EcoTreasures’ Sydney Tour Guides
Meet EcoTreasures team of expert Sydney tour guides
Hi, My name is Damien and ECOTREASURES is a locally grown business I started on the northern beaches of Sydney, Australia.
ECOTREASURES specialises in Eco Tourism experiences of the Northern Beaches and Ku-ring-gai Chase & Sydney Harbour National Park in Sydney, Australia. EcoTreasures’ Sydney tour guides will help you see the natural wonders of Sydney.
ECOTREASURES mission is to provide people with an unforgettable fun, relaxing Australian experience while increasing your knowledge about Australian wildlife, environment, culture, heritage and fun things to do in Sydney. I believe the best way to learn and appreciate the environment is to have fun while you’re in it. I want to help spread the message of conservation across the world while having a good time with new friends.
I grew up on the Northern Beaches so I can guarantee you will have a true Australian coastal experience. I have been very lucky to travel to a few countries across the globe and I have a passion for traveling, meeting new people and learning about other destinations and cultures. I would like to share this passion with you. My life and travel experiences, and listening to people has helped me design unforgettable eco tourism activities in Sydney, which is a remarkable area of the world, whatever your needs.
Damien McClellan – Owner/lead guide
Please go to the ECOTREASURES home page to view the Sydney Eco Tours we offer
EcoTreasures’ Sydney Tour Guides Profiles
Founder/Lead guide – Damien’s Experience and Passions
“The more we know the more we care”
Passion: “My Passion is enjoying the outdoors and trying to raise environmental awareness along the way”
Hobbies: Surfing, Snorkeling, Stand Up Paddle boarding, Bush/Coastal walks, Reading nature booking & watching documentaries.
Heritage: My heritage is from Ireland and Scotland. One Scottish ancestor on my mothers side came on a boat called “the Chance” in 1853 from Liverpool, for many different reasons, but we won’t go into too many details at this moment. Other young pioneers arrived in 1852 from Ireland and the rest arrived in 1908 also from Scotland. I’m very lucky they made the mission down under. I have 2 great great uncles who served at Gallipoli and died at the Somme (WW1), and my grandfather was in New Guinea ( WW11)
Education and experience: After high school I went traveling around the globe and then returned to begin my studies. Instead of going to the beach everyday I put my head down and went to University. It was a tough choice but the right one. I was very lucky to be granted a scholarship to study for a semester in Mexico where I studied sustainable tourism, basic spanish, mexican cooking and I also surfed most days. I graduated with a Bachelor Degree in Environmental Management from Macquarie University and then after University I completed a Diploma in Transport and Logistics from Sydney University, Certificate IV in Tour Guiding, Certificate IV in Small business Management, Certificate III in Sport and Recreation, Certificate II in Hospitality Operations. I have experience working as a community environmental educator for Local Council, Surf and Paddle Board Instructor for Manly Surf School and nature tours guide for Boutique Tour Australia.
In the last decade after University along with starting my own small Business EcoTreasures I have worked as a Sydney Wildlife Tour Guide, Sydney Surf Tour Guide (Australia East Coast), Snow Tour Guide (Japan), Wine Tour Guide (Hunter Valley) and various other customer service roles since I was over 12yrs old. I was lucky to gain experience in the corporate world for 2yrs+ in State sales channel management roles, which is where I witnessed the need for new unique team building/bonding exercises between colleagues.
I knew my life was meant to be spent in nature, so I took the leap into running my own business. With many years of hard work I now run EcoTreasures full time with my team of Sydney tour guides and we have the best time in the world hosting our guests from all over Australia and the world. These life experiences and consulting with tourism industry specialist combined with my training has helped me gain skills to conduct unique unforgettable Eco Tourism experiences for customers.
See you on tour soon – Damien
EcoTreasures’ Sydney Tour Guides – Michelle Havlik
As a Sydney native, Michelle has been wandering the beautiful Northern Beaches outdoors all her life, and has loved exploring the depths of the ocean more since her first snorkel on the Great Barrier Reef on a Year 12 field trip. She followed two reef sharks to the edge of the coral where the shallow seafloor dropped away, and decided in that moment to dedicate her life to studying and saving the blue.
She recently graduated from the University of Technology with a degree in Marine Biology and International Studies, spending a year on exchange in Mexico exploring the ancient archaeological sites, sea-bird filled islands, swimming with whale sharks and volunteering with sea-turtle conservation camps, as well as farming and hiking. During her degree she participated in research at Heron Island on the Great Barrier reef, focussing on the local corals.
Michelle is passionate about spreading the message of ocean conservation – she’s seen first hand the damage that plastic pollution and waste from recreational fishing can have on marine life during her time working at Manly Sea-life Sanctuary. On the regular, sea turtles, fish and other marine life such as penguins are rescued from entanglement and plastic ingestion if they’re lucky enough to be found.
She participates regularly in beach cleans, and has reduced her own use of plastic to almost none – if you’d like any advice on how you can live more environmentally friendly with almost no effort, ask her on tourJ Reduce, reuse, refuse, recycle.
EcoTreasures’ Sydney Tour Guides – Lucy Hough
Lucy has always spent as much time as possible in the great outdoors, and she is very passionate about environmental sustainability. Lucy role as a nature tour guide gives her the opportunity to engage with people from all walks of life on her passion and love for the natural world, while at the same time taking part in some of her favourite outdoor activities, which is a bonus. Lucy is currently studying Climate and Earth Science at university, and she enjoys her involvement with the Scuba Diving Club. Lucy’s aim to widen your perspective on the beauty of Sydney’s gems, while having a load of fun at the same time!
EcoTreasures’ Sydney Tour Guides – Lucy Hough
EcoTreasures – Eco Tourism Australia Certification
EcoTreasures is very proud to have achieved Advanced Eco Tourism & and Respecting Our Cultural certification with Eco Tourism Australia. Please see below the information about each program. You can also click on the link to the Eco Tourism Australia Web page for more information about Eco Tourism.
WHAT IS ECO CERTIFICATION?
ADVANCED ECOTOURISM – “Tourism with strong interpretation values, commitment to nature conservation and helping local communities.”
The ECO Certification program assures travellers that certified products are backed by a strong, well managed commitment to sustainable practices and provides high quality nature-based tourism experiences.
The ECO Certification Program is a world first and it has been developed to address the need to identify genuine nature and ecotourism operators.
WHAT IS ROC (Respecting Our Cultural) CERTIFICATION?
The Respecting Our Culture (ROC) Program is a tourism industry development tool designed by Aboriginal Tourism Australia (ATA) and administered by Ecotourism Australia.
The ROC program was produced through an extensive and ongoing national consultation by ATA with Indigenous communities, industry stakeholders and tourism operators. ROC embraces national accreditation standards to ensure tourism experiences meet customer expectations in a professional and sustainable way. It also encourages the industry to operate with respect for Indigenous cultural heritage
What is Park Eco Pass? National Parks and Wildlife NSW
EcoTreasures was awarded a 10 year Premium Eco Pass
Commercial recreation and tour operators play a key role in facilitating public use and enjoyment of New South Wales’ over 850 national parks and reserves, by promoting their unique values and encouraging tourism and recreation.
NPWS licenses commercial recreation and tour operators who offer guided tours, instructional or educational courses and other leisure activities in NSW parks and reserves.
The Parks Eco Pass, introduced in 2009, is a comprehensive, centralised licensing system for commercial recreation and tour operators that includes a number of significant benefits for licensed operators.