BIG4 Atherton Woodlands Tourist Park achieved Eco Certification, Nature Based Tourism in 2011.
The Eco Certification logo is a globally recognised brand which assists travellers to choose and experience a tour, attraction, cruise or accommodation that is environmentally, socially and economically sustainable. In order to achieve this certification BIG4 Atherton Woodlands Tourist Park was required to meet specific criteria addressing the core principals of ecotourism including:
In October of 2012 we opened our first solar powered cabins. The solar power provides the energy for LED lighting, water heating and heat extraction - reducing the need for air-conditioners. These cabins were built from building materials that were sourced from sustainably managed renewable sources and sourced locally where possible.
In August of 2013 we opened our 3 bedroom solar powered family Lodge with the solar power providing the energy for LED lighting, water heating and heat extraction. We were able to improve even further on the first solar cabins with the sustainable materials that were used to build the Lodge – including recycled plastic bottles to build the deck.
In January of 2014 we opened our 2 bedroom eco family villa, again with the solar power providing the energy for LED lighting, water heating and extraction and the decking on this villa has also been made from recycled plastic bottles.
Later in 2014 we added a further 2 bedroom eco family villa and another open eco cabin.
We are very proud of these cabins, as the solar energy feeds directly into a battery system, not into the main power grid, which ensures that these cabins are completely stand-alone.
These cabins have all achieved Eco Certification from Eco Tourism Australia.
For each stay in one of our eco cabins, we make a donation to the Turtle Rehabilitation Centre on Fitzroy Island. We are very excited to announce that Woody (a gorgeous juvenile Hawksbill Turtle we sponsored for several years) was released to Moore Reef late 2016. Because we love turtles so much we just had to replace Woody and now sponsor another gorgeous turtle - his name is Woodson - he is a Green Sea turtle.
Woodson was found at Funnel Bay Beach on the mudflats and taken to Eco Barge Turtle Rescue. He was transferred to Bowen Turtle Rehabilitation Centre in September of 2015. From Bowen Woodson was transferred to the Cairns Turtle Rehabilitation Centre so he could put on weight and recuperate. He was transferred to Fitzroy Island in August of 2016 where he is now doing really well and loves eating plenty of prawns. He is very special and we want him to grow big and strong. We keep our guests updated as to his progress on our Park Facebook page. Please help us to help Woodson!.
WOODSON UPDATE: We are excited to announce that on Wednesday the 13th of December 2017, our beautiful Woodson was released. Having resided at the Cairns Turtle Rehabilitation Centre for nearly 2 years and only weighing 6.95 kilos on arrival, Woodson weighed a very healthy 36 kilos when he was released, having enjoyed a special diet of prawns and squid.
Woodson had become a favourite and loved it when the volunteers showed visitors around the Centre so he could have a little show-off. He will be missed but we wish him safe travels. He does have a tracker, so we hope to hear of his progress in the coming weeks.
A thank you must go to Dr Jennifer Gilbert and the volunteers at the Centre for all the work that they do and to Sunlover Reef Cruises for providing the boat from which Woodson was released.
We are very excited to announce that in April of 2015 we were awarded Silver status under TripAdvisor's worldwide Greenleaders Programme for our continuing environmental efforts.
You will find a copy of the BIG4 media release on our BLOG!
We ask that our guests consider the environment when travelling, whether it be by using energy saving appliances, reducing waste and litter and recycling or using products which are environmentally friendly. When filling the car with fuel, please consider options which are kinder to the environment. If using walking tracks, stay on the path and remember to take your rubbish with you.
We also encourage you to visit or stay with another operator who has also received this Accreditation.
There are many, many ways in which we can help the environment. Climate Change is a continual “work in progress” but if each of us make a conscientious effort to do want we can … the environment will be all the better for it.
If you would like to know more, we encourage you to visit the following sites: