All posts filed under: Travel

Main Beach Byron Bay

How to Use Less Plastic in Your Travel + Beach Bag

This post is part of an on-going series about going plastic free one area of your life at a time. See the other posts here and sign-up for Nikkey’s newsletter to recieve new plastic free challenges as they come out. This challenge is inspired by her work with eXXpedition on a microplastic research voyage through the Pacific Ocean.  Summer is finally here! I’m less than two weeks away from my microplastic research sailing voyage with eXXpedition which has me thinking about packing all things travel sized and sun related. I’m guessing you’ve got a trip or two coming up in your summer plans too. Whether you’re going on vacation or spending a day at the beach, you can stay safe from the sun and enjoy it all without using plastic! How great is that? Here are my suggested swaps for the essentials in your bag: Sunscreen in Plastic Bottles > Sunscreen in Tins, Tubes or Glass Jars Why: Plastic sunscreen bottles and tubes are rarely recycled because of the labour involved to clean them and non-recyclable …

Beach Scene in Malibu

10 Ways to Make Your Road Trip Eco-friendly

Thought caring about the environment meant giving up road trips? Think again! Roll down the window, crank the tunes and give slow travel a go. Car travel almost always comes out ahead of air travel for less emissions but there are many online calculators to help you out. Some of the factors include plane capacity, distance and the fuel efficiency of your vehicle. Of course driving less is always better but if you need to get somewhere, why not enjoy it. I had to head down to LA for a conference at the end of summer so after roping in a friend we turned what could’ve been a fly-in/fly-out work trip into a much more fun west coast road trip. Both of us live a pretty eco-conscious lifestyle so while we prepared for the trip we definitely learned some more ways to reduce our impact along the way. Read on for my top 10 tips: 1. Camp or stay at eco-certified accommodations You will use far less power camping and likely conserve more water. What’s a road trip without sleeping under the stars anyways? If …

Farm Field

7 Ways the British Live More Sustainable Lives

I’ve been fortunate enough to have traveled to the UK twice in the last three years, most recently this summer for my beautiful sister in laws wedding in Kelso, Scotland. During our trips we have spent time all over Scotland, England, Portugal, and Ireland. There are a few things I noticed on our first trip in 2012 relating to the environment that I never gave much thought to. They seemed like old fashion practices, not using dryers for example. Now that I have much more respect and awareness for sustainable living, I have to give British people a big thumbs-up and here’s why: 1. Laundry Like I mentioned- there are very few dryers in the UK, in my experience. It is common practice to hang clothes on a line in the yard or on pulley systems hidden in the high ceilings. I even stumbled across a apartment complex in Edinburgh that had a clothes drying courtyard with communal clothes lines. Living spaces are smaller than in North America so drying clothes outdoors is a huge space saver. Now you might …

Glass House Mountain

Feeling at Home in the Wilderness

Imposing peaks, unknown wildlife, poison ivy… there’s a variety of factors that can contribute to feeling uncomfortable in the wilderness. Even if you are used to spending time outdoors, a new environment or changing conditions can throw you off. I’m speaking from experience on this one, I’ve found myself feeling uncomfortably low on the food chain anytime I’ve been in shark populated waters. I have a tremendous respect and admiration for sharks but I’ve also got an active imagination, and shark attack stories – those stick with you. Logically, I know sharks are not hanging out down there just waiting to take a sample out of me but some small part of my mind screams at me that it does happen and that I can in fact be next. We don’t often feel like prey in the modern age and I think we’ve forgotten how to deal with it. Our primal fears once served a very important purpose but now that most of us live in protective shelters with basic needs met, we’re no longer …

Jungle Path

Voluntourism – Know Before You Go

My first experience with voluntourism was in Costa Rica at an off-grid turtle camp, La Tortuga Feliz. It was founded by the late Paul Lepourtre after he studied the sea turtles in the area and is now run by long-term international volunteers and the local community. The program generates income for the locals through volunteer fees- providing another way to make a living other than poaching. The local guides take the volunteers out on night-time beach patrols, collecting recently laid turtle eggs and bringing them back to the hatchery where they are protected from poachers. I showed up after a few bumps in the road not really knowing what to expect. We’d come in at dawn, the noise of the boat waking up the howler monkeys, sending them into yelling fits in the jungle overhead. It was unreal, the area was so untouched and so full of wildlife. The locals are very inspiring in that they make use of any material to build what they need and are some of the most cheerful, friendly people I’ve ever met. I knew this would …