Ladakh photography tour, India

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Date
Price
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19 Jul 2017
£ 2650
including domestic flights only
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Responsible tourism

Responsible tourism: Ladakh photography tour, India

Environment

Both our company and our location guides are keen environmentalists. For example we are privileged to have worked in Ladakh for many years and we work alongside Ladakhis whose knowledge of and respect for the local environment is unsurpassed and are members of the international Eco-Tourism Society whose aim is to unite conservation, communities and sustainable travel. Our Ladakhi colleagues have an immense knowledge of the indigenous flora and fauna. Our objective is to, “help people understand the nature better and to conserve it so that the future generation can benefit and admire the it’s beauty.” Our photography reflects the special access we have to some less explored locations that local people have shown us. Walking through locations is key to our trips, wherever possible we avoid any sort of transport at all allowing total immersion in the areas we visit.

Out in the field we encourage you to travel responsibly and to consider the following guidelines:

- When out in wild places we encourage you to keep erosion to a minimum, keep to footpaths and avoid stepping on or picking native flora.
- Protect the environment – its flora, fauna and landscapes.
- We encourage you to use water sparingly particularly, in Ladakh it is a precious and expensive commodity. Additionally avoid buying plastic bottles of water and use your own metal or heavy-duty plastic bottle such as Nalgene to refil with water from a safe source.
- River water could also be drinking water, do not contaminate water supplies by washing in it. Any washing products should be phosphate free.
- Carry out some research about your holiday destination, being able to speak a few words of the Ladakhi language will always be appreciated.
- Minimize pollution and carry out litter.

Community

We consider it a huge privilege to be able to visit the world’s wild places and at all times we endeavor to respect local cultures At the beginning of the trip we advise and discuss issues such as local community projects in the area, local religious and cultural beliefs and our effect on the local community. We encourage participants to ask our local guide as much as possible about the community.

Throughout our holiday we will be working alongside Ladakhi colleagues, we also use an English speaking local guide and local location experts.

- Respect local customs religion and traditions. Wear appropriate clothes by adhering to local dress codes.
- Don’t take photographs of local people and places of religious significance without permission.
- Keep promises! Send copies of photos to local people if this is what you have said you will do.
- Buy local products such as food and souvenirs so that money directly benefits the community.

A guide that we have worked with often is Thinles Dorjay. Hailing from the remote Phokar village of Ladakh, Thinles, he started working in travel and hospitality when he was just sixteen and in addition to some guiding he handles the office logistics and transport arrangements in Leh, meets all clients, and is there at the airport to meet us and see you us off.

We travel in small groups often splitting into smaller groups of two or three persons in order to reduce intrusion on local communities while photographing. With a few exceptions when we visit iconic locations, we tend to avoid main tourist areas, concentrating instead on the less visited areas thus economically supporting these local communities. We have known and worked with our location experts for many years and as such we get to visit places often unseen by other visitors to the area and we are often treated to insights of cultural tradition and ways of life that would have passed us by without this connection. We stay in locally owned accommodation and visit as many locally run initiatives as we can fit in.

Information is also available on our web site.

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