Belize and Guatemala holiday, tailor made

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01273 823 700

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This trip can be tailor made throughout the year to suit your requirements
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Responsible tourism

Responsible tourism: Belize and Guatemala holiday, tailor made

Environment

Travel and tourism can both benefit and damage the environment, the economy, the social structure, culture and communities in any country. We know how mass tourism, unrestricted hotel building, poorly devised tours and environmentally destructive activities can bring money flooding in and governments have, in a spirit of short termism, been tempted to accept them. But experience teaches us that in the long term this sort of uncontrolled activity can be detrimental to the country's development.

As a company we love Latin America and strive to protect the rural and urban landscapes which we take you to visit. We work with local operators which have a proven record in training guides to set a good example in their respect for their surroundings and pass on advice and encouragement to visitors on how to preserve the fragile environment in simple ways, such as by refilling a water bottle, disposing of rubbish responsibly, not disturbing local communities or wildlife and not purchasing items made from endangered animals or plants. When selecting accommodation, we give preference to hotels, lodges and cruise vessels which have a verifiable commitment to eco-friendly practices.

In San Ignacio, Belize, you will stay at The Lodge at Chaa Creek. You will be impressed by their exemplary record when it comes to sustainable tourism: environmental and social responsibility runs through every single strand of their operation. Conservation projects are continually being undertaken and supported by The Lodge at Chaa Creek: each year The Lodge hosts and educates hundreds of local and overseas students and sponsors internship positions in ecotourism and responsible travel through various programs at their Natural History Centre, Blue Morpho Butterfly Breeding Centre and other operations. Other conservation projects they have supported have included a Howler Monkey Reintroduction programme and Bay Palm Reforestation initiative.

They encourage their guests to actively participate in their conservation efforts by explaining their environmental policies upon arrival and gently reinforcing environmental awareness amongst guests through written conservation messages in each guest room, for example encouraging guests to re-use towels as much as possible in order to save water and energy. They produce their own water using state-of-the-art filtrations systems and provide guests with hygienic water refilling stations and souvenir aluminium water bottles in an effort to reduce the use of plastic bottles. You can take these away and use them throughout the rest of this trip.

When it comes to respecting the historical and cultural attractions visited on this tour, you can rest assured that our guides on the ground have been impeccably trained to ensure that your visit creates little negative impact. They will advise you on how you can reduce your impact at fragile archaeological sites such as Tikal by ensuring you know how and where to dispose of your litter, ensuring you keep to dedicated footpaths and advising you against touching the delicate stonework.

Community

We pride ourselves on delivering our clients truly authentic and unforgettable experiences in Latin America and immersing them in the culture of the places they visit. In Lake Atitlán in Guatemala, you will visit lakeside villages such as Santiago de Atitlán and meet the people who live on the communities of its shores. You will be greeted by enthusiastic children who will likely offer to show you where the local idol, Maximón, who moves annually to a different house, is currently located. This is an authentic experience that really gives you an insight into the culture of the local area and creates a strong bond between tourists and local people.

On your way back to Antigua you will visit the market in Chichicastenango where there will be the opportunity to support local artisans by purchasing their delicate textiles and handicrafts: whether you buy the extravagant hand-carved masks, good-quality leather goods or some of the striking textiles, clothes and tapestries, or even purchase some fresh fruit and vegetables from local farmers, you will be supporting the local economy and be immersed in the bustling way of life of the market.

1 Reviews of Belize and Guatemala holiday, tailor made

2 out of 5 stars
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Reviewed on 10 Aug 2017 by

1. What was the most memorable or exciting part of your holiday?


Guatemala felt more authentic and affordable. We enjoyed the balance between organized trips and our own free time.

2. What tips would you give other travellers booking this holiday?


I would seriously look at a couple of the hotels you put us in. There were two that really fell short. The first was in the lakes, the hotel itself was okay, but
the rooms were really too hot, no air conditioning and felt quite musty - but the biggest annoyance was the continual music which you couldnt get away
from. Its fine to have it by the pool or in reception, but it really drove us mad. The hotel we were not happy with was the first one in Belize in San Ignacio -
in fact it really a back packers hotel and not suitable on several accounts - the pool was really designed for a backpackers party the music was off the scale
loud, so it didnt really make for a relaxing time. Secondly, the bedroom - the bathrooms were not safe at all, the floors were so slippy when wet, my
husband fell and broke his arm - this really destroyed the final part of our holiday - to matter worse the hotel called a Dr when I asked for help to get him to hospital - the Dr they called was useless and just wanted money from us for doing nothing, then accused us of not paying. Utterly disgraceful.

3. Did you feel that your holiday benefited local people, reduced environmental impacts or supported conservation?


We had our phone stolen in Guatemela in the market - so yes they benefited from that. The guide would only report it as lost to the police for us.... That did
not impress us at all.

4. Finally, how would you rate your holiday overall?


Belize was expensive, and a real dampner that my husband couldnt do anything due to his broken arm.

Read the operator's response here:

Thanks for your feedback, though I was sorry to hear your husband had an accident in the shower at one of the properties and you were also were the victim of robbery in Guatemala. I can appreciate both must have had a very detrimental impact upon your holiday enjoyment and we are sorry you had such unfortunate experiences.

In addition, we note your concerns regarding the music. Although we have previously found the simple cottages at the family run Midas Resort offer good value for money, as mentioned in our hotel description, the pool area is open to the public and as a result it can get lively. In any event, I regret this detracted from your stay and we shall review proposing this hotel in the future in light of your feedback.

We will be following up the issues you have raised and be in touch with you directly very shortly. Thank you again for bringing these matters to our attention.

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