6 Eco-friendly vacation activities

Eco-friendly vacation ideas
Photo credit Getty Images

Temperatures are heating up and vacation season is swinging into full gear.

In between cold beverages with tiny umbrellas in them on the beach, why not check out these tours Thrillist rounded up that will improve the locale you may be summering at! From helping baby sea turtles to eating (!) invasive species to protecting local waters these six activities are fun and will help make life better for us and the planet. That’s a win-win!

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Snap beach-saving photos in Sri Lanka

In 2021 a large shipping container fire off the west coast of Sri Lanka caused a great amount of debris to be spread throughout the ocean. Much of the plastic debris wound up on the coast of Sri Lanka and the Maldives. These plastic pellets (or nurdles) washed up on the beach killing numerous marine wildlife. Oceanswell, Sri Lanka’s “first marine conservation research and education organisation” has created a nurdle tracking website to help clean up the plastic waste! It’s incredibly simple as locals and visitors alike upload photos of the nurdles they come across while visiting the beaches. This helps Oceanswell coordinate cleaning efforts and track where the nurdles will head along the coast next.

While capturing timeless beach memories you can also snag some pics that will help save the planet!

Find bluefin tuna in Monterey Bay, CA

How awesome would it be to spend a day of vacation catching, tagging, and releasing one of the world’s “most magnificent marine species”? With TAG Research Charter you can do just that on a day-long expedition to search for giant bluefin tuna. Tagging the species helps TAG Research create and implement effective strategies to reverse the decline in the population of the amazing fish. Participants will hop aboard a fishing boat with the TAG team to find bluefins and aid in the protection of the species.

Not a bad deal to help out some glorious fish and feel that ocean breeze on your face!

Scuba to save reefs in Key Largo, FL

Not only will you help save the coral reefs off the coast of Florida in this program but you’ll get a coral restoration certification too! The Coral Restoration Foundation holds dive programs weekly where the team teaches you all about diving then gets you underwater and cleaning up and even planting new coral! Not only do you get to participate in saving beautiful coral but you earn a PADI Coral Restoration Certification at the end of you day too.

Helping heal the waters of Hawaii

The Great Huki Project is a monthly effort to remove harmful algae in Maunalua Bay in Oahu. Targeting the invasive algae species helps the bay get closer to restoring its coral reef and seagrass beds. So far the project has removed three million pounds of algae and cleared 23 acres of reef ecosystem. Not only do you get to spend time in the ocean but you’ll be ridding it of an invasive species of algae too!

Catch and eat lionfish in Pensacola, FL

The lionfish has become an invasive species over the last few years off the coast of Florida. It is believed the fish may have been set free there from a personal aquarium in the area. The fish reproduce incredibly fast and eat nearly everything in site making it difficult for other fish and species to thrive. Conservation crew Ocean Strike Team offers a cool experience where they’ll take you out on one of their boats and aid you in catching lionfish and then eating your spoils over the four day trip. The team has devices to catch the fish or you can even spear them, just watch out for the poisonous spines!

Save sea turtles in Puerto Vallarta, Mexico

Not only are Kemp’s Ridley sea turtles endangered but they’re also the world’s smallest sea turtle. Visitors of the Marriot Puerta Vallarta Resort & Spa can sign up to volunteer with its turtle protection program to save the tiny turtles. With the on-site biologist you will embark on night patrols finding recently hatched turtles and assist in using coconut shells to get them into the ocean. Save an endangered species while enjoying the beach!

For more ideas on how you can save the planet, visit 1Thing.

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