Another great thing about travelling through Europe is that it is one of the most Eco-friendly regions in which to travel. If you are planning a trip to Europe soon here are some Eco-friendly tips that will help to reduce your carbon footprint:
TransportOf course there is no getting away from the fact that if you’re travelling from the US or Canada you’re going to have to fly to get to Europe, but once you are there you will be able to use much more Eco-friendly forms of transport. Trains are a great way to travel, as they allow you to see parts of countries that you would never see any other way, plus they are great for the environment. Europe has a brilliant rail network, which spans across the entire region and connects the majority of the major cities and countries.
When you’re at your location try and use local transport instead of hiring cars and taxis. Cities like London and Paris have a bike scheme that enables you to rent bikes and leave them at any of the many docking stations around the cities. As well as this, the majority of the major cities have efficient underground train systems that are cheap, safe and convenient to use.
AccommodationMany European countries have Eco-friendly hotels and lodges that make it easy for environmentally-conscious travellers to lower their carbon emissions. If you are on a tight budget and travelling in summer consider camping, as there are many campsites throughout Europe that offer fantastic facilities and which are safe to stay at. Self-catering is another popular option, as it means you can bring your Eco-friendly home habits with you while you travel.
Eating and drinkingMany European countries are famous for their cuisine and as such eating out in countries like France, Italy and Spain is part of the experience of visiting these places. Saying this, constantly eating out is not only bad for your waistline and wallet, but also for the environment. Instead consider buying local foods at markets and picnicking, or when you do eat out try and choose small, family-run cafes and restaurants where the food is usually locally sourced and the owners are more conscious of wasting electricity and water.
Constantly buying plastic water bottles is another huge environmental mistake many travellers make. In many, especially western, European countries water from the tap is safe to drink so instead of continuously buying water simply fill up your water bottles. A bit of online research before you leave will let you know which countries this is safe to do so in.
Respect the local environmentRemember that one of the best Eco-friendly practices you can do when travelling is to respect the local environment. Whether you’re hiking through the Alps or taking in the history in Rome remember to keep all your waste with you until you can throw it away. Also recycling is common in many European countries, so try and make sure you dispose of waste in the right bins.
Written by Derin Clark, a writer, editor and blogger
Image courtesy of Magali M. / Flicker