What is Eco-camp?
The desire to visit nature and to spend times in the wilderness have always been with the humans. However, slowly this interest turned to a nightmare for the very source of it. It didn’t take long for us to understand how destructive our presence in nature is, and with that came lots of researches and studies conducted to reduce the effect. All that led to a new form of traveling, a subsection of tourism industry known as Eco-tourism.
Eco-tourism is traveling to pristine natural area with the purpose of enjoying it but with minimal effect on the environment of the visited place. So that the place is left with minimal human intervention and is enjoyed by following generations as well. Although the main goal of ecotourism is preservation of environment, at the heart of it lies a form of communication with locals and investment in programs and projects that work to enhance the nature.
With the popularity of ecotourism as an alternative form of traveling that don’t have the negative aspects of the mass-tourism, substitute services were provided as well. One of these services is using eco-camps instead of hotels, lodge, huts or shelters for your accommodation that provide almost the same services and with much less danger to nature.
It’s difficult to put framework on the concept of Eco camps since it is so diverse and different in various parts of the world. However, enjoying nature with least amount of effect on the environment, repetitive clearing of the area of human intervention, and using renewable energies as fuel are the basic parts of an eco-camp.
Following all the mentioned principles and taking model from Argentina, Brazil and Nepal, Atour Adventure Group has set up its own eco-camp on the south face of Damavand and Hesarchal area of Alam-Kuh. In order to do so, first, the Eco camps of other countries were analyzed, especially countries that were very successful in this field. Then representatives of the company were sent to visit these camps and learn the planning, organizing, and managing of an eco-camp in a mountainous area.
With great knowledge and newly gained experience, the latest models of mountain tents and other equipment were purchased to make the most standard and suitable camp possible. The Kailas alpine and polar tents were chosen for having dynamic structure, a characteristic that brings them to the top list of every professional mountaineers.
Separate section was made to be used as a W.C. and Shower. rly. The tents are equipped with solar panels to provide the necessary energy and they all have mattress. The wastes are all separated and taken down once a week and at the end of the season a clearance project begins that removes traces of human intervention from the area. There are no disposable dishes in the camp.
Atour Eco-Camp Services
Although Atour camps have an environmental purpose, they are part of the tourism industry and must provide good quality services for the guests. There are numerous services provided in Atour Adventure eco-camp and in both destinations of Damavand and Alamkuh.
Among the tents, one is bigger than the rest and used as a dining section where warm freshly made food is served. There are also free hot and cold drinks served to all the guests. The staffs in the camp prepare lunch box for the ascend day and when the mountaineers return from summit, warm food awaits them.
The list of camps services is as below:
· Tent with mattress
· Breakfast, lunch, dinner (Warm freshly cooked food)
· Lunch box for ascends
· Hot and cold drinks
Electricity for battery recharge