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3 Reasons to stay at an Eco Surf Lodge
Some call them trendy, while others swear by them. Either way, eco lodges are gere to stay and are a part of the green revolution that surfers and the rest of the world are either enbracing or about to embrace. When an eco lodge gets it right, they really can be something very special. We recently had the opportunity to stay at an eco surf lodge, and here are some reasons why we'll definitely be going back again.
A pure escape
Whilst, we're lucky enough here at Shaka Surf to live close by to a great beach, we're still close enough to a big city to still feel the crowds, especially on the weekend. Crowds on land, traffic, busy shopping malls and other such institutions can affect you in so many ways, many of which you don’t even realise at the time. Constant noise and the movement of people can make some people tense, stressed and vigilant. Crowds in the water can just be odious. Too many people in the water takes all the fun out of it, and makes surfing harder than it should be. A few selfish people in a crowd matrix is even worse, and can lead to a general feeling of tension and aggression. Staying at an eco surf lodge in a remote area of Portugal was pure bliss. We were surprised at how quickly we felt re-energised and invigorated. We were able to totally disconnect from our screens and really embrace nature. It was awelcome relief from all the toil and grind that we have been enduring the last few months in a bid to achieve our goals. Honestly, the last few months have seen us working 10 - 14 hour days, 7 days a week. So this was a necessary break to reconnect, recharge and come back with renewed energy.
Another term that is often used these days but easily falls under the spin of greenwashing is ‘sustainable lodging.’ There is a lot that can be done to make lodging sustainable, but it needs to be done along with other basic eco-principles in order to not nullify a minimal carbon footprint. This eco lodge that we visited got it right. The sustainable lodging concept is pretty subjective, but the lodge we stayed at used renewable energy as best they could, with solar panels and inverters. They also recycled everything possible, which is always very encouraging to see. Even just makig sure that was eventually sinlged out as trash went to the recycle bins. They are a lodge that has entirely cut out single use plastics, which should become compulsory all over the world. They also made judicious use of all water, catching rain water and makign potable, as well as recycling grey water for watering their garden. Speaking of their garden, everything was grown organically with permacultures, which meant we had delicious evening meals with everyone.
An alternative to Overtourism
Many cities are suffering from overtourism. It's clear that people need to start venturing out of the cities more. This avenue of tourism is expected to grow even more over the next decade as the cities get busier, and the trafic and trasnport systems often border on the dysfunctional.
Staying an eco surf lodge will often mean traveling a bit further, and some people do not enjoy getting out of their comfort zones, but the rewards of getting out, of getting away and of having nature and fresh air surrounding you are certainly worth a few extra miles. Remember that when you book in an eco lodge you’re also supporting local whether it comes to the actual lodge, the people employed by the lodge and by buying local produce. That is infinitely better than supporting already established tourism businesses in the cities.
If you're interested in having an eco surf lodge experience and are in Portugal here's the lodge we stayed at:
Bukubaki Eco Surf Resort, near Peniche
There are great waves in the area, from gentle waves for beginner surfers, to full-on beach-break barrels at Supertubos a little further away. It has a pool, a skate pool, yoga classes and the rest.