Sustainable Tourism

Sustainable Tourism

At VisitAberdeenshire, we advocate for the active involvement of all in fostering a more sustainable industry. The tourism sector holds significant potential for discussions on sustainability and the adoption of responsible business practices. Our region is renowned for its breathtaking landscape and wildlife, it is imperative that we collaborate to ensure its preservation. This collective effort is crucial to ensure that the splendor of our region endures, allowing future generations to continue marveling at its beauty.

This page serves as a useful resource, offering a 'one-stop-shop' for information on transforming into a more sustainable tourism and hospitality business. Here, you can access webinars, case studies, green tourism schemes, and more, providing valuable insights and tools to promote sustainability within your industry.

Workshops and Webinars

VisitScotland - Sustainability & Scotland’s Environment Advice

VisitScotland has a dedicated support channel for sustainable tourism and how to implement sustainable practices into your business.

Below you can find a link to VisitScotland's sustainable tourism page, which includes advice on creating a climate action plan, factsheets and advice on climate change.

Click here for VisitScotland's Sustainable tourism advice page 

Case Studies - Local Businesses On Their Sustainability Journey

In this section we will showcase some businesses in Aberdeen and the Shire that have been praised for their sustainable business practices, to show you that your journey towards being more sustainable is realistic and achievable.

All three of these case studies were finalists for the ‘Climate action award’ at the 2023 Aberdeen City and Shire thistle awards.  You can read about what each of the businesses have implemented into their practices below.

Cairngorm Bothies and Lodges 

The winners of the 2023 Climate action award, Cairngorm Bothies and Lodges, are luxury, self-catering, forest bothies and lodges set in the heart of Royal Deeside and the Cairngorms National Park. The business also currently holds a gold level green tourism award.

The accommodation is set within beautiful natural landscapes, surrounded by wildlife. Cairngorm Bothies and Lodges wants to ensure the environment surrounding the lodges is preserved for many, many years to come.

Cairngorm Bothies and Lodges have taken many steps to increase their level of sustainability as a business, such as increased efforts to recycle, high grade insulation and organic product use.

You can read more about Cairngorm Bothies and Lodges sustainability approach below.

Click here to read more.

The Bay Fish and Chips

The Bay Fish and Chips was a finalist for the climate action award at the thistle awards in 2023. The indulgent take out serves locally caught fish served with a side of responsible business practices.

The ‘Chipper’ located on Stonehaven promenade has been highly recognized for their achievements with a long list of accreditations and awards.

The Bay has undertaken many responsible and sustainable business practices such as – compostable packaging, reducing food miles and composting food waste.

To read more on what The Bay is doing to be more sustainable click the link below.

Click here to read more.

Aberdeen Performing Arts

Another finalist for the climate action award is Aberdeen Performing Arts.

Aberdeen Performing Arts have pulled together a comprehensive responsible tourism policy. The business has pulled together a responsible mission, stating – “At Aberdeen Performing Arts we strive to be a socially responsible and environmentally sustainable creative organisation committed to protecting people and the planet and ensuring our long-term future success, and we will do this by placing sustainability front and centre of everything we do.”

To read more on what Aberdeen Performing Arts are doing to achieve this mission, click the link below.

Click here to read more.



Green Certification Schemes

Having a Green tourism certification can do wonders for your business. A growing number of tourists are conscious of how sustainable they are being during their travels. Being able to identify what places are green tourism accredited can be very important for these visitors, and having a certification may encourage them to visit you.

To be awarded a green tourism certification, you will be assessed by the scheme against a certain criteria. If you meet the criteria you will be awarded the certification label, which you can display across all your social platforms and in person at your location.

Having a certification can also assist you in maintaining your sustainable practice's since you will be reassessed over time.

There are currently three main recognized green tourism certifications schemes in Scotland, each of the links below will take you to the schemes website so you can gain more information and apply to be assessed.


Green Key

Green Tourism