North and Central America overland tour

Responsible Travel, Travel Team

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Date
Price
Basis
31 Jul 2019
£7000
excluding flights
Full
 
24 Mar 2020
£7060
excluding flights
5 spaces left
Click here to enquire about or book the 24 Mar 2020 departure
22 Jul 2020
£7060
excluding flights
Available
Click here to enquire about or book the 22 Jul 2020 departure
03 Apr 2021
£7215
excluding flights
Available
Click here to enquire about or book the 03 Apr 2021 departure
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Accepted
Vacation type

Overlanding

If you’re looking for adventure, an opportunity to travel with like-minded travelers and to get truly off the beaten track then this an overlanding trip is for you! We will sometimes be covering long distances over a period of a few days but will then most often be camped up for a few days with opportunities for adventure activities, visiting local communities, time in a town or city to chill out or wildlife viewing experiences. The roads are sometimes bumpy and you need to expect the unexpected! This type of travel is through regions where things can change and experiences are more important than luxury – borders sometimes close and there may not always be hot water in the showers! You will often be camping out under the stars, sometimes out in the bush and on campsites. Often an element of your tour includes small locally-run hostels and guest houses. The trips are really participative so you will be involved shopping for food in local markets, cooking for your group (on a rota system), collecting water and setting up camp. If you’re not confident about doing any of these things beforehand, don’t worry our crew are there to help you and you’ll be good at it by the time you finish!

You will be traveling on one of our own purpose built overlanding vehicles with up to 24 travelers, many of whom will be traveling on their own. It is a great way for solo travelers to travel. Our vehicles are fully equipped with tents and cooking equipment, tanks with drinking water, charging facilities and designed for great all-round viewing, with comfortable, sociable seating. You will be accompanied on your trip by a Driver and Tour Leader and, depending on your trip, we often use local guides at sites of specific interest for more detailed information.

This type of travel will provide you with a plethora of memories and stories to tell, new-found traveling companions and friends and a well-exercised spirit of adventure!

Responsible tourism

Responsible tourism: North and Central America overland tour

Environment

We are dedicated to minimising the effects our trips have on the environment, and are committed to ensuring that we have a positive impact on the local communities we travel through.

On this epic trip through Belize, Canada, Costa Rica, El Salvador, Guatemala, Honduras, Mexico, Nicaragua, Panama and the USA, we will be traveling overland, using a combination of private bus and boat, thus minimising carbon-emissions. Going overland (by car and on foot for excursions) means you get to experience physically crossing the borders between countries as well as explore places which are off the beaten track.

We have a strict set of rules regarding wildlife-spotting, for example when in the Kenai Fjords and Denali National Parks. In order to minimise the impact of our presence on the wildlife and ecosystem of the areas where we travel, we explicitly forbid any involvement in activities that harm or exploit animals, and advise our crew in specific activities to avoid in this regard.
All of our vehicles conform to UK emission controls when they leave the UK and are regularly serviced and maintained in established, locally-owned workshops ensuring that they run as efficiently as possible and our economic returns to a country reach beyond tourism. Waste products such as oils and tyres are often reused several times after we have finished with them, as we pass them on to local people.

All trucks carry a 350-litre water tank, providing drinking water for the group and minimising the need to purchase bottled water. Rather than using plastic bags when shopping for food, we also provide reusable longer lasting bags; we bury our bio-degradable waste or give it to local people to feed livestock; and for cooking we generally use gas instead of wood, a cleaner fuel which leaves natural resources for local people. Passengers and crew are encouraged to use rechargeable batteries for items such as cameras, which can be charged from mains supplies or on our trucks as we travel.

In the office and as a company: We are committed to trying to reduce, re-use and recycle as much as is possible: we reduce what we print by using email and online media for the majority of our communication; any necessary print is always 2-sided and all paper products (in addition to plastics, glass, cardboard, oils and metal) are recycled. We minimise our energy consumption in whatever way we can (e.g. using energy efficient light bulbs and minimising water usage with reduced water cisterns in the bathroom for example).

We are committed to promoting human rights within our sphere of influence – this means trying to ensure that everybody involved with us are treated with fairness and respect, including our office staff, crew, local guides and suppliers, as well as all the other stakeholders.

We are also involved with a variety of community projects in key destinations as we visit. Our involvement with these projects is a long-term commitment, allowing us and our passengers to participate directly in delivering real practical benefits to the communities we travel through on the ground. The projects are not tourist initiatives, but a way of employing tourism to generate funding and support and facilitate community interaction. For example, in San Andres Itzapa, we spend one night at the community center of Manos Amigas, run by the Italian NGO 'Mani Amiche' in support of local women who have been abandoned and abused, and who are staying in the center with their children, and in Suchitoto we at the Centro Arte Para La Paz community center, which runs programs for the local communities to build cultural identity and unity.

Community

We believe that local culture and communities must be an integral part of our trips. We recognise that we are guests of the local communities we travel through and strive to make these communities into our partners.

Wherever we are in the world, we prefer to use smaller locally-owned businesses, ensuring that local communities gain a direct economic benefit from our business, for example, we use small locally owned hotels, campsites and activity providers wherever possible.

We use local guides and operators throughout the trip; for example, in Kennicott, Dawson, Tequila, Suchitoto, Monteverde Cloud Forest National Reserve, and the Manuel Antonio and Cerro Verde National Parks, and at the ruined Zapotec city of Monte Alban and the Mayan ruins at Yaxchilán, Palenque, Chichen Itza, Tikal, and Copán, we use responsible local operators that provide training and employment to many local people as guides, providing them with stable employment in the tourism industry.

We also feel it is important for our guests to immerse themselves in the culture of their host country and we ensure that we weave experiences that will facilitate this into our itineraries. For example, we visit local markets along the way, and in the Monument Valley Tribal Park we learn about the local Navajo culture.

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