Saudi Arabia small group tour
Description of Saudi Arabia small group tour
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As the pioneers of responsible tourism, we've screened this (and every) holiday so that you can travel knowing it will help support the places and people that you visit, and the planet. Read how below.
PlanetWe must always keep the environment at the forefront of our minds and we are always careful to take all litter with us, disposing of it responsibly in big cities and towns. We mustn’t leave cigarette butts either. We encourage our travellers to avoid excess packaging if purchasing any snacks, and to bring a reusable water bottle which can be refilled throughout the tour.
We visit ancient ruins, old desert forts and remote natural areas on this tour, encouraging our travellers to stick to the trails so as to protect these areas and leave them for others to enjoy. The entrance fees that we include play an important part in the conservation of these sites.
Where possible, we choose low impact forms of accommodation, and a good example of this is the tented camp we stay at on this tour during our time in Al Ula. We strongly believe in preserving ancient sites such as this and strive to ensure that we leave these areas as we find them. Our team have been trained in strict no litter policies, meaning that we take all refuse to either be recycled or properly disposed of back in the city.
Up until now, Saudi Arabia has seen very little in the way of tourism, which is set to change with the introduction of the tourist visa. We believe it is incredibly important that at this early stage of tourism development we work with local service providers to set and implement best practice when it comes to environmental matters, so that this becomes the norm as tourist numbers increase. This includes basic things like not replacing towels each day, as well as saving electricity and turning lights off – small things but Saudi Arabia is not as used to tourism as countries in western Europe. We also help to educate local guides and drivers about how not to negatively impact upon the areas visited.
Where possible we make use of public transport rather than private vehicles to keep emissions down. An example of this is on the last night of the tour, where we take the train back to Riyadh rather than drive.
PeopleSaudi Arabia is a deeply traditional and religious country with certain codes of behaviour, and the people here are not always that accustomed to outsiders. We ensure that our travellers are appropriately briefed in order so as not to offend local sensibilities.
Using local guides also ensures money stays within local economies and means we will be treated to such valuable, in-depth and honest knowledge which you perhaps wouldn’t get from a western guide. It also means we are keeping carbon emissions down.
On all of tours we strive to include a strong focus on local communities and we are firm believers that tourism should have a positive impact on the places visited. On this tour we try to allow our travellers to gain a real insight into the traditional customs of the region; a good example of this is when we visit a typical Saudi home in Abha to see how people live. Not only is this a great experience for travellers but it means that small scale community based tourism projects, often ignored by mainstream tourism, are able to benefit from our visit.
We visit the UNESCO World Heritage Site of Madain Saleh on this tour. The entrance fees that we include play an important part in its restoration and conservation, helping to maintain the heritage of this ancient country for future generations – not just western travellers but more importantly to local people to whom they have far more cultural and historical significance.