Governor Andrew M. Cuomo today announced the launch of an extensive new online guide to sustainable travel in New York State along with bookable itineraries, making it one of the only U.S. destinations to promote sustainable tourism on such a large scale. The New York State guide and itineraries, set for official release on November 6, were produced in partnership with responsibletravel.com, a leading international travel organization and pioneer in sustainable and responsible tourism. The partnership and program reflect Governor Cuomo's commitment to increasing tourism throughout New York, conserving the state's unrivaled natural wonders and supporting local communities.
"This initiative will continue to New York State's history of pioneering environmentally responsible tourism," Governor Cuomo said. "From our millions of acres of protected wilderness where New Yorkers can hike or kayak, to our vast network of parklands, New York is truly unmatched when it comes to opportunities for sustainable tourism. On top of all that, these assets support eco-friendly jobs and growth in local communities, and ultimately reinforce the value of preservation."
The Responsible Travel Guide to New York State provides an overview of the culture, history and ecology of each of New York's regions as well as practical information on public transportation, eco-friendly activities and accommodations. An easy-to-navigate format invites eco-oriented travelers to discover many lesser known and authentic aspects of New York State. Whether visitors want to explore an Amish culture or bicycle along former Erie Canal tow-paths, they'll find this guide an inspiring and useful resource. Equally valuable as a planning tool, the guide links to other useful sites as well as a tour section that is constantly growing with a multitude of click-to-book New York itineraries. For a preview of the new guide, visit: www.responsibletravel.com/holidays/new-york-state/travel-guide.
The guide is being published and promoted by U.K.-based responsibletravel.com. A separate section of the tour operator's website features a growing catalog of easy-to-book eco-tourism activities in every region of the state. The online guide and tour program will be officially introduced on November 6 during the Responsible Travel Awards at World Travel Mart in London.
Justin Francis, co-founder of responsibletravel.com, said, "We are delighted to be working with New York State to find and celebrate the best examples of responsible tourism. I was staggered by the diversity of experiences we found within the state, and by the contribution these make to conservation and communities. I think our clients will be too. We are thrilled that New York State has decided to turn perhaps the most powerful tourism branding in the world, I Love NY, green to help us launch this guide."
The guide has been penned by Catherine Mack, an ecotourism expert and writer who has contributed to several ecotourism guidebooks as well as responsible-travel oriented articles for the National Geographic Traveller UK, The Irish Times, and other publications.
New York's strong commitment to conservation dates back more than a century to the ratification of the "Forever Wild" amendment to the State Constitution in 1894. The amendment mandates that state-owned and acquired forest preserve lands be "forever kept as wild forest lands." New York's Adirondack Park, the nation's largest park outside of Alaska, is bigger than Yellowstone, Yosemite, Grand Canyon, Glacier and Great Smoky Mountains National Parks combined and is just one of the state's many natural treasures. The original two preserves -- the Catskill and Adirondack parks -- have since expanded to more than 175 New York State Parks with activities such as fishing, hiking, mountain biking, swimming, kayaking, horseback riding, cultural presentations and historic re-enactments.