Thinking about going green? With families around the world changing their light bulbs, cleaning products, diet, recycling and commuting habits, why not try applying some of those ideas to your vacation time too!While some of us (ahem) might be using the green movement as a way to avoid bathing, the changes to your holiday time this year needn’t be so drastic. Here are three minor changes I’ve discovered through my own travels that can majorly affect the way you experience your vacation (for the better, I swear!)
Pack light. I’m not talking about hauling out your backpacks to carry as you skip from hostel to hostel, but do you really need all six pairs of stilettos for that weekend at the beach? If I managed to pack my clothing for an entire quarter abroad in one suitcase, I know you can do it too!
Eat locally. Local food can tell you loads about local culture, and (with a few exceptions) it’s usually the freshest, tastiest food in the area. I’ve talked about missing cheeseburgers and burritos, but I’m not about to spend every night at the local Burger King, and yes, there is a local Burger King. Check out the local pubs, cafes, and hole-in-the-wall restaurants, you might be surprised by what you find (I was!).
Walk, hike, bike, swim! There’s no better way to explore a new area then to see it firsthand. Sand, surf, and sun just don’t look the same from the inside of a car, bus, or plane window. (That goes for snow, sleet, and rain as well.) If you’re still interested in a guided experience, why not try a walking tour, an outdoor adventure, or a day on bicycle?
Still having trouble getting around? Think about booking a hop-on-hop-off bus tour for your days on the tourist circuit. These buses have flexible schedules that follow commonly-toured routes and make it easy to get around
Getting there. Of course, to do any of these things, you’ve got to get there first! Try booking buses, boats, and trains for a cheap, environmentally-friendly alternative to driving or flying to your vacation destination. All three of these can be a great way to see a ton of countryside close-up in a short amount of time, and as I’ve already learned from my mornings on the underground, much more relaxing than trying to navigate with your car’s mini GPS.