On Beautiful Sceneries and Why We (Sometimes) Want to Hide Them, and Responsible Tourism

Tell your friends about it!

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I’ve had my share of keeping secrets. I’ve tried to hide the names of places that I didn’t want to be spoiled by people who just don’t have the sense of responsibility. But most times, when someone sends me a message, asking about the very place that I wanted to keep a “secret,” I couldn’t help but spill. Tieza Botanical Garden

I don’t want to be selfish. Other people have the right to enjoy the same things too.

However, as much as I would like to be unselfish and share stories about all the scenic places I’ve been to (especially the new ones) so other people can enjoy it too, it can be very disheartening to see something so beautiful get destroyed by inconsiderate, irresponsible humans.

Cebuanos, remember how the celosias got destroyed at the first Sirao Flower Farm? And I’m sure the destruction of the artificial flowers at the 10,000 Roses cafe in Cordova is still fresh in everyone’s minds. I’m glad that these places are in good condition now, but still…

I am perplexed by the thought that people are capable of destroying something that they claim to love or enjoy. We’re better than this. We should be.

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I’ve also heard that some people are blaming bloggers for sharing details about new attractions and whatnots. How is it the fault of the bloggers? Are bloggers telling people to do harm now? No one in their right mind would do that. If you think about it, we are all rational beings who are capable of making sound decisions, unless one has a mental condition. We should know right from wrong, and that involves understanding #ResponsibleTourism.

What is responsible tourism?

It’s when you, as a tourist, do not litter, vandalize, or do any damage to places you visit. It’s when you are considerate enough to let other people enjoy these places by not destroying them. It’s when you do your best to make the most out of your experience without causing any negative impact to the society and the environment. It’s when you still use your brain even when your body is on vacation mode.

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So, why do we share anyway even if it may risk having people destroy it? Some people assume that it’s to show off where we’ve been. Well, that may be true for some. But not everyone’s intention is the same. Really. It’s not about bragging, people. It’s about giving others a chance to experience what we’ve experienced, and to see the beautiful things we’ve seen, not just in pictures but in real life as well. It’s about sharing.

Although, I have to admit, when I heard that some people are blaming bloggers now, it made me have second thoughts about travel blogging. Then I realized… sadly, that’s just how things are in this world. People are just always looking for someone to blame.

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But even if there are people who simply don’t care if they destroy something just for the sake of snapping the perfect photo, we have to remember that there are also a lot of other people who just want to see something beautiful, who just want to find inspiration, who just want to spend some time somewhere nice to get away from stress. There are people with good intentions too.

But we can’t really control people’s actions, can we? We can’t force people to act the way we want them to unless there are imposed consequences.

So, what’s best way to educate people on responsible tourism?

“Take nothing but pictures. Leaving nothing but footprints. Kill nothing but time.”

xo Faith Mari

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