Chitwan luxury tiger safari in Nepal

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Responsible tourism

Responsible tourism: Chitwan luxury tiger safari in Nepal

Environment

In Nepal (as with everywhere we travel we apply all the same ethics and principals set down by Tour Operators For Tigers (TOFT) to all the tiger safaris. By being a member of TOFT we use only TOFT approved accommodation, so you can be assured that the food you eat is locally and responsibly sourced as is the furniture, fuel and other resources used by the accommodation. We are regularly in talks with the park commissioners and other local authorities and help to build sustainable practises.

Many of the places in Sauraha do not comply with standard eco-tourism practises so we regularly meet with hotel and resort owners and explain how better to run their hotels and resorts so that they will receive more guests as they run in eco-friendly ways. This will increase their business (which is what they are really interested in) as well as making sure that they have a pristine ecosystem full of amazing wildlife in the park for future generations.

At the end of each we offset our carbon footprint (based on the number of tours we have completed and the number of passengers we have taken with us), with the Carbon Trust.

Wildlife Promise:
In Nepal we actively supporting the Crocodile, Vulture and Turtle Breeding Stations inside Chitwan National Park, which aims to reintroduce Gharial, vultures and endangered freshwater turtles back into the Chitwan National Park and has already seen success in Gharial reintroductions.

We also keep a record of all the tigers and other rare wildlife we see on each tour and record the environmental factors, this data is used by ourselves but also given to the researchers who work out of each of the national parks. As well as multi-national organisations like Panthera and the World Conservation Society. All the information collected in invaluable as the knowledge of the dwindling population of tigers is under such a threat. We also donate our pictures to the researchers to aid in their photo identification studies.

Sapana Village Lodge is renowned for its community work, setting up many women's handicraft initiatives, local schools and also local community gardens. All of these projects and many more are supported by our clients whenever we stay here and make bookings with this lodge.

Throughout this trip we use as many locally produced and sourced foods as possible, by doing so we minimize waste as most of these locally produced products have less packaging that mass produced products. All waste we do create during the trek is taken back with us to the city so they can be recycled effectively. In fact nearly everything we consume along the way is locally produced in the villages that we pass through. Leaving next to no waste from packaging.

For water conservation we reduce washing of bedding and towels by encouraging our clients to use the same towel for the duration of their trip, so to reduce water usage in cleaning them regularly. Where washing has to be done when on the trek we use the rivers (not machines) and do not use any chemicals.

As we after often in the eco camps and small independent guest houses we are well off the power grid and so solar power is crucial for our trips. All of the camps and guest houses we visit use solar power as their primary source of energy and water heating.

We only use one vehicle on this trip, we minimize the amount of driving on the trip, most of the movement on the trip is walking. We also offset our carbon emissions annually by planting trees. On average 15,000 tress annually are planted on our behalf.

All of our local suppliers in Nepal are pioneers in establishing eco tourism, they work hard to introduce eco friendly practices such as employing local people, using local products and also saving water and energy as well as being as sustainable as possible. In Nepal our suppliers are involved eco tourism at a government level and are key in establishing eco tourism to some Nepal's most remote rural communities.

Community

In Nepal the community benefits as we visit the local cultural dance performances and take guided tours of the indigenous villages. This increases the revenue received by the locals and helps to promote sustainable eco tourism in the area. We also support local initiatives which are helping to train up local guides and drivers as well implement educational programmes which promote sustainable use of the natural resources and of course promote environmentally friendly tiger safaris. Our director is also personally involved in the further development of Chitwan National Park and how they can further improve eco-tourism here. It is by activity involving the local people here that most of the land around the park is not being too heavily developed. Traditional ways of life are still common practice here because the money distributed from tourism to the local people is very good (around 30-50% of the total revenue finds its way to the local people). It is initiatives such as this which are helping Nepal achieve increasing numbers of rhinos, elephants and also tigers!

Also by visiting these remote rural areas we actively encourage employing the local village people as porters, guides, drivers and accommodation staff as well as spending time to understand and observe their traditional ways of life.

Throughout this trip we have opportunities to purchase local crafts as well as seeing how they are produced. We will be traveling through communities that produce local crafts and products for their traditional uses as well as tourism. It is the hard work of our suppliers in Nepal that are encouraging the local communities to produce such crafts to help stimulate their rural economies and also to help educate our clients on their local culture.

When traveling we give all of our clients the opportunity to contribute and participate in local traditions and activities. We are at the mercy of local people and the local communities when off the beaten track in Nepal. So it is crucial we make sure that we have a great relationships between our clients, guides, suppliers and the local communities. By bringing supplies (such as medication, school supplies and solar chargers) from the towns to these rural communities we help to secure a strong relationship through eco tourism.

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