Itâ€™s always so great to kick back and relax on a vacation, but all too often, vacations are rife with waste. From the massive carbon footprint attached to air travel to endless plastic cups and plates, our leisure time rarely leaves the environment unscathed. Vacationing sustainably, then, takes concerted effort â€“ but it can be done.
What does it look like to keep things eco-friendly while taking a break from your usual life? It can actually be an incredible adventure. These four vacations are some of the most popular ways to enjoy nature without causing environmental harm.
Head To The Islands
Sure, you arenâ€™t likely to get to the Caribbean without doing a little bit of harm, whether you take a plane or a boat, but once you get there, youâ€™ll be able to enjoy a beautiful setting thatâ€™s sustainably powered. This is especially true of the Cayman Islands.
What makes the Cayman Island unique in the Caribbean? Well, if you cruise to the Cayman Islands, locals will be more than happy to take on your shipâ€™s waste vegetable oil to create biodiesel. Backed by Island Biodiesel, the Cayman Islands are committed to fighting the potential ecological harm that their huge tourist industry could produce.
Connect With Nature
One of the best ways to relax while also participating in sustainability initiatives is by connecting with nature through activities and organizations linked to environmental groups. Whale watching is a popular choice that falls into this category. Not only will you get to see an incredibly majestic creature in its natural habitat, but what you spend to go on the trip will also be funneled back into researching, protecting, and rehabilitating the whales.
Another benefit of going whale watching is that you can go on such a trip in a wide variety of locations. Diverse environments from Iceland to the Maldives host whale watching expeditions. Depending on where you go, youâ€™ll also see different species of whales. Make sure to research whale migration patterns to increase your odds of a sighting.
Set Your Own Pace
If you want to cut down on waste while traveling, one great way to do so is by traveling in a campervan. Campervans are specifically designed for longer trips and that means you can stock the van with food, do some of your own cooking, and do the washing up, rather than relying on fast food and disposable dishes. Itâ€™s more effort than some may like on a vacation, but itâ€™s more environmentally friendly than the alternatives, especially if your appliances run partially on solar power.
Go On Foot
For the most sustainable experience of them all, skip the fancy transit options and spend some time getting down and dirty on a backpacking tour. Alaska is home to several tours with breathtaking views, including trips through Denali National Park.
Of course, you can backpack through the park, mountain range, or forest nearest you â€“ thereâ€™s no need to go to Alaska to participate in this activity. At the end of the day, itâ€™s all about taking in your surroundings and embracing the natural world, while leaving no trace of your presence behind.
Eco-friendly vacations come in all shapes and sizes and thereâ€™s sure to be one youâ€™ll enjoy. Grab your family and friends and check out your options â€“ there are adventures waiting around every corner.