We are well aware of the impact tourism has at home and abroad, and we make every effort to balance the environmental impact of travelling with the immense benefits sustainable tourism can bring to destinations and the people who live there. So we start in the office: we turn off all electrical equipment every night; we use energy-efficient bulbs; we measure print and paper consumption, and re-cycle wherever possible; we print our brochures on paper from sustainable sources, and send them out in bio-degradable packaging.
Leaders & local suppliers:
The Loire is undoubtedly one of Europe’s finest wine producing regions, with many of the separate wine areas producing red, white, rose and sparkling wines. In our pre-departure booklet, we provide information on both the larger “caves” and also the smaller, family-run wineries. And, should you wish to purchase any bottles from anywhere you visit whilst cycling, simply choose and pay, then leave your wines for our rep to collect when he passes the following day. He will then take the wines to your last hotel for you, so that they are ready for you to put in the car and take home with you. In order that as many people as possible take us up on this, thus giving local vignerons custom they might not otherwise have, we don’t make a charge for our pick up service.
Staff will suggest places to see and visit locally. Many of our overseas staff have worked for us for many years now – in fact, the 20 returning staff this summer have, between them, clocked up an impressive 189 years! Each year, our staff attend a 5-day training course which covers all aspects of customer service, product delivery and health & safety overseas. Our dedication to our staff contributes to us being awarded the highest accolade of 3-stars “exceptional” by Investors in Customers last summer.
Having no minimum number means that groups sizes can be small and therefore the trips have less impact on the environment.
Walking has minimal impact on the environment as you provide most of the energy yourself and, when you’re strolling from village to village, you can enjoy a relationship with locals in a way motorists passing through never can. On foot, you get off the beaten track, and you’ll find that people treat you as a visitor rather than a tourist. Also, by walking independently, and not having to worry about keeping up with a group, you set the pace so you can soak up the sights, sounds and scents of your surrounds and really get under the skin of the place you’re visiting.
We proactively encourage walking clients to think about travelling responsibly too: packing light, saving water, buying locally and re-cycling all maps and route notes at the end of their trip.