Sustainability and ecotourism are proving to remain hot topics. It is great to see tour operators now jumping on the environmental wagon and implementing positive changes within the nautical industry. However what many people don’t know is that Sail Croatia have been driving the environmental vehicle for many years now.
Since operations began, Sail Croatia has seen first hand the negative effects of tourism growing at an unprecedented rate; beaches and sea beds littered with plastic and trash, and a nonchalant approach to the environment and sustainability from local communities and tourists alike. In 2016 Green Sail was born out of a love for the Sea, our environment and a strong desire to do much more within our areas of influence.
Environmental sustainability and positive community influence have always been Sail Croatia’s leading ethos as a business and even at an individual level within passionate staff members. Since its origins in 2016, the Green Sail initiative has expanded rapidly to now influence over 1,900 vessels and their guests, operating as a registered charity in Croatia that is funded and founded by Sail Croatia.
The Green Sail message initially spread on our Yacht Charter and Private Yacht Tour experiences with the presence of Green Sail flags in marinas and on our vessels, indicating that we support sustainable tourism. The Green Sail flag can now be seen on over 1,200 yachts in Croatian marinas. Each of our Sail Croatia Skippers are trained by Green Sail staff on how to be a sustainable sailor and this information is passed on to our guests through educational materials onboard our yachts and educated conversations between clients and crew members. All companies which support Green Sail and fly the Green Sail flag abide by environmental policies that govern the decisions they make within their businesses.
On Sail Croatia ships more is being done to ensure we remain environmentally sustainable. After researching and understanding the impact free, single-use plastic bottles were having on the environment, we quickly replaced this inclusion with water coolers on every ship. These days we actively encourage clients to bring their own reusable water bottles and fill them with free water available in each ship saloon.
In 2018, Green Sail launched the Eco Walk Talk to Sail Croatia guests. The Eco Walk Talk is a walking tour of Split that delves into the beauty of this town and the environmental issues it faces. All proceeds from the Eco Walk Talk go directly back into supporting Green Sail actions and initiatives . The tour is a great way to spark an environmental conversation with our Sail Croatia guests before they return to their home countries.
We’re always researching and developing new ways we can incorporate our Green ethos across every area of our business.
Recognising the importance of sustainable tourism, the Eco Walk Talk is now a permanent addition to the Split Walking Tour available on Sail Croatia cruises.
In 2019, we launched new initiatives in partnership with Green Sail, including:
Foster a Floatie
This initiative previously ran on our Flotilla, as we attempted to turn the tide on the number of plastic floaties used for 7 days and thrown into landfill. By recycling and reusing, guests were able to raise funds for Green Sail and reduce the amount of plastic in the sea!
Reusable Water Bottles
We will be trialling reusable water bottles on our Cycle and Hike cruises this coming season. These bottles will be made from biodegradable sugarcane, making them the perfect ambassadors for the Reduce, Reuse, Recycle mantra. If the trial is successful, reusable water bottles will be available to purchase with every 2020 Sail Croatia booking, drastically reducing the amount of single-use plastic onboard our ships.
As well as these initiatives, we’ve developed our Sustainability Strategy that includes what we’ve achieved so far and what our plans are for a more sustainable future within the nautical industry! Read all about this strategy in our Sustainability Report.
We truly believe that education, awareness and action will guarantee tourism can continue in Croatia for many years to come. Founding Green Sail and investing in its future ensures Sail Croatia play a small part in advocating for sustainability and environmental awareness.
By choosing to cruise with Sail Croatia, you’re directly investing in the future of sustainable tourism in this beautiful country - thank you for your support!