Hello from Kerala 👋🏼
Hopped across the border from Tamil Nadu to spend a few days at the surreal @spicevillage_cghearth in Thekkady. Just across the giant bamboo forest and vast wilderness of the Periyar Tiger Reserve, this is our cosy abode. Thatched with dried elephant grass by the local tribes - a natural air conditioner even on hot sunny days!
I’ve stayed at several eco-friendly and sustainable lodges around the world. But Spice Village has been an eye opener.
70% of all electricity here, including the humongous boiler to heat water, comes from solar energy. After estimating that a lodge of this size discards 36,000 plastic mineral water bottles annually, they installed their own water bottling plant. After reverse osmosis, minerals are added back to the water through bio dynamisation. So drinking water is served in glass bottles in the rooms. The natural bathroom toiletries are free of single-use plastic - wrapped in paper or provided in little jars. All waste is segregated - composted at home or sent for recycling.
And that’s just the beginning. All paper waste is recycled into beautiful handmade paper - which is then used for guest registration, scribble pads in the rooms, even pens! All waste water is recycled for irrigation. An in-house biogas plant converts some food waste into biogas - used for cooking in the staff canteen. Local rural entrepreneurs are engaged to supply reusable cloth bags, pesticide-free veggies and pappad. The in-house organic farm grows all kinds of herbs and leafy greens. And one of the two restaurants serves seasonal food sourced only within 50 miles!
Tourism can seem detrimental in many ways. But if done right, it can help protect the local way of life, create respectable employment opportunities and be ecologically sustainable. And Kerala is sure leading the way!
So glad to be collaborating with @cghearth to bring out some inspiring stories of sustainable travel in India 👣
#theshootingstar #cghearth #spicevillage #kerala #incredibleindia - 1 hour ago