Traveling is a recreation that everyone thoroughly enjoys and looks forward to whenever one gets a chance. Traveling becomes much more fun when you keep the planet green on the go even while enjoying to the fullest. Eco-friendly vacation and traveling is a fairly new concept and not practiced by many but it surely is a great idea to incorporate in your travel plans. In this article, everything about traveling green will be discussed with ways to make your travel green without compromising on the enjoyment quotient. Some eco-friendly travel destinations will also be discussed as we move ahead.
Eco-friendly travel starts from planning your vacation itself. Here are some steps one needs to take while planning for an eco-friendly vacation.
- Choose an eco-friendly hotel or resort, this makes a statement that you care for the planet and choosing an eco-friendly destination makes a difference.
- Plan your vacation with an eco-organization that makes sure you are eco-friendly right from the word go!
- Pick a trip that takes you more close to the nature and avoid one that takes you into the urban setting.
Before leaving, take care of a number of steps to be taken.
- Turn down your thermostat, if you are traveling in the winter.
- Unplug all the appliances.
- Cancel the newspaper.
- Make sure all the lights and electrical appliances are off.
- Book e-tickets instead of paper tickets.
- Pack lightly to reduce your luggage weight and reduce the carbon footprint you create while traveling.
Once you arrive at your destination, take the following preferred steps.
- Walk to the hotel or take a subway rather than a taxi, if possible and viable. This is not only green but also gives you a better taste of the area and people.
- If you need a car, rent a hybrid. This will further add up to your eco-friendly motto. At many places, you can rent bikes for the whole family.
- Be sure to turn the hotel extras off, like do not leave the sauna, the jet spa, lights in the exercise room or exercise equipment switched on.
- Do not buy plastic souvenirs or other junk; buy greener products when possible.
- Do not pick up brochures and fliers and area maps wherever you go as you do not need maps to enjoy the area. Moreover, you never take a look at these maps after getting home and it will be just a wastage of paper.
- Carry along reusable bottles for everyone, you can also fill these with juices and drinks, apart from water.
- Take along reusable carry bags for all the shopping you do.
- Eat local and organic food at green restaurants instead of fast food at fast food chains.
- If you travel by plane, take a bus or shuttle to get to your hotel.
- Whether travelling in winter or summer, follow the same conservation activities that you follow at your home, dress for the weather, turn down the AC or heater whenever leaving the room and so on.
While making a decision about the destination, you have to keep some important points in mind, like:
- Whether the local traders and hotels take care for the environment by making use of eco-friendly techniques.
- Whether the money earned by tourism is returned to the society by taking up welfare tasks for the local people.
- Whether the services provided to you are well in sync with your motto of green traveling.
Some of the green destinations of the world are:
1. St Croix in the US Virgin Islands: St Croix has a thriving underwater reef ecosystem. This reef ecosystem is extremely preserved and has a visitor footfall of 30,000 visitors per year. The reef surrounded national monument in St. Croix in the US Virgin Islands was named Buck Island Reef National Monument in 1961. People come here from all around the world just to experience the beautifully preserved underwater reef. Visitors take pictures and enjoy the unspoilt beauty of this exceptionally preserved treasure.
2. Beaches of Tangalla in Sri Lanka: The Tangalla beaches of Sri Lanka nearby to Rekawa is also a place to visit, if you are on an eco-friendly vacation. This beach of the island country is a home to nesting turtles. Here, you can see the rare 5 of the 7 species of turtles coming to nest on the shores. Some lucky ones can also get to see the Green turtle. Turtle lovers lobby for the preservation of this ecosystem for safe breeding of turtles.
3. Quito, Ecuador, the Napo Wildlife Center: The Napo Wildlife Center located in the Yasuni National park of Quito, Ecuador is a lovely preserved ecosystem. It has been set up by the government with the cooperation of the local Anangu Indians and the lodge is situated south to a small lake and is surrounded by untouched rainforests, making for a very romantic, cool gateway with great mornings and evenings. Sightseeing can be done and animals can be watched from a 100 feet long ladder over the lake, giving a tree top view.
There are many more ways to make your vacation greener and many more destinations to woo your imaginations. Go green, pack your bags and head for an eco-friendly destination.