Top single use plastic free vacations

Although many of our vacation companies and customers have been practising reduced plastic lifestyles for a long time, they can’t always guarantee that everyone around them is doing the same. For example, a walking vacation company might advise you to bring your own refillable water bottle, but the local inn might insist on plastic beer glasses for the garden. Or the hotel is unwilling to let go of their mini toiletries bottles, plastic bin liners or laundry bags. Below are some vacations that have worked hard across the board to pretty much eliminate single use plastic. Neither we nor they are claiming perfection, but near as dammit. The map is small, but this is our call to action for others to join us in our war against plastic.
Hebrides cruise, Scotland

1. Hebrides cruise, Scotland

Single use plastics are devastating to marine environments, with dolphins and seabirds mistaking it for food and nesting materials. The issue is never far from the surface on this otherwise idyllic cruise around the Hebrides. Plastics are kept to a minimum throughout, collected from the water whenever spotted, and the basking sharks and otters you might spot en route will thank you for it. (Metaphorically speaking.)
Red Sea diving, Egypt

2. Red Sea diving, Egypt

Divers were shouting about single use plastics long before anyone, and one of our Red Sea dive resorts is leading by example. They have banned food wrap, provide cotton bags for shopping, work with local markets to reduce plastic and insist on reusable water bottles. Travelers can fill these up from the hotel water station, which they aim to make self-filtrating soon. They want their beautiful Red Sea green – and clean. Read more about our Red Sea diving in Egypt vacation
Sketching in Sri Lanka

3. Sketching in Sri Lanka

The suppliers of this stunning sketching and art vacation understand Sri Lanka’s Buddhist and ancient cultural landscape, while also valuing its natural beauty. This is why they are working with local people to show them that natural and traditional is best: who needs plastic when you have banana leaves? Single use plastic was introduced to keep tourists happy, not residents; this company strives to reverse this trend. Read about our sketching in Sri Lanka vacation
Villa in Ithaca Greece

4. Villa in Ithaca Greece

Luxury eco villas on this island idyll take a classy long term approach to single use plastics. You don’t have to have plastic to be posh. You just need some brilliant creativity and passion: they make their own toiletries on the land, all natural and no plastic. Their local produce is delivered to you in baskets. All drinking water is from an underground spring and put in glass bottles. It’s a single plastic free paradise. Read about our villa in Ithaca
Volunteering with bears, Romania

5. Volunteering with bears, Romania

If you go down to the woods today, you are not in for a nasty surprise. Because this bear sanctuary Romania, where you can volunteer to help with neglected, abused or injured bears, cares not only about its bears but also the Carpathian Mountains habitat. In a country where there is little recycling and a lot of plastic packaging, they are taking on the system brilliantly in their own pioneering way. Read about our volunteering with bears
Croatia sailing vacation

6. Croatia sailing vacation

Sailors hate single use plastic. They see the impacts with their own two eyes, on a daily basis and it stinks. This company is coming up smelling of roses, however, with its efforts to be single plastic free. And regular beach clean ups. As they take you sailing around Hvar, Korcula and many more they eliminate single use plastics, sending you packing advice reminding you to wear paraben free cosmetics in the water too.
Travel Team
If you'd like to chat about Plastic free or need help finding a vacation to suit you we're very happy to help.

Where to go on a plastic free vacation

Lynne Helal-Gillis from our supplier Dive Urge Resort, Dahab, Red Sea, Egypt:
“I think that Egypt recycles a lot more rubbish than the UK does, as it is another way to make an income here. There is a great group called Don't Mess With Dahab, as well as many fab souls who live here, deeply committed to making Dahab plastic free. Polystyrene trays were used by a lot of safari companies here, which drives me insane. It is not that hard to use real plates and cutlery instead. I campaigned to stop these horrid trays being used at the local Friday Market and some members of Sea Shepherd set up a stall offering rental plates… which was brilliant.”
Luigi Piero Grieco from our supplier, Idillio d’Arte in Puglia, Italy:
“We have selected only partners who are committed to being environmentally friendly and avoid single use plastic. The hotel has been doing a great job for years with everything at breakfast, in the restaurant and rooms served in porcelain, glass dishes, and using metal cutlery as opposed to plastic. All restaurants too, just use porcelain, glass dishes, and metal cutlery on their tables. Furthermore we distribute fabric bags and glass bottles to be reused and explain in the introduction evening, where and how to avoid the use of single use plastic objects, due to our experience on the ground.”
Written by Catherine Mack
Photo credits: [Page banner: Kitty Terwolbeck] [Map introduction: averie woodard] [Hebrides cruise, Scotland: Jeremy Stewardson] [Red Sea diving, Egypt: Hagainativ ] [Sketching in Sri Lanka: Hafiz Issadeen] [Lynne Helal-Gillis quote: Kyle Taylor] [Luigi Piero Grieco: Kars Alfrink]