Many people look forward to Christmas, and a handful more look forward to using the week of vacation between Christmas and New Year’s as a time to get away and jet off to somewhere warm or drive to a rented cottage or resort room where you can ski, eat, and snuggle. Here are some of our suggestions for a eco-friendly vacation this holiday season.
How to tell a true eco-resort from a greenwashing resort? If all they do is only wash towels that haven’t been dropped on the floor and other more conventional measures, you aren’t dealing with a true eco resort. If they are taking care to protect local wildlife, are members of an ecotourism organization, and generally walk the talk, you are dealing with a green spot.
Maho Bay is a collection of not one, but two eco resorts in the US Virgin Islands. They feature an arts centre, scuba diving, sailing, powerboating, and many other activities. One of the first true eco resorts before it was “cool”, Maho Bay is definitely a picturesque spot to get your sun on.
Gaia Napa Valley
Want to do some wine tasting Sideways-style in California’s Napa Valley? There’s no better place to stay than the first LEED gold certified property in the US. Only an hour’s drive from San Francisco.
Cotton Tree Lodge
Ecotourism is huge in Belize, where the crystal clear waters are a paradise for scuba divers. The property runs an organic garden for both demonstration and for the purpose of feeding guests, and also participates in a Sustainable Harvest program that ensures that all trees used in construction are harvested sustainably.
This resort in the Dutch West Indies has the best of everything, and is situated on the island of Saba, where there are no casinos or huge marinas full of all-inclusive partiers. It’s just paradise, and the EcoLodge does everything they can to preserve it.
This Costa Rican ecolodge was voted one of the Top 50 Eco Lodges by National Geographic in 2009, and has a host of other awards to its name. This property maintains a beautiful guest resort while providing protection to over 1000 acres of rainforest.
Do you have any suggestions on where our readers could spend a winter vacation, green style? Post them in our comments section.