This trip can be tailor made throughout the year to suit your requirements
Tailor made vacation
This trip is run by a company which specialises in only Central and South America vacations. It can be tailormade to create a unique vacation for your individual requirements by travel experts with intimate knowledge of the destination. The length of stay, standard of accommodation and even the itinerary can all be amended and tailored to suit your preferred style of travel and budget. Quality and value are the hallmark of these trips.
Responsible tourism: Honeymoon in Brazil and Argentina, cities & beaches
This vacation suggestion for a honeymoon in Argentina in Brazil takes you to some of the two countries’ iconic highlights, staying in romantically-styled, good quality hotels which we judge to have made some efforts to be eco-friendly and institute policies aiming at sustainability.
Your vacation starts in the Argentine capital Buenos Aires, a huge, dynamic, city with a tight colonial core, elegant residential suburbs a refurbished port district and several culturally significant art-focussed neighbourhoods. As such, it is fascinating to visit but suffers from vehicle-generated pollution. You will explore the elegant quarter of Recoleta and Bohemian San Telmo on foot, thereby not making any personal contribution to the destruction of air quality, using quieter roads. This way you will learn about the city’s historical heritage from an intimate perspective.
Your hotel in Buenos Aires, the San Telmo Luxury Suites, is a colonial building restored and decorated in conjunction with the authority of the Commission for the Preservation of Historic Sites in Buenos Aires. The hotel is located in one of the Areas of Historical Protection, which are subject to regulations regarding the preservation of the cultural heritage.
You will visit the monumental Iguazú Falls, one of the New (2011) Seven Wonders of World, which are located in the Iguazú National Park, designated by UNESCO a World Heritage Site in 1984. In 2013 UNESCO categorised the park, blanketed in tropical rainforest bursting with wildlife, as one of Exceptional Universal Value, devised to encourage collective protection of cultural and natural heritage. Your park entrance fee will be instrumental in efforts to give financial support to conservation efforts.
At Iguazú, your accommodation is at the Sheraton Iguazú Resort & Spa, the only hotel permitted within the national park, which has been listed as sustainable by the Rainforest Alliance. The hotel is linked to the Starwood chain’s “Make Green Choice” Policy, where you can choose to help reduce the environmental footprint by foregoing full housekeeping for up to 3 days, in return for vouchers. For each night you can save, in this way, up to 49 gallons of water, 0,19KW of electricity, 25,000BTU of natural gas and 250g of cleaning products. The chain has a strict policy of sourcing local ingredients for food, and introducing declared environmental practices of energy and water conservation, waste minimisation and the use of eco-friendly cleaning products.
In Rio de Janeiro you will visit the Tijuca Forest, an area of reforestation on the slopes of Corcovado, the mountain hosting the Statue of Christ the Redeemer, by open top jeep, and your guide will inform you about how the vegetation was reclaimed from decline caused by agriculture. You stay at the Porto Bay International hotel in Rio de Janeiro. Across the Porto Bay Hotel chain has adopted and continues to implement measures which are to eco-friendly. For example, solar panels, low energy bulbs light sensors and more efficient white goods are being introduced. Refuse is recycled, and measures to reduce water and paper consumption are being evolved.
You will travel to Parati, a UNESCO World Heritage Site – the municipality is deemed by UNESCO an integral part of the Atlantic Forest Biosphere Reserve. The town is a beautifully conserved Portuguese colonial port on the Atlantic Green Coast of Brazil. The centre is fully pedestrianised to preserve the historic character of the town, and any changes to the architecture or décor of the buildings is strictly controlled. It’s an area of great biodiversity, there are 5 separate protected areas.
Your hotel in Paraty, the restored colonial residence housing the Pousada de Ouro, is a member of the international Green Hotels Association, whose environmentally-friendly members adopt energy and water saving measures and recycling based on guidelines and ideas formulated by the Association. You’ll get to know the unspoilt island of Ilha Grande – where steps are being taken to achieve UNESCO World Heritage Site status - is carpeted by one of the most pristine areas of Brazil’s threatened Atlantic rainforest, and rigorous attempts are being made to conserve it. Vehicular traffic is banned here, and only small-scale ecotourism is encouraged on the island, which has 150km if hiking trails but no roads.
The Parque Estadual da Ilha Grande was set up in the 70s to preserve natural resources and supervise the development of sustainable tourism on the island. Initiatives range from the establishment of various biological reserves to ingenious socio-ambiental projects such as the transformation of used cooking oil into soap. Your hotel, Pousada Naturalia, is a relaxation-focussed guesthouse with a philosophy of conservation. 8 of the 12 guest rooms have solar-heated water, all have an optimisation system in place to avoid the waste of energy, furniture is made from sustainable eucalyptus and every stone from the original site has been included in the architectural project.
As is the case with all our private journeys, we adopt the services of locally recruited guides and drivers in each location in order to promote local employment. This also ensures that you have face to face contact with people who are intimately familiar with their environment and community, and have a vested interest in protecting it so as to ensure the future of tourism in their region. This will help to put a brake on the current tendency for people to leave their homes to seek work in the large urban centres, which harms the socio-economic viability of the countryside and smaller settlements and puts pressure on the infrastructure of the larger cities.
Our partner company in Argentina has an internal policy of donating recyclable items to a foundation which converts them into toys for deprived children. In 2015 they intend to support native members of the Huichi, Toba and Mapuche tribes as well as other artisan crafts people by purchasing and distributing small gifts created by these people both to support them financially and promote local culture. They support the Mapuche Community project where volunteers bringing medical aid and education to remote and impoverished native Indian communities.
Your honeymoon starts in the Argentine capital Buenos Aires, a city where contrasting historical quarters are fused together to create a living historical narrative and unparalleled cultural variety. Your walking tour visits two of the quarters with well conserved colonial and belle époque architecture. These neighbourhoods have many locally owned retail, entertainment and food and drink outlets where your financial contribution will help the localities maintain their character and thrive.
The Sheraton Hotel at Iguazú Falls has a commitment to employing 100% of its staff locally and to supporting the development of the local community. Porto Bay Hotels, which operates your accommodation in Rio de Janeiro, supports cultural events in the community, especially in the fields of artistic and cultural education and events. Since 2012 the Group has donated to an organisation called “HOPE: Small Gestures Big Hopes” an umbrella charitable organisation assisting the underprivileged in social and medical fields. A contribution is made from a small charge to every room night sold.
Brazil’s Greenport campaign: motto “Green Passport, Sustainable Tourism for a Loving Planet” which was designed to educate visitors how to avoid damaging the environment, kicked off with a pilot at Parati, because of its cultural richness, and aims to impel tourists to contribute to the economy by truly understanding it. Various workshops have educated local people to prepare for this, eg devoted to recycling and preventing pollution. The Sustainable Gastronomy Programme in the town encourages local eateries to use fresh local produce. There are several craft workshops and retail outlets which create and sell traditional artisan work, for example ceramics using traditional methods adopted from the local indigenous peoples. These small companies also support community incentives; you can help them by shopping here.
The international Green Map system, which aims to help direct communities to a sustainable future, has consulted many businesses on Ilha Grande. Its mission is to provide a historical document of the changing economic and cultural landscape on the island, orient tourism towards sustainable and culturally sensitive business, to encourage awareness of the ecological processes and engage with local people with resources provided by a network of educational professionals.