Now more than ever, travelers are becoming more conscious about the impact we’re all having on the planet, and how important it is to try and minimize our carbon footprints while we’re on the road. The good news is that there are places like HI Point Montara Lighthouse Hostel where your stay is green from the get-go. The hostel is a certified Bay Area Green Business and has a Gold-level Sustainable Travel Education Program certification from Sustainable Travel International, plus they have a drought-friendly native plant garden and encourage guests to recycle and compost their waste. Even better: this hostel’s located along one of the most scenic stretches of the California coast, where nature is a constant inspiration. Here are four of our favorite ways to enjoy your stay at beautiful HI Point Montara while minimizing your carbon footprint.
Take a Hike
The best way to fully understand why it’s so important to take care of our planet is to go out and see it for yourself! Seeing the animals big and small living in the beautiful coastland and marshes near the hostel is a great way to get in touch with nature, and just in the area immediately surrounding the hostel there is a diverse selection of environments to explore and experience. Get up close and personal with the creatures of the coast at the Fitzgerald Marine Reserve where you can go tidepooling, or breathe in the refreshing air generated by the giants in Big Basin Redwoods State Park for light walks. Otherwise, there are plenty of challenging trails in places like the Blufftop Coastal Park (which is also a good spot for birdwatching), the San Pedro County Park and the Purisima Creek Redwoods Open Space Preserve.
Ride a Bike
Once you’ve landed at home base at HI Point Montara, you can switch from four wheels to two to do your exploring (the hostel even has storage for your bike when you’re not riding). Take the Coastal Trail from the hostel to the quaint beachside town of Half Moon Bay (about 8.5 miles) for a day well spent, or stay a little closer to home and go exploring in Montara nearby. There are a number of awesome scenic trails you can take in the area as well, whether you’re up for a serious cycle or just looking to take in the beautiful views.
Stock Up at a Local Farm
The Half Moon Bay area is a locavore’s dream with its abundance of farmland and fresh produce stands, and one of the best things you can do to be green and good to your belly at the same time is pick up some of their local goodies to prepare back at the hostel. From May to December, you can get your fill of fruit, vegetables, dairy, seafood and at the Coastside Farmers’ Market (open on Saturdays), or go straight to the source for goat cheese at Harley Farms and pumpkins at Farmer John’s. A lot of the local farms also have fun seasonal events and festivities, making them worth a visit year ‘round.
Shop and Eat Local
By supporting local business, you’re helping the local economy and reducing your carbon footprint because products don’t have to travel far to get to the storefront. While you’re out exploring Half Moon Bay and Montara, you’ll find plenty of places where you can pick up supplies, browse for souvenirs or grab a bite to eat, which you can happily support knowing you’re still being kind to the earth. Sam’s Chowder House is a prime example of the area’s dedication to being green: the restaurant uses rooftop solar electricity, serves sustainable seafood, and donates gallons of fryer oil to be used as diesel for a local auto shop.
HI USA Tip: Take a look at the way you can support HI USA's efforts in sustainable travel at our hostels in America.