For travel that doesn’t hurt the environment, look no further than these ECO-certified tours.
When organising our travel, ensuring that we leave the area as good (or better) than before is so important. And nobody knows the environment better than the locals, which is why tours are such a great, hassle-free way to see the sights.
We’ve found the top ECO-certified tours in Australia that not only take the stress out of planning for you but are also proven to take sustainability seriously. Ecotourism Australia’s ECO-certified experiences are backed by a strong, well-managed commitment to sustainable practices, so travellers are sure to find high-quality nature-based tourism experiences no matter what their interests are. Here are some of our favourites.
We’ve also covered the top ECO-certified attractions and accommodations in another article to help you round out your sustainable travel options.
1. AAT Kings – Inspiring Journeys
Discover ancient cultures and rugged destinations with the guiding hand of an expert at Inspiring Journeys. It offers the perfect balance of freedom from the stress of holiday planning, and just enough flexibility to shape your journey with a choice of optional experiences.
2. Coral Expeditions
As an Australian eco-accredited expedition cruise line, Coral Expeditions take small groups of eco-aware travellers to the most beautiful and remote destinations in Australia, New Zealand, Southeast Asia, the South Pacific and Indian Ocean Islands.
3. Trek Tasmania, Tas
Trek Tasmania is a boutique tour company focused on taking small groups onto the paths less travelled and into the heart of the Tasmanian wilderness. Their specialty is offering quality, deep immersion wilderness experiences, and their commitment is to sustainable eco-tourism principles.
Trekking through Tasmania is the best way to see it. (Image: Tayla Gentle)
4. Moonshadow Cruises, NSW
With vessels operating from Port Stephens Harbour, Moonshadow Cruises offer a range of scheduled cruises and private charter options. In port or at sea, for whale or dolphin watching, lunch or dinner, corporate events, birthdays, weddings or Christmas parties.
Spot a dolphin on a Moonshadow Cruise. (Image: Destination NSW)
5. Elixir Journeys, Central Coast, NSW
At Elixir Journeys, they are all about private and small-group nature-based experiences that will engage the senses, hyper-local products with low-carbon impact and great hosts. All of the experiences are crafted with attention to detail, love, and little luxury touches, and ensure just the right balance of activity and relaxation.
6. Twelve Apostles Lodge Walk, Vic
On the Twelve Apostles Lodge Walk, everything is taken care of. The only job is to put one foot in front of the other. They’ll show you the way, carry all the extras on their back and point out natural features. Plus, you’ll get scrumptious lunches, daypacks and walking sticks, cool lemonade and soothing foot baths at the end of each walk. Return each evening to the private eco-lodge where you’ll be served gourmet meals complemented by local wines and beers.
The Twelve Apostles Lodge Walk is the ultimate tour. (Image: Visit Victoria)
7. Flinders Ranges Odysseys, SA
Tour guides from Flinders Ranges Odysseys, a sister company to Kangaroo Island Odysseys have the same passion for the outback of South Australia as they do for Kangaroo Island. When touring with Flinders Ranges Odysseys tour guides, you won’t believe the incredible mountain range spanning 430 kilometres, its ancient landscapes, significant aboriginal heritage, and its pioneering history.
8. SA Eco Tours, SA
Discover one of the world’s oldest landscapes, the vast areas of unspoilt wilderness, unique wildlife and rich traditional aboriginal culture that is Outback South Australia. Taking small group eco safaris to the Flinders Ranges and the Yorke Peninsula, SA Eco Tours offers high-end private charters and special interest groups. SA Eco Tours offers authentic encounters, allows maximum freedom and has the utmost respect for the environment, nature and local people.
9. Kangaroo Island Marine Adventures, SA
Having seen and experienced the island from both land and sea with its unspoilt beaches, breathtaking scenery and abundance of wildlife, Kangaroo Island Marine Tours can provide you with an insight into the true beauty of Kangaroo Island.
See a dolphin at Kangaroo Island Marine Adventures. (Image: South Australian Tourism Commission)
10. Untamed Escapes, SA and WA
Untamed Escapes connects travellers from all walks of life with adventure, wildlife, wellness and epicurean experiences in nature. Guided by the region’s most passionate storytellers, the small group and exclusive private tours roam over two-thirds of untamed Australia in the regions between Perth and Adelaide.
Roam over two-thirds of untamed Australia. (Image: Riley M Williams)
11. HeliSpirit, WA and NT
Multi-award-winning HeliSpirit operates a fleet of helicopters at key locations across the Kimberley including Kununurra, Purnululu National Park (Bungle Bungle) and Mitchell Falls, as well as Katherine Gorge and Karratha. Take to the air to discover the awe-inspiring landscapes with a scenic flight or an extended Luxury Helicopter Safari.
Take a scenic flight with HeliSpirit. (Image: Tourism Western Australia)
12. Margaret River Discovery Co, WA
The Margaret River Discovery Company offers personalised tours, hosted by expert local guide Sean Blocksidge and his luxury 4WD on a wine and scenic tour that takes you behind the tourist facade, away from the masses to discover people and places you won’t find on your own.
13. Lombadina Tours, WA
Set amidst a tropical oasis, Lombadina offers accommodation that gives you an opportunity to share community life, escape the harsh elements of the Kimberley and time to enjoy one of the most beautiful swimming beaches in the world.
