The latest trend in the travel industry is undoubtedly the blending of wanting to see the world with a desire to take care of the planet at the same time. Known as sustainable travel, this mindset allows you to scratch your itch for wanderlust while feeling good about caring for Mother Earth. Sustainable travel means that you make travel choices that allow you to journey around the world in an eco-friendly way, starting with your mode of transportation all the way to how you drink your water. Here are six of the best travel destinations to consider if sustainability is your goal.
There is no doubt that Costa Rica is a leader in sustainable travel opportunities. Ecotourism has been a focus of this Central American nation long before it was the trendy buzzword. In this tropical paradise, travelers will find eco-lodges that are nestled into the rainforest, wildlife encounters that take care of the native animals and plants, and a commitment to personal health while on vacation. What could be better than a peaceful yoga retreat on the beaches of Costa Rica followed by a smoothie made with local fruits?
Slovenia boasts the distinction of being one of the greenest nations in Europe, helping it to land at the top of any sustainable travel list. Regardless of if you are seeking an exhilarating outdoor adventure or a lively trip to the city, you will find it in this country. For those wanting a city vibe, be sure to check out Ljubljana with its vast array of eco-friendly museums. Those wanting to immerse in the beauty of Mother Nature can head to the Soča Valley, Škocjan Caves, or Lake Bled. Slovenia should also be recognized for its commitment to utilizing local ingredients in food preparation.
Boasting a terrain of about 80% of forest land it is easy to understand how Finland lands at the top of the list of sustainable travel destinations you can reach on cheap international flights. Finland’s air and water are some of the cleanest on the planet, making it an amazing destination to breathe in the wonder of a clean Earth. The country’s official Sustainable Finland program is just one of the ways that officials have made eco-friendly travel a priority in this Northern European wonderland by encouraging both locals and tourists to pitch into the effort.
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Nestled in the scenic Himalayas, the Kingdom of Bhutan mandates a minimum daily tariff ensuring that the country is able to build up and maintain its sustainable tourism infrastructure. As the world’s only carbon-negative country, you will feel good about spending your tourist dollars here. You may pay a bit more than you would in other Asian countries, but you will enjoy fewer crowds and a much more eco-friendly approach to traveling. The remoteness of the country only serves to amplify this commitment to the environment.
The innovative Nature and Me initiative of Montenegro is designed to encourage travelers to get out of the virtual rut of the last few years and explore what this country has to offer. While it may be tiny, this Balkan state rolls out the red carpet for travelers looking for a responsible travel experience. Relax on the beaches of the Adriatic Sea, indulge in locally sourced seafood, and more in this pristine travel destination that was built for the perfect escape from the digital world.
The African island of Madagascar is brimming with unexplored terrain ranging from lush rainforests to unfettered miles of coastline. Many of the island’s most popular resorts and lodges have made the commitment to offer green services in an effort to attract those travelers looking for sustainable experiences. As one of the poorest countries in the world, Madagascar is also a haven for volunteers looking to make a difference on their travel journeys. What better way to give back to the world than to give back to its most vulnerable citizens in meaningful ways? As a bonus, you will get up close and personal with the iconic lemurs that call this island home.