What exactly is
Nature-Based Tourism?

Nature-based tourism (NBT) is travel into natural environments that advances conservation and sustainable development efforts of both the ecosystem and existing culture, and allows people to connect with that natural environment (passively and/or actively).
NBT includes high impact activities (involving motorized vehicles, hunting, fishing, visiting agriculture farms), medium impact activities (catch/release fishing, mountain biking, non-motor boating that may introduce pollutants to water), and low/no impact activities (truly leave no trace, no motorized vehicles, no introduction of pollutants).
Ceballos Lascurain (1996) defines NBT as: a form of tourism that relies on the natural environment for the basis of its experiences and can include almost any form of outdoor activity that involves a natural element.

The above definition was approved by the Board and Members of the SCNBTA - October 2010.

Our Mission
The SCNBTA exists to educate and promote its members and the nature-based tourism experience. We create opportunities for networking and professional development that help our members learn to build, manage, and market nature-based businesses and tourism. We endorse conservation of natural and cultural resources that make the nature-based tourism experience possible.
How SCNBTA fulfills its mission…
Lynches River Center

The SCNBTA brings together local nature-based tourism business owners with resource managers and community leaders. In addition, the association provides continuing professional education and encourages the exchange of information among its members, particularly as it relates to the conservation of natural and cultural resources for long-term economic benefit. The SCNBTA plays an important role in that it provides the industry with a single voice to educate public and private decision-makers about the need to balance economic development with resource conservation and other issues of interest to SCNBTA members. This website will inform both our membership and the public about relevant issues, while promoting nature-based tourism throughout South Carolina.



The SCNBTA welcomes your participation if you or your business are directly or indirectly linked to nature-based tourism. Your experience and knowledge are valuable assets to our organization. We encourage you to join!

Fill out a membership application!


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