Bali holiday, Munduk & the Menjangan

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Responsible tourism

Responsible tourism: Bali holiday, Munduk & the Menjangan

Environment

Responsible Travel doesn't mean having to compromise on the enjoyment of your trip or the quality of your accommodation. We feel strongly that we should directly benefit the communities we visit whenever possible through sustainable travel, environmental protection and social projects, without sacrificing comfort or character.

We are firmly committed to the principles of ethical travel. Our comprehensive Responsible Practices policy summarises our commitments and actions.

Whilst we recognise that a vital element of any holiday is relaxation, we do try to encourage our clients to be aware of the impact they have on their destinations. For each booking, we provide notes on cultural sensitivities and our local guides brief our clients upon their arrival. We hope this will help to ensure the sustainability of our destinations and improve the quality of our clients' overall experience. We also ask that our guests be sensible with their resource use in places visited, as although beautiful, they are very fragile, and we strongly discourage littering.

Ethical considerations are also part of our research and development process and we encourage feedback on our practices. Clients are asked to comment and make suggestions on our responsible practices when completing their post-trip questionnaire. In addition to this, as well as visiting destination-based initiatives whilst on their educational trips, our country specialists are encouraged to help continually improve our responsible travel initiatives.

Community

Designed by award-winning Balinese architect, Popo Danes, Munduk Moding Plantation is situated in a part of the island that is largely untouched by international tourism. This greatly adds to the charm of visiting the area and the staff are strongly committed to help avoid the excesses of mass tourism. Given that international tourism is new in this region, the aim is to demonstrate to the local population that sustainable tourism is in their interest, respects the local culture and helps promote a better environment. The majority of the staff come from the area and the construction work was largely undertaken by local teams, supervised by an international crew. Local traditional dancing courses are provided for the girls from the primary school situated not far from the entrance gates; this can be observed by hotel guests. English lessons for locals are provided and information sessions about protecting the environment (with an emphasis on sustainable farming) are given.

The owners work with local coffee farmers to pool resources, upgrade the quality through organic farming and sell to wholesalers directly. This will hopefully lead to better revenues for local farmers and will protect the soil and water tables in the area; organic coffee plantations use much less water than growing oranges and cash flowers while it requires shadow trees which, in turn, attracts a large variety of birds and stimulates the growth of many indigenous plants and flowers. There has been a remarkable increase in the variety of birdlife since this type of farming was introduced. Birds that are regularly observed include swallows, singing bush larks, kingfisher, red jungle fowl, pink necked pigeons, plaintive cuckoos and spider hunters.

As part of the approach to sustainable tourism, the hotel gives 'right of way' to locals on the eastern side of the plantation (near the staff quarters), where there are century-old paths leading down to the valley. This does not concern the area near our villas, but when you set about exploring the plantation you might bump into the odd local who will invariably be friendly and supportive of the endeavour. Access for locals to a traditional water source and its shrine situated on the plantation has been maintained so they can continue to fetch water here and bathe. (Guests are asked to respect their privacy.)

We prefer, where possible, to use smaller, locally owned ground agents. Not only does this ensure that it is the host community who are managing and benefiting from the local tourist industry, but we also believe that our clients will have a better trip as local agents have a much more intimate knowledge of the region.For the same reasons as above, we always use local guides and drivers. This not only provides crucial employment and income for the local community, but also increases the authenticity of the clientís trip.

Ethical practice is not just limited to the destinations we operate in. Responsible practice is exercised in our office with various measures put in place aimed at reducing, re-using and recycling resources where possible.

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