Trying out new things and adopting new habits is a fun thing to do in our everyday life. And when it comes to “living differently“, like we say at Orla Collective, there are so many ways to do that, contributing to both our wellbeing and the planet. When travelling, it can be surely be hard to think of those good habits, or take them with us. But there are plenty of awesome things you can do to keep your trip healthy & green, which can also contribute to making it so much more enjoyable!
1) Wear comfortable, breathable clothes & shoes
The right clothes can make you feel comfortable and free to walk, breathe and have fun during your trip. Of course, you don’t have to sacrifice your style, but wearing comfortable shoes, clothing that feels like a second skin to you can contribute a lot into your wellbeing and encourage you to walk more, move more, jump more…well, live more! I’m in love with my loose tops, leggings and lightweight shoes as they really make a day that much more enjoyable!
2) Stay hydrated
It’s important to beat thirst and stay hydrated, especially with warm & sunny conditions, or if you walk a lot during your trip. We don’t recommend buying plastic bottles (really try to avoid that, as it just generates plastic waste, plus it’s not healthy) but do get yourself a lightweight, re-usable bottle you can refill during the day!
3) Wear a natural, clean sunscreen.
When travelling, you’re quite likely to spend a lot of time outside, and for this reason it’s important to get your skin protected from harmful effects of sun exposure. Although, using industrial suncare products can be counter-productive in this case, as they’re full of nasty chemicals that get absorbed into the body and weaken your immune system (read: the system that actually protects you for skin cancer…). They’re also not quite environmentally-friendly. The solution: be smart about your sun exposure and don’t be excessive about it. If you are planning to stay in the sun for a while, you can look for a natural alternative, which doesn’t contain titanium dioxide, nano zinc oxide or parabens. Or you can make your own, it’s super fun! We posted a tutorial here.
4) Must have: Coconut oil!
Coconut oil is a wonder-product by itself. Used externally, it can help care for sunburns, can be used for a soothing foot massage after a long walk, as a moisturizer and healer of all sorts of skin issues, as a hair mask to treat hair which has been exposed in the sun, and so on. You can also use it for oil pulling (awesome detox ritual), or you can add it to your diet and eat a few spoonfuls per day, as it will energize and cleanse your system as well as rev up your metabolism – keeping those holiday pounds off, ha!
5) Eat fresh, snack smart!
Look for farmer’s markets around where you are. Whether you have the possibility to cook some food or not while travelling, it’s always a great idea to fuel up on fresh fruits and vegetables, if possible organic. Why? Because the way we eat when we are travelling can be quite different than when we’re back home, which can create some digestive issues and deficiencies. Sneaking in some healthy, raw produce can help in this case and also make you feel more energetic. Have a stroll around, and get your hands on some crunchy veggies or delicious fruits you can easily snack on (apples, peaches, cherries, carrots, bell peppers, whatever is seasonal). Tip: My favourite way to sneak in something healthy is at breakfast. It’s so easy to just make a whole meal out of yummy fruit, anywhere! This is also a great way to “ease” your digestion into the day, as fruits are digested quickly and are cleansing to the body. Which is also especially interesting if you’ve had a little bit of a “heavy” dinner the night before.
6) Go veg-adventurous
Whether you are a vegan, vegetarian, or meat eater, if you’re travelling in a big city, there’s absolutely no excuse not to get a little adventurous by trying a plant-based restaurant. Not only will you be making a more mindful and healthy choice for you and the planet, but those places tend to be extremely inventive & surprising when it comes to creating awesome dishes. Hello scrumptious veggie burgers, kale salads and reinvented national dishes! Want to start looking for them? Start your search on happy cow, and get your foodie on!
7) Detox SOS
Had a heavy meal? Yes, it can even happen in those vegan restaurants 😉 Carry natural detox teas & supplements with you to ease your digestion and beat bloating. I personally love this detox tea from pukka, made with aniseed, cardamom and fennel. Supplements and herbs with diuretic/cleansing properties such as nettles, papaya enzymes or milk thistle can be great to get things moving and make you feel light. It’s also a good idea to get probiotics into your system, keeping your gut flora healthy and helping your immune system.
8) Bring your mat
This one is a particularly good tip if you’re quite dedicated to exercising back home and want to stay in shape mentally or physically while you are travelling. It’s simple: just bring your mat with you. Wherever you are, in a hotel room, in a house, or outside unroll it and do your thing. Yoga, bodyweight exercise, stretching, meditation, relaxation, whatever makes you feel good and is special time for yourself only. Of course, you must make time for it, and this is not always easy to do when you’re on a holiday mode, but here’s what I do: I keep a 30-minute timeframe in the morning for it, followed by a shower and then my day can start! Doing this in the morning is a simple way to sneak it in and feel awesome.
9) Move eco-consciously
Now’s the time to make your commuting eco-friendly. Since you are probably not as stressed or in a rush as when you’re back home, try renting a bike, and cycle through all the places you want to see in a healthy & green way! Or use your feet and walk. Both will give a energising call to your legs and heart, which is especially great if you’ve been quite sedentary before your trip, and, you’ll also get to see some interesting things while getting from point A to point B 🙂
10) Visit beautiful greeneries
Don’t get us wrong, museums and shops can be cool, but the real beauty and ultimate breath of a place lies in its green sanctuaries. There’s nothing more relaxing and re-charging than taking a little break in these places. If you’re in a city, look for community gardens & large green parks. When I recently visited the city of Lyon, David and I took a nap in its large green park, for 2 hours, just laying on the grass. An incomparable calming experience. And in Berlin, we visited this community garden which is so colourful that it feels unreal! If you’re not in a city, even better: look for natural reserves and beautiful trails by the nature. Spend an hour there and you’ll feel born again!
11) Shop local
When it comes to buying souvenirs for your friends and family, look for handmade goods. Support local makers and creators rather than big chain companies or things that are made in China. Not only will you be “putting your money where your mouth is” (aka voting with your wallet ;)) but, you will be purchasing things that are unique and that have a meaningful story behind them!
12) Try WWOOFing
What’s WWOOFing? Well, it’s an awesome network around the world, creating awesome opportunities for budget-friendly travel that’s fun & green! You can spend your holiday in an olive orchard, helping out in a veggie patch, or be active in a farm. By offering your volunteer help for a few hours per day, your hosts will offer you food, accommodation and of course the opportunity to learn about those organic lifestyles. Isn’t that a cool, alternative idea for your next holiday?
13) Soak it in
Travelling can have a great effect on the mind & the body. It’s a time for transition, new ideas, inspiration, challenges and experiences that will transform into memories we will keep and that will make us grow in some way. With this in mind, practice as much mindfulness as possible. In other words: chill. Breathe. Live the moment. Embrace it and stay curious. I generally do this by gathering inspiration in all the things that surround me, taking a few photos, maybe even notes, questioning and gazing at things that are different from back at home, and it’s been great for both my mind & creativity! But you can also do this in a more laid-back way that’s personal to you. Just soak it all in and don’t sweat the small stuff. This is your time.
Credits: Photos from my instagram account. Follow me!