Ecotourism in Martin County

Explore Sustainably from Palms to Pines

Make A Difference When Exploring

Martin County has no shortage of ecological wonders, from vast uncrowded beaches to sprawling tropical forests, there is something for everyone to explore. These beautiful places are part of what makes the spirit of Martin County, and we want everyone to be able to experience them for generations to come. This is why we encourage explorers to adopt responsible recreation practices, so that you can be not only find the adventures that you seek, but become a steward of the environment as well.

Beyond the outdoors, advancing sustainability throughout Martin County is an integral part of our community. From ecotours to green lodging, there is a diverse array of sustainability efforts that are building resilience socially, economically, and environmentally. Luckily, whether you are a resident or a visitor, there are many ways in which you can contribute to sustainability efforts here in Martin County.

Read below to find the tools to equip your next sustainable adventure in Martin County.

Take an Eco-Adventure

Explore Natural Martin offers a variety of ecotours across Martin County to allow others to experience and learn more about the amazing environment surrounding them. Programs are offered year-round and are completely free. Click below to see a list of our upcoming programs and we hope to see you there!

Martin County Green Hotels
  • The Nature Conservancy’s Blowing Rocks Preserve:
    • This beautiful barrier island preserve is a unique natural destination that is a must see. The Nature Conservancy considers Blowing Rocks Preserve one of their proudest achievements representing successful large scale restoration of endangered and critical coastal ecosystems.  This preserve is not only a fabulous place to visit but they also offer fun and easy ways to help make a difference. Blowing Rocks is hosting Stewardship Sundays every 2nd and 4th Sunday of the month January through May! From beach cleanups and trail maintenance to native plantings, they offer a variety of ways to get involved. Click HERE to learn more!
  • The Treasure Coast Wildlife Center: 
    • The Treasure Coast Wildlife Center is a 501(c)3 not-for-profit corporation, dedicated to the preservation of wildlife and the conservation of natural habitats. Their purpose is to rehabilitate and return injured, ill, and orphaned animals to the wild, as well as offer educational services to the public. Click HERE to fill out a volunteer application or to inquire about opportunities to help out!
  • Florida Oceanographic Coastal Society:
    • A non-profit organization founded in 1964 with the mission to inspire environmental stewardship of Florida’s coastal ecosystems through education, research, and advocacy. They have a variety of volunteer opportunities available that take place throughout the year. Take a minute to browse through their Volunteer Opportunity Descriptions, fill out our online application linked here, attend an information session to learn more about the Coastal Center and how you can contribute.
  • Surfrider Foundation:
    • Dedicated to the protection and enjoyment of the world’s ocean, waves and beaches through a powerful activist network. Find out more about the mission and programs of this advocacy group by connecting with the local Treasure Coast Surfrider chapter here.

 

Can’t attend an event? You can still make a difference! 

Below are some examples of environmental programs you can contribute to without attending an actual event.

Click on each one to learn more! 

Dolphin Spotter Program

Florida Otter Spotter 

Florida Oceanographic Society Beach Cleanups 

  • Skip the Straw
    • The Florida Department of Environmental Protection is promoting a “Skip the Straw” initiative, which challenges individuals, schools and businesses to help reduce pollution from plastic in Florida. If every person in Florida took this pledge, we could together reduce pollution from plastic straws by approximately 2.35 million.
  • Reel. Remove. Recycle. – Monofilament Recovery and Recycling Program
    • Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission created the Monofilament Recovery and Recycling Program (MRRP) it is a statewide effort to educate the public on the consequences of monofilament line left in the environment, to encourage recycling through a network of line recycling bins and drop-off locations, and to promote volunteer cleanup events.
  • South Florida Reef Ambassador Initiative
    • Florida counties of Monroe, Miami-Dade, Broward, Palm Beach, and Martin have banded together to create a “Coral Reef Ambassador” Initiative, which provides actions individuals can take to safeguard our precious resource. Stand with Martin County as we work to #ProtectOurParadise. Learn more about Florida’s iconic reef here.
  • Single-use Plastic Reduction & Awareness
    • In 2019 Martin County passed a resolution supporting voluntary reduction of single-use plastic straws, polystyrene and plastic use in general to preserve, protect and enhance local Florida waterways and prevent plastic pollution from entering the marine environment. As part of the outreach program we are collaboration with local and regional partners to provide information on plastic pollution harm and to encourage and support alternative practices and use of marine friendly products.

Collaborators

Leave No Trace

Martin County is proud to have an official, county-wide partnership with Leave No Trace, an internationally recognized organization that works to protect the outdoors through science, education, and stewardship. This partnership will give Martin County the tools to continue to develop sustainable tourism across the county, enhancing us as a destination by putting the health of our environment and surrounding communities at the forefront.

Florida Society for Ethical Ecotourism

The Martin County Office of Tourism and Marketing (Explore Natural Martin) is proud to be an official member of the Florida Society for Ethical Ecotourism (Florida SEE). Florida SEE is recognized as the leading authority in Florida on authentic ecotourism and is dedicated to maintaining a professional code of ecotourism ethics to encourage an awareness and stewardship of Florida’s natural and cultural heritage. This is done by:

1. Endorsing compliance with federal, state, and local laws regarding the protection of natural resources and customer safety.

2. Providing environmental education and awareness which encourage behaviors that contribute to the sustainability of Florida’s natural ecosystems and resources.

3. Promoting professionalism and integrity within the ecotourism industry by providing and maintaining a certification/recognition program for ecotour providers.

One Planet Living

Martin County Tourism Office is an active participant with One Planet Living Sustainable Tourism Programme, which aims to accelerate sustainable tourism policies and practices to address the challenges of pollution, biodiversity loss and climate change. One Planet Living encompasses 10 easy-to-grasp principles along with detailed goals and guidance. “Together, these provide a clear, practical route map to create a sustainability action plan for any organization that can engage hearts as well as minds,” according to the One Planet Living website.

Florida Youth Conservation Centers Network

The Florida Youth Conservation Centers Network, or FYCCN, is a groundbreaking initiative housed within the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission (FWC).  The goal is to inspire in youth a lifelong delight in and passion for conserving Florida’s natural resources. They aim to help young people experience the best that wild Florida has to offer, and then educate and empower them with practical conservation principals. Explore Natural Martin, Martin County’s Office of Tourism and Marketing ecotourism program, has recently become a partner of FYCCN. This will allow Explore Natural Martin to expand its outdoor educational offerings, specifically related to wildlife and conservation.

Want to learn more about ecotourism in Martin County?

Click below to view more programs, events, and initiatives occurring around Martin County!

Learn More