Londoners in general are an eco-aware bunch — but don’t always practice what they preach. And even the concept of taking a “responsible,” “green,” or “environmentally friendly” trip here isn’t without controversy, particularly if you’re travelling by plane. However, there are everyday things you can do to minimise the impact — and especially the carbon footprint — of your travels.
Remove chargers from cellphones, laptops, and anything else that draws from the mains, once the gadget is fully charged. If you’re shopping, buy seasonal fruit and vegetables or local cheeses from markets rather than produce sourced by supermarkets from the far side of the globe. Most importantly, use public transportation to get around town. The city’s Tubes and buses are easy to use and efficient.
Greener even than Tubes and buses are the publicly accessible cycle hire bikes dotted around town, ideal for short journeys across the center. Provision and marking of dedicated cycle lanes is very hit-and-miss, however, so you’ll need to take care and rent (or buy) a helmet if you plan to get around by bike. Or, if you stay at the Hilton London Bankside, you can use one of the hotel’s sustainable hand-made bamboo bicycles and even book a vegan suites.
Green vacationing also extends to where you eat and stay. A location such as Hilton Midtown in New York is within walking distance of many attractions. The hotel extends its hospitality to thousands of honey bees who return to an apiarist’s rooftop hives from whence they healthfully pollinate the city and produce honey. Vegetarian food tends to have a much smaller impact on the environment, because it eschews energy- and resource-intensive meat production.