Updated: Jan 28, 2020
Eco-friendly tourism is on the rise and has become a trend within the travel industry. Due to the impact this movement is having on the industry, many governments, hotels and tourist services are aligning themselves with eco-friendly practices, to accommodate for the environmentally conscious traveller.
Luxury Escapes writer, Georgia Ristivojevic investigates the most eco options.
Hotels are becoming more concerned with how they can minimise their impact on the environment, while still providing an exceptional experience – something you may have noticed if you’ve ever seen a sign in your hotel room bathroom asking you to re-use your towels to cut down water consumption.
If you are an eco-friendly tourist, or would like to have an eco-friendly experience, these are some ideas to make your next holiday more environmentally friendly.
Stay at a specified Eco-Resort
More and more eco-friendly resorts are opening up. Usually these resorts will have a minimal carbon foot-print, the furnishings will be made out of environmentally friendly materials, and the resort will be in a setting which allows guests to completely immerse themselves in the local environment.
One of the pioneers within the eco-resort sector is the Banyan Tree hotels and resorts chain. The first Banyan Tree resort was founded on an old tin mine in Phuket, Thailand. The founders rejuvenated the polluted site and planted over 7000 trees. Since then, Banyan Tree has opened up environmentally friendly hotels and resorts all over the world.
Have a layover at Singapore’s Changi International Airport
Often Changi airport wins awards for most outstanding airport in the world. However, did you know it is one of the most environmentally friendly ones as well? The airport has 919 skylights installed to minimise the use of electricity in the daytime. There are multiple in-house nurseries and gardens, providing fresh air within the terminals, and the airport harvests rainwater.
Fly an airline which offers carbon offsets or controls baggage allowance
Many airlines now offer the option to purchase carbon offsets when flying. This is to offset the carbon emissions you produce as a passenger in the air. Qantas has one of the largest carbon offset programs in the world. If you don’t mind sacrificing some of the perks premium carriers offer, consider flying a budget airline. This is not only good for your wallet, but for the environment as well. Due to the baggage restrictions most budget airlines have, they save on fuel. Budget airlines also tend to use smaller – but still as safe – aircrafts, producing less carbon emissions.
Visit attractions with a purpose
Some buildings and attractions serve a double purpose, whether that be to regenerate energy or contribute to research. A good example is of the world’s largest underwater restaurant, which is due to open in Norway in early 2019. The materials of the building are designed for coral and mollusks to be able to easily cling on, to create a living space for them. The restaurant also serves as a marine biology research centre as well. You can dine admiring the deep blue, while also giving back to the environment!
Enjoy locally-produced honey
Many luxury hotels are now jumping on the latest trend – beekeeping at the hotel. Beekeeping provides an endless supply of honey for a low cost, while also providing a safe environment for the bees to flourish. The honey produced by the Mandarin Oriental in Paris has become so popular, the hotel uses it as an incentive for guests who reuse their towels – a free jar of honey to take home. Talk about satisfying that sweet tooth.
By Georgia Ristivojevic