Chile beat out other countries such as Argentina, Brazil, Colombia, Costa Rica, the United States, and France, and only Canada obtained more “green places” than Chile on the American continent.
The Cape Horn Biosphere Reserve, Huilo Huilo, Chiloé Island, and Curacaví were chosen among the “2016 Sustainable Destinations Top 100″ on the planet in the second edition of this joint initiative of four leading sustainable tourism organizations (TravelMole, Vision on Sustainable Tourism, Totem Tourism, and Green Destinations), which replaces the selection made up until 2010 by National Geographic.
This is an international award given to those regions that stand out for their biodiversity and their efforts to offer tourism that is more respectful of the environment.
In the previous edition from 2014, Lake Llanquihue and Easter Island were the only Chilean sites included on the top 100 list of green destinations, along with the Great Wall of China, Vancouver, Canada, the Portuguese Archipelago of the Azores, and the Slovenian capital of Ljubljana.
Cape Horn Biosphere Reserve
The reserve was created in 2005 and encompasses an area of 5 million hectares, both on land and at sea. Three national parks are included in this area, including the Alberto de Agostini National Park to the south of Punta Arenas, and the Cape Horn National Park next to Puerto Williams, which is the southernmost national park on the planet.
This area protects thousands of tiny plants and lichens that make up part of the “miniature forests of Cape Horn.” Given the fact that tourism has doubled over the last few years, the destination has created a new sustainable tourism activity called “ecotourism with a magnifying glass in your hand” in order to discover, enjoy, and appreciate the ecological, economic, aesthetic, and ethical values of the small organisms that are not normally given much notice. This activity, which is conducted in the Omora Park in Puerto Williams, has a low environmental impact and a very high educational value, allowing visitors to discover local nature throughout the year.
This destination’s primary tourist attractions are the waterfalls and the largest canopy network in South America. Huilo Huilo has become a well-known sustainable tourism destination, and as a result, it has seen a significant increase in the amount of visitors. Countless improvements to this destination have been recognized through various awards for sustainable practices implemented in the region.
This destination is aiming for sustainable tourism development and has an active local community that participates in decision-making processes. The island is renowned for its natural and cultural heritage and it actively strives to conserve and protect both. It also supports and promotes local artisans, who produce a considerable part of the souvenirs sold in this region.
This is a town located in the Metropolitan Region of Santiago that offers visitors both natural and cultural experiences. Curacaví focuses largely on supporting local traditions and cultures, and the local people prepare traditional dishes using regional, organic products. This destination also has policy plans focused on sustainability.