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9 of the world's least eco-friendly destinations

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Eco-tourism and eco-travel is quite an important factor in the travel landscape, especially amongst young people. What is the easiest way to travel emission free, how do we safeguard our environment without stopping to explore it, and how will we ever leave our hometown if we're too scared of polluting, are recurring questions behind this green travel movement.

However, we could simply start by avoiding (or even boycotting!) some of the least eco-friendly travel destinations, just for a head start.

1. India

India is one of the most popular touristic destinations in the world, but not in the slightest the best one when it comes to being eco-friendly. The whole country is dangerously polluted. The levels of trash and air pollution are preposterous, and pollution-related deaths are quite common in rural areas. India may be a wonderful country to visit, but your lungs won’t appreciate that visit to the Taj Majal.

2. China

China is one of the most polluted countries in the world (shock). Their CO2 emissions levels are terrible: outdoor air polution has reached deadly levels, and it is normal to see people wearing masks to filter the air. The situation is so worrying that the government of China has set in motion a series of measures to improve the quality of the air, but it will probably take some time.

3. London, UK

London has never been a landmark in eco-friendliness. The Great Stink of 1858 and the Great Smog of are considered some of the worst environmental impacts ever. Nowadays, the situation has hardly improved. In spite of the Mayor’s desperate measures to reduce the emission of CO2 (like the T-Charge and the Congestion Charge Fee), this year London reached the legal limit for 2018 in less than a month. 

4. Qatar

The World Health Organisation has stated that Qatar’s air pollution exceeds safe limits, which is very unhealthy for the population. The PM 2.5 particles in the air are very toxic and can cause health problems including coughing, chronic bronchitis and lung cancer.

5. All-inclusive hotels, everywhere

Popular all-inclusive destinations like Cancun, Punta Cana and the Bahamas are extremelly polluting, for they originate an enormous amount of waste. The great majority of all inclusive hotels lack eco-friendly practices, and the encouraging of consumerism translates into very contaminating production and purchasing processes.

Apart from this, these massive buildings have a terrible impact in the coastline environment, from projecting shadows on the beaches to modifying the tides. So be careful when choosing an all-inclusive hotel!

6. Major events around the world

Event-driven vacations usually create a gigantic amount of waste, typically without any type of eco-preparation. Events like Mardi Gras in Louisiana, the Carnival in Brazil, conventions or festivals leave a huge mark behind. If joining one of these events, be careful and conscious!

7. Lima, Peru

Lima, the capital of Peru, has the worst air pollution of all Latin American cities. The deforestation of the amazonian rainforest, water pollution, endangered species and soil erosion are some of the many environmental problems that Peru faces - along with the mass tourism that little by little destroys  natural and historical landmarks like Machu Picchu.

8. Theme Parks, everywhere

Theme parks are fun and a great tourist attraction. But they are also very dangerous for the environment, mostly due to their enormous waste of energy and their inciting of consumerism. Think twice before visiting Disneyland!

9. Road trips, everywhere

There is something about road trips that fascinates many people around the world. A cross-country road trip in the United States may sound like a perfect way to spend your vacation, but it is more than obvious that driving a car for such a long distance is not eco-friendly at all. The huge emission carbon footprint that you create when taking a road trip may not be worth it!

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