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Responsible tourism: Beijing to Hong Kong holiday, China
The natural landscapes we explore on our cultural holiday to China are some of the richest, often most challenging, yet at the same time some of the most fragile environments on earth. With education, experienced leadership and appropriate equipment and techniques, it is possible to travel responsibly through these regions. For us, it is critically important that such wilderness travel experiences do not diminish the natural values of the environment.
Our environmental sustainable principles: True sustainability is a guiding aspect in all aspects of our business planning and operations. Specifically our tour operations should be managed in a way where the natural and cultural values of the host region are undiminished in the long-term.
Where possible, we engage in partnerships with local environmental groups and/or land managers to actively campaign for conservation or promote environmental protection and/or rehabilitation.
We always travel in small groups of between 4-16 people, thus keeping our physical impact as light as possible.
Our Responsible Travel Guidebook: Our philosophy since 1975 has been to leave only footprints and take only photographs. To reiterate this, every customer and supplier receives a copy of our award-winning Responsible Travel guidebook. This detailed book outlines our environmentally sustainable principles, and outlines how each customer and supplier can minimize their impact while travelling in China.
In our offices, we keep our footprint as small as possible by recycling, reducing waste, encouraging public transport and cycling to the office, using energy saving appliances and by recently installing double glazing. Thus all reducing our carbon footprint.
This trip allows ample time to appreciate the rich cultural history of this vast and diverse country. This trip is organised and led by local guides and with the use of local transport companies and accommodation you can be assured that as much of your money as possible feeds back into the local communities that you visit. Our strict policy of small groups ensures that this trip is both environmentally and culturally sensitive.
Where possible we will stay at locally owned accommodations and eat meals from locally grown produce. We visit markets where any purchase goes directly into the local economy and encourage our customers to buy handicrafts that support local communities.
Our responsible travel principles: Our company aims to maximise the positive benefits of tourism for host communities. This includes training and employment of local staff, using local suppliers and assisting in the development of sustainable local businesses.
We actively minimise the negative effects that tourism can have by ensuring that tourism does not divert resources away from local communities or drive up prices on local resources, especially in rural areas.
We provide opportunities for real cultural exchange, where locals and visitors alike can share and learn from each other in an environment of mutual respect.
We contribute to the welfare of the host community. This is epitomised in our Community Project Travel program where we organise for our travellers to spend time in disadvantaged villages upgrading basic facilities such as health, education and water access.
We strive to educate our travellers about the destination and its local cultures as well as providing guidelines on appropriate behaviour to minimise impact.
No local payments policy: Local cash payments are becoming increasingly popular with many operators in the adventure travel industry. This policy seems to benefit the tour operators more than the local economies or the travellers, as it avoids local taxes and transfers the costs and risks of cash handling onto the travellers. In accordance with our Responsible Travel practices, we have chosen a policy of not asking for such payments.