Highlights of Poland with Lviv and Kiev holiday

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Responsible tourism

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Environment
As most of the accommodation that we use on this trip are locally owned properties, our tour leader recommends to our customers to be conscious of their water use when showering and encourages them not to have towels changed on a daily basis.

We use a public bus from Krakow in Poland to Lviv in Ukraine, which reduces our carbon emissions and allows us the opportunity to meet more people from the local community. When in Kyiv we use the metro to explore and our tour leaders encourage our clients to do this during their free time as well. To get between the cities in Poland we use public trains and within the cities we normally travel by tram. To help reduce the level of pollution within the urban centres, the sightseeing tours we do in the main city centres are mostly done on foot, which is also a great way of seeing all they have to offer first hand.

Our tour leaders do not use single use plastic bottles and also encourage our customers to use their reusable water bottles. Tap water is safe to drink so refilling bottles is easy in Poland.

Our local agent in Poland recycles according to Polish laws in their office building. Above that they aim to reduce the unnecessary use of printing paper and also plastic bottles, cutlery and food containers. On tour our local agent and tour leaders try to follow a zero waste travel strategy whenever possible

As a travel company we are continually looking for ways to improve and are proud to be ‘Responsible in everything we do’. Education is key, and so all staff, Tour Leaders and partnering suppliers are trained in responsible and sustainable tourism. At our Head Office, we continually strive towards a sustainable and planet-friendly working environment, including having solar panels installed and a company commitment to reducing our plastic usage.
Community

The Impacts of this Trip

The majority of accommodation used on this trip is locally owned. This not only provides direct employment within the hotel, but also has the effect of percolating money beyond to small businesses that supply the hotel and in this way money is spread throughout the region we visit. Other people benefit too from our visit including drivers and local guides.

We use tour leaders, who know the countries very well and who will help to give us a unique insight into their history, customs and culture and get us that bit closer to the local people. They also ensure that our customers are aware of the cultural norms that should be observed, dress code, gestures, etc. They also ensure that historical sites are visited in a respectful way and that local sensitivity is taken into account. This is especially important at the sites visited that relate to World War II and to Poland’s religious history. Our tour leaders are trained by us in the importance of responsible tourism with guidance given on how they can make a difference.

Our tour leaders will make recommendations to clients to use locally owned restaurants, bars and shops. When dining in restaurants our tour leaders also offer advice about what to order based on what’s in season and what has been produced locally.
In Krakow there is the opportunity to join a cooking lesson to learn how to make traditional Polish specialities. This is a family run business. Whilst in Wroclaw there’s the chance to visit Zagan or Ksiaz Castle which our local agent books through a small guiding company from the area. This helps to ensure that the money our groups spend stays within the communities we are visiting.

Whilst in Krakow we have included a traditional Jewish dinner with Klezmer music which is performed by local musicians. This type of music is particularly important for preserving the memory of the Jews and Jewish culture present in Krakow before World War II.
After the invasion of Crimea and the Ukrainian revolution in 2014, tourism to Ukraine was hit hard and is only starting to recover a few years ago; obviously our priority is always the safety of our groups and that is why we always follow UK foreign Office Travel Advice and are in constant contact with our local suppliers to ensure we know what conditions are like on the ground.

However we also strongly believe that is important that we continue to send groups to Ukraine to help support the local businesses and our local tour leaders. Ukraine is a fabulous country and the capital city, Kyiv, is full of history, stunning architecture, mouth-watering food, and it’s affordable with cost of public transport, food and drinks being some of the lowest in Europe.

As a company we have valuable and longstanding partnerships with UK charities Toilet Twinning and Send a Cow, plus many smaller initiatives and projects around the world. We’re members of the UK travel industry body AITO because we believe it’s important to share our knowledge and experience, as well as learn from other operators.

Climate

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