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About and Renewing the Countryside

About Green Routes

Green Routes helps sustainably-minded businesses and communities link to travelers interested in authentic experiences, local and sustainable products, and green services. Administered by the nonprofit Renewing the Countryside, the goal of Green Routes is to help build vibrant, sustainable communities, especially in rural areas.

The Green Routes website is an easy-to-use tool to help you find one-of-a-kind places to eat, play, shop, sleep, and learn. Green Routes will help you discover small, unique businesses that are rooted in their communities; places to eat where the food is not only fresh from a family farm, but where you might bump into the farmers who grew it; places to have fun while helping to ensure that our natural and cultural resources will be around for many generations to come. Green Routes gives you a way to incorporate your values into your travels. It makes it easy to find fun and rich experiences and places.

Take time to explore the back roads and learn about a region from the people who live and work there. When you explore Green Routes regions, you’ll find no tour guides more gracious than the owners of these green businesses. And, since the places highlighted are not necessarily your typical tourist destination, please respect the hours of operation as well as the spaces themselves, and call ahead if you have special needs.


Green Routes Members

Green Routes members receive a variety of benefits including listing on the website and in printed materials, access to information and resources, technical assistance, discounted workshop fees, and the opportunity to be part of the pioneering sustainable tourism program in North America.

How are Green Routes destinations selected?

Green Routes businesses are selected by regional advisory groups made up of business owners, community leaders, and community-based organizations. Each advisory group reviews applications and nominations of businesses and decides which to include in Green Routes materials based on how each business meets the following criteria:

  • Contributes to the local economy by employing local residents, using local products and growers, and supporting local businesses.
  • Conserves and/or enhances our natural resource base (e.g. through use of renewable energy, recycling, green building techniques, wildlife habitat protection, etc.)
  • Uses sustainably produced or organically grown products.
  • Engages customers and visitors through active, personal, and meaningful participation in nature, people, places, history, and/or cultures.