My mission is to bring light to the darker sides of tourism. Things you don’t see on instagram and Youtube.
When I set off on my journey to “discover the world”, I was disenchanted by what I saw: garbage, litter, and a general disregard for the locals and their environment. I am trying to find ways to make travel better, greener and more socially responsible.
Travel can be a wonderful tool for self-development, it takes us out of our comfort zone and offers a new perspective on a different way of life. It also brings us closer to people we would not have met otherwise. For the first time in human history, travel is accessible for 1/7th of the world’s population and in 24 hours, you can go from one side of the earth to the other. That far away place on an iPhone screen turns into a real place with people you know. People who welcomed you into their country and people who you may choose to care about should a conflict come their way.
“Perhaps travel cannot prevent bigotry, but by demonstrating that all peoples cry, laugh, eat, worry, and die, it can introduce the idea that if we try and understand each other, we may even become friends.”
– Maya Angelou
Travel does not come without consequences, tourism is responsible for 10% of the world’s carbon emissions (Lenzen, M., Sun, Y., Faturay, F. et al.). According to The United Nations Environment Programme, 14% or 4.8 million tonnes of waste is created by tourism.
In cities rich and poor, local residents are pushed out so apartments can be turned into Airbnbs. When I visited an island off Bali, I was disturbed to see people living in tents next to a resort. When I asked them why they were living in tents, they told me that they got evicted so a hotel could be built and this was the only place they had to stay.
These things can be fixed with local regulations, protections for local citizens, and responsible practices by tourists. Also, travel influencers and platforms like Youtube and instagram should prioritize content that points out the reality of a destination. Influencers are taking it upon themselves to do this and things are looking good.