The Five Stans holiday, Ancient Silk Road Cities
Description of The Five Stans holiday, Ancient Silk Road Cities
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Small group tour:
Small group travel is not large group travel scaled down. It is modelled on independent travel – but with the advantage of a group leader to take care of the itinerary, accommodation and tickets, and dealing with the language. It’s easy to tick off the big sights independently – but finding those one-off experiences, local festivals, travelling markets and secret viewpoints is almost impossible for someone without the insider knowledge gained from years in the field. Those with a two-week holiday, a small group tour will save valuable planning time.
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.
PlanetThe natural environments that you’ll travel through in Central Asia are fragile; the cultures and traditions precious and often the communities we pass through are reliant on tourism. It is our responsibility as visitors to minimise the impact of our presence, protect what is precious and where we can leave a positive impact.
We are aligned with “Leave No Trace”, an international organisation that has set the global standard for outdoor ethics. Through targeted education, research and outreach, its mission is to ensure the long-term health of our natural world while maintaining sustainable recreation in nature.
Our company-wide Waste Management Policy encourages our travellers to take their own reusable water bottles and reusable stuff sacks to avoid single-use plastics. We follow this same philosophy in our office as well as on the tour: in our London office we have banned single use coffee cups and water bottles. We use recycled paper in our office and we are working towards reducing the amount of paper we use, as well as recycle all of our paper and plastic waste.
We were the proud recipients of the inaugural Australian National Travel Industry’s Environmental Achievement award for our Responsible Travel Guidebook. This detailed guide to responsible and sustainable travel is provided to all our clients before they travel.
PeopleOur preferred accommodations we use on this trip are locally owned and not part of big international hotel chains; this way we ensure your tourist spend is staying within the area and benefiting local people.
We have included some local guesthouses where available. For example, in Arslanbob we are hosted by a local family, who will prepare our evening meals and welcome us with great hospitality, this is also a chance to experience village life and connect with the local people.
We use local guides throughout this trip. The guides are highly experienced, have strong local knowledge of the area and a love and understanding of their country that they are happy to share throughout the trip. This not only provides a richer experience but creates valuable employment helping to keep income within the community.
A local guide brings so much value to the tour, they can explain to you the customs, the dos and don’ts to help you navigate Central Asia with cultural sensitivities. In addition, all clients receive a comprehensive pre-departure info pack, which includes some helpful hints for travellers to the region in terms of dress and culture.
We have scheduled visits to areas where you can see local crafts during the tour, including the village of Rishtan which known for its pottery and ceramics, and Marghilan where we visit a local silk factory. Buying your local crafts and souvenirs here will give you the opportunity to support these communities. Which also helps support these unique traditions, and to help sustain them for the future.