Ladakh and Kashmir tour, The Hemis festival

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Date
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21 Jun 2018
2399
excluding flights
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Responsible tourism

Responsible tourism: Ladakh and Kashmir tour, The Hemis festival

Environment

On this tour clients travel to some remote regions of India including Ladakh, and through some beautiful natural scenery, including the high altitude desert of the Nubra Valley. When traveling in these areas we make a point of ensuring that we leave no permanent trace of our stay behind, taking all rubbish with us to protect these valuable areas. This is also stressed when visiting the sacred 'Hidden Lake', to ensure any negative impacts are minimized.

We visit several monasteries and on this tour, which attract a number of tourists every day. The entrance fees paid to see these buildings go towards conserving and protecting these attractions so they can continue to be visited by incoming tourists.

Where appropriate and feasible we will always incorporate walking tours of cities rather than being reliant on private transportation - not only reducing our carbon footprint but we believe leading to a more enjoyable and intimate experience for our clients. Furthermore, all vehicles used on the tour have low carbon emissions. This is particularly important in the regions of Ladakh and Kashmir as air pollution and carbon dioxide emissions have increased in recent years, and we work closely with our local suppliers to highlight best practice in terms of environmental issues.

We only employ local staff and unlike many operators we believe that to send a foreign Tour Leader along to accompany your trip is an unnecessary burden on your wallet and our carbon footprint. We believe that locals know best. Our local operators only use locally owned accommodation. This means your money stays in the area to benefit the local community. When possible we use local transport, (i.e. rail or bus) and we always use local restaurants, markets and shops. In doing this your travels are supporting and encouraging the development of local services.

Our groups average only six clients, and many tours operate on a private basis with just two travelers. This has much less impact when traveling through rural areas, reducing our environmental and social affects. Finally to emphasis our commitment to Responsible Tourism all clients will receive a copy of our Travelers Code of Conduct with their travel documents.

Community

This tour is based around the Hemis Festival; a highly religious festival that is very important to the local people. Our guides will brief clients on the appropriate behaviour and interactions when attending the festival as to not disturb the festival but allow clients to have a more enriched experience.

Furthermore, by attending the festival we are putting valuable money into the local economy so the local villages benefit from tourists. This also encourages social interaction between the locals and tourists, promoting healthy and long-lasting relationships. We wan to come to an area as friends, promoting the sustainable use of tourism.

We only work with operators who are as committed as we are to putting something back into the communities we visit. This may include giving a percentage of the profits from each tour to a foundation to help street children or local conservation projects. Furthermore, in order to allow our clients to make an informed decision on where a greater proportion of their money should be spent, we avoid including pre-paid full board meals where possible. Local restaurants and cafes then benefit. If meals are included, we use small, locally owned restaurants so the local community will benefit.

All of our trips include visits to local markets, craft shops and fairs. As well as being good for the local economy this gives travelers to the country a real feel for the life and culture of this remote area of India. Clients also have the opportunity to purchase local souvenirs, ensuring the money is kept within the local community.

We only employ local staff and unlike many operators we believe that to send a foreign Tour Leader along to accompany your trip is an unnecessary burden on your wallet and our carbon footprint. We believe that locals know best. Our local operators only use locally owned accommodation. This means your money stays in the area to benefit the local community. When possible we use local transport, (i.e. rail or bus) and we always use local restaurants, markets and shops and encourage our clients to interact both financially and socially with the communities that they are passing through. In doing this your travels are supporting and encouraging the development of local services

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