Thanks to Reserva Biológica Huilo Huilo’s conservation efforts, this diverse natural wonderland has been awarded the title of “Best for Conservation of Wildlife and Habitats” by the 2012 Virgin Holidays Responsible Tourism Awards.
The Responsible Tourism awards celebrate the stars of the responsible tourism industry, aiming to support the individuals and organizations that are working to benefit destinations and local peoples around the world.
Huilo Huilo is a unique destination that gives visitors the chance to enjoy nature while also stimulating the local economy and supporting conservation efforts. The reserve is a privately owned protected area of Southern Chile near Valdivia that covers 386 square miles (100,000 ha) of Patagonian temperate forest.
According to the Responsible Tourism Awards, the owners of Huilo Huilo have changed the way in which the surrounding community supports itself – from logging to conservation and sustainable tourism. The scale of transformation at Huilo Huilo was especially impressive to the judges.
Huilo Huilo has been working since 2004 to conserve the area’s native species and plants. The area is home to the endangered Darwin’s frog, a species rapidly declining in population, and the huemul, an endangered species of deer found in Southern Chile and Argentina.
In addition to preserving endangered species, Huilo Huilo drives economic activity in the region by creating jobs and providing educational programs to the local community. The reserve aims to improve the quality of life for the local community, and support the culture of native people.
According to Alexandra Petermann, Executive Director of Huilo Huilo, the award puts Chile on the map as a trailblazer of the sustainable tourism industry.
“The award shows Chileans that it is really possible to put our country out into international territory and it’s possible to be a leader in sustainable tourism,” Petermann told The Santiago Times.
You can learn more about planning a visit to Huilo Huilo through their website.