It’s no secret that Riviera Maya is the closest thing to Paradise! There’s no doubt or question of that, and there’s also no room for doubt that we, as its inhabitants are the ones with the power to change it for better or for the worse. Having said that, I am very happy to say that I am particularly aware of the nature and special environment that my family and I live in and do my best to keep my mind and actions as eco-friendly as possible.
I’ve never disguise my preference for this park (as well as all the other parks belonging to the Experiencias Xcaret group) for different reasons. I love the fact that you can spend all day enjoying the inlet with many water activities, eat delicious food, learn about the delicate eco-system existing within the area and snorkeling in the water’s larger natural aquarium.
Xel-Ha De Oro; environmental sustainability for visitors and the community!
Last Saturday was an exceptionally special day for Xel-Ha Park as well as the Tulum and Chemuyil community.
We were invited to the press conference in which the park was being awarded with the EarthCheck Gold Certification for its environmental policies and efforts in this natural reserve. There we we also learned about the work that they have been doing with the neighborhood community of Chemuyil.
It is necessary and worth mentioning that Xel Ha first attained the EarthCheck Silver Certification in 2009, being the first park in the world to have ever to gotten this kind of recognition. They have steadily maintained this status for 5 years which has driven them to achieve this new level of Gold Certification.
The most valuable asset to this event was not only the scenery (which of course is to die for) but the tour around the village of Chemuyil, to the parks recycling center and the plant nursery.
In Chemuyil, the outstanding efforts include a baseball field, a library and a clean façade program in which Xel-Ha gives away the painting materials and colors, and Chemuyil’s residents make a compromise to keeping their homes clean and spotless façades.
For me, the library was one of the biggest hits because as a result of the educational efforts, all of the community residents are alphabetized. Isn’t it wonderful?!
Keeping it clean and green!
The recycling center was a revelation to everyone on the tour because basically, about a 75% of the disposable waste generated within the park is actually recyclable (they call it “Valuable Material”). The entire Xel Ha family and the Chemuyil community are involved in these programs as well. At the plant nursery, about 50,000 plants are planted every month and then transported to different places around the country.
Maintaining this beautiful place is not a business, it is a true labor of love for the beauty and nature surrounding us. There are generations of families working at the park for more than 15 years now, from fathers to sons and nieces and nephews; everyone’s involved.
Why is this so cool?
Xel-Ha Park is located between two of the most tight and eco-friendly communities in Riviera Maya, which are Akumal to the north and Tulum to the southern end. Both are strong and its residents are pretty much hands-on with environmental issues, whether is with the different sea turtle conservation programs or community wellness centers.
So, if you happen to be living in Tulum and want to watch the programs and community efforts done by Xel-Ha nearby, just do your homework and research and get in touch with any of the non-profit organizations they support or look for others within the area. Let´s keep our home as the natural wonder that it is!
-By Bea Lozano