At the Beach
Most people enjoy a day at the beach and some even spend their entire vacation lying in the sun and swimming in the sea. Therefore, it is good to consider how you could possibly do this (more) sustainably, because there are definitely ways! Check out the bullet points below to find some tips & tricks as to how you can make your beach vacation more environmentally friendly for both nature and local people.
- If you know that you are planning a beach holiday, book accommodation close to the beach. As a result, you can walk or cycle to the beach (or use public transport), which will decrease your carbon footprint. This will make your holiday more environmentally friendly.
- When you want to do water sports, try to choose the ones that will create the least pollution – this includes noise pollution – and which disturb the sea life as little as possible. Supping, surfing, snorkelling or simply swimming are great examples of this.
- It might seem obvious, but should not be forgotten: do not leave any waste lying around on the beach. Make sure to throw everything in garbage bins and if there are none around, just take the trash back with you to throw away later. Additionally, it might be a good idea to consider what food you will take with you and how, such as using reusable boxes instead of plastic bags (which also easily blow away). Before you leave, simply check whether you have taken everything with you.
- Make sure to keep an eye out for signs at and around the beach to indicate how you should behave. For example, keep away from animal breeding areas, in order to not disturb them. Additionally, the rules at various beaches around the world can vary. For instance, it might be forbidden to take any shells or sand, because that can lead the ecosystem to deteriorate. And just to be safe, don’t do that even if there are no restrictions on this.
- If you ever come across an animal, do not feed it, keep your distance and definitely do not pick it up! When the animal seems in distress, look up the local help line and ask for their professional opinion on what to do instead. The same thing applies to coral reefs. It is an endangered living organism which should not be touched and especially not be replaced.
- Speaking of marine life, it is also recommended to use marine life friendly skincare products. Especially sunscreens can contain various harming chemicals for different marine species. Therefore, choose wisely when it comes to beach skincare products.
- Most beaches include a dune area, which is an ecosystem that protects the main land from the sea. When going on a walk or hike through this area, make sure to stay on the paths, to avoid disturbing the ecosystem.
- When showering at the beach, avoid using soap if possible, because the water often runs straight back into the ocean with these showers. As a result, the chemicals in your soap will do the same, without being filtered. Again, this can ruin marine life.
- When you want to eat seafood during your day at the beach, try to find a sustainable place. This can be tricky, which is why we recommend joining a local fisher for a fishing trip and catching your own food. This is a fun and interesting activity, which shows you exactly where your food came from and supports the local economy.
- Lastly, beach holidays often consist of strolling on the boulevards and checking out the shops. When doing so, try to buy at local stores instead of chains and do not buy anything that has been taken from the beach or the sea, such as coral (which is often illegal as well).