AITO Sustainable Tourism Award
Pure Crete has been awarded the outstanding 4 Star Status for Sustainable Tourism. This reflects our commitment to sustainability, responsible tourism and ecotourism. Pure Crete has restored stone-built Cretan houses and villas and has helped to protect endangered species in Crete. This means that our clients can enjoy the rural tranquillity of traditional houses safe in the knowledge that their holidays help to conserve Crete’s natural and physical environment.
Houses are owned by local families so that the economic benefits go to local communities who engage in restoration and environmental work. We encourage our clients in Crete to recycle and we use local producers and traders to supply our welcome packs which we give to our holiday makers.
Pure Crete assist in subsidising the installation of solar energy in the houses we rent.
In the UK we use recycled paper and encourage staff to bring forward initiatives to promote sustainability. In Crete we help to finance the installation of solar panels in the houses we rent. We have run wildflower and walking holidays in Crete for 20 years. Our customer loyalty is linked to our environmental approach as well as the enjoyment of a holiday in Crete.
Pure Crete offers properties in Aptera, Stilos, Provarma, along the North coast at Kalami, further inland including Armeni, Maza and Vrisses. On the south coast we have houses at Frangokastello Beach. We provide these in combination with flights from the UK and Car Hire.
In all these locations we encourage the restoration of disused Cretan houses and the use of traditional building methods. We are not involved in modern building or ownership but instead work in friendship with local communities to protect and enhance the environment. We promote local recycling and make are customers aware whilst in holiday on what they can do to help locally.
All our team in Crete live there permanently so enabling us to sponsor the use of solar energy. As conservation of the local culture and environment is central to Pure Crete we are pleased to have been a founder member of Green Flag International – now Green Globe – an organisation set up to promote environmentally responsible tourism within the travel industry.
As a member of AITO (Association of Independent Tour Operators) Pure Crete, alongside all fellow members,has recently provided its annual Pledge, for an activity that we will carry out this year to protect the tourist destination our clients visit. You can read all about our pledge, and other AITO members on the AITO website here.
The pledges were part of the AITO project PROTECT launched in Spring 2017 in recognition of the important role that destinations play in the future of the travel industry. “PROTECT” being an acronym. “People – Resources – Outreach -Tourism – Environment- Conservation- Tomorrow”
October 2018 Update and Testimonial
In 2018 Pure Crete improved recycling facilities in its properties on Crete. We chose this Pledge because many of our customers are keen to recycle on holiday and ask where they should recycle their waste on Crete. Promoting recycling is significant to us because we want to leave the environment in Crete as pristine as possible and hate to see it covered in rubbish. We want to reduce landfill on the Island.
In total Pure Crete installed one glass bin and one non glass bin in 10 properties in 2018. Data was collected to provide a rough calculation of the amount of waste guests recycled. With an average fill of 20 weeks in each of the 10 properties we collected around 5000 litres of non-glass recycling and around 1998 litres of glass recycling in one season.
It has been very encouraging to see the recycling bins in place and the information provided in the houses for guests to read about the scheme. We feel that our customers have benefited the most from this pledge. One customer, who has holidayed with us for over 10 years, told us “Lovely to see that you’ve finally made it easier for us to recycle whilst on holiday. It was always a bit of a chore to drive to the municipal recycling bins. Well done! “
One of the main challenges was getting all house owners to dispose of the recycling in the main bins. Two Greek house owners felt it was extra work for them so Pure Crete staff helped with the correct disposal of recyclables by collecting it at their properties throughout the season. Next time we will encourage more property house owners to take part by offering this help from the beginning.
We hope that carrying out our pledge may have raised awareness amongst property owners about how important it is to recycle waste in Crete and how important it is to our guests, that holiday in their houses. We have made a small but localised effort on Crete to improve the situation and which our customers have enjoyed being involved in.