FROM THE EDITOR:
REINVENTING THE WAY WE TRAVEL
Earth Day held special meaning for our online community at Travel + Escape this April. Find out why in this month’s Letter from the Editor.
You heard the buzz words all month long: ‘green travel’, ‘ecotourism’, ‘geo-local travel’, the ’10km hotel’, ‘voluntourism’, ‘geotourism’, ‘responsible travel’, ‘sustainable travel’ …
As part of the largest, most celebrated environmental event by millions around the world this month, Earth Day themes indeed abound. And for our online community here at Travel+Escape, Earth Day holds special meaning. It means travelling – with respect. It’s more than just a month-long commemoration. It’s about a new way to travel.
More than ever before, travellers today see themselves as citizens of the world. Rather than thinking Not my land, Not my problem, the new generation of travellers think: How can I help? How can I get involved? Travel has become more than about taking a holiday – it’s about giving back; an opportunity to improve the places we visit.
Travel today has a purpose, with not only our own needs in mind, but also those of the destination. Rather than simply travelling to tick off places and things on our bucket list, travel today is seen as an opportunity to learn and help make a difference in the lives of communities we visit. Travellers today want to see a better world, and they want to be a part of the efforts to help make that happen.
Travel today has a purpose, with not only our own needs in mind, but also those of the destination.
I’ve been so proud of our online community’s dedication to green travel this month on TravelandEascape.ca, advocating responsible travel choices that are demonstrably making an impact on the travel agencies today.
Like Pamela MacNaughtan of SpunkyGirlMonologues.com who shared her first-hand experiences all the way from the very grounds of Thailand’s Elephant National Park, an elephant sanctuary for rescued and abused elephants illegally captured from the wild. I read with amazement as her voluntourism experience quickly turned into one of activism as she headed to Bangkok on an overnight bus with animal rights activist Lek Chailert to help push Parliament steps toward the implementation of animal protection laws.
Or our posts by Diana Edelman of DTravelsRound.com whose dedication to raising awareness about captive exotic animals undergoing unspeakable cruelty in training before being “tamed” and ready for travel photo props brought significant attention to their plight.
Travellers today see themselves as citizens of the world. Rather than thinking ‘Not my land, Not my problem,’ the new generation of travellers think ‘How can I help? How can I get involved?’
And Mariellen Ward of BreathDreamGo.com whose post about the terrible state one of the world’s great rivers, The Ganges, helped raise awareness to the severe threat its pollution poses to one-tenth of the world’s population who depend on it.
It was especially exciting to see our LIVE CHAT on the topic of #EthicalTravel trending across Canada when we co-hosted on Twitter @TravelandEscape on April 6. An incredibly passionate and dedicated community of travel bloggers shared engaging insights, tips and thoughts on the topic, including GreenGlobalTravel.com’s Bret Love (who dictated tweets by phone to his partner Mary, I later learned, while he was in the hospital having upper GI X-rays done – now THAT’s dedication!
There’s no doubt about it: Responsible tourism is a better way to see the world. Not only do you get a more authentic experience, but your holiday benefits locals – and the environment.
We hope you enjoyed our month-long series on Sustainable Travel, and that it leaves a lasting and positive impact on your travel choices going forward.
In a few days, we launch into May with our next spotlight series: TRAVEL THAT TRANSFORMS! Be sure to look out for special guest posts by Marc and Craig Kielburger, and other co-founding members of one of the most inspiring organizations in the world, Me to We. Follow the series and join our community to share your own take on trips that change lives.