World Environment Day 2024: Top 5 Ecotourism Destinations in India

From the majestic Himalayas to the lush Western Ghats and the serene backwaters of Kerala, India provides abundant ecotourism opportunities that are both sustainable and enriching.

These destinations foster a harmonious relationship with nature, encourages responsible travel, and promotes sustainable living among local communities.

1. Kaziranga National Park, Assam

Kaziranga is dedicated to the conservation of wildlife and their natural habitats. It promotes sustainable tourism practices by limiting human interference, ensuring the protection of its diverse flora and fauna.

How to Reach:

  • By Air: The nearest airport is in Jorhat (97 km away).
  • By Train: The nearest railway station is Furkating (75 km away).
  • By Road: Well-connected by road from Guwahati, Jorhat, and Tezpur.

Best Time to Visit: November to April

Travel Tip: Book jeep safaris in advance to ensure availability during peak seasons.

USP: It’s home to the largest population of the one-horned rhinoceros in the world.

2. Sundarbans National Park, West Bengal

Sundarbans National Park emphasizes the conservation of mangrove ecosystems and endangered species. It supports sustainable tourism by controlling visitor access and offering eco-friendly boat tours, which minimize environmental impact while educating tourists on the importance of mangroves.

How to Reach:

  • By Air: The nearest airport is Netaji Subhash Chandra Bose International Airport, Kolkata (112 km away)
  • By Train: The nearest railway station is Canning (48 km away).
  • By Road/Boat: From Kolkata, travel to Godkhali by road and then take a boat to the Sundarbans.

Best Time to Visit: September to March

Travel Tip: Hire a local guide for a richer experience and better chances of wildlife sightings.

USP: It is the largest mangrove forest in the world & is home to the Royal Bengal Tiger.


3. Periyar Wildlife Sanctuary, Kerala

Periyar is committed to preserving its rich biodiversity through community-based ecotourism initiatives. Programs like nature walks, bamboo rafting, and tribal heritage visits promote sustainable tourism and involve local communities in conservation efforts.

How to Reach:

  • By Air: The nearest airport is Madurai (140 km away) and Cochin International Airport (190 km away).
  • By Train: The nearest railway station is Kottayam (114 km away).
  • By Road: Well-connected by road from Kochi, Kottayam, and Madurai.

Best Time to Visit: October to March

Travel Tip: Opt for the bamboo rafting experience for an immersive view of the park’s wildlife and scenery.

USP: It is known for its elephant herds and the Periyar Lake.


4. Valley of Flowers, Uttarakhand

The Valley of Flowers is a prime example of ecotourism, focusing on the preservation of its unique floral diversity. Strict regulations limit human impact, ensuring that the pristine environment remains untouched. Trekkers are educated about the fragile ecosystem and encouraged to follow eco-friendly practices.

How to Reach:

  • By Air: The nearest airport is Jolly Grant Airport, Dehradun (295 km away).
  • By Train: The nearest railway station is Rishikesh (275 km away).
  • By Road: From Rishikesh, drive to Govindghat and then trek 13 km to the Valley of Flowers.

Best Time to Visit: July to September

Travel Tip: Carry enough warm clothing and rain gear as the weather can be unpredictable.

USP: A UNESCO World Heritage Site known for its diverse flora and stunning alpine meadows.


5. Mawlynnong, Meghalaya

Mawlynnong promotes eco-friendly living by using bamboo dustbins, maintaining a ban on plastic, and practicing rainwater harvesting. The village offers homestays, allowing tourists to experience the local Khasi culture sustainably. The famous living root bridges showcase the harmonious relationship between the villagers and nature.

How to Reach:

  • By Air: The nearest airport is in Shillong (78 km away).
  • By Train: Guwahati Railway Station (151 km away) is the nearest major station.
  • By Road: Well-connected by road from Shillong and Guwahati.

Best Time to Visit: October to April

Travel Tip: Respect the local customs and traditions, and maintain the cleanliness of the village.

USP: It is known as the cleanest village in Asia and famous for its living root bridges.


By highlighting offbeat places, rich cultures, and ancient traditions, ecotourism benefits both travellers and nature. We get to experience unique moments, and of course, nature thrives.