Enjoy an Eco-Friendly Holiday
Ecological consciousness, which is becoming more and more ingrained, does not end when the holidays start. Choosing where and how you travel is important if you want to respect the environment and pollute as little as possible. In recent years, the options to enjoy a green holiday have multiplied.
IT’S ECO, IT’S LOGICAL8 June 2017
Eco-friendly tourism differs from traditional mass tourism in a way that it aims to cause the least possible damage to the planet. This type of holiday is related to the preservation of the environment. Choosing the correct form of transport and using renewable energy, any alteration caused in the ecosystem is minimised. The awareness-raising efforts of the traveller are also an important part of the journey.
Tourism can be a double-edged sword. Although it helps us to get to know other cultures and allows for the development of many local populations that cannot be sustained in any other way, it can also destroy and negatively affect the environment. Mass tourism, which in summer mainly affects the coasts, poses a threat to the planet that is reflected in the alteration of the flora and fauna, the scarcity of natural resources, such as water, or in the pollution of seas and rivers. According to experts, tourism is responsible for contributing 9 percent to global warming.
In order not to become part of the problem without having to give up leisure time, there are more options available to enjoy a sustainable holiday. It is estimated that in Europe around 20 percent of the population is following this trend, and, according to data from the World Tourism Organization (UNWTO), the figure increases every year. The International Ecotourism Society, founded in 1990, is dedicated to disseminating information on sustainable tourism. It currently has members in 100 countries.
When it comes to opting for this type of tourism, it is important to look for eco-friendly accommodation. Rural houses are a good choice; there are also eco-friendly hotels that minimise their environmental impact, energy-efficient apartments with zero CO2 emissions and ecological campsites. When we arrange a trip, we must take into account the ecological footprint we leave each time we travel. Air travel accounts for more than 40 percent of total CO2 emissions in the atmosphere and has already exceeded 1 billion annual trips worldwide. Travellers opting for ecotourism should change their consumption habits and choose short-haul destinations, which entail travelling with a lower environmental impact.
If you want to have an eco-friendly holiday, you should look for activities related to nature. Many of them are offered by rural houses themselves: from feeding animals on the farm, learning how to grow a vegetable garden or visiting small artisan dairies, to horse riding or doing mountain sports. As long as we respect the ecosystem, it is all within the framework of ecotourism. All these activities and green lodging can be reserved through internet portals, but there are also travel agencies who specialise in this type of tourism.