I want you to explore. I want you to go see this beautiful planet. I want you to dip your toes into pristine waters and see things the average person may not take the time to find. However, those waters are at risk of losing their “pristine” status as we come in and leave our mark everywhere we go. There are a few EASY things you can do to lessen your impact, and lucky for all of us, these things will often save you time, money, and benefit your health.
Bring a “zero waste kit” and skip single use. Put together a zero-waste kit, which includes dining utensils, cloth napkins, etc. When you sit down to dine, tell your server ahead of time that you don’t want straws or plastics. Until you do this a few times, it might feel awkward. It’s ok. To quote our favorite little conservationist @noah4greatlakes “It’s only 1 straw, said 5 billion people…” This also means taking the time to pack your own toiletries vs. using the little hotel containers. Pack your own water bottle.
Go easy on the water. Don’t run the water while you brush. Take shorter (or less) showers. This means alerting your host that you do not need fresh linens or towels each day. These mini sacrifices have a massive impact over time.
Know your impact. Recently, glass was deliberately dumped along a stretch of beach in Sleeping Bear Dunes, and while that’s not the normal impact we leave, it’s a bit of a metaphor for the impact we do leave when DROVES of visitors explore our natural, beautiful parks, beaches, etc. Be kind to the places you visit. Stay on trails, take your recycling and trash with you (or dispose of properly).
Support local businesses when you go. Skip the chains. Giving back to the local economy is not only good for your soul and their wallets, but it’s a more carbon-neutral act than always seeking goods that have origins further away and had to travel to arrive where you are.
Unplug devices before you leave and make sure that you do the same when you’re on the road.
Do your homework. When you take a few moments to plan your route, your stay, and your meals.ou are able to anticipate needs, avoid fuel waste, and choose accomodations/businesses that are also eco aware.
Encourage your travel buddies to follow your lead. This is easy and starts a conversation in the name of Mama Earth, something that we all need to be doing regularly. Let’s support one another and hold each other accountable to an earth-supporting, high vibe standard of living!
But Katherine, this all feels like you’re taking the magic out of travel by removing the element of the unknown...
I love spontaneity both daily and in travel as much as the next, but I trust there will always be enough excitement and unforeseen events to keep you on your toes. Mother Nature always seems to come through with a plot twist, so if you show up for her, I’m a believer that she’ll show up for you.