A beginner’s guide on how to be eco conscious on a cruise shore tour

Carnival Cruise Lines takes you to some of the most beautiful destinations in the Southern Hemisphere. Everywhere from Moreton Island and the Great Barrier Reef in Australia to New Zealand’s Bay of Islands and some of the Pacific’s most stunning spots … Lifou Isle, Isle of Pines, Maré and Mystery Island. A huge part of the appeal of these locales is their pristine beauty – something that needs to be carefully protected for future generations. We work hard to ensure we have minimal impact on these destinations and limit availability on shore excursions (which is why it’s essential to book these ahead of time), but cruise passengers can also do their bit to help preserve these unspoiled environments. Here are five eco-conscious tips for your next shore excursion.

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Respect the local environment
Whether you’re just taking a stroll, or doing a serious hike, stick to marked paths and tracks. To protect endangered plants and animals, Keep Australia Beautiful recommends staying on marked trails and keeping a safe distance from any animals you might encounter. Also, if you have rubbish, take it back with you to the ship: small islands and developing locations often don’t have sophisticated waste management in place. “Leave nothing but footprints” should be your mantra.

Keep it to a minimum
The less you take on a shore excursion, the less you can accidently leave behind. Taking your own water in a refillable bottle is a no-brainer. Pack a folds-into-nothing reusable shopping bag: perfect for local markets.

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 Be aware when buying
It’s great to support local craftspeople, artisans and businesses – money stays in the local community, helping the economy – and to take home lovely mementoes of your cruise. But try and avoid souvenirs that are made from endangered plants, plant materials or animals. The Humane Society International names these as coral, fur, leather and skin and turtle shell.

Opt for Earth-friendly activities
You can reduce your carbon footprint in destinations by choosing activities such as sailing, snorkelling, scuba diving, hiking, kayaking, biking and swimming. And walk where you can. Not only does walking have no impact on the environment (as long as you keep to marked paths and trails), it’s also incredibly good for you.

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