If you’re looking for adventure, an opportunity to travel with like-minded travellers and to get off the beaten track then this type of trip is for you! We will sometimes be covering long distances over a period of a few days but will then most often be camped up for a few days with opportunities for adventure activities, visiting local communities, time in a town or city to chill out or wildlife viewing experiences. The roads are sometimes bumpy and you need to expect the unexpected! This type of travel is through regions where things can change and experiences are more important than luxury – borders sometimes close and there may not always be hot water in the showers! You will generally be camping out under the stars, sometimes out in the bush, but generally more on campsites. (Our South America and Central Asia trips also use small locally-run hostels and guest houses). The trips are fully participative so you will be involved shopping for food in local markets, cooking for your group (on a rota system), collecting water and setting up camp. If you’re not confident about doing any of these things beforehand, don’t worry our crew are there to help you and you’ll be good at it by the time you finish!
You will be travelling on one of our own purpose built overlanding vehicles with up to 24 travellers, many of whom will be travelling on their own. It is a great way for solo travellers to travel. We have lost count of the number of travellers who have met their future spouse on one of our trips! Our vehicles are fully equipped with tents and cooking equipment and are designed for great all-round viewing and a sociable seating plan. You will be accompanied on your trip by a Driver and Tour Leader and, depending on your trip, we often use local guides at sites of specific interest for more detailed information.
This type of travel will provide you with a plethora of memories and stories to tell, new-found travelling companions and friends and a well-exercised spirit of adventure!
Responsible tourism: Cairo to Nairobi overland tour
Waste: at the point of booking a tour with us, all our travellers receive detailed pre-departure information which contains a large section on travelling responsibly. This includes advice on minimising the amount of waste they create on the trip. This informs travellers on what they can do before they go, for example removing toiletries from unnecessary packaging and taking a reusable water bottle and gives advice on what they should do whilst on the tour, for example, disposing of litter appropriately. All of this information on waste reduction is re-iterated at the pre-departure meeting at the start of the tour, with specific advice for the areas we visit on the tour. As a company we have a big commitment to reducing, reusing and recycling in our UK office. We are very aware of the environmental impact of our office in the UK, so we recycle and compost as much of our waste as possible. We try to reduce paper usage ,but when necessary we use recycled paper and stationery. Our brochure is available to view or download online and the paper version is printed on stock produced from sustainable sources and vegetable based inks.
Accommodation: The majority of nights on this trip are spent, sleeping in tents-sometimes in camp sites, sometimes out in the bush. This obviously involves minimal use of electricity and if we're out in the bush we can only use the water that we carry-no chance to leave taps running, the air conditioning or heating or lights on! Filling up and carrying jerry cans of water helps concentrate the mind on how much water you consume!
Volunteering and Charity:We support two charities in Egypt. In Cairo we have donated computers, teaching materials and provide regular financial assistance to the Sudanese Community Development Program-a school for Sudanese refugee children. We have also helped the school set up a Sponsor-a-Child scheme, and arranged a letter exchange between the Sudanese children and a school local to our UK office. This promotes opportunities for inter-cultural understanding and provides the Sudanese children with great encouragement. We can arrange pre tour visits to the school, and many of our clients regularly donate old clothes and shoes to the Sudanese Refugees via our collection system at our Cairo Hotel. In 2008 we have funded an air conditioning system to the schools computer room. We struggled a bit with this one as aircon is not generally considered very environmentally friendly but this room is unusable during the summer months.
In Luxor we sponsor the Sunshine Project International, a home for abandoned and orphaned children. Apart from a regular financial commitment we have also donated bedding and play equipment to the school and even delivered a sandpit from the UK. Luckily there was no need to deliver any sand! Clients on the Egypt trip are given the opportunity to visit the home in Luxor and regularly donate baby toiletries and toys directly there themselves.
Friends and Neighbours: Our aim on this trip is to put as much of the trip costs directly back into the local communities and economy as possible. We use local guides, reps. and operators at all the places of interest we visit and recommend local restaurants and street sellers to help spread the benefits of our tourist dollar more widely. In Luxor, for example, our local rep Tayeb, sources the donkeys for our village trip from his own family and neighbours and has been doing so for the past five years. This allows village families to gain extra income beyond their subsistence farming.
In Aswan the feluccas we use are owned and run by Ahmed Fauzi and his extended family –we have been supporting their tiny felucca business from its start. They have recently managed to expand to 3 small sail boats which completely supports their large extended village family.