We feel strongly about promoting sustainable, ethical, and environmentally friendly journeys throughout Asia, ensuring that the foot-print of our travelers is minimal and that we benefit communities in a positive way. Responsible travel doesn’t mean a compromise on quality and experience, as you can see from a selection of our beautifully crafted responsible travel tours below, it actually results in very authentic and fulfilling experiences.
1. PHUKET CHARITABLE EXPERIENCE, THAILAND
The island of Phuket is arguably home to some of Thailand’s finest beaches, elaborate resorts and sophisticated restaurants and therefore not normally associated with responsible tourism principles. As a result we’ve destined Phuket Charitable Experience, a two day experience with the aim of supporting local families and sustainable projects in the area. The journey includes an overnight stay with a host family in a village destroyed by the 2004 tsunami; it is here where guests enjoy freshly cooked Thai food and learn about daily life. Visiting a local women’s group which specialize in making soaps is also included as well as the opportunity of fishing with local fishermen and a lesson in weaving. This culturally rich two day tour ensures money goes directly to local people, and is perfect for those wanting a more authentic experience.
2. BUCKET OF BOOKS, LAOS
This unique tour supports two excellent local charities in Laos and allows visitors to donate ten educational books to local communities whist they are exploring the region. The books mainly focus on the natural environment and how to take care of it, helping to promote awareness within village locations throughout northern Laos. The books are stored in a steel bucket, rather than a plastic one, which villagers find useful for washing clothes and vegetables. This can be set up as a stand alone day trip from Luang Prabang but it can be adapted to fit within itineraries elsewhere in Laos.
3. TRAVEL CAMBODIA THE SUSTAINABLE WAY, CAMBODIA
Cambodia has a plethora of unique non-government organizations and projects all aiming at helping individuals escape poverty and inequalities in one of Asia’s most beautiful countries. Our seven day tour has been crafted to not only take in some of the most important historic and archeological sites in Phnom Penh, Battambang and Siem Reap, but at the same time supporting some of the most innovative and successful social projects in the country. This includes dining in Haven (a training center for young adults and orphans), visiting The Landmine Museum, exploring Sala Bai (a hospitality school for poor families), and Phare Ponleu Selpak (a performing arts school for underprivileged children).
4. UBUD FAMILY DAY TRIPPER, INDONESIA
This full day trip provides a glimpse into the traditional Balinese lifestyle by interacting with locals, learning their customs and experiencing their crafts at the local level. The day includes a morning tour to Ubud Market to learn about local foods, a chance to experience how to make traditional Balinese offerings, it includes a visit Pura Dalem Agung at Monkey Forest, a soft trek through the ricefields and after a local lunch it includes a refreshing dip in the pool of holy water at Pura Tirta Empul. There’s also the chance to visit Pondok Pekak Library, which provides over 5000 books to local adults and children.
5. FULL DAY COMMUNITY EXCHANGE, VIETNAM
Bloom Microventures is a non-profit social enterprise (UK registered charity) providing microcredit to women living below the poverty line in developing countries. This is done by using a unique model that harnesses the power of responsible tourism and microfinance to alleviate poverty. This unique award-winning tour, two hours outside of Hanoi, provides the opportunity to explore, learn and truly experience rural life in Vietnam. Most importantly, the tour fees touch lives by directly funding a low-interest microcredit loan for marginalized woman met during the tour.
6. FREE THE BEARS AT PHNOM TAMAO, PHNOM PENH, CAMBODIA
In recent years, more than 100 sun bears that have been rescued from captivity are relocated to Phnom Tamao in Cambodia, making it the world’s largest bear sanctuary. This full day tour offers a behind the scenes look at what it takes to be a bear keeper, working alongside the dedicated staff to prepare enrichment toys and assist in their feeding. The sanctuary not only provides a safe habitat for the bears, it also works hard in educating thousands of Cambodians about the long term threats faced by the bears.
7. GIVING BACK, YANGON DAY TRIP, MYANMAR
This unique day trip showcases a different side of the city of Yangon, while introducing travelers to various charitable organizations. This includes spending time with residents of a retirement home, experiencing handicrafts made by disadvantaged women, dining at a hospitality training center, and relaxing with a massage at the local school for the deaf.
8. MEET THE PANDAS IN BIFENGXIA, CHINA
Enjoy the company of rescued pandas and get involved in a volunteer program approximately 90km from Chengdu in China. The center, run by a local NGO and the Chinese government, has rescued just under 100 pandas. This has had a profound impact on the number of pandas now living in the wild. The day is spent observing the pandas, and there’s the possibility of feeding them, preparing their bath and washing their enclosure.
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