Accommodation & Meals:
During your trip to Bhutan you will spend all nights in hotels. The hotels employ local staff and try to source produce locally if possible in order to promote the area’s economy. The hotels usually offer buffet style food which is a mixture of Bhutanese and Chinese fare. All meals are provided, but clients are encouraged to stop in cafes as much as possible e.g. there is a small cafe opposite the Tiger’s Nest Monastery which has the perfect view of the buildings clinging to the mountain, so this is a good place to stop for a bite. Your local tour leader will be able to point out several authentic spots which are more off the tourist trail and would benefit from your commerce.
Local Craft & Culture:
Although this trip is largely focused on cycling and the stunning natural scenery on offer, we like to include as many elements of culture as possible, too. This tour has a large focus on celebrating the culture of Bhutan and, of course, local crafts and traditions come into this. We visit monasteries and workshops, for example the weaving center and handicraft school in Thimpu. Our tours benefit these small communities here as travellers purchase goods as souvenirs and often make donations. There is also the advantage of perpetuating these ancient ways of life and manners of producing goods. The most flamboyant display of culture we support on the trip is the Paro Festival, where hundreds gather to see monks dressed in colourful brocade and painted masks, re-enacting tales about gods with music and dance. Also by law, $70 of the daily cost of any trip in Bhutan goes towards education and health.
Few holidays have as little detrimental impact on the environment and local residents as a cycling trip. Erosion on and adjacent to popular paths is a growing problem in certain places and therefore our trip leaders encourage clients to stick to advised routes in order to minimise this. We do believe in leaving no more than footprints (or tyre tracks!), however, this tour does actively encourage clients to make a positive impact by helping guests to talk to local people, visit local cafes and restaurants, use markets to purchase traditional gifts and crafts and get a real impression of Bhutan.
Water is a really important issue with cycling trips and whilst we must stay hydrated, it is also vital that we have a system for providing clean water without causing lots of waste with plastic bottles. We suggest that instead of repeatedly buying bottled water, guests should re-fill a singular bottle using the containers provided in the support vehicle.
A Fair Deal:
We employ guides from the area for their insider’s knowledge and huge passion for Bhutan. In exchange for this local expertise, we provide fair wages to all our staff. They are fully trained and also given refresher courses on responsible travel issues and so are able to convey this to clients in careful briefings. These might include advice on where and when to dispose of litter on a cycling trail or appropriate dress and donations when entering a temple.
It all starts at home so we have first worked to reduce our carbon footprint in our UK offices. Through energy conservation measures and recycling policies in place, we are proud to be actively reducing the waste produced and our impact on the environment. We support various projects all over the world to try and give something back to the places we visit.
See the highlights of magical Bhutan in just over a week
From £1178 7 days excluding flights