There are so many benefits of travel and experiencing new places. In Shakespeare’s England we love to welcome visitors from far and wide who come to learn the history and heritage of our destination, whilst connecting with our beautiful green, open spaces and enjoying the many things to do in Warwickshire.
Unfortunately, travel can often have a negative impact on our planet by increasing pollution and putting a strain on our natural resources. With this in mind, we have put together our top 6 tips to help you be a more sustainable visitor in Shakespeare’s England.
Re-use not single use
Single use plastics such as drinks bottles and coffee cups are often used for less than 15 minutes yet they can take more than 1000 years to degrade (if at all).
Exploring is thirsty work and we all need to stay hydrated when we are out and about, but by bringing your own reusable cups, water bottles and containers you can help to reduce the huge impact that single use plastics have on our planet.
According to greenmatch.co.uk, 16 billion paper cups are used for takeaway coffees every year. This leads to the loss of 6.5 million trees and results in 4 billion gallons of water going to waste. Many coffee shops offer discounts to customers who use their own cups, so you can save some pennies whilst helping to save the planet.
If you are heading to Rugby, be sure to pop into the Visitor Centre to purchase your very own Rugby Town Takeaway Cup which makes a lovely souvenir and means you can enjoy a warm drink while you explore!
Carrying your own drinks bottles and bringing snacks in reusable containers is another great way of reducing waste. Ask in shops and cafes if you can refill your water bottle. You can download the Refill App which helps you to find locations offering refills for everything from water, to lunch and snacks, groceries and cosmetics.
By shopping and eating locally during your visit to Shakespeare’s England you can support the planet as well as the local economy, including the many independent businesses who rely on your custom. Shopping locally helps reduce your carbon footprint by lowering food miles generated through the transportation of goods. Search for restaurants with seasonal menus using local produce – such as Billesley Manor and Mallory Court Hotel who are both proud to use home grown produce from their own kitchen gardens.
Shakespeare’s England is also home to many independent businesses who hold sustainability at their core, such as the Shakespeare Distillery who are certified as a Carbon Neutral Business. Their initiatives include sourcing local ingredients for their spirits, reducing packaging, and working hard to be as energy efficient as possible – they also offer a fantastic refill scheme so customers can bring back their empty 50cl gin bottles for a discount on their refill! You can read more about their sustainable commitment here.
Taking home a local souvenir from your visit helps to support the many local producers and gift shops in Shakespeare’s England towns and attractions. Local honey, artisan spirits, chocolates and artworks make wonderful mementos – and remember to bring your own reusable shopping bag to take them home in!
Share a journey
Shakespeare’s England encompasses a large area and there is a lot to explore! Transportation has a big impact on the environment, so a great way to help reduce this is to share a ride! Look into train or bus travel to help you move around between places. There are direct trains to Shakespeare’s England from London and Birmingham, visit Chiltern Railways for train times and prices. You could even go fully retro with a traditional steam train journey aboard the Shakespeare Express with Vintage Trains which runs during the summer months from Birmingham Moor Street to Stratford-upon-Avon.
For local exploration, try a walking tour of our local towns like the Stratford Town Walk, which is a fantastic way to dive deeper into the history of Stratford-upon-Avon, or why not hire a bike during your visit and enjoy some of the wonderful Warwickshire countryside on two wheels?
If you would like to visit more rural destinations, a group guided tour is a great way of visiting new places and making new friends along the way! Go Cotswolds run their popular ‘Cotswolds in a Day’ minibus tours – they also offer pickups from Stratford-upon-Avon and Moreton-in-Marsh train stations.
Be a mindful guest
When staying in a local hotel or guest house, ask yourself if you really need your towels and bedding changing daily? Many hotels will offer sustainable choices like this to help reduce their guest’s impact on the environment during their stay. Simple changes like opting out of daily linen changes can help to save millions of litres of water each year, and reduce the impact of transport and energy use from laundry services.
Spread the word
By introducing simple sustainable habits into our travel plans, we can help make them the norm for everyone! Share your sustainable travel tips with your own circle through word of mouth and social media. The more people who hear the message, the further we can help it travel. We would love to hear some of your sustainable travel tips too – please share them with us by tagging Shakespeare’s England on social media – you can connect with us using the links at the bottom of this page!
Leave only footsteps…
Have you heard of the famous saying “Leave only footsteps, take only memories”? This is a great sustainable mantra to travel by! Remember to take any rubbish away with you and recycle wherever possible. We can all help to retain the beauty of our wonderful places by leaving them just as we found them for future generations to enjoy for years to come.