a vital role in mitigating coastal erosion and supporting water quality.

For nature enthusiasts, the Ramsar Site presents endless opportunities for bird watching and hiking. Witnessing the graceful flight of herons, the impressive dives of pelicans, or the vibrant plumage of exotic birds is an awe-inspiring experience within this natural sanctuary. As you explore the Ramsar Site, keep an eye out for the diverse coral communities beneath the crystal-clear waters, a testament to the resilience of marine life in this enchanting region.

biodiversity in Huatulco

Within these protected natural areas, visitors to Huatulco can immerse themselves in the wonders of nature while contributing to the conservation and preservation of these fragile ecosystems. From scuba diving amidst vibrant coral reefs to hiking through lush forests teeming with wildlife, the opportunities to connect with nature are endless in Huatulco’s protected natural areas.

Yiimtii – A Handcrafted Example of Ecotourism

Yiimtii is an extraordinary exemplar of ecotourism nestled on the scenic cliffs above Playa Carrizalita. This captivating eco-resort is the remarkable outcome of the visionary efforts of Marytere Farrell and her husband Naim Sultan. Built with utmost dedication to sustainable practices, Yiimtii offers its guests a distinctive experience that seamlessly blends with the natural surroundings.

Visitors to Yiimtii have the opportunity to immerse themselves in the lush beauty of the surrounding jungle and revel in the tranquility of the stunning beach. The resort boasts eco-friendly accommodations that harmonize with the environment while providing comfort and luxury.

Yiimtii prides itself on its commitment to organic agriculture, responsible water management, rigorous waste reduction measures, and the utilization of limited solar power. These practices enable the resort to provide an authentic, environmentally conscious experience for its guests, ensuring that their stay leaves a minimal ecological footprint.

Indulge in the unique charm of Yiimtii, where the unspoiled beauty of nature and the concept of responsible tourism harmoniously coexist.

Experience Nature’s Splendor

Yiimtii offers a wealth of activities that allow guests to connect with the natural wonders of Playa Carrizalita. Whether it’s embarking on a guided hike through the verdant jungle or engaging in invigorating water sports, such as snorkeling or kayaking, there are numerous opportunities to appreciate the region’s rich biodiversity.

Unwind on the pristine beach, listening to the soothing melodies of the waves crashing against the shore. As the sun sets, witness a breathtaking display of colors painting the sky, creating an unforgettable panorama.

“Yiimtii is our labor of love, where visitors can immerse themselves in nature while leaving a positive impact on the environment. We believe in the power of sustainable tourism to preserve the natural beauty of Huatulco for generations to come.” – Marytere Farrell, Co-founder of Yiimtii

Unique Features of Yiimtii Benefits
Eco-friendly accommodations blending seamlessly with the environment Enhanced guest experience
Organic agriculture and sustainable farming practices Supports local communities and reduces environmental impact
Responsible water management Conserves natural resources and preserves the ecosystem
Rigorous waste reduction measures Minimizes ecological footprint
Utilization of limited solar power Reduces reliance on non-renewable energy sources

Playa Carrizalita

Immerse yourself in the beauty of Yiimtii, where sustainability and a unique connection with nature converge to create an unforgettable eco-tourism experience.


Huatulco is a shining example of sustainable tourism, where environmental protection and eco-friendly practices take center stage. As a leading destination for responsible travel, Huatulco has received international recognition and certifications for its commitment to conservation. The area’s dedication to preserving its natural beauty is evident in the establishment of protected natural areas like Huatulco National Park and Ramsar Site 1321.

Visitors to Huatulco have the opportunity to immerse themselves in nature while treading lightly on the environment. From exploring the lush landscapes of the ecological reserve to staying in eco-friendly accommodations, sustainable tourism practices are seamlessly integrated into the Huatulco experience. By supporting local initiatives such as Yiimtii, a handcrafted eco-resort, travelers can further contribute to the preservation and enhancement of the destination.

With its ongoing commitment to innovation and a greener future, Huatulco is a destination that sets the bar high for sustainable travel. The combination of breathtaking natural landscapes, eco-conscious practices, and a thriving community dedicated to environmental stewardship creates the ideal environment for eco-friendly travel. Whether you’re seeking adventure, relaxation, or a deeper connection with nature, Huatulco offers a truly sustainable tourism experience that embraces and protects the beauty of the destination for generations to come.


What makes Huatulco a sustainable tourism destination?

Huatulco is recognized as one of the most advanced tourism communities in terms of environmental protection. It has implemented programs such as modern water and sewage treatment plants, the use of gray water for golf courses and public parks, and has received certifications and awards for its sustainable practices.

What is the Green Team Huatulco?

The Green Team Huatulco is a team composed of representatives from various sectors that implemented actions and programs to position Huatulco as a leading sustainable tourism community. They have adopted the EarthCheck Program for Environmental Administration to obtain international Green Globe certification.

What are some sustainable accommodations in Huatulco?

Huatulco offers sustainable accommodations that promote green tourism practices. Visitors can choose from eco-friendly resorts, hotels, and lodges that prioritize conserving natural resources, reducing waste, and raising awareness among the population.

What are some protected natural areas in Huatulco?

Huatulco is home to several protected natural areas. Huatulco National Park covers over 11,800 hectares of land and preserves the biodiversity of the region. The “Wetlands and Corals of the Coastal Zone of Huatulco” is designated as Ramsar Site 1321 and is known for its important coral communities.

What is Yiimtii and how does it promote ecotourism?

Yiimtii is a handcrafted eco-resort located above Playa Carrizalita. It is built using sustainable practices and focuses on organic agriculture, water management, waste reduction, and limited solar power. Yiimtii offers guests a unique and environmentally friendly experience in harmony with nature.

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