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Discover Our Wild Side
About the Nature Tourism Initiative

Recognizing the truly remarkable ecological and recreational resources of our bi-national region, MAC developed the Discover Our Wild Side nature tourism initiative to help transform Southeast Michigan and Southwest Ontario’s “rust belt” image to one that better reflects the “blues” and “greens” our waters and wildlife habitat actually offer. Through this initiative, MAC works with partners such as the Detroit River International Wildlife Refuge, the Essex Region Conservation Authority, Michigan Sea Grant, and others to identify and promote our world-class water, wildlife, and wealth of recreational opportunities across the Windsor-Detroit metropolitan area.

What is Nature Tourism?
Nature tourism integrates economic development and environmental conservation in a way that creates jobs and local revenue while protecting and conserving treasured natural resources.  Under MAC’s Discover Our Wild Side initiative, nature tourism includes those outdoor recreational activities and educational programs that connect people with natural places and wildlife. It involves such activities as biking, hiking, fishing, wildlife-watching, horseback riding, camping, canoeing, and kayaking in natural areas.  

Vision and Goals
The desired outcome and overarching vision of the Discover Our Wild Side nature tourism initiative is to use the natural assets of Southeast Michigan and Southwest Ontario to enhance the region’s long-term economic prosperity while protecting natural resources and promoting sustainable development.In achieving that vision, the larger goals of the initiative are to use the rich water, wildlife, and natural resources of our shared region to:

  • Create, through an international experience, enhanced nature tourism opportunities for those who visit as well as live in the area.
  • Develop new small businesses and increased employment through nature tourism.
  • Provide educational opportunities on the region’s remarkable biodiversity and the importance of environmental conservation and sustainable development.
  • Transform the region’s “rust belt” image – especially to help make the region a more attractive location for young, talented professionals.

Discover Our Wild Side Brochure
To learn more, download MAC’s Discover Our Wild Side brochure. You must have Adobe Acrobat Reader.

>> Download Discover Our Wild Side (3.3 MB)

If you wish to obtain a hard copy of Discover Our Wild Side please contact MAC at 313.961.2270 or mac@mac-web.org.



© 2012 Metropolitan Affairs Coalition (MAC)