How to be a responsible tourist?
So you’ve decided to travel to the Yucatan peninsula, right? Well, here you’ll find some tips to improve your experience in your travels and also learn how to be a responsible tourist.
Learn the basics
First of all, it is very important to learn some basics about language, culture, religion, and customs of the city, country or place that you want to visit.
Learning how to say hello, goodbye and thank you is quite useful anywhere, and these simple gestures will make your stay easier… plus the natives will appreciate it! More so when you can say greetings in Spanish or Mayan.
Know the traveling etiquette
Now let us talk about manners, would you like someone to enter your home and start doing as they please without your permission, or asking at least? Well, it is quite similar while traveling – we recommend you to respect the law wherever you go, and of course the people too.
Try to adapt to the local habits while you stay, as a responsible tourist would do.
People here in the Mayan peninsula are very kind and welcoming so feel free to exchange words with them, you could make new friends. Isn’t that awesome?
Try to go unnoticed
Clothing is another topic which is usually ignored while traveling, but, depending on your destination, might be quite important. Wearing flamboyant clothes is not the best idea to have in mind while you travel. It’s not just as a matter of security, but also, it will help you blend in with the locals.
Know when to bargain
Support the local artists and artisans, buying their craft or articles will not only help them to continue with their job, but also this helps the economy of the place that you are visiting. In addition to this, you’ll have a piece with a real and interesting story to tell your friends and family.
Bargaining is a useful skill to buy things in many places all around the world. Nevertheless, there are places where this is not seen as a positive thing to do, so ask the locals what do they think about it before trying.
Important tip: Try not buy any animal or plant-based articles like ivory, pelts or seashells.
Use public transportation
Using public transportation is a good idea, why? Well, this helps the economy of the place that you are visiting, and of course your own economy.
Also, this will give you the opportunity to know better the people and the country or city that you are visiting. Public transportation is way cheaper than renting a car.
Taste the local gastronomy
Try the local gastronomy, food is a reflection of the culture and the people. Panuchos, salbutes, and cochinita are some of many delicious and traditional dishes here in the Yucatan peninsula.
Visit the local markets and restaurants, you won’t regret it! And who knows, maybe you’ll learn how to prepare some of these dishes.
Last but not least, the environment. Here in the Mayan peninsula we have beautiful beaches, mangroves, cenotes, and more, and we care about them a lot, so do not litter. Use “ecofriendly” products, if you see any harmful behavior to the environment or wildlife, call the authorities. Be a responsible tourist, and you’ll be welcome anywhere.
Did you know that one of the most harmful habits tourists have is using sunscreen? Try to purchase reef friendly ones that make the least damage to Coral Reefs. These ecosystems are the home of millions of organisms!
Another great way to help coral reefs is by visiting MUSA, the Underwater Museum of Art. This exotic place is between Cancun and Isla Mujeres and acts as an artificial reef. Tours to MUSA depart every day from Cancun and Isla Mujeres and you can go snorkeling or diving. There’s also a submarine that shows a few sculptures from the museum.