This Website is dedicated to the development and promotion of agritourism and ecotourism in Escambia and Santa Rosa Counties, Florida. We invite you to visit our agricultural and natural ecosystems and learn more about nature. If you are a local or a visitor, we welcome you and encourage you to do something just a bit off the beaten path and create some beautiful memories while doing it. Discover our local farms, waterways, trails, and events.
Defining Agritourism and Ecotourism
Agritourism—the crossroads where agriculture and tourism meet. Agritourism has been best defined as inviting the public onto a working farm or business to learn, have fun, purchase products, or just relax. These specialized Agritourism sites are open to the public at least some parts of the year. Some Agritourism farms are open 365 days, some only open for a few weekends during particular seasons. All offer a unique and entertaining farm experience and are generally appealing to all members in a family and are often small-scale, low-impact, and, in most cases, education-focused.
Ecotourism promotes visiting locations that have interesting or unusual natural resources where individuals can begin to understand the environment around them and get a better insight into our impacts, as human beings, and also a greater appreciation of natural habitats. This form of nature-based tourism has an emphasis on conservation, education, traveler responsibility and active community participation.
Naturally EscaRosa is funded through a grant awarded to UF/IFAS Extension in Escambia and Santa Rosa County. For 100 years, the University of Florida’s Institute of Food and Agricultural Sciences (UF/IFAS) Extension has been enhancing and sustaining the quality of human life by making University research accessible to the public. UF/IFAS Extension is a federal-state-county partnership dedicated to developing knowledge in agriculture, human and natural resources, and the life sciences. UF/IFAS has a reputation for excellence in teaching and research on the University campus, which is extended into every community in the state through County Extension offices. This branch of UF/IFAS is typically referred to as “Extension,” with “Extension Agents” tasked with carrying out educational programs. Since inception, the Extension Agents of UF/IFAS have translated research from the UF campus into useful instruction for members of the community, taking a highly engaging approach to learning. For example, natural resource agents lead clientele in kayaking trips over seagrass beds to teach them about coastal ecology, while the agriculture agents hosts farm tours for elected officials. Horticulture and family & consumer science agents teach physically and intellectually challenged youth to grow and cook vegetables from a wheelchair accessible garden, while 4-H youth learn legislative procedure at mock sessions in the state capital.
To find out more about your local UF/IFAS Extension offices, visit http://santarosa.ifas.ufl.edu/ and http://escambia.ifas.ufl.edu