Rewilding is an important new trend in conservation, promising to change the world and the people in it. For decades, young people have taken gap years to go see the world before starting university. They’ve traveled to remote villages to dig wells or build shelters, volunteered to take care of animals, and enjoyed other experiences that opened their eyes to how different the world can be outside the city.
Rewilding experiences offer a whole new perspective, and it’s not just young students that are trying them—adults on a career break and retirees are also trying the experiences.
There are many companies that are offering rewilding trips. Rewilding Europe, for example, offers safari trips to their rewilding area, while Rewild Tourism offers conservation and ecotourism in the United States.1,2
These companies offer families and individual travelers the chance to explore nature and see things that they might not otherwise ever have the opportunity to encounter. What sets them apart from standard safaris is that instead of intruding on nature that has always existed and potentially damaging those fragile ecosystems, the visitors get to see the planet being brought back into balance around them.
Nature Becomes Real
In the media, there’s a lot of talk about deforestation, extinction of animals, erosion of waterways, and other issues concerning nature. However, for many people, these are simply abstract concepts rather than topics people think about every day. Growing up in a city, it’s hard to truly understand the devastation that these changes in nature can bring to the area.
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Ecotourism brings people to these natural areas. This supports the economy in those areas and also raises awareness about the issues at hand.3 Nevertheless, eco-tourism is a controversial topic because tourism contributes to around five percent of greenhouse gas emissions.4
However, on an individual level, it is incredibly inspiring. Taking that one flight to see a rewilding project in action could open your eyes to the plight that the world, specifically natural habitats, face.5 If one flight is all it takes to make you reduce your carbon footprint for the rest of your life, it might very well be worth it.
Once you have seen rewilding with your own eyes and experienced how quickly nature reclaims once barren land, you will have found a new appreciation of nature. Additionally, it’ll give you a new perspective about the choices you make on a daily basis and can give you the push to make small changes such as cutting down on use of plastic or buying locally grown food.
Not everyone can, or should sell all their belongings become completely one with nature. However, there are definitely small things that anyone can do to make the world a better place. Taking some time out of your day-to-day life to see how other inhabitants of the planet live and to admire the natural beauty that exists in many of these places can put your own life in perspective and give you a mental breath of fresh air.
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