Sustainable Travel for Families

I love to travel. Some of my best memories are of traveling with my family, exploring new places, and getting to practice photography at some of the world’s most beautiful sights. However, in the last few years, I’ve really had to stop and think about the impact that travel could have on the world where my daughters will grow up. I’ve been doing a lot of research into sustainable travel, so I wanted to share what I’ve learned with you!

What is Sustainable Travel?

This was a totally new concept to me, so I wanted to really dig in and find out more about what sustainable travel really means. It’s not all about the environment; it’s about limiting the negative impacts of tourism. The goals of sustainable travel are:

  • protecting the environment,
  • addressing climate change,
  • minimizing plastic consumption, and
  • encouraging economic growth in communities affected by tourism.

Obviously, we’re one family, so we’re not out to change the travel industry all on our own! Participating in sustainable travel is all about encouraging hotels, airlines, and other travel companies to invest in healthier practices.

Support Businesses that Support Communities

One easy way to incorporate sustainability into your travel plans is to research hotels or resorts before booking your trip. There are a lot of great options for places to stay that really value supporting their local communities. Here are some examples:

  • The Grootbos Nature Reserve in Gansbaai, South Africa
    • This stunning natural resort is a beautiful, luxury resort. In addition to the incredible lodging, they’ve also started the Grootbos Foundation that provides education, training, and opportunities to the local community. They’ve also been carbon negative since 2018 – meaning they add in environmentally friendly practices to offset the climate impact of their resort.
  • Magical Pond Nature Igloos in Finland
    • This gorgeous igloo village is the perfect place for a romantic getaway. They employ the local community, use sustainable cleaning products, and 100% of their electricity is generated by hydroelectric power.
  • Heron Island Resort in Queensland, Australia
    • This resort on the Great Barrier Reef is perfect for a sustainable family vacation. They use solar power, have eliminated single use plastics, and have a ton of available experiences to learn about protecting the reef.

Explore National Parks

Canada has incredible national parks in every province and territory. These parks have already been cleared and set up for tourism, so taking full advantage of them helps to eliminate demand for new construction. Parks like Prince Edward Island National Park and Kouchibouguac National Park are right here in Nova Scotia, and offer incredible camping sites, beaches, and activities for families.

National Park vacations are also great for families that want to help their kids learn about history, conservation, and nature.

Reduce Your Waste

One of the easiest ways to travel sustainably is to limit your impact on the place you visit. I’ve found some great products that help reduce the single use waste I used to leave behind:

  1. Bamboo Toothbrushes
    • I do not like to bring home and use a toothbrush that’s been in my suitcase, in a hotel, back in my suitcase, and on a plane. I used to always throw my plastic toothbrushes away in the hotel room before we left. I recently found these great bamboo toothbrushes, and they’re now a mainstay in my suitcase.
  2. Reusable Makeup Pads
    • Traditional cotton makeup pads are single use and can be pretty wasteful. These reusable cotton pads are easy to pack, clean, and much more environmentally friendly.
  3. Reusable Travel Sets
    • Having reusable travel bottles is just smart packing! They’re small, lightweight, and most can go through security in your carryon.
  4. Reusable Shopping Bags
    • If you’re planning a longer vacation, you might have to make a grocery run. You probably don’t want to pack your large grocery totes, but these foldable bags are a lot easier to pack.

I’ve added all of these items to my Travel Essentials Amazon Storefront list!

xoxo Fil

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