Five eco-conscious cities to visit in 2022

The future of travel depends on us making more mindful holiday choices. By choosing destinations that consider their effect on the environment we can all do our part to reduce our carbon footprint while still enjoying the holiday experiences we love. Our ships travel to many destinations that encourage greener living. Here are five eco-conscious cities to visit in 2022.

1. Valencia, Spain

Vibrant Valencia is Spain's third-largest city and a picturesque resort known for its pavement cafés, parties (Las Fallas) and paella. Two million square metres of gardens help absorb the carbon emissions and keep things green.

Spectacular gardens

At the top of the list has to be Valencia. It’s home to two million square metres of gardens, including Turia Gardens and Viveros Gardens, that act as the green lungs of the city by absorbing carbon emissions.

European Blue Flag status beaches

For those who love the sun, Valencia boasts over 20 kilometres of European Blue Flag status beaches. Exploring the city in an environmentally friendly way is easy.

Explore sustainably and easily

Hire an on-street bike from the city’s cycle scheme and make use of over 150 kilometres of cycle paths and 40 ciclocalles (cycle-priority streets). You'll soon understand why the European Commission chose the coastal Spanish city as the European Capital of Smart Tourism 2022.

2. Copenhagen, Denmark

Copenhagen has plans to become the first carbon neutral capital by 2025, taking its reputation as a healthy city with eco-friendly principles to another level.

Charming Copenhagen

Discover the beauty of the city. It’s captivating around the clock, but perhaps never more so than at night, when twinkling lights add to the charm.

Experience Nordic cuisine

The New Nordic cuisine put Copenhagen on the culinary world map and today eating and buying organically isn’t considered a luxury in Copenhagen, but a way of life.

Dining, made organic

You’ll find many climate-friendly and organic dining options from the acclaimed Noma (book months in advance to avoid disappointment) and Geranium to the enormous Reffen street food market.

A fantastic shot of Copenhagen

A recent capture of Nyhavn Harbour in Copenhagen, submitted by Nina Whitley-Jones (@ninawjones on Instagram).

3. Valletta, Malta

With 3,000 hours of sunshine a year, Valletta is a city that celebrates the great outdoors.

Take an adventure in the outdoors

Valletta is a city that celebrates the great outdoors, boasting pretty parks, cobbled piazzas and a collection of stunning beaches and national parks within easy reach.

Bask in nature

Valletta is known for its beautiful green spaces including the colonnaded Barrakka gardens, which offer a panoramic view of the Grand Harbour.

Travel your way

It’s easy to explore the city on foot, and the public transport network is exceptional. Look out for the fleet of electric mini cabs that look like golf carts and are really fun to ride around in.

4. Helsinki, Finland

Helsinki’s residents are passionate about making their city greener. From plastic bottle recycling schemes to Think Sustainably, the website which rates activities by sustainability credentials, Finns are ahead of the game.

Travel on pure renewable energy

Join the Finns and feel the wind in your hair (Helsinki has some of the cleanest air in Europe) by renting an electric scooter to get around or take the train – the metro runs on renewable energy.

Discover Jokamiehenoikeudet

Finns love the great outdoors. So much so that they have a term for enjoying the natural environment freely and responsibly, Jokamiehenoikeudet. Meaning ‘everyman’s rights’ in English, the idea encourages residents and tourists to enjoy nature’s bounty for free, so long as the environment is left exactly how it was found.

Indulge by the harbour

Harbourside saunas and heated pools are another outdoor activity you shouldn’t miss when visiting Helsinki.

5. Tallinn, Estonia

If you don’t manage to fit it in to your travel schedule for 2022, Tallinn surely deserves a spot on the bucket list for 2023. The pretty Estonian capital recently won the European Commission’s prestigious European Green Capital title for 2023 and it’s easy to see why.

A sea of green

A whopping 19.5 per cent of the city is given up to public green spaces, including Kadriorg Park which surrounds the palace.

Explore the Old Town

Tallinn is a very walkable city so be sure to walk around the medieval Old Town to explore the well-preserved Masters’ Courtyard and pick up locally made handicrafts to support the local community.

A great shot of Tallinn

A recent overhead capture of Tallinn's skyline, taken by Mark Williams.

Ready to book?

Here's a recap of our top 5 suggested eco-conscious destinations.