Photography holiday in Austrian Tyrol

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12 Jun 2020
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Responsible tourism

Responsible tourism: Photography holiday in Austrian Tyrol


The photographic emphasis of this Retreat is on plants and insects and in this delicate environment. Plants, in particular, can be vulnerable to trampling and dislodging if they are growing on a steep or friable slope.

After an initial briefing, we encourage the group to disperse a little to reduce local trampling. Group members are issued with a two way radio to keep in touch with the leader, even if they are just 50 metres away. We're not keen on shouting in the wilds! We advise the Park authorities on where we are planning to go in order that they can alert us to any nest sites that might be vulnerable to disturbance in order that we can them a wide berth. When we work with insects in the field studio, we will do so in the shade, to prevent over-heating and keep them on set for as little time as possible before release.

It is easy to assume, in an alpine environment with lots of snow in winter, that water supply would not be an issue. But in fact, there is increasing concern in a growing number of Alpine valleys about summer drought. Higher temperatures and increased evaporation, rather than diminished snow and rainfall, water use is the main driving factor behind the frequency and intensity of droughts. We will impress this on our guests and suggest ways they can reduce water waste as we will in the kitchen. We discourage the purchase of bottled water and provide guests with containers they can put tap water in for the week.


High quality photography of the sort we can produce in the field studio is enormously helpful to the Park in its communication and education programmes as has been demonstrated when we've done this in the past. Donating some of the images we take to the Park helps them without hurting local professional photographers as no budget exists to commission them and there are relatively few practitioners of this specialised type of illustrative photography, anywhere.

Since we make all the meals for our guests we can choose where the ingredients are purchased and target our spending where it helps - advised by our partners in the area. We like to introduce guests to the area's specialities by visiting local coffee shops when we are out and about. We would also encourage guests to buy local crafts and food as gifts to take home rather than something from the airport!

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