Frankfurt, 17 April 2019 - Sustainable travel means high environmental standards, social redistribution of tourism revenues and respect for human rights. The world needs more travellers to be sustainable and reduce their carbon footprint on the planet. Green travel starts with finding an ethically correct travel destination. To help with the travel planning and to celebrate Earth Day on April 22, WorldHotels™ put together six green destinations for 2019.
While the Dutch national colour may be orange, the Dutch pride themselves on green initiatives. The country is working hard to reduce air pollution and carbon emissions, improve waste management and clean up its rivers. Since 1989, the Netherlands have had a National Environmental Policy Plan in place. It’s not surprising that a country known for its windmills is a leader in renewable energy. Trams and subways run on green electricity and canal boats use natural gas and other sustainable fuels. The Netherlands has more than 35,000 kilometres of bike paths. City trips and sustainable tourism; it may seem a strange combination. However, Amsterdam is an ardent supporter of cycling as the city has more bikes than people. Due to their high CO2 emissions, airplanes do not have a reputation for being eco-friendly. Therefore, Amsterdam Airport Schiphol is working hard towards a policy that is as sustainable as possible.
Hotel Tip: The Duin & Kruidberg Country Estate in Santpoort/Amsterdam offers its own honey from bees that live in the nearby Zuid-Kennemerland National Park. On the hotel grounds, the hotel has two charging stations for electric cars and two more for electric bicycles.
Green and clean New Zealand – it’s a cliché for a reason. New Zealand demonstrates a commitment to sustainability: the topics of environmental protection and sustainability are highly rated politically. The government announced to ban single-use plastic bags by July this year. Eco tourism is quite synonymous with the country. New Zealand offers 13 national parks to preserve the environment and nearly 30 per cent of the country’s total area is protected as conservation land. New Zealand is particularly active in species conservation. Through innovative rescue programs, the country is bringing endangered wildlife back. There is also an active biotech community in New Zealand, which has taken on the task of promoting the bio economy.
Hotel Tip: Stamford Plaza Auckland offers various sustainable practices, from eco-friendly products, energy efficient sensors to donating lost property to the Auckland city mission. It also has a clean towel policy and no service option for guest in place, so guests can help to cut down on washing. Furthermore, the hotel selects suppliers who shows commitment towards sustainability and mostly orders stock from nearby and local supplier to reduce its carbon foot prints.
Singapore is Asia's greenest city due to its ambitious environmental targets and its efficient and innovative approach to achieving them. It sets the standard amongst other cities with the Sustainable Singapore Blueprint, which outlines the country’s national vision and plans for a more sustainable Singapore. Experts in technology, urban design and city planning collaborate to re-think traditional ways of doing things and to devise ways to protect the environment for future generations. The country is committed to improving its amount of energy consumed for its GDP by 35 percent by 2030. Solar will be the most reliable renewable source given the country’s year-round tropical climate.
Hotel Tip: Luxurious hospitality and eco-consciousness go together at Carlton City Hotel Singapore. The hotel encourages its guests to reduce their ecological footprint and to be part of their environmental-friendly practices, such as reusing their linens and towels, maintaining a recommended room temperature and minimizing waste.
As a paradise of biodiversity, Ecuador is particularly concerned about protecting its natural resources. Some 300 species of mammals have been recorded in Ecuador, from the rare Andean spectacled bear to more than 100 species of bats. The "Plandetur 2020", the roadmap to 2020, defines 78 projects for sustainable tourism development in Ecuador. The main objective is to develop tourism in harmony with nature conservation and the well-being of the population, making optimum use of all resources.
Hotel Tip: Hotel Oro Verde Cuenca switched to long-lasting LED lights to reduce electricity use. Furthermore, it encourages guests to reuse towels and sheets. In its gourmet deli, the hotel switched from disposable plastic tableware to environmentally-friendly products for takeaway orders. In the bathrooms, guests find bulk liquid dispensers instead of mini bottles, which is eco-friendlier and reduces plastic waste.
Creating a green and sustainable society is one of the key goals for Denmark. Denmark’s society used to be based on fishing and agriculture, and that is why Danes still feel connected to their country and the water surrounding it. Their respect for nature makes the country a frontrunner in promoting sustainable practices. Samsø island is worth visiting as it has been 100 percent carbon neutral, relying entirely on renewable energy such as wind, solar and biomass energy since 2007. Copenhagen's biking culture is one of the many initiatives that make the city green and sustainable. The city is a pioneer in recycling, upcycling, renewable energy, mobility, smart city solutions and green transformation.
Hotel Tip: Tivoli Hotel & Congress Center in Copenhagen is environmentally certified by Green Key. The hotel reduces its waste, demands that their suppliers provide services and products which fulfil the requirements of Green Key, use goods which have the lowest possible strain on the environment and ensures that all taps are fitted with water saving devices. Because of this measure, guests experience a pleasant flow of water, but only use around half the water that normally comes out of the taps. Furthermore, the hotel only uses cleaning products, soaps and shampoo that are environmentally certified and washes the linen at an environmentally-certified laundry.
Following Australia, Sweden was the second country in the world to introduce an ecotourism charter. Besides its breath-taking nature, Sweden is known for its ambitious environmental awareness. Sweden is a pioneer when it comes to electric mobility. Its CO2 emissions are below the European average. The fact that the Swedes care about nature is also evident in the nature reserves and urban gardening. Sweden's waste balance is particularly exemplary: 99 percent of all waste is recycled or further processed. In many Swedish towns, tourists find E-busses and stations where bicycles can be hired. Sweden also set up ‘Nature’s Best,’ Europe’s first eco-label. It assures the quality of tours run by eco-certified tour operators around the country. Stockholm is one of the greenest cities in the EU and the first city that won the European Green Capital Award in 2010.
Hotel Tip: Gothia Towers in Gothenburg has identified several focus areas in which it has an impact on people and the environment, from cleaning and shipments to food and beverage. The coffee served at the meeting place is ecological and fair trade. Gothia Towers also puts strong emphasis on its social commitment: During its annual Christmas campaign, the hotel collects Christmas gifts which are distributed by the Gothenburg Rescue Mission to children.