Sri Lanka Family Holidays

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Departure information

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

Responsible tourism: Sri Lanka Family Holidays

Environment

The Sri Lanka Family holiday introduces families to the culturally rich and environmentally diverse island state of Sri Lanka, with an emphasis on contributing to the local economy and community projects while respecting local traditions and the natural environment. Sri Lankan guides are at the heart of the tour, whether driving visitors around the island, taking treks at Horton Plains or leading safaris in National Parks. Some of the guides come from community-led projects such as the Woodlands Network, which helps local people gain access to education and employment.

Information: Providing suitable, relevant information for our customers; to help them to gain a wider understanding of our style of tourism that focuses on learning, genuine interaction with the local communities, reciprocity and cultural exchange processes. To be aware of the potential impact of tourism on the local society, culture and environment, and to behave and dress appropriately with a respect and appreciation for local customs, mores and traditions and a respect for the ecology of areas visited. Our guides and leaders thus facilitate communication of our values to both travellers and local communities, educating them in sustainable tourism practices

Group sizes: By limiting groups to small sizes we aim to reduce the impact on both local communities and the environment whilst allowing for greater genuine interaction with said communities. It also results in a higher guide/customer ratio thus greater facility for supervision and individual assistance and allows us to use smaller hotels and restaurants and employ the services of more genuinely ‘local’ operators perhaps not otherwise well equipped for larger groups.

Destinations: We combine the well known tourist sites with many off-the-beaten-track, rarely visited destinations thus diverting tourist revenue and contact with responsible tourism into areas not usually benefiting as well as providing a more authentic view of the region visited.

This tour supports various environmental initiatives including bird watching in Kalametiya Sanctuary, the Yala West and Horton Plains National Parks and 6 UNESCO World Heritage Sites. Entrance fees to the National Parks contribute to conservation projects throughout all national parks.

Accommodation used on the tours employs local people and the majority are locally owned. The accommodation used in the Cultural Triangle has been built and refurbished using reclaimed materials from decommissioned tea factories and the site was left undisturbed with no trees cut down or lakes drained. All vegetarian food is grown in its local gardens. The tree houses are built from local materials and any building in this area is compelled to contribute to the agriculture of the area. The owner grows fruit and vegetables for our clients and also enables local people to cultivate their own plot on his rented land. The Palm Paradise Cabanas at Tangalle, although situated in a palm grove were constructed without any palms being cut down and cabanas and villas are again built from local material. They are very active in water and power conservation and educating their clients to take conservation seriously and responsibly.

Community

Local products: As much as possible we aim to employ local personnel, (guides, drivers, agents etc), use local restaurants and smaller privately owned accommodation. Customers are also encouraged to buy and use local products and services as much as possible in order to support and stimulate the local economy.

Instruction: By explaining our methods and the reasons behind them local agents, guides and hotels are encouraged by us to adopt further responsible tourism practices themselves and guides and drivers are provided with additional training in this respect.

Sri Lanka community-led projects: The Asian Tsunami highlighted the plight of coastal communities in Sri Lanka and our initial projects were targeted at Sri Lankan individuals and communities devastated by the tsunami (please ask us for details). However, many other communities away from the coast also lack essential materials and services and our objective is to offer long-term support to such Sri Lankan individuals and communities. By channeling all donations received by Forgotten Village Sri Lanka (a charitable organisation currently applying for charitable status with the Charity Commission) into community-based projects on the island, we hope to provide sustained assistance to these communities in their endeavour to improve their lives. We make a contribution to Forgotten Village Sri Lanka for every holiday booked.

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