Source: Sven Zacek
We always encourage travellers to opt for conscious choices when travelling to Estonia, in order to take care of the surrounding nature by saving resources and consuming local produce. This is especially important in tourism.
Estonia has a number of quality labels that guide you through picking those products and services that are deemed sustainable.
EHE label is an eco-tourism quality label given to services that value local nature and cultural heritage in rural areas. EHE gives the guest the assurance that the service is both nature and community friendly and of good quality. EHE-labeled companies reconsider all their activities from an environmental point of view, using environmentally friendly cleaning and washing products, setting an example in waste sorting, avoiding disposable plastic containers, etc. The services and products of local companies are preferred to imported goods.
Green Key is an international eco-label that unites hotels and guesthouses in 57 countries around the world. Around 20 accommodation businesses are currently holding the Green Key label, including large hotels as well as small tourist farms and guest apartments. The aim of the label is to achieve a balance between quality, comfort and environmentally friendly operation. Accommodation companies that have joined the Green Key in Estonia set environmental goals and meet the mandatory criteria related to the label including the use of electricity, heating, water waste and so on. The produce in Estonia’s Green Key establishments in locally sourced, promoting activities related to nature and local cultural heritage in its area. All Green Key labelled establishments are reviewed once a year.
Alexela Conference Centre is the first non-hotel visitor to receive recognition for environmentally friendly management.
Clean nature and environmentally friendly management is one of the main messages in Estonian tourism marketing, and expansion from hotels to conference halls is a welcome addition. Environmental protection is promoted to the visitors of the concert hall at every step of the way, from catering to ticket sales. The service fee for tickets goes to environmental activities, in addition to water-saving sanitary equipment and energy-saving lighting.
Estonia participates in the international Green Destination program, which Visit Estonia will pilot in 7 destinations in 2020 (Saaremaa, Hiiumaa, Pärnu, Rakvere, Lahemaa, Järva County and Tartu). The goal of the program is to make destinations act more responsibly and provide visitors with a sustainable experience. In 2020, Estonian island of Saaremaa was recognized as the “The winner of Sustainable Travel Competition 2020” at the MATKA tourism fair in Finland. Saaremaa stood out for its sustainability and social responsibility.
In addition to development work, it is important to introduce the destination's green offer to visitors and to raise the awareness of destination companies to analyze their activities based on sustainable principles and apply for an eco-label.
This page brings together green companies that take into account the principles of environmental protection and sustainable tourism in their daily activities. You will find companies offering green accommodation, seminar services and active holidays, as well as organic farms. Even when actively resting, you can choose a responsible entrepreneur in favor of services and activities that have a lower impact on nature.
While Estonia has always been a forested country, the last half a century has seen those forests increase in size.
Estonian farmers' markets sell fresh, organic, handmade foods reflective of the region and seasons.
Embrace the nature and rest in the wild, here's a list of sustainable accommodation in Estonia.