Best of Vietnam holidays, tailor made

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This trip can be tailor made throughout the year to suit your requirements
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Responsible tourism

Responsible tourism: Best of Vietnam holidays, tailor made

Environment

We put a lot of thought in working with local providers that care for our planet and its people. We promote excursions that foster a more sustainable tourism and try to maintain small-group sizes as much as as possible to limit negative environmental impacts in accordance to the carrying capacity of the visited site.

Waste & Energy:
We are giving our best to keep the extra unneeded waste to a minimum in all our tours through our “bring it in, bring it out” policy for litter and rubbish such as food packaging and recycling wherever possible.

In our UK office, we do not produce a glossy brochure, but concentrate on a comprehensive website, and provide as much information to our travellers as possible electronically, reducing the use of paper and inks. Our local partner offices in Vietnam use only 2-side printing and pass codes of good environmental practices (the codes for the label ATR – Agir pour un Tourisme Responsable) on to guides, suppliers and partners.

Whenever motorized forms can be avoided, we recommend the use of bicycles or walking to our guests. For your city tour in Hanoi for example, you will go on a walking tour and on a cyclo ride on a cyclo rickshaw, a small-scale local means of transport, human-powered by pedalling and hence reducing carbon emissions.

Wildlife:
Our partners in Vietnam have started to promote some Wildlife conservation projects into their program, such as WAR (Wild Life At Risk) center in Cu Chi near Ho Chi Minh city, Cat Tien National Park, Cuc Phuong National Park and Con Dao National Park (Sea Turtles laying eggs). We don't support excursions or tours where wild animals are abused (snake farm, crocodile farm in the Mekong Delta). For your tour, we make sure our local guides receive training in how to leave a lower impact and actively promote nature conservation practices such as reducing noise, disturbance, not feeding animals, not bringing any rubbish, etc. Especially along Halong Bay, a UNESCO world heritage site with two important ecosystems which is home to many endemic species, we will make sure to preserve that natural wonder through tight waste controls.

Responsible accommodation:
Whenever possible we promote that our guests stay at places that support sustainability and community. For your time in Hanoi for example, we have chosen the Melia hotel group, who works with organisations such as Earth Check, the Responsible Tourism Institute (ITR-Biosphere), Travelife, ISO and Leed, applying a set of universal principles called the Global Sustainable Tourism Criteria. Some features of this set that the Melia in Hanoi applies are a recycle paper plan, sustainability training on electricity and water energy saving, green and eco-friendly cleaning products and waste control.

Building:
We promote accommodation and excursions that respect and preserve cultural heritage. For example by going on your tour in the Ancient Town of Hoi An, you will support this exceptionally well-preserved example of a South-East Asian trading port dating from the 15th to the 19th century with buildings and streets reflecting the influences of combined indigenous and foreign heritage.

Community

We encourage trips that will benefit the locals and the local minority ethnic groups as much as possible, just as much as their warm wisdom will benefit you.

We value authentic local experiences, therefore we include home meals, local markets, local shops and food stops, cooking classes, or handicraft workshops with locals in your tour and many hands-on experiences. In order to preserve cultural heritage, we don't recommend guests to buy antiques or rare objects from ancestors or ethnic villages.

On your trip you can live special experiences which will help keep local wisdoms and traditions alive, encouraging local artisan and culture. For example you will visit Ben Tre within the Mekong Delta, a town only accessible by boat where tourists are still rare and where you can mix with the open and friendly locals. You can observe traditional techniques of making bricks and grass mats or try local rice paper or coconut candies, which will all benefit and encourage the local community and the preservation of cultural heritage.

You will also explore and help local life on your cooking class in Hoi An, including the discovery of the local market, the cooking school’s vegetable gardens and the Vietnamese art of plate carving.

By staying at the New World Hotel in Saigon, you will support a group that actively gives back to nature and the local and global community. Activities range from financial support to victims of natural disasters and educational opportunities for children, to committing to recycling and conservation efforts and providing career-enhancing training for all associates. The group also provides special support to the non-profit organisation Room to Read, by contributing funds which enable 100 young women to continue their secondary school education in Cambodia. Also the Melia Hotel in Hanoi runs monthly community involvement projects to contribute money and material locally.

In times of natural disasters (flood, storm) our local partner companies often provide clothes, money or rice to help the communities in difficulties. They also provide volunteering & charity possibilities for you, for example you can organise some games or hands-on lessons to make crafts with a local charity, or you can choose to spend a day or more participating in daily tasks or renovation work at a charity or organisation (prepare the meal for the children, repair facilities, repaint the house, plant trees to make their environment better).

We make sure our guests receive the best local welcome with our welcome letter and through our guides. Our local guides have an annual guide training, and this is one of the topics. For some tours, we teach guests some Vietnamese survival phrases so when they come to visit a local house, they can do the greetings in Vietnamese.

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