Accommodation and Meals:
The accommodation on this trip is a combination of hotels and lodges. The vast majority of the staff is from nearby villages and they even offer accommodation for staff staying in villages further away. This industry is a great source of employment for local people, so by staying in these hotels we are supporting steady income for local communities. In terms of meals, hotels will source local produce as much as possible and clients are encouraged to explore local restaurants and markets if convenient. Main meals are typically based on a meat or bean stew and ‘ugali’ (maize flour and water) or ‘matooke’ (boiled and mashed green banana).
Our tours are designed to entertain as well as inform about wildlife issues and promote animal welfare. When we visit National Parks such as Kibale Forest, Lake Mburo and Queen Elizabeth National Park, we pay park fees which contribute to the protection of these parks and the myriad of unique (and sometimes endangered) species which can be found there e.g. baboons, gorillas, elephants, lions, and leopard. Local guides are also employed when we enter these reserves. This creates employment and gives clients an altogether more informative, genuine experience. We will explore the Bigodi Wetlands Sanctuary in the Magombe wetland, which is operated by the Kibale Association for Rural and Environmental Development. Because of the wetland's rich biodiversity, it was resolved that the tourism could bring benefits to the community and encourage conservation of this natural resource. Projects so far include building a secondary school, a wetlands boardwalk and running safe water campaigns.
The permit fee charged to see the Mountain gorillas in Bwindi Impenetrable Forest goes directly towards the preservation of this endangered species and their fragile but beautiful environment. By travelling with us, you ensure that rangers are paid a fair wage and have the provisions and personnel to protect themselves and wildlife against harmful poaching activity.
This is a small group tour and so numbers do not exceed 18, meaning that local environments and the communities and variety of species (endangered and otherwise) that we encounter are not seriously impacted by our stay. This group size also allows us to travel with ease and therefore to stay at a number of unique, lesser known campsites and one hotel that would not usually benefit from tourism commerce due to its limited size.
It all starts at home so we have first worked at reducing our carbon footprint in our UK offices. Through energy conservation measures and recycling policies, 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.