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Top 4 Destinations for Eco-Friendly Travelers

Eco-tourism is on the rise in the world of travel! Many travelers are looking for a way to travel clean and green, with less negative impact on the environment. This got us thinking about which destinations really support eco-friendly, sustainable travel. Where can environmentally responsible tourists go where they can leave the smallest footprint, or even make a positive impact on their destination? If you’re interested in the answer to that question, here are some eco-tourism destinations we discovered.  

blue circle with white number 1 in middle Costa Rica

If you’ve ever Googled anything related to “eco-tourism” or “environmentally friendly travel”, you already know that Costa Rica comes up at the top of the search results. That’s because the country is well-known for being the go-to spot for travelers who care about minimizing their impact on the ecosystem, especially for those coming from the United States. In Costa Rica, sustainable travel doesn’t necessarily mean low-key accommodations, either. In fact, many of its eco-lodges are incredibly luxurious —they’re just maintained through eco-friendly practices. At some spots, you can even stay for free in exchange for putting those eco-friendly practices into place, like helping with farming activities, maintaining hiking trails, and cooking with food from sustainable farms. You can navigate how eco-friendly each lodging option is through the country’s national ratings system, so you won’t have to do any guesswork. And no matter where you stay and visit, you’ll find an abundance of stunning rainforests, wildlife, parks, and water close by—maybe even in your backyard.

waterfall in Costa Rica

blue circle with white number 2 in the middle Kenya

If you’re interested in going on a safari as an eco-conscious individual, this is the spot for you. When it comes to destinations that offer safaris, not all are created equal. Some are known to be more touristy, ravaging the land for the sake of the experience. Kenya, on the other hand, has worked hard to safeguard against environmental destruction, maintain the natural beauty of the land, and even established Ecotourism Kenya to ensure that private companies are held accountable for maintaining the country’s beautiful ecosystems and magnificent wildlife. Like Costa Rica, Kenya has a national rating system for its lodging, so you’ll know which ones are the most eco-friendly before booking. 

wildlife in Kenya

blue circle with the white number 3 in the middle Galapagos Islands

The wildlife that call the remote Galapagos Islands home are so diverse and rare that they were declared the first-ever UNESCO Natural World Heritage Site in 1978. This remains the case today, and in an effort to maintain its eco-diversity, the Galapagos National Park Directorate (GNPD) and the Ecuadorian Ministry of Tourism enforce regulations on tour providers. These regulations are meant to make sure providers take measures to conserve energy, recycle, bolster the local economy, and treat their workers fairly. If you plan to visit the Galapagos Islands, you can use the Galapagos Conservatory’s list of travel partners. Each have been through a licensure process that assures they’ll adhere to environmentally-friendly practices.

large bird in the Galapagos Islands

blue circle with the white number 4 in the middle Norway

If you’re looking for a European getaway, we highly recommend Norway. Norway has long been known for its focus on preserving its environment, and the government imposes strict regulations around hunting, fishing, and the petroleum industry, which is a major part of the country’s economy. Because of their remote location, the Norwegian Fjords are particularly well-preserved, and the tours that will take you to visit them are very much focused on keeping it that way. Many offer ecotourism package deals, which allow you to take in the Fjords’ glorious natural beauty by way of boating, hiking, swimming, caving, and more while leaving the smallest possible environmental trail. Even if you plan your tourism trip yourself, you’ll find the country lends itself to eco-friendly travel, offering recycling bins, well-carved trails, and local guides that can take you to more remote locations without harming the environment. 

bridge in front of waterfall in Norway

If you’re planning a trip and want to make sure your experience is as eco-friendly as possible, we suggest checking out these apps and downloading the ones you think will be most useful before you head out.

Do you know of other eco-friendly travel destinations or experiences that we should know about? We’d love to hear—tell us on FacebookTwitter, or tag us on Instagram (@insureyonder). 

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