Responsible tourism: Cycling vacation in the Netherlands, Germany & Austria
Cycling is one the greenest activities you can think of, but we are aware there are other elements of an organised cycle tour that are not as environmentally friendly as they could be. So we encourage our clients to offset their carbon emissions when traveling to the start and from the end of our trips. We are passionate about responsible tourism and on our Road to Vienna tour we will strive to leave no traces of our presence as we cycle the 900miles from the Netherlands to Austria, we will be immersed in the local culture and wherever possible we will only be using suppliers who are from and firmly ensconced in the local economy. Our bed and breakfasts, inns and hotels will be chosen because of their longstanding links with the community. We will be sourcing our lunches from artisan suppliers rather than chain stores and multinational supermarkets and for our evening meals we will be dining within the village or town where we are staying. We are determined that financial benefits of our Road to Vienna cycle tour stays within the local economy.
We are aware that every trip has an impact and we do all we can to ensure that this is sensitive to the local environment and benefits the local community. We want our clients to appreciate and respect other countries, their institutions, traditions, religions and heritage and we are committed to creating positive long-term relationships with the communities and places we visit.
To ensure we meet these aims, we work with local people, using local staff and supporting locally owned accommodation. Treks and group logistics are organised to have minimal impact on the environment: groups are limited (max 16); wood is only used for fuel when other resources are not available; cleanliness of water sources is protected at all times; trek leaders are rigorous in ensuring that all litter is removed from campsites and properly disposed of. We uphold the following guidelines on Responsible Tourism: Protect the environment its flora, fauna and landscapes Respect local cultures traditions, religions and built heritage Benefit local communities both economically and socially Conserve natural resources from office to destination Minimise pollution through noise, waste disposal and congestion We are a member of Tourism Concern Tourism Concerns mission is to ensure tourism always benefits the local communities they do this through a wide range of exciting and innovative projects. From working with communities in destination countries to reduce social and environmental problems connected to tourism, to working with the out-going UK tourism industry to find ways of improving tourism so that local benefits are increased. www.tourismconcern.org.uk
We support the IPPG (International Porter Protection Group) The IPPG works to improve the conditions of mountain porters in the tourism industry worldwide. This means porters carrying for individual trekkers, organized groups, climbing expeditions and those who supply lodges. We support the work of IPPG and endorses its five recommended guidelines. www.ippg.net Responsible office practices We also try to minimise the impact on the environment in our office. For instance: We stopped printing a brochure (although it was printed on recycled paper) several years ago aware that most of them end up in landfill Our stationery is printed on recycled paper We re-use and recycle paper We ensure office equipment is turned off overnight