about me

Ecotourism – challenges and hopes

My introduction to ecotourism took place in Central America. I travelled down the trail which is called La Ruta Maya (The Maya Route), and which connects areas of natural importance, ancient Mayan sites hidden in the rainforest, native villages and colorful markets full of locally produced arts & crafts and other local fair trade products. This was a real ecotourist experience, which began my adventure with ecotourism and resulted in my first book „Ecotourism”, which since 2000 has seen four editions (2000, 2008, 2010, 2020).

In the “Mundo Maya”, you could stay in one of the Indian villages located at the base of volcano deep in the countryside, or in a colonial town, learn Spanish, appreciate first-hand the daily life of the natives, take part in one of the magic ceremonies performed by the descendants of the Mayas, enjoy corn tortillas, savor the aroma-filled coffee grown on small, family-run plantations, or munch away at exotic fruit from the local market … Almost 100% of the money spent during this trip remained in the community and went straight into the pockets of local inhabitants! That’s what I call ecotourism pure and simple.

The name I gave to this website derives from Lake Atitlan in Guatemala, which was a major inspiration for me to travel responsibly and to write and take photos during my travels.

Dominika Zaręba


Dominika Zaręba – author of Poland’s first book dedicated to ecotourism (“Ekoturystyka”, PWN, 4th ed. 2020). Writer, freelance columnist and traveler, author of tourist guides and books. Co-founder of the Bezdroża Publishing House. She laid the foundations for the greenways program in Poland and initiated creation of greenway networks across Central and Eastern Europe. She is active with many environmental NGOs in Poland and world-wide. Dominika is the Chief of the Board of Trustees of the Partnership Fund and the international expert of the Environmental Partnership Association which brings together six foundations running programs in Poland, the Czech Republic, Slovakia, Hungary, Romania and Bulgaria.

About photography:

I work mostly with the analog photography and write, trying to combine Image & Word to express the diversity of the world in which we can still find beauty, mystery, and harmony. My homeland is Central Europe, my hometown – Krakow, a mystical and artistic city. My work was exposed in dozens of books, guidebooks and newspapers, art exhibitions, galleries and cafes.


  • 2004: finalist of the artistic performance „Photomovement of Kazimierz”, Krakow
  • 2005: 2nd prize, Photo-contest „Magical Cracow”, International Culture Center, Krakow
  • 2006: 1st prize, Photo-contest „Photoreportage”, Fundation for Development of Local Education RITA, Warsaw
  • 2012: Distinction in the international photo-contest „Exposure” and publication n the Exposure 2012 Catalogue published in N.Y.
  • 2013: Distinction in the international photo-contest Exposure – See Me and presentation of photos on the Exposure 2013 exhibition in Long Island, N.Y.

Main exhibitions

  • 2000: Culture and Religion of Mongols, Ethnographic Museum, Krakow (with Tomasz Ostrowski)
  • 2004: Photomovement of Kazimierz, Les Couleurs Cafe, Krakow
  • 2004: Impressions from Lanckorona, Lanckorona Galery (Dom Golonki), Lanckorona
  • 2005: Belarussian impressions. Winter-Summer, Chimera Restaurant, Krakow
  • 2007: Colours and women inspirations from El Mundo Maya, Spokój Cafe, Krakow, Cafe Pensjonat Lanckorona
  • 2007: Discovering of Belarus, International Culture Center, Krakow
  • 2008: Discovering of Belarus, Polish Culture Institute, Minsk, Belarus
  • 2009: Balkan trumpets of Guca, Cafe Szafe, Krakow
  • 2011: Andalusia, where passion begins, Por Fiesta Club, Krakow
  • 2011: Ecotourism in Belarus, National Library in Minsk, Belarus
  • 2012: Andalusia and flamenco, Cafe Pensjonat Lanckorona
  • 2013: Andalusian artistic inspirations (Dominika Zaręba, Remko Jontgien, Mariusz Kusion), Por Fiesta Club, Krakow
  • 2013: Southern artistic inspirations (Dominika Zaręba, Aleksandra Zapolska, Mariusz Kusion), Pałac pod Baranami, Krakow
  • 2013: Andalusian stories – photography and poethry (Dominika Zaręba, Mariusz Kusion), Biblioteka Sopocka, Sopot
  • 2013: Photo-choreo-poethry „Andalusian inspiration”, Theatre – Teatr L. Solskiego, Tarnow