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Responsible tourism: Stonehaven Bay villa apartments, Tobago
One easy way to lessen your environmental impact during a holiday in Tobago is to consider whether you really need to hire a car. It's not completely necessary for our location, we're just a short walk to the beach and there are plenty of amazing places nearby to hike, horse ride and explore by mountain bike. There are also some great locations for hiking, and you can visit Grafton Sanctuary and its birdwatching trails to learn more about the Island's exotic bird species. We try to manage the grounds around the villa as naturally as possible and keep everything in keeping with the landscape, this helps to attract more birdlife into the area. There are places in the nearby village to stock up on local produce.
The landscape of Tobago is unique and one of the most unspoiled in the Caribbean. The eastern landscape of the interior rises steeply into tall peaks, providing shelter for the oldest protected rainforest reserve in the western hemisphere. The rainforest is vital to Tobago's ecology, it protects the soil and landscape from erosion by wind and rain; and river valleys and other agricultural areas from floods. There is of course a desire to explore the area amongst both locals and visitors, and we'd recommend doing this with a responsible guide who can ensure that the impact on the area is minimised.
Tobago's economy is heavily supported by tourism, and relies on businesses working hard to promote one and other to visitors. The beauty of Tobago for visitors is that most of the businesses you encounter are run by local and native people, so you can get a more authentic experience of our Island as well as helping local people create a sustainable way of living.
We support many local restaurants, shops and activity providers by letting our guests know what they can do nearby once they arrive. Guests can choose from water sports including windsurfing, sailing and fishing trails. We can also organise horse riding with a local company who can take you along the beach or through the plantations. Mountain biking is always growing in popularity and there are guides who can show you some fantastic sights in a low impact way. Of course, there are also many Tobagonian locals who have tasked themselves with learning about the Island's landscape inside and out, and you'll be surprised how much you can learn from heading out with a tour guide for just a few hours. Tours of the rainforest and Little Tobago are popular, and many tours will include stops in local villages for food and drinks, which helps to benefit a broader range of local communities.