It’s easy to plan a carbon-friendly vacation at Algonquin Park if you know what you are looking for.
Here are a few things to consider:
- How you are getting to Algonquin Park? Choose a destination that is close to home and easy to get to. Choose a mode of transportation that puts the lowest amount of carbon into the atmosphere – like Ontario Northland bus to Algonquin Park. Northern Edge Algonquin at South River entrance to the park provides shuttle service to and from their nature retreat for folks who take public transit to Algonquin Park. Purchase carbon credits or invest in carbon offsets for your emissions – like tree planting or power generation that wouldn’t other wise happen.
- Go somewhere green. TripAdvisor recently established the GreenLeader program that can help travelers identify authentic green hosts. Consider the carbon footprint and energy use of your Algonquin Park host location. There are solar powered places, wind powered places, places that use little energy or are energy efficient, and places that immerse the traveller into the green landscape. Northern Edge Algonquin and other lodges have been recognized for their Sustainable Tourism Initiatives. Ask about your host’s green amenities and services.
- Eat local. Some Algonquin Park accommodations like Northern Edge Algonquin source their food locally, hence lowering emissions for transportation of food. Ask the host location where their food comes from. These Algonquin Park adventure providers usually employ locally too, so the people who are hosting your visit don’t have to put out significant carbon emissions to serve you. Inquire about where the guides who will be hosting your trip live when they aren’t guiding your Algonquin Park adventure.
- Choose Algonquin Park activities that don’t require carbon emissions. Choose a location where you can walk or take public transit to most of the things you want to see and do. Consider activities that burn calories instead of carbon like biking, canoeing, Stand up paddling, sea kayaking, hiking instead of riding in gas powered golf carts, motorboats, or atvs.
Northern Edge Algonquin is a great example of a location that has been serving up climate-friendly holidays for over a decade at Algonquin Park. They make it easy for travellers, encouraging guests to forgo the high gas prices and traffic congestion on the highway by offering a special discount called the Climate-Conscious Traveller package. Northern Edge Algonquin’s Climate-Conscious Traveller package includes a two for one bus ticket from Toronto to the South River entrance to Algonquin Park on Ontario Northland bus ( a low emissions transportation option), free shuttle to the solar powered eco-lodge and complimentary water bottle. This special travel package is just $140.
In addition, as previous guests attest, Algonquin Park experiences with Northern Edge Algonquin are decidedly good for the planet, serving up locally produced foods from market gardens and local organic meat producers (some from their own garden), and employing local staff, some who live right at the eco-lodge. Guided adventures in Algonquin Park by canoe and sea kayak and hosted yoga retreats are the featured vacation packages.
If you are near Toronto, this summer, leave the car parked in the driveway and start your Algonquin Park vacation at Toronto’s Union Station.
Food is another way your travels can be carbon-friendly. Eat locally and save on the fuel emissions that are necessary to get food to table. Ask your hosts if they know the names of the food providers. Stories from local food providers is one of the special things Gregor presents at every meal. He’s on a first-name basis with most of the food growers in the region.