Today, the Hawaiʻi Ecotourism Association celebrated its 2016 accomplishments at an awards luncheon at the Hilton Waikiki Beach Hotel.
During the program, HEA honored ecotour operators, guides, writers, and volunteers for their contributions to sustainable tourism in Hawaiʻi.
HEA certified a record 23 companies as sustainable tour operators, adding to the previous list of 18 sustainable tour operators.
Maui winners included:
Maui Ecotour Guides of the Year:
Rowdy Lindsey of Hawaiian Paddle Sports (pictured above)
Curtis Geary of Maui Kayak Adventures (pictured above)
Certified Ecotour Operators:
Aloha Kayaks Maui
Maui Nei Native Expeditions
Haleakalā Bike Company
Maui Dreams Dive Company
Valley Isle Excursions (2016 Sustainable Tour Operator of the Year Award)
Maui Ocean Center
Maui Stand Up Paddle Boarding
Maui Surf Lessons
Hawaiʻi Mermaid Adventures
These newly certified operators join: Hawaiian Paddle Sports, Trilogy Excursions, Maui Kayak Adventures, Pacific Whale Foundation, and Atlantis Adventures who have been certified since 2011.
Travel Writer of the Year Award: Shannon Wianecki