Cycling holiday in the Prosecco Hills, Italy

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Date
Price
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27 Apr 2019
£ 1299
including UK flights
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18 May 2019
£ 1299
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08 Jun 2019
£ 1299
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29 Jun 2019
£ 1499
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27 Jul 2019
£ 1549
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31 Aug 2019
£ 1499
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28 Sep 2019
£ 1349
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12 Oct 2019
£ 1249
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Vouchers
Accepted
Holiday type

Small group holiday

Small group travel is not large group travel scaled down. It is modelled on independent travel – but with the advantage of a group leader to take care of the itinerary, accommodation and tickets, and dealing with the language. It’s easy to tick off the big sights independently – but finding those one-off experiences, local festivals, travelling markets and secret viewpoints is almost impossible for someone without the insider knowledge gained from years in the field. If you’re heading off on a gap year your, perhaps – but for those with a two-week holiday, a small group tour will save valuable planning time.

The leaders are not guides – they’re not there to shepherd you around. Instead, they’ll let you know which local restaurant serves great value food – without running the risk of travellers’ tummy. They’ll allow you to avoid hour-long queues at train stations and attractions.

We like to think of small group travel as the Goldilocks option. It is independent travel without the fuss, worry and bunk beds – and organised travel without the coaches. And it’s cheaper than a tailor made tour. It’s sits somewhere in the middle – and we think it’s just about right.

What are the main benefits?
Big experiences
Have big, life-enriching experiences that would be impossible to organise without lots of time and insider knowledge.

Simplicity
Make the most of your holiday time by letting someone else do the hard work and boring logistics!

Peace of mind
Small group tours take care of the security aspects – and provide a safety net should anything unexpected happen.
Who is it ideal for?
Travellers who are short of time
If you don’t have three months to spend exploring, small groups trips let you cover more ground in less time. Your days are not spent queuing for tickets or finding hotels – so you can squeeze more into your holiday.

Solo travellers who’d like company
Likeminded travel companions plus peace of mind for those travelling alone. Single supplements are usually available – providing privacy if you want it.

Less confident travellers
Stray from the tourist trail without worrying about getting lost, and meet local people without dealing with the language barrier.
Mythbuster
“I won’t get any privacy!”
Couples and friends have private rooms, and you can choose to eat alone or not. Single supplements give solo travellers their own room.

“There won’t be any free time”
Free mornings or afternoons let you explore on your own, or just relax.

“The accommodation will be basic”
Trips are as high or low end as you like. Though off the beaten track destinations won’t have luxury hotels, this is all part of the adventure.

“I won’t like the other travellers!”
Tour operators try to create groups with a similar demographic – age, families, activity levels... Chances are, you’ll even make new friends.

“Will we be following an umbrella?”
No.
Valerie Parkinson
Meet a group Leader
Name: Valerie Parkinson

Story: The first British woman to climb Manaslu, Valerie climbed Everest for her 50th birthday. She’s spent fourteen Christmas Days trekking to Everest Base Camp, and is involved insetting up Responsible Tourism initiatives in the Himalayas.
Roshan Fernando
Meet a local guide
Name: Roshan Fernando

Story: Roshan has led over 130 trips – he adores showing travellers around Sri Lanka. He won the company Leader Award in 2010, but his career highlight was working on their Tsunami Project – which earned him a responsible tourism award.

Responsible tourism

Responsible tourism: Cycling holiday in the Prosecco Hills, Italy

Accommodation and meals:
On this trip, we spend the nights in a number of locally owned hotels, where they employ local staff and purchase their ingredients from local markets or directly from farmers wherever possible. This thereby ensures that our visit provides economic benefits to the local community. When meals are not provided, our local guides will encourage and recommend clients to eat out in local restaurants and cafes to celebrate local delicacies.

Local craft and Culture:
There are plenty of opportunities for clients to be exposed to the culture and history of Cambodia. In Battambang, we discover the local way of life and the small cottage industries that produce sticky rice, noodles, and fish paste. At Phnom Penh, we have a tour inside the Tuol Sleng Genocide Museum and the Killing fields of Choeung Ek to learn about the story of the tragic legacy of Khmer Rouge that has caused the death of approximately 1.5 million Cambodians. We will also visit the largest temple complex in Asia, Angkor wat, with its huge moat, long causeway and massive towers.

When visiting local markets and shops, we encourage clients to purchase traditional goods and souvenirs to help support local production and craft. In Siem Reap, we will visit a night market with plenty of shops that sell silk, cotton, silver and statues. Clients are also encouraged to buy craft from non-profit organization, Artisans d’Angkor which helped rebuild Cambodia’s traditional art practices after the Khmer Rouge genocide and is now employing more than 900 artisans and 1300 staff around Cambodia. Definitely, our local guide will advise clients on what to buy and what to avoid as any type of protected animal products and original stone carving before the 20th century should not be purchased.

Activity:
Cycling trips have very little detrimental impact on the environment and local residents though we are aware that erosion on and adjacent to popular paths is a growing problem in certain places and therefore our trip leaders encourage clients to stick to advised routes in order to minimise this. We do believe in leaving no more than footprints, however this tour actively encourages guests to talk to local people, visit local cafes and restaurants, visit markets to purchase traditional gifts and crafts, to help facilitate overall cultural exploration.

Community:
Our local partner is dedicated in contributing to the community. Every year, they participate in the Angkor Bike Ride 4 Kids to provide financial support for organizations supporting Cambodian children. They are also a member of the Cambodian NGO, conCERT that serves as a platform to connect people who are keen to help to suitable projects. Additionally, our partner also works directly with several charitable organizations in the area providing them with regular tourism income to help them become self-sufficient.


Arrangements can be made during the trip to have a meal at any TREE restaurants, which is an alliance of training restaurants that has the goal of providing young people, which many are former street youths, with skills to become employable in the hospitality industry. Hence, by dining at one of these restaurants, it supports the students in their hospitality training and all profits are reinvested into their training and also to partner with NGOs for projects.

A Fair Deal:
We work closely with our local operator and ensure that all of our guides are local and that in exchange for their expertise that they are paid and treated fairly. The leaders will give a briefing on Responsible Tourism issues to help clients understand how they can help reduce their impact and maximise the benefits to the local community from our visit.

Group Size:
This is a small group tour, meaning that we have a low impact on the environments and communities we visit and are able to ensure that we do not disrupt or lead to the displacement of local people. The small number also allows us to stay in unique, family-run hotels that cannot benefit from coach tours and other mass tourism due to their limited sizes.

UK Office:
It all starts at home where we work towards reducing our carbon footprint in our offices through energy conservation measures, recycling policies and the promotion of cycling and walking as a means for our staff to commute. Our head office has become a plastic-free zone with the use of plastic bottles being banned in our head office and we distributed reusable water bottles and tote bags to every staff member. We also support a large number of community and environmental projects in different parts of the world and try to give something back to the places we visit.

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