Ecotones was born out of a passion to bring guests closer to nature. While most hotels and resorts utilize the beauty of nature and the wilderness to sell themselves, there are very few that give back to nature or contribute to conservation in any way. Eco-tourism—responsible travel to natural areas that does not damage the environment, contributes to its conservation, and improves the well-being of local people—is an ethical option and Ecotones attempts to imbibe this culture in its true sense. Guests can indulge in nature-oriented exploratory activities such as bird watching and nature trails or can just sit back and enjoy the scenic view. With activities such as cycling and guided nature walks, we hope to take people one step closer to nature—and inculcate an interest for the natural world through observation and learning about its many intricacies.
One important aspect of eco-tourism includes the involvement of local communities. The staff at Ecotones consists of about 90 percent locals, who get their training in accordance with contemporary tourism standards. Many fruits and vegetables are also sourced locally, so that local farmers, small businessmen & women profit from Ecotones, ensuring community involvement and upliftment. Guests can visit local farmers, interact with them and try their hand at harvesting organic produce too.
Ecotones also conducts small programs including awareness sessions about nature and wildlife. There are informative discussions with the locals so that the local community benefits in as many ways as possible. Local clean-up drives and native tree sapling planting programs are also underway. The target of these programs is to reach out to the public about the necessity for nature conservation.
Apart from these features, we have tried to be as eco-friendly as possible while building Ecotones. Our mud houses are ample proof of this, where one can enjoy the rustic flavour of a hut, equipped with modern amenities. We also discourage the use of plastic bottles on the campus and offer drinking water only in re-usable glass bottles. To give our guests the true flavour of local cuisine, our menu is very traditional and we do not offer exotic or Continental cuisine. What we have on offer instead, is local ethnic food prepared from locally-sourced ingredients for our guests, which also gives clients an opportunity to sample local flavours and delicacies. We believe that even small actions like these can go a long way in preserving the beauty of Munnar and its surroundings, which are gradually degrading, due to the enormous pressure of callous and commercial tourism.