Just because you’re going to the cottage for a week doesn’t mean you have to leave all your eco-friendly habits behind. In fact, with a little planning and focus you can have a fabulous green vacation too; here’s how:

Reduce: Purchase only what you need so you’ll have less perishable items to deal with. Don’t use disposable dishes or cutlery; opt to rotate the dish washing shift, so each person takes a turn.

Recycle: Keep a container outside the door of your cottage to collect the usual recyclables. If the cottage area doesn’t have recycling services, put everything into a big bag and bring it home to recycle.

Compost: Compost leftover food. A composter converts food waste into organic material that can be used in the garden. If it’s your cottage, set up a composter away from the cottage. Otherwise, you can freeze the compost you’ve collected and bring it home to place in your compost bin.

Repair and Reuse: Rather than throwing away things such as furniture, try to repair it so you can use it again, or ask around to fellow cottagers and see if they’d like to take it off your hands. Consider coming up with arts and craft activities for your children that use these items. If you’re a magazine and newspaper reader, share them with your neighbours too, before recycling them.

Biodegradable: Whenever possible, use biodegradable, environmentally preferable cleaning products. Also, use biodegradable soaps and shampoos – especially if you are using the lake to bathe!

No Litter: Whether you are walking through the forest near your cottage or along the shoreline of your beach, don’t throw anything on the ground if you can’t find a garbage. Instead, bring it back to your cottage and discard it, so everyone can enjoy the pristine beauty of nature and going green!