Whether you have already chosen your holiday destination, or you are going to start planning your next holiday, keeping it green and eco-friendly isn’t always as easy as it may first seem.
But to truly become a green traveller, it is important to commit your whole travel experience to being as green as possible, the risk being that some of your activities may outweigh the good you’re trying to do.
If you need some inspiration on how to keep up with being a green traveller whilst on holiday this spring, here are 5 eco-friendly activities you could do:
1. Take a hike
Taking a hike is not only a really great way to take in the beautiful surroundings of nature, but it is also a great way to keep your holiday itinerary eco-friendly.
Taking a hike or going for a long walk doesn’t require many resources, and nothing damaging to the environment. If you’re visiting a particular woodland, parkland, hill etc. it may require travelling to get there, so try to keep this part as eco-friendly as possible. You can do this by opting for public transport or choosing somewhere in close proximity.
It’s also important to keep in mind that popular hiking destinations/popular trails aren’t so eco-friendly due to erosion from too many tourists.
2. Get involved with a community garden
Gardening is a wonderful way to think about and demonstrate how valuable the earth is. Gardening is a great way to help make the community greener, and it’s also an excellent way to meet new people in your chosen holiday destination, which is beneficial for those who want to experience a new culture.
You can lend your skills in gardening, which are not likely to be turned down as it can help towards building and growing a greener space for the community. This green space could also become edible growing space, so you may even be helping towards feeding a community.
3. Volunteer for an environmental charity
There is a plethora of charitable causes that you can volunteer for that help the environment, and the likelihood of being able to find one in (or close to) your chosen holiday destination is very high.
Charitable causes such as cleaning up rivers, litter picking, planting trees and so on, are just some great environmentally friendly causes you can get involved in. Yes, you can always donate to charitable causes, but to actually be involved with physically helping a village, town or a city’s environment can be a lot more fulfilling as you are directly helping towards a better, greener future for the area.
Trying to reverse the damage already made is the first step towards a greener future, so this type of activity can help educate people (such as yourself) of the consequences of not being green.
4. Visit a national park or wildlife reserve
Visiting either a national park or wildlife reserve is a brilliant way to experience the natural beauty of the earth, and the animals that live in their natural habitat.
One of the most important missions of a national park or a wildlife reserve is to educate visitors and hopefully change the way that they think about the treatment of nature and animals, so that they can be further protected.
A wildlife reserve isn’t open to the public the same way a zoo is, you should be escorted by someone working at the reserve to ensure the safety of yourself and the animals.
These types of activities are not only an incredible way to experience nature at its finest and spotting animals that you would otherwise never get the chance to see, but it also supports the local community and helps protect endangered species by looking after their natural habitats.
5. Shopping responsibly
Shopping whilst on holiday is inevitable for most, as you want to bring back something to remind you of your incredible experience, or you may want to bring back a souvenir for a loved one. Either way, what you should do is make sure you choose your products wisely.
Although buying items from locals is good as it quite often goes back into the local economy, some products may be made from endangered species. This can include animal hides (skins) and body parts, tortoise-shell, ivory, coral and so on.
Not only are these types of trades often illegal, but by buying products from these trades, it is encouraging the continuation of them.
When a species becomes endangered (or worse, extinct) it can have an effect on our environmental ecosystems. For example, the North American Gray Wolf’s near extinction caused Elk populations to increase considerably as they were not being hunted by their natural predator (the wolf). And because of the increase in the Elk population, the Elk almost ate the aspen tree to extinction.
Keep up the eco-friendly travelling
Fitting eco-friendliness into your itinerary is easier said than done, especially as this can depend on your chosen destination. We hope this article has given you inspiration to help you create an eco-friendlier itinerary for your holiday.
Kiwano can help you towards the first step of becoming a green traveller, by providing a list of green accommodations for you to stay at and giving you further tips on how to stay green as a traveller.