The world around changes as we speak. There are so many things going on around us, somewhat independently, as we hardly ever stop to examine the world around us. Yet, things that happen in such a way influence each other and continuously change the world in which we live.
As the world is starting to appreciate the nature around us and the fact that people are changing the environment with every step, the issue of suitability has been one of the significant aspects to consider in our modern history.
Sustainability includes the use and exploration of the resources which is in harmony with nature. The main principle of sustainability is to keep the balance as intact as possible. The idea is to prevent global development to harm our world and to preserve the natural resources for the generations to come. This idea is so powerful and so meaningful that it has been implemented in many aspects of our lives, so we have technological sustainability, environmental sustainability, etc.
The concept of sustainable tourism has become an important part of traveling for both leisure and business. The central premise behind this whole concept is to create this kind of thinking: When you visit a place as a tourist, you must strive to leave a positive impact on that environment.
It is a broad concept that can include many different ways and opportunities for travelers to express this positive attitude and show appreciation towards the environment by making sure they do not disrupt the harmony.
How can travelers contribute to sustainable tourism?
Firstly, you have to understand how traveling affects the environment to determine how together we can change things and enjoy traveling while still thinking about the environment.
- CO2 emission – Over 70% of emission comes from transport, more than 20% comes from accommodation and the rest is from other activities related to other activities that affect the environment.
- Cultural heritage preservation – Travelers need to be well-informed about the importance of the sites they’re visiting and prevent any behavior that would in any way impact the original look of the landmarks.
Obviously, the biggest issue is the emission of the gases that cause irreparable harm to the environment. This is how sustainable transportation has been brought into the spotlight.
In essence, sustainable tourism is responsible travel when travelers respect the environment they explore and find ways to conserve it by minimizing the impact they have on such an environment.
Sustainability in the city center
Most travelers choose to stay in the city center. Some find apartments in Madrid, and some prefer other types of accommodation. Regardless of the type of accommodation you choose, there is one great benefit of staying in the center of Madrid.
Popular landmarks are within walking distance. As public transport is causing a significant level of pollution in the cities across the globe, travelers can contribute to reducing the emission by walking instead of taking the bus or taxi. Why would you possibly choose to spend time on a bus, especially when the weather is beautiful outside if you can walk instead? While you walk, you get to see a lot of interesting things along the way. You get to stop and check out the store windows, or just enjoy the sights in front of you.
Since our apartments are in the city center, we always advise our guest to walk to the landmarks such as the Puerta del Sol (which is only 20 meters away from our apartments) and the Plaza Mayor (30 meters away). Even when it comes to longer walks such as 200 meters to the Prado Museum, our guests say that they always prefer walking than taking any other type of transport even though they are available in the city center.
A great way of transportation in big cities such as Madrid is using a bike. Not only is it efficient because you can’t really get stuck in a traffic jam, this solution is also environment-friendly.
How to rent a bike in Madrid?
BiciMAD is a city service which provides bike rental service in Madrid. It is a public transport that includes electric bicycles available on 123 stations in the city. This is a perfect way to show how suitability can be an important factor in developing a network of public transport and enabling people to reach the desired location conveniently. If you want to consider this way of exploring Madrid, check out this page with information on the locations of the stations where you can rent a bike, as well as the details about the rates that apply for different types of users.
Even though sustainability is a big issue, Madrid is not particularly a bike-friendly city like some other European capitals. However, what Madrid does have is plenty of locations in the city and in its surroundings which are perfect for riding a bike.
Exploring Madrid on a bike
Madrid is such a big city with lots of parks and green areas that you can find a lot of exciting locations to enjoy a bike ride in Madrid. Here are a few suggestions where you can explore Madrid on a bike.
The Retiro Park
The city’s most popular oasis and one of the most significant landmarks is undoubtedly the Retiro Park. We always recommend having a walk or a picnic in this park as one of the things you must do in Madrid, but riding a bike around the park is also an exciting activity. In fact, you are unlikely to explore the entire park solely on foot, so renting a bike is a perfect way to go.
This is a bicycle network that includes an extensive cycling path along the river. It is a perfect way to spend a day outdoors with your friends or family and yet have a positive influence on the environment. These cycling paths are also connected with other trails that take you further from the city center enabling you to explore the surroundings of Madrid in the same way.
Casa de Campo
The area is a large park with lots of interesting outdoor activities, a swimming pool, sports courts, amusement parks, etc. One of those fun activities is cycling. You can rent a bike and start your adventure around the park as you enjoy the nature and plenty of fresh air.
Parque del Oeste
Even though the main feature of this park is its astonishing rose garden, you can still enjoy the park on your bike. There park is situated on a slope with lots of narrow winding paths, and most of them are actually in the shade. This means that you won’t mind spending a hot sunny day riding your bike around the Parque del Oeste.
Surroundings of Madrid
Having in mind that transportation damages the environment, one of the most obvious activities for sustainable tourism is riding bikes.
If you are more into sports and if you are up for a more exciting ride around Madrid, you will love the experience of mountain biking. Exploring the surroundings of Madrid, you will get to find so many paths that are designed for those seeking a thrilling adventure and new goals to conquer.
Ride across Sierra de Guadarrama
Track MTB organizes a ride across Sierra de Guadarrama where you can explore the surroundings of Madrid in the area which is near the town of Segovia. A perfect activity for those who are looking to get away from the crowded streets flooded with tourists, especially during the warm days.
Exploring countryside around Madrid
Riding a bike is such an amazing experience to enjoy Madrid countryside. Mountain Cranks tour takes you on an exciting journey of exploring the Mediterranean forest and hills that surround Madrid.
Walk tours in Madrid
Walk tours are also an amazing way to avoid using public transport but still manage to explore the city. You can find a lot of walking tours suggestions online. If they are too much of a challenge because you are not used to walking for too long, you can also check out Segway tours. These are becoming more and more popular because they enable travelers to visit more places and explore an extensive area than if they were to walk.
And if you want some idea on what to visit in Madrid, check out this useful guide to help you organize a five-day trip to Madrid: 5 Days in Madrid: What to Visit.
Thinking about sustainability and taking responsibility
As a traveler, you need to act responsibly and show respect to the local environment. Just imagine it was your own city and town. The cultural heritage and natural resources that we as inhabitants of this planet have are priceless. This is why you need to adopt sustainability as a way of thinking and attitude you have towards traveling.
Regardless if you are visiting Madrid cultural heritage sites or nearby towns such as Segovia, travelers should behave in accordance with these principles of sustainability.
These are only some of the signs of expressing the importance of sustainability and developing Madrid’s tourism in a way that it supports suitability. In fact, the UN has declared the previous year the International Year of Sustainable Tourism. This only proves how the whole concept is vital for the travel industry and how we as accommodation providers in Madrid need to promote this concept and encourage travelers to think about the environment and sustainable development.