Reduce Your Carbon Footprint: Vacation Activities That Won’t Make A Huge Impact On The Environment
Eco-friendliness at home can also happen when you’re on vacation. Sure, there are some activities that you can’t really do if you want to reduce the carbon footprint you leave behind, but there is still so much you can enjoy. Now, you may be wondering what kind of vacation activities you can do when you’re being earth-conscious and eco-friendly.
Beachy Eco-Friendly Activities
Every year, millions of people go to the beach. They have to escape the fast-paced life they have back home and get a break from the winter cold. However, if you’re eco-friendly, you may think that beach activities bring harm to the planet. Actually, there is plenty you can do at the beach that won’t bring much, if any, damage to the environment.
For example, you can enjoy your time in the sand. It doesn’t matter if you’re 12, 22 or 52, there is something to be said about digging in the sand and having a good time. If you want to spend some time building a sandcastle or something else, purchase eco-friendly sand toys for the venture.
Be mindful though of other things:
Avoid walking where you’re not allowed. For instance, if there are “Keep Off The Dunes” signs posted, make sure to follow them. These things are there to protect the various species of the area. You may also see signs for “Don’t Feed The Ducks.” This is pretty self-explanatory.
When you’re using an outside shower to rinse the sand off your feet and body, be sure not to use any soap. Why? It’s likely the drain goes into the ocean. Using soap means the soap residue goes into the water.
Eco-Friendly Water Activities
You may think that enjoying the water means having fun on jet skis and a fast boat, but there are tons of other activities you can enjoy on the water that doesn’t leave a huge carbon footprint behind. What are some of these activities?
Kayaking – While many people consider going on boats to enjoy the water, a recent study discovered that boats can boost algae growth and take up the ocean or river floor. Both of these can lead to environmental damage. Kayaking, on the other hand, allows you to enjoy the water and get in some exercise too. No gas or oil can get into the water as well as no fast speeds that can disturb the environment.
Swimming – Another watery environment you can enjoy on vacation is swimming. However, you need to be mindful of what sunscreen you use. Many of them contain chemicals such as oxybenzone and octinoaxate. When going swimming, use products that don’t contain these chemicals that can get into the water and destroy marine life.
Eco-Friendly Land Activities
There are many enjoyable land activities you can do that won’t leave much of a carbon footprint, especially if you pay careful mind to what you’re doing. What kinds of activities?
Camping – This is a favorite pastime for many people for all kinds of reasons – warm campfire, roasted hot dogs and marshmallows, S’mores, scary stories, sleeping under the stars, etc. There is so much to love about camping, and it’s a way for you to enjoy
Hiking – This is another activity that people love to do, but if you’re trying to save the environment, you need to remember this golden rule: “pack out what you pack in. What does that mean? It means you leave with what you brought in with you. Therefore, use a reusable water bottle and take any trash out with you.
Special Note About Hiking: If you’re hiking in a well-known area where paths are marked, be sure to stay on that path for two reasons – you won’t cause soil erosion, and you stay safe.
Now, when you’re out and about with the bugs, you may want to use a bug repellant to keep them off you. The problem with this is that many of them using a chemical called DEET in them. DEET can kill bioluminescent organisms and lead to neurological damage. Therefore, when enjoying these activities, use only repellants that have no DEET in them.
Leave The Electronics Behind…
And, it doesn’t matter if you’re headed to the beach, camping or out on the water, the biggest way to reduce your carbon footprint is not to take your smartphone or laptop with you. Anything electronic should be left behind when you can. The fewer things your car battery needs to “charge up,” the better off the environment will be. Are you going to bring an air mattress with you? Don’t forget the “foot” air pump.
Other Fun Eco-Friendly Activities You Can Enjoy On Vacation
There are all kinds of other activities you can enjoy such as:
• Walking or biking tours – These help you to learn about the area you are visiting, give you some exercise and reduce your carbon footprint.
• Wildlife conservatories
• Local parks
• Local farmer’s markets
3 Helpful Tips To Stay Environmentally-Friendly On Vacation
• Visit stores that work to reduce their carbon footprint.
• When you see trash while hiking, pick it up so you can throw it away later.
• Use reusable containers for your food and drinks.
• Again, any trash you make, you take.
When you go on vacation, you can still have fun and be eco-friendly. For you, that means doing your homework about the different activities available that promote eco-friendliness. And, if you decide that a staycation is the way to go, all the better!
If spring break or summer is right around the corner, consider checking out the Historic St. Mary’s City to book your next kayaking venture or other eco-friendly vacation activity. Despite what people may think, an eco-friendly vacation can still include a lot of fun.