• Posted:Friday, July 31, 2009
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Posted in: Travel
Backpack with a conscience
When it comes to the general backpacking experience, I'm a lover, not a hater. I'm not one of these who takes a ten-pack of Budweiser and a litre of whiskey with them wherever they go on the off-chance that a good drinking opportunity will present itself. I'm much more interested in absorbing the culture of a place and seeing what it has to offer an outsider such as myself and I like to do it in the most responsible of ways. In no way do I wish to have an adverse effect upon the environment I am in. It's all about being at one with the earth.

That's why I was so pleased to come across Skyscanner's compilation of eco-friendly backpacker destinations - ranked according to the Economist's Pocket World in Figures, which factors in air pollution, biodiversity and water use when deciding which countries are greenest.

In first place is Switzerland. All mountains and lakes and clear blue skies - the perfect backpacker retreat. It's pretty cheap where backpacker hostels are concerned as well so you save money and the planet in equal measure. I've heard the Hotel Blumlisalp in Goldiwil is a safe bet and it overlooks a massive lake, which is good feng shui - water's a very calming influence, apparently.

Halfway down the list is Costa Rica, which is now thought to be the world's most natural area of conservation after many preservation institutes were created in order to protect more than 27 per cent of its land.

Not everyone's first choice for holidaymaking, Latvia is apparently the eighth greenest country in the world and there're loads of opportunities for backpackers to get down and dirty with the eco-friendly farming techniques by visiting an open farm. Choose from livestock, mushroom, fish or flower. You won't be disappointed.

Sam BuckleyADNFCR-2435-ID-19291394-ADNFCR
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