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Natural Awakenings Central New Jersey


Eco Travel 101

Eco Travel 101


While checking places off the travel bucket list, keep in mind these traveling tips for leaving small footprints across the Earth.

Don’t Travel Far

Burning up jet fuel to fly to faraway places represents the largest affront to the environment. Staycations are the most eco-friendly. The shorter the distance we travel from home, the lower our carbon footprint. Because takeoffs and landings use the most fuel, fly direct whenever possible.

Avoid Over-Tourism

Some sites are so popular that they are prone to being overrun and abused. To avoid becoming part of the trampling herd and minimize tourist impact, visit the most popular tourist destinations during off-peak months or avoid them altogether. A green travel agent can help find less-trafficked destinations, book hotels with green certifications and secure eco-friendly tours and adventures.

Say No to Disposable Plastics

Put together a travel kit that doesn’t include throwaway plastics. Pack soap, shampoo and conditioner bars, as well as soap sheets that fit in a wallet, lather up with water and disintegrate. Invest in a reusable travel bottle—collapsible types use less space—along with a filter or purifier, in case of non-potable water. Pack a few lightweight cloth bags for souvenir shopping.

Go Paperless

Most transportation tickets can be purchased online and stored on a phone, with no paper needed. The same is true for maps, brochures and guidebooks.

Respect Resources

Help the local economy by using less of the area’s resources. Turn off the lights and air conditioning when not in the hotel room. Take short showers. Don’t get the bed remade with fresh sheets every day, and reuse towels as much as possible.

Support Local Businesses

To support community talent, purchase from local artisans for unique gifts. While a chain restaurant might seem fun, a local restaurant is more likely to serve authentic dishes. Ask residents where they would go, or hire a guide that lives in the area.

Use Public Transportation

Rental cars and taxis use more resources and may not give the best travel experience. Taking a local bus or train across town helps the environment and provides a great way to experience the culture. Biking and walking are even more environmentally friendly and allow for some of the best meandering and sightseeing.

Leave No Trace

Leave nothing behind. Place trash in receptacles, or, better yet, carry a bag and pick up trash to beautify the landscape. 

Tick Talk

Spring officially sprung on March 21. We have turned our clocks ahead. We are looking forward to warm winds, sunny skies and the smell of fresh cut grass. The daffodils and tulips have recently bloomed and we are just starting with the yard work that comes with the warmer weather.  Sadly, another season has started ramping up.  Tick season.

•             The best form of protection is prevention. Educating oneself about tick activity and how our behaviors overlap with tick habitats is the first step.

•             According to the NJ DOH, in 2022 Hunterdon County led the state with a Lyme disease incidence rate of 426 cases per 100,000 people. The fact is ticks spend approximately 90% of their lives not on a host but aggressively searching for one, molting to their next stage or over-wintering. This is why a tick remediation program should be implemented on school grounds where NJ DOH deems high risk for tick exposure and subsequent attachment to human hosts.

•             Governor Murphy has signed a bill that mandates tick education in NJ public schools. See this for the details.  Tick education must now be incorporated into K-12 school curriculum. See link:

•             May is a great month to remind the public that tick activity is in full swing. In New Jersey, there are many tickborne diseases that affect residents, including Anaplasmosis, Babesiosis, Ehrlichiosis, Lyme disease, Powassan, and Spotted Fever Group Rickettsiosis.

•             For years, the focus has mainly been about protecting ourselves from Lyme disease. But other tick-borne diseases are on the rise in Central Jersey. An increase of incidence of Babesia and Anaplasma are sidelining people too. These two pathogens are scary because they effect our blood cells. Babesia affects the red blood cells and Anaplasma effects the white blood cells.

•             Ticks can be infected with more than one pathogen. When you contract Lyme it is possible to contract more than just that one disease. This is called a co-infection. It is super important to pay attention to your symptoms. See link.

A good resource from the State:


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