Go fishing with an Aboriginal tour guide at Lombadina. (Image: Tourism Western Australia)
14. Ningaloo Whaleshark n Dive, WA
Ningaloo Whaleshark n Dive provides tours and activities for guests of all ages and fitness levels to experience the Ningaloo Reef. The tours include an Interaction swim with a Whalesharks day tour, Swim with Humpback whale tours and the lovely relaxing Humpback sunset tour.
Go swimming with whale sharks at Ningaloo. (Image: Tourism Western Australia)
15. Alice Springs Helicopters, NT
Alice Springs Helicopters offer a broad range of scenic flights and private charters, over Alice Springs township, East and West MacDonnell Ranges, Old Telegraph Station, Mt Gillen, Heavitree Gap, and Simpsons Gap, just to mention a few. All flights showcase the amazing natural landscapes of the Red Centre region and are available daily.
Alice Springs Helicopters offer a broad range of scenic flights. (Image: Tourism NT and Salty Aura)
16. Nitmiluk Tours, NT
Consisting of 13 separate gorges, Nitmiluk Gorge is a maze of waterways sculpted from the sandstone over countless millennia by the Katherine River. Nitmiluk Tours is the specialist agent offering a great variety of tours that allow you to immerse yourself in the history, rugged beauty and culture of this majestic region.
Be drawn to the spectacular sandstone country of Nitmiluk National Park. (Image: Tourism NT and Charlie Bliss)
17. Davidson’s Arnhemland Safaris, NT
Mt Borradaile is a registered Aboriginal sacred site nestled against the Arnhem Land escarpment. From floodplains to savannah woodlands, Davidson’s Arnehmland Safaris focus is on sustainable tourism showcasing the pristine natural environment and local indigenous culture of the Amurdak people.
Davidson’s Arnhemland Safaris at Mt Borradaile is a registered aboriginal sacred site nestled against the Arnhem Land escarpment. (Image: Tourism Australia and James Fisher)
18. Venture North Safaris, NT
Venture North offer guided micro-group 4WD tours from Darwin in the Northern Territory. Catering to the higher end of the touring market they specialise in taking guests off the beaten track in style. Touring routes included Kakadu, Litchfield and Katherine but also the more remote area such as the Kimberley and Arnhem Land.
Venture into Arnhem Land and be immersed in Aboriginal culture on Venture North’s 4 Day Arnhem Land and Cobourg Peninsula Tour. (Image: Tourism NT and James Fisher)
19. Northern Territory Indigenous Tours, NT
Northern Territory Indigenous Tours offers an expert interpretation of the Top End’s natural and cultural environment from an Aboriginal viewpoint. Experience inspiration, education and adventure in comfort and safety on the owner, guide and former park ranger, Tess Atie’s rugged and beautiful country.
20. Kimberley Quest, WA
Kimberley Quest is a luxury cruise company operating a range of extended wilderness expeditions along the stunning Kimberley coast, cruising between Broome and Darwin. With a maximum of 18 guests, you will cruise in complete comfort and luxury on Kimberley Quest II, a 25-metre vessel custom-designed for relaxing and exploring.
21. Great Adventures Green Island Cruises, Qld
From Cairns, Great Adventures operates ecotourism-based cruises to tropical Green Island, which is also home to the eco-sensitive Green Island Resort. With Great Adventures, you can choose from full and half-day trips to Green Island.
Great Adventures runs daily cruises to tropical Green Island. (Image: Tourism and Events Queensland)
22. Hartley’s Crocodile Adventures, Qld
Hartley’s Crocodile Adventures is the ultimate eco-adventure for the traveller that enjoys experiencing wildlife in a natural setting. This award-winning attraction offers an activity-packed day with crocodile cruises and an array of wildlife presentations.
Feeding time… (Image: Tourism and Events Queensland)
23. Saltwater Eco Tours, Qld
Operating on the peaceful waterways of the Mooloolah River, Saltwater Eco Tours is the first of its kind on the Sunshine Coast. Combining Indigenous culture, maritime history, and live music, and surrounded by the beauty of the coastline and ocean in view, Saltwater Eco Tours truly captures the essence of the Sunshine Coast.
Enjoy the delicious catering with a bush twist. (Image: Tourism and Events Queensland)
24. Ocean Safari Cape Tribulation, Qld
Ocean Safari offers an exhilarating 25-minute ride to snorkel the pristine untouched Great Barrier Reef off the Daintree Coast at Cape Tribulation. This half-day eco-tour visits two different snorkel destinations, Mackay and Undine Reefs, each with an extraordinary array of marine life, turtles and coral species.
Do you know the difference between an island and a sand cay? (Image: Tourism and Events Queensland)
25. Sailaway, Qld
Sailaway sets off from Port Douglas and sets the highest level of nature experiences on the Great Barrier Reef. Offering first-class service, small numbers of guests, premium sailing and snorkelling experiences to Low Isles and Mackay/Undine Coral Cays.
The day trip from Port Douglas is dreamy. (Image: Tourism and Events Queensland)
26. Ocean Freedom – Cairns Premier Reef and Island Tours, Qld
Ocean Freedom provides a first-class way to experience the Great Barrier Reef without the crowds. Ocean Freedom is the only boat in Cairns offering a full 6 hours on the reef, meaning there’s absolutely no rush in the day. Experience an adventure drift snorkel tour and jump on board for an informative glass bottom boat tour.