Having an environmentally friendly vacation is important if you want to keep the nature healthy when you’re not home. However, it’s also important to know that your travel destinations are also eco-friendly. So, if you’re a green enthusiast, check out these amazing travel destinations that will contribute to Earth’s welfare.
1. The Galapagos Islands
When you’re thinking of islands, don’t think of going to caribbean, fiji, cayman, or all those fancy ones. Instead, go to Galapagos Islands in Republic of Ecuador. The islands are home to a lot of species that can only be found in the area. It’s also declared the world’s first Natural World Heritage site in 1978.
The main attraction of this islands is of course its pristine nature. 90% percent of this islands is made to be a national park. So you can enjoy the nature, snorkel, dive, what have you. Their tourism system limits the number of visitors on the island so that they can maintain energy and water conservation.
The purpose is to keep the islands just the way they are (and improve the condition) for the future. One of the villas has taken measures to save electricity and reduce waste, which is good for sustainability.
No, no. Don’t think of Machu Pichu yet when you hear the word Peru. When you visit this country, go to The Manu Biosphere Reserve, Tambopata National Reserve, and Pacaya-Samiria National Reserve. Those three areas are the largest protected rainforests in the world.
Although it’s protected, you can still visit the beautiful forests.Peruvian government allows tour groups into the areas. There is an official e-book guide to having an eco-friendly vacation while you’re in Peru. You can also volunteer travel in this beautiful country to enjoy the beauty of Peru as well as learn the people’s cultures.
The country may have the word ice in it, but it doesn’t mean that you’ll be seeing iceberg, penguins or polar bears. Iceland is well-known for its green surrounding and remote beauty. Although it is very cold in there, so better prep yourself with thick coats.
Iceland generates the cleanest electricity per person. Almost 100% of its energy comes from a renewable source. This makes the country the cleanest energy consumer in the world. You can contribute to their green effort by camping instead of staying in big hotels. When you want to explore, bike, walk or ride on horses to minimize energy.
4. Costa Rica
You might not hear or know much about this country, but did you know that Costa Rica is one of the most successful ecotourism destinations in the world? Not only that this is the place of 20 natural parks and 8 biological reserves, this country has 98% of electricity from renewable sources.
It doesn’t mean that you can have a fancy travel there. There are numerous pristine beaches that you can visit and environment-friendly boutique hotels (which provides naturally-heated rock pools for bathing) that you can stay. You can have a beautiful sight-seeing at the volcanoes or just have a walk in the rainforest. A lot of options for your eco-friendly holiday!
5. New Zealand
Probably this country is the most famous destinations of all the list. New Zealand is well-known for its greenery and breathtaking landscapes. Perhaps you’ve seen a glimpse of the country it in the films, Lord of the Rings, for example.
Almost one third of the country becomes national parks, reserves, and heritage sites as an effort to preserve its ecology. When you visit New Zealand, you can go to The White Island, Mount Cook National Park, Poor Knights Islands Marine Reserve, and Wai-O-Tapu Geothermal Reserve.
There are a variety of eco-tours and luxurious eco-lodges that you can enjoy in this country as well. Traveling to one of the most popular destinations without leaving negative impact to the environment? Just perfect.
This destination is perfect for wildlife and animal lovers. 38% of the country’s total land is made to be national parks, reserves, and wildlife management areas. Botswana creates jobs for the locals, uses solar-powered boats, and carbon-free game viewing experience.
Here, you can stay in eco-lodges with solar lighting and recycled water. When you go out, you can have an epic wildlife watching. You can have a chance to see the great African elephant because this country holds 40% of Africa’s entire elephant population.
7. The Republic of Palau
Palau is a small country. But don’t be fooled, it holds crystal blue, pristine diving destination home to beautiful coral reefs and beautiful sea creatures. On the land, Palau has diverse forests and gorgeous untouched beaches that you can explore.
Because the government cares about their country’s nature, they insist to keep human from meddling around too much (as a way to minimize negative impact). For example, the country regulates no-fishing zones in 500 miles of the reefs. As a result, some endangered fish species have repopulated the area. Ready to visit the beaches and dive around the sea?
Again, this country might never come across your mind when you’re thinking about travels. As it turns out, Slovenia has 75% of their electricity from hydroelectric dams. The city buses run on natural gas and there are electric trains that you can hop on.
There are a lot of things to do while you’re in the country. You can go swimming with sea turtles, learn about coffee and cocoa, beautiful mountain hiking, and visit local eco-friendly farms so you can learn a little bit about the country’s culture and local life. If you’re feeling a bit lazy, you can just enjoy the breathtaking views that the country offers. Slovenia is not only green, but also sustainable.
Now since you’ve found the destinations, what else can you do to have an eco-friendly vacation? It isn’t just about turning off the lights when you go out. First, you have to choose green transportation. Minimize flying (or choose fuel-efficient flights), take the trains, and use your feet for short travels. If you must use vehicle, rent the fuel-efficient ones (like Prius or Tesla).
Then, choose green activities. Conserve water, limit energy use, respect the environment (don’t pluck plants and litter), and use your own bag when you go out shopping to minimize paper or plastic wrapping. You can also sail, snorkel, scuba dive, hike, kayak, swim, many more. Also, pay attention to the souvenirs because they might be made from endangered species.
Remember, no matter where you’re going–whether your destinations are eco-friendly or not, you can always run an extra mile for the environment. And I hope that this article will give you an insight and inspirations about your eco-friendly travel plans. Happy traveling!