A Travel Review From Island Trader Vacations
In one year alone, over one billion people travel internationally. This number continues to rise each year with an expected increase in the number of tourists again this year. As the number of travelers continues to rise, so to does our impact on the worlds most popular locations. Places such as the Grand Canyon see millions of visitors each year by themselves and the city of Paris and New York both see visitor numbers of over 50 million each year. While many tourists do what they can to reduce their impacts at natural areas and other sensitive sites, there is inevitably some impact. As travelers and concerned citizens doing our part to reduce our impact and preserve the worlds amazing sites for generations to come, it is imperative that we think before we do.
Even the smallest changes can make huge impacts. We must change our way of thinking to remember that although we are just one person, we are also just one person of over 1 billion others, many of whom will think the same thing. Case in point is the recent report of one popular attraction in California that is disappearing quickly.
California’s Glass Beach
Whether or not you agree with the beach’s status as a nationally protected area or not, the fact still remains that if visitors continue to disobey the posted rules about removing glass, the beach in its current state will be gone forever.
Glass Beach is located in Mendocino County in California and is name for its colorful sea glass. Once a dump until the 1960’s, the beach was cleaned up in the late 1990’s and 2000’s leaving only the tons of colorful broken glass worn smooth by time and the waves. Today, the beach is not only one of the county’s most popular tourist sites but is also a protected state park. Despite the sign posting for visitors to leave the glass, millions of tourists arrive with plastic bags in hand and collect pounds at a time. Today, the beach which was once covered with up to a foot of glass is now barren of any glass.
While this may be an extreme case, the fact remains, we all have an impact. If you would like to reduce your impact and still enjoy your vacations, consider the following:
- Use environmentally friendly transportation when possible
- Take as few planes as possible
- In the words of the parks “take only pictures and leave only footprints”
- Never remove or destroy public property of any kind
- Use reusable bottles for shampoos and other personal products
- Use heating and cooling only when necessary in hotels and vehicles
- Unplug all unused items in your home before leaving
- Use locally sustainable items when traveling i.e. eat local, shop local and use local guides
What do you do to ensure that your favorite destinations will exist for future generations? Share your tips and advice with us here at Island Trader Vacations Reviews.