Ecological tourism has developed significantly during recent years. It must be kept in mind that tourism can be quite detrimental to the environment, if environmental matters are not taken into consideration. Everything we do has some impact on our environment.
Why travel to the ends of the Earth when you can enjoy a nice holiday just around the corner? Too many people travel to far away locations but forgo travelling in their own country. Hiking and staying outdoors is one of the best ways to keep oneself and one´s family healthy and fit. Travelling does not have to last long. It can be an enjoyable experience for the family just to get out of the city or town and into the wilderness for a few hours. Remember to drive carefully, and enjoy watching the landscape through the window. Before you commence your journey it is advisable to make a list of the things you need to have with you and a list of where you especially want to visit.
The best option is to limit the number of things that you take with you. It is advisable only to use multipurpose reusable packaging for food and other stuff. If you have to do the dishes or wash clothes out in nature it is better to use environmentally friendly detergents and cleaning liquids. Try not to do the dishes in streams or creeks; it is often possible to use sinks on official campsites.
It is important to respect nature when travelling. This entails not leaving garbage on the ground, but to take it along in the car and to dispose of it at the next recycling facility. It is also important to leave the campsite and nature in the same condition or better than when you arrived. The car should be used as sparingly as possible. It is possible to go walking or even to take a bike along on summer holiday.
If you want to do some hiking, it is best to hike along well known and marked routes/paths. Otherwise you can damage the soil and the growth, and also you could end up trespassing or getting lost. The same goes in general for cars. It is important never to drive off the roads. Besides showing grave disrespect for nature, tire tracks can easily damage vegetation cover and stay visible for decades to come.
If you are going on a holiday Nature suggests keep the following points in mind during your stay:
- Turn off the lights and the air conditioning when leaving the hotel room.
- Save water.
- Do not change bed linen everyday. Let the hotel know that it is unnecessary in your case.
- If you are travelling within the destination country, try to bicycle. In most places bikes can be rented. You can also take the bus, and trains are, in general, more environmentally friendly than cars.
- Participate in group activities planned by the tourist bureau.
- Sort waste and recycle as much as possible in the hotel.
- Buy souvenirs which are made locally but take care not to buy products like antiquities which you are not allowed to take out of the country.
- Do not buy products made from animals or plants that are on the brink of extinction.
- Do not buy ivory, mahogany or rhinoceros horns and other well known illegally harvested products.
- Stay at small hostels or hotels but not the large international ones. In this way you support native tourism.
- Do not stay at a hotel with a pool. You can always go to the beach or to a public swimming pool.
- Follow the code of conduct for the beach. It might be a Blue Flag beach.
- Follow the code of conduct for the hotel. Choose an environmentally labelled hotel if possible.
Graphic: The Garage of the House, Guðrún Tryggvadóttir og Signý Kolbeinsdóttir.
Náttúran er „Umhverfisvæn ferðamennska“, Náttúran.is: Nov. 18, 2013 URL: http://natturan.is/d/2008/03/30/umhverfisvaen-feroamennska/ [Skoðað:July 13, 2020]Efni má nota eða vitna í samkvæmt almennum venjum sé heimilda getið með slóð eða fullri tilvitnun hér að ofan.
skrifað: March 30, 2008
breytt: Jan. 1, 2013