There’s no doubt about it – we all need to be taking steps to live a little greener these days, remembering to recycle, insulating our homes, and eating more plant-based foods. It can be a daunting task to adjust your lifestyle accordingly, and you may find yourself wondering if that means axing your precious holidays abroad too. However, while travel does have a big impact on the planet, it’s not all bad!

As a business, we’re working to be more eco-conscious by offsetting all carbon emissions produced by our company – including your villa holiday. We’re doing this through a tree-planting partnership with Tree-Nation. On top of that, we have a sustainable villas collection that will help you pick the holiday home that most aligns with your values. And, to go one step further, we’ve pulled together a list of the most sustainable countries to visit in 2022. Time to get planning!

1. Denmark

DenmarkThe number one country in Yale’s Environmental Performance Index (EPI) and undeniably a pioneer in the field of sustainability, Denmark scored highest on 32 performance indicators across 11 categories. Propelled by its long history with improving air quality and providing safe drinking water for all, Denmark is also a leader when combating the effects of climate change, announcing an ambition goal in 2019 to cut its greenhouse gas emissions by 70% before 2030.

Most notably, right in the middle of Denmark you’ll find Samso, an island that relies entirely on renewable energy. When you combine that with wider Denmark’s commitment to making its buildings more energy-efficient – particularly necessary when citizens need their heating on for over half of the year – you’ve got one forward-thinking country. 

2. United Kingdom

UKWhile residents here may widely believe that their country still has a long way to go in the sustainability stakes, the UK actually ranked 4th in the EPI, topping the charts when it comes to the cleanest drinking water while also boasting the second lowest CO2 growth rate.

However, it really goes down the micro level, with 4 out of 10 UK consumers considering sustainability when making everyday purchases. You also won’t find any plastic straws here anymore – every little helps after all! If you choose to stay in the UK for your holiday, you can also consider travelling by train to lower your carbon footprint further.

3. Spain

SpainComing in at 14th, but 8th when it came to biodiversity and habitat, Spain continues to improve its sustainability efforts year on year. Making the most of the country’s plentiful sunshine, the Totana Solar Plant acts as an excellent example of the government’s switch to more renewable energy sources. This staggering solar project alone contributes 85 megawatts of electricity to Spain’s national grid, while also giving work to thousands. So, when you’re kicking back on the beach recharging your batteries, just know that those sun rays are also being put to good use powering up the country.

4. France

FranceTaking one of five ‘climate change leader’ titles in the EPI and sitting comfortably at number five, France has set ambitious goals for 2030 to preserve air quality and make clean energy more affordable. It’s also one of the lowest GHG emitters among industrialised nations, accounting for only 1.2% of global emissions.

However, what really sets France apart is its approach to agriculture and nutrition. By tackling food waste, promoting healthier lifestyles and eco-farming methods, it was able to earn the top spot in a 2018 food sustainability index – making that fresh baguette stuffed with baked brie and grapes taste even better!

5. Italy

ItalyComing in at a respectable 22nd, Italy has invested heavily in renewable energy in recent years, making it easier for citizens to live a little greener, and they also introduced a plastic tax in 2020 – an important factor in encouraging positive consumer habits.

And, while there’s still much to be done, the future looks bright. In 2019, it became the first country to make climate change and sustainability classes compulsory in schools, devoting an hour a week to these topics.

Now that you’ve got a better idea of the most sustainable countries to visit in 2022, it’s time to start planning your next trip! Whether you choose to stay at one of our sustainable villas or want to look at other options as well, our concierge team are happy to help you at every stage of the sustainable travel planning process.

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