Whale watching holiday in Baja, Mexico

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Responsible tourism

Responsible tourism: Whale watching holiday in Baja, Mexico

Environment

Responsible marine wildlife viewing is our business. The Baja peninsular still has some of the most unique plant and animal biodiversity of anywhere in the world. The variety of marine wildlife is outstanding. The marine wildlife viewing opportunities both on the Pacific coast of Baja and on The Sea of Cortez are legendary. It is critical to our company that the ongoing development of wildlife tourism on Baja is done in a sustainable and responsible manner; whilst largely benefiting the local people not foreign tour companies. In order to have a practical and lasting impact on this we work in two ways.

Unlike larger companies we always work through a primary supplier on Baja. A small tour company run by locals who live in the area, know and understand the people and speak the language fluently. We have been working with the same primary supplier since we started running tours in Baja who share our commitment to the development of responsible wildlife tourism. We are working on developing a bursary to fund the attendance of our primary supplier at symposia and conferences around the world that address the key issues of responsible wildlife tourism - reducing impact of viewing on the animals, balancing the benefits between local people and overseas tour companies and helping local planners develop lasting sustainable wildlife viewing programmes for the future.

Working through that primary supplier we are able to influence the behaviour of secondary suppliers like boat handlers and transport drivers. We will only ever use those boat handlers who have undergone training in viewing marine wildlife. Through our primary supplier we have influenced the development of a "wildlife aware" training programme for boat handlers when approaching wildlife at sea. This has resulted in the adoption of a binding code of conduct for the interaction of boats and cetaceans at our primary wildlife viewing sites around Loreto and on the Pacific coast which will continue to significantly reduce any negative impact on the marine wildlife.

We continue to work on these issues and the implementation of new ideas and practices gained through our membership of The Responsible Whale Watch Partnership working group of The World Cetacean Alliance and our close association with a number of other responsible wildlife tourism providers around the globe.

Community

Responsibility in wildlife tourism is a "must have" not a "nice to have". It is not restricted simply to the point of contact, it applies throughout the supply chain. Responsibility for our environmental and social impact extends to communities we encounter on the way to our destination as much as it does to those we interact with once we reach our holiday venue. This is the mantra on which our company was founded and the cornerstones of our dealings with our suppliers, local communities and customers, both on location and during the journey to reach out chosen destination.

1) We regard our primary and secondary suppliers as business partners not business associates. What is good for our suppliers is good for us and in turn, and most importantly, allows us to deliver the very best service available to our customers.

2) It is important to us that both our primary and secondary suppliers make an appropriate profit. We take account of the vagaries of exchange rates and local economic indicators to ensure our suppliers are paid commensurate with the value of the service they provide.

3) We invest heavily in ensuring all key suppliers are trained to the level of our most qualified tour guide. This way we know our primary supplier can deliver the same message and holiday experience as we would.

4) We believe it is important that our customers who travel with us know as much about the local area and communities as possible before they travel. All customers receive a detailed written and verbal responsible travel briefing before we arrive. It is important for our customers to travel with respect and consideration for the local people we encounter along the way as well as at the destination.

5) We use the very best local expertise in the delivery of services to our customers and recognise our transport and accommodation suppliers as experts in their field and treat them as friends and associates in business. We consider the specific expertise of our drivers, boat handlers and accommodation providers as an integral part of our company team effort, not as peripheral.

Reviews of Whale watching holiday in Baja, Mexico

You can trust Responsible Travel reviews because, unlike many other schemes, reviews can ONLY be written by people who we have verified have been on the holidays.

I am reborn! Simply the best holiday I have ever been on
Some great stories to tell the grandchildren. Would recommend to a friend
Very enjoyable
It was OK
A bit disappointing really

Reviewed on 17 Feb 2015 by

1. What was the most memorable or exciting part of your holiday?


Seeing so many whales, so close to us and they were not stressed in any way.
The extra bonus of seeing so many other species while looking for whales.

2. What tips would you give other travellers booking this holiday?


Follow the guide lines provided by the operator

3. Did you feel that your holiday benefited local people, reduced environmental impacts or supported conservation?


Helped the local economy by using hotels, restaurants, local guides and boatmen.
I think the locals were very environmentally and conservation aware and we were benefiting from their system.

4. Finally, how would you rate your holiday overall?


Fantastic trip on so many levels and the whales WOW!! AMAZING!!

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