Travel thoughts with Rachel Mataira

Travel thoughts with Rachel Mataira

I recently visited Sarakiniko which is located on the island of Milos in Greece. The beach is often compared to a moonscape, shaped by volcanic eruptions and relentless waves. Its unique geological formations have given birth to a breathtaking and otherworldly site, with smooth, milky-white rocks contrasting dramatically against the clear blue Mediterranean Sea. 






This magical place has been revered by the island's inhabitants for generations, but it now faces challenges due to its increasing allure. The influx of tourists has led to several challenges jeopardising the very essence of Sarakiniko's sanctity. The rapid increase in foot traffic has caused erosion and degradation of the delicate rock formations, posing an alarming threat to the ecological balance of the area. Additionally, the heightened tourism activity has brought with it litter, compromising the once-pristine environment. 




During my recent travels I pondered what the future of travel looks like and I started to question if generations to follow will be able to experience the beauty of the land that is so easily accessible now? I asked myself a few simple questions:


- Can we explore not just for our own pleasure but with a sense of responsibility towards the destinations we visit?
- How can we be more conscious of the impact our travel choices have on local communities and ecosystems?
- How do we strike a balance between the benefits of travel and its potential impact on the places we visit?
- What happens to sites after they become saturated by tourists and are no longer popular?





I thought about this further and came to the conclusion that I think it’s important to strike a balance between the desire to experience the world with the responsibility to preserve and protect. Here are few simple ideas i’ve decided to adopt when traveling going forward: 


- Choose eco-friendly transportation: Opt for public transport, biking, or walking whenever possible to reduce the carbon footprint during travel.
- Support local businesses: Spend at locally-owned accommodations, restaurants, and tour operators to contribute positively to the local economy and preserve cultural heritage.
- Minimise waste: Bring a reusable water bottle, shopping bag, and utensils to avoid single-use plastics and reduce waste during the journey.
- Respect nature and wildlife: Refrain from touching or disturbing wildlife, and avoid littering to protect the delicate ecosystems of the destination.
- Be mindful of water and energy usage: Conserve water and energy by taking shorter showers, turning off lights and electronics when not in use.



    Sustainable travel is going to be important and does not need to be difficult. It's a transformative approach that fosters respect for the environment, cultures, and communities. The allure of Sarakiniko reminds us of the delicate balance between the natural world and our human curiosity. I deeply hope that  

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