Bhutan holiday, culture and festivals

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Date
Price
Basis
27 Sep 2017
£ 2399
excluding flights
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Responsible tourism

Responsible tourism: Bhutan holiday, culture and festivals

Environment

When travelling in a country such as Bhutan that has few if any tourists, there is an additional responsibility on us as a company and on our clients visiting the country to do everything possible to minimise our impact on the fragile environment, particularly when trekking in the Himalayas.

We do everything possible to reduce our waste while travelling; clients are advised to bring their own water bottles rather than purchase plastic for example. We use only locally run cafes and restaurants and we work extremely closely with our locally owned suppliers to inform and educate their staff about a range of issues, including litter and waste disposal, and the recycling of material.

Wherever possible we use environmentally friendly local accommodation. If this is not possible we make every effort to alert the management of the accommodation in question to ways of improving their service with the environment in mind. Many of the hotels and lodges we use are in extremely remote areas and are therefore almost entirely self-sufficient, using local sources of food, labour and construction materials.

Community

Our very small groups and limited departures in Bhutan means that our impact – both cultural and environmental – on the areas that we visit is small and truly sustainable. We are investing in the future, in the belief that along with our local colleagues we can create sustainable social benefits. All of the guides we use are local, and most have been working with our local team in a full time role for a number of years, rather than just as seasonal jobs.

All of our trips include visits to local markets, craft shops and fairs. As well as being good for the local economy this gives travellers to the country a real feel for the life and culture of Bhutan. When visiting a festival such as at Tamshingphala, the Bhutanese are generally tolerant of Westerners and don’t expect that they will necessarily follow, or understand, local customs, so they are not quick to take offence, but we aim to have as little impact as possible and inform all our clients of the correct dress code.

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