In recent years we have seen an increasing amount of emphasis placed on how we best care for the environment. It's becoming more important than ever that we all try to do our part, no matter how big or small, every little helps. At Parkdean Resorts we feel very lucky that our holiday parks are located in areas of natural beauty, so it's important to protect and learn more about our surrounding environment to enable future generations to enjoy it as much as we do.
There are so many easy ways to help care for the environment even when you’re enjoying a family holiday. We think that it is a great opportunity to teach the kids more about how they can help the Earth.Check out our handful of suggestions to get inspiration to make your holiday more eco-friendly!
What does eco-friendly mean?
You’ll probably have heard this phrase before, and maybe some other variations like “environmentally friendly” or heard about something being “green” and wondered what it all really means. To put it simply the phrase eco-friendly is used to describe anything that is beneficial to the environment and most importantly, that is not harmful to the environment.
1. Invest in a reusable water bottle
This one’s a no-brainer, it’ll save you money by eliminating the need to buy single-use plastic bottles - great for the environment and a bonus for your bank balance! We know that whilst the kids are running around making memories, keeping them hydrated can be a challenge. Give them their own water bottle, something jazzy that they won’t want to leave behind, and show them just how easy it is to refill it.
Excitingly, we’ve teamed up with Refill to ensure all of our parks have free water refill points! To find your closest refill point you can download the Refill App and it’ll show you the closest to your location.
2. Say no to plastic!
We're working hard to cut down on plastic on park, that's why we've already ditched plastic straws, welcome pack bags and take-away boxes. You'll find environmentally-friendly alternatives at all of our parks including paper straws, eco-envelopes and recyclable cardboard packaging.
That doesn’t mean there’s not an opportunity for you and the family to get involved, all of our parks have recycling bins, making it easy for you to do your part on holiday. To make it more fun, you could turn it into a competition with the kids and take the "no plastic challenge" whilst exploring the local area. This can be as simple as bringing a shopping bag with you for your souvenirs, or investing in a metal straw to have with you on the go.
With the unpredictable British weather, it’s always important to keep the kids protected from UV rays, so sun cream is a holiday essential. If you’re planning to take a dip and seeing some sea life, try researching and picking up a Marine Friendly Sun Cream as an alternative for your go-to sun cream, and enjoy the environmental benefits!
3. Explore nature together
Our holiday parks are nestled in some of the UK's most spectacular locations, many of which are officially recognised as Areas of Outstanding Natural Beauty and protected wildlife habitats. Spending time with your children in such beautiful surroundings is a great way to get them closer to nature and build an early appreciation for the importance of protecting the environment.
When thinking about outdoor activities, get out your binoculars and see how many species of bird you can spot. Bird watching is an easy eco-friendly activity to do with kids. You definitely don’t need to be an expert to enjoy it, grab a guide and you can learn along with them. Just a fifteen minute drive from Highfield Grange is Holland Haven Country Park, an area which is managed in order to conserve the natural landscape and wildlife. This is the perfect spot as you’ll find bird watching hides and lots of interesting breeds of bird.
Or, if you’re further North, Arnside and Silverdale AONB is just a half hour drive away from Regent Bay. You could definitely spend all day exploring the diverse wildlife, walking routes, not to mention the many variations of woodland birds that have made their home here.
We know that it might be a struggle getting them to stay still so another great eco-friendly activity to keep them entertained is rock pooling! Once the tide goes out there’s a whole world of sea life for them to discover. Scarborough beach, just a short drive from Cayton Bay Holiday Park, is the perfect location, here you’ll find enough rock pools to entertain the kids for days. With so much sea life the kids (and you) will be amazed at what there is to find.
4. Plan a green day out
You’re spoilt for choice if you’re staying with us, we can’t choose one so we’re going to highlight just a few options if you fancy a green day out. If you’re staying in Cornwall then a visit to the Eden Project is definitely a must-do for younger and older kids alike. Nestled inside a huge crater, the Eden Project is made up of “biomes” which recreate some of the planet’s most dramatic environments.
Eden Project, St Austell
With so much to see, do, and smell, this place is the perfect mix of interactivity and educational - illustrating how our ecosystems are being impacted by climate change.
Alternatively, if you’re staying in Wales, just a short journey from Brynowen Holiday Park is the Centre for Alternative Technology, an eco-centre which utilises interactive exhibits to showcase alternative ways of using technology – perfect for a family day out. The kids will definitely be entertained here, they can take a ride on the cliffside railway which works purely by balancing water, or wander through the woodlands and seek out some fabulous views of Snowdonia.
5. Get involved with Outdoor 'n' Explore
New to Parkdean Resorts, our Outdoor 'n' Explore camps are ideal for budding young adventurers looking to discover more about the environment. Available at White Cross Bay, Warmwell, Sandford and Ruda Holiday Parks, our Outdoor 'n' Explore activities are a must!
Lead by experienced guides trained in the art of bush craft, you'll learn all kinds of interesting facts and skills - from surviving in the wild to lighting campfires. It's a great way to get the little ones interested in the great outdoors.
6. Ditch the car
Another way to be more environmentally friendly is to leave the car on-park and find alternative ways to discover the surrounding area.
Cycle trails give you the chance to explore at your own pace with the family, exercise, and be more eco-friendly all at the same time. With so many of our local towns and seaside resorts offering local bike hire, it's an easy way to do your part for the environment whilst on holiday. If you’re staying at Highfield Grange why not try the nearby cycling route from Clacton-on-Sea to Frinton-on-Sea and you’ll be rewarded with some stunning views of the Essex coastline.
If you’re not in the mood for cycling, walking and hiking trails are a brilliant environmentally friendly alternative, whilst giving you the time to explore the areas of natural beauty around you. If you’re staying at Whitley Bay Holiday Park, make time to walk the trail from Whitley Bay to St Mary’s Island, it’s an easy and flat walk that is perfect for the whole family, and if you’re really lucky you might spot some seals!
Or, if you’re seeking a truly memorable experience, horse-riding is a wonderful and unique way to discover a destination. Lots of local riding centres offer guided rides along trails designed to show you the beauty of the surrounding countryside. Horse-riding is also a great opportunity for the kids to bond with the animals, and get them more interested in exploring nature. Plan a visit to Kelburn Estate and Country Centre just a 20 minute drive from Wemyss Bay or check out Bigland Hall Equine Group which is close to our Lake District Holiday Parks and start exploring!
Don’t worry if you’ve not been horse riding before, different levels of experience are catered for so the whole family can enjoy it.
There are so many ways to be more eco-friendly whilst making memories on holiday, so we’ve chosen picked just a few. Got any of your own recommendations on how to make your holiday more eco-friendly? Share them with us on our Facebook Page.