Participants in the first International Urban
Ecotourism Conference (2004) respect Urban Ecotourism as
an ongoing opportunity to conserve biological and social diversity,
create new jobs and improve the quality of life. We issue the
Recognizing urban centers as cradles of civilization, socio-political
progress, examples of co-existence between diverse cultures
Recognizing the importance of ecotourism in facilitating cultural
exchange, environmental conservation, sustainable and equitable
We, the participants of the first international Urban
Ecotourism Conference, ask interested stakeholders -- officials
at the local, federal and international levels, relevant cultural,
historical and environmental organizations, the private sector,
travelers and residents -- to focus on common goals:
Restoring and conserving natural and cultural heritage
including natural landscapes and biodiversity, and indigenous
Maximizing local benefits and engaging the local community
as owners, investors, hosts and guides;
Educating visitors and residents on environmental matters,
heritage resources, sustainability;
Reducing our ecological footprint.
We propose that local authorities and other stakeholders should
work together in taking the following measures:
INFORMATION AND COMMUNICATION
Share news about local endeavors towards environmental
and biodiversity protection.
Improve existing information centers with details on
urban environment and culture or create new centers.
Conduct surveys of best practices from other cities,
and share with all interested stakeholders.
Improve interpretation of natural and cultural features
for residents and visitors.
Showcase urban ecotourism models to stimulate broader
awareness, acceptance and interest.
Create and distribute green maps
Showcase biodiversity conservation
Increase public green spaces and guarantee the free use
of public space.
Create opportunities for positive interaction among residents
Encourage participation by all stakeholders -- particularly
medium-sized enterprises that are the core of sustainable tourism
and urban ecotourism.
Integrate municipal development of Urban Ecotourism bottom-up
with regional, national and international allies.
Encourage connections between the tourism industry and
the cultural heritage and environmental sectors
Focus on enhancement/cleanup of the urban environment
Encourage renewable energy sources
Finance adequate infrastructure, public spaces, personnel
to develop Urban Ecotourism in an organized fashion.
Provide incentives to develop tourism and employment
in marginalized areas.
Develop and promote natural and organic product markets
(particularly those with local goods).
Develop interconnected bicycle lanes/trails and walking
Support and promote a user friendly system of public
transit for tourists and residents
Encourage transportation innovation and research to develop