In 2019 I set out to travel greener and even especially budgeted to make sure I could afford to do that. I did great for two years, like many of us, but in 2022 I felt I had to catch up on things and wasted all of the brownie points I made. Just like last year I wanted to write them out as looking back will hopefully help me push greener travel more for next year.
Green and sustainable travel is very broad and every person will have a different take on it. For me it’s about being conscious about my choices and trying to find a balance, because I know I will never be able to be 100% green. Some of the questions I like to keep in mind:
- Do I stay close and keep it to train / bus travel or take a flight to the other side of the world? If I go to the other side of the world can I stay there for a bit longer?
- Do I stay at small-scale accommodations or chains? Does the AirBnB host have 1 place they rent or multiple?
- How do I support the local economy? Do I support local economies by eating at local restaurants and booking local activities?
Keeping those in mind, here is how I did in 2022.
Trip To Tenerife
In January I escaped to the Canary Islands for a week. I wouldn’t say it was green: I flew (for the first time in 3 years) I stayed at an AirBnB whose owner has multiple AirBnBs that he rented, which I only found out about after my stay. I tend to not book those kinds of places as I have the landlords buying up local houses to rent out, so next time I’m definitely going to triple check. On Tenerife itself, I enjoyed surfing, seeing the different sides of the island, and catching up with friends.
Train Trip To Paris, Barcelona and Valencia
Travel by Train Win
In June I took the train from London to Paris, Paris to Barcelona and from Barcelona to Valencia. I don’t think there was anything major that wasn’t green during this trip, so two thumbs up. I enjoyed a day in Paris, stayed in a new neighborhood in Barcelona, and explored Valencia. Did not enjoy getting sunburned in Valencia though.
Cabin Stay near Battle
Staying Close to Home Win // Travel By Train Win
July took me to a new part of England: 1066 country for a cabin stay and getaway from London. Staying close to home is an easy win and the main reason I did well in 2021. Cabin X was a much-needed great escape where I traveled there by train, did a bit of walking and learned about the area.
Family Visit to the Balkans
Support Local Economy Win
In September I took a flight to Croatia for a family trip to Bosnia. Not sure it counts on this list as it was a holiday, but I did travel to get there so I’m adding it to the list. During my time there was lots of support of the local businesses (mainly restaurants), but on my last night, I did stay at a big chain hotel in Zagreb. My only excuse was that I was selfish and wanted to swim and they were the only ones who had a swimming pool.
Safari & Beach Holiday in Tanzania
Support Local Economy Win
In September I also went to Tanzania on a safari. This trip was not really sustainable or green: from the flight to a lot of plastic and purchases that had to be made ahead. I’d say the greenest thing I did there was book a small-scale accommodation in Zanzibar, eat at local places and stay there for a bit longer as I combined the two destinations (mainland Tanzania with Zanzibar island). Obviously, a safari is not too ethical if you want to get into it, but after researching I did choose to go. I have to say I did enjoy driving around and spotting all the different animals, seeing the different sceneries and relaxing at the beach.
Cabin Stay Near Dorchester
Staying Close to Home Win // Travel By Train Win // Eco-Conscious Accommodation
The Bide was definitely the greenest trip I did this year. From taking the train to eco-conscious touches at the cabin itself. At the Bide I loved cooking, watching movies on their big projector screen, using their wood fired hot tub and exploring the local area on foot.