International Mangrove Day: Where to Celebrate and How to Preserve Mangroves

Mangrove forests - one of the many ecosystems around the world

Sitting on the shoreline of over 100 countries in the world, are forests. Trees and plants grow in the salty waters of these sub-tropical climates. 26th of July is designated as International Mangrove Day to celebrate the preservation of the Mangrove Forests. These interesting and unique features of the natural world are some of the most beautiful places to explore. From the beautiful mangroves in Vietnam to those found in the states in the Florida Keys, you can find them all over the world. Over 50% of mangroves around the world are being destroyed over the course of 40 years. So, International Mangrove Day is an important day to celebrate!

A man canoeing through Mangroves in Vietnam

What is mangrove deforestation and how to protect these ecosystems around the world from the effects of climate change

Raise awareness about mangrove deforestation for this year’s International Mangrove Day. These resilient forests grow along the shoreline, which is highly rich in salt. As a result, trees here have developed many different systems of drawing oxygen from their environment in order to survive. Other benefits of mangrove forests are easy to observe. Whilst providing a home and nursery to a great number many of fish, crustaceans, and other types of marine life in their roots. Not only this, but they act as a buffer from coastal erosion, storm surge, and tsunamis in the region. Protecting not only the wildlife but people who live beyond these sea forests. In addition to this, they store carbon in the soil, which helps combat the effects of climate change.

One of the main challenges International Mangrove Day faces is shrimp farming. In the farming process nutrient-rich chemicals are discharged into the environment. This upsets the natural balance of the ecosystem and in turn, destroys the mangroves. Mangrove reforestation and promoting more responsible shrimp farming are ideal methods for the two to co-exist.

An orang-utan hanging out in mangrove forests in one of the best coastal destinations

How to protect mangrove forests and the best countries to volunteer at amazing coastal destinations like vacations in El Salvador

There’s plenty that glampers can do if they want to help during International Mangrove Day. If you want to be more involved there are plenty of organisations to support. Get down to a mangrove forest near you and help with replanting and reforestation. Enjoy an opportunity to directly interact with the local population and support ecotourism. You can do so with the Mangrove Action Project, using their multifaceted CBEMR approach in many countries around the world. Including volunteering vacations in El Salvador, Tanzania, and many more!

The Sundarbans Mangrove Forest in India

Visit the largest mangrove forest in the world for International Mangrove Day

Another way to give back is to embark on your own eco-tourism getaway! Visit the mangroves firsthand and get inspired during your visit to these fantastic destinations whilst giving back to the local community. Visit the largest mangrove forest in the world in India! In the area of West Bengal, and also spilling into parts of Bangladesh is where you’ll find this huge natural wonder covering over 10,000 square kilometers. So pay a visit to the Sundarbans Mangrove Forest and get lost in this ancient wonder, thought to be around 1800 years old.

Kerela mangrove forest in India

There are many others further east in Asia, with the Indochina Mangroves found across Vietnam, Thailand, and other countries in the region. These dense and thick mangroves invite magical scenery before your eyes and you can get lost during incredible boat journeys through here. When you visit the best mangrove forest Thailand can offer, you can be sure that you’ll be giving back. Sadly, deforestation in this area continues prevalently, so during your trip to this region, make sure to check it out whilst you can and try and raise the all-important awareness around this issue.

Forest near Thailand

Afterward, make a visit to Latin America to see the amazing mangrove forests in Mexico! In what is described as the Mayan Corridor, you can enjoy the combination of ancient native architecture and the fascinating forests along the Caribbean Coast in Quintana Roo. To the north, you can visit Florida as mentioned, with the mangroves there near the Everglades for a domestic visit. So this year during International Mangrove Day, you can give back and help preserve these impressive and vital natural wonders.

Caribbean Coast, Mexico

Take a look at the Mangrove Action Project website for more information on how you can help and what is being done

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