New sustainable travel experiences in Belize, Indonesia, Kenya, Mexico, and Nepal have been announced by G Adventures for 2017, empowering travellers to support local communities while offering them a truly local experience.
The five new social enterprise projects include a guided cycle tour on Caye Caulker, Belize, local meals at restaurants in Playa del Carmen, Mexico and Nakuru, Kenya, and homestays near Chitwan National Park in Nepal, and inside Bromo-Tengger-Semeru National Park in Java, Indonesia.
The initiatives, known as G Adventures for Good projects, aim to support women, indigenous communities and at-risk youth, while offering travellers immersive experiences in culturally unique parts of the world. The new additions mean more than half of G Adventures travellers will visit a G Adventures for Good project during their trip.
G Adventures’ Australia and New Zealand Managing Director, Adrian Piotto explained that travel and tourism can be a force for good in developing nations where tourism is often one of the most important means of income.
“We know Australian and New Zealand travellers are increasingly aware of ensuring they make a positive impact on the places they travel to. Our new projects are perfect examples of the type of change and initiative that our world needs.”
The United Nations has designated 2017 its Year of Sustainable Tourism Development and G Adventures believes with increased awareness tourism can be the biggest means of wealth distribution in the world.
The five new experiences join G Adventures’ list of 31 projects around the world, and are part of its commitment to launch 50 new projects by 2020 – 10 per year – also known at its “50 in 5” campaign. More details on the projects, and how travellers can experience them follow:
- Bike with Purpose – Caye Caulker, Belize – On Caye Caulker, children often drop out from school by age 12. G Adventures sends 4,000 travellers a year to the island, and by taking a Bike with Purpose tour, travellers give students from the Ocean Academy (the island’s only community high school) the opportunity to practice their guiding skills while offering travellers a unique experience. The two-hour ride embraces the island’s motto of ‘go slow’ and highlights the area’s idyllic nature, history, and culture. A 12-day Mayan Encounter trip is priced from $1,349pp* travelling from Antigua to Caye Caulker.
- El Hongo Community Restaurant – Playa del Carmen, Mexico – Playa del Carmen has become built-up by mass tourism and this project takes travellers to see ‘the other side’ with a home-style meal at volunteer-run restaurant El Hongo. G Adventures groups enjoy a meal at the restaurant and tour the neighbourhood, learning about the vivid street art the kids created with support from this social enterprise. A 10-day Yucatan Panorama trip is priced from $1,569pp travelling from Cancun to Playa del Carmen.
- Unbutu Training Cafe – Maai Mahiu, Kenya – This training café empowers communities and creates jobs along the only route to the Maasai Mara. Travellers enjoy a delicious lunch sourced from local organic farms. The café also provides a market for marginalised women to learn to make, and sell handicrafts as meaningful souvenirs. Proceeds from the businesses help support the nearby Ubuntu School, which serves children with special needs by providing therapy, education, and vocational training. An eight-day National Geographic Journeys with G Adventures Keya Safari Experience is priced from $3,799pp travelling from Nairobi return.
- Barauli Community Homestay – Chitwan National Park, Nepal – G Adventures travellers visit the Barauli Community Homestay while they are in the Chitwan region, learning about the traditions of the Tharu people. Over 1,500 travellers visit this region annually, bringing sustainable tourism revenue for the community. The homestay project aims to diversify the income of women in the region. A 15-day Delhi to Kathmandu Adventure is priced from $1,919pp travelling from Delhi to Kathmandu.
- Tengger Community Homestay – Java, Indonesia – G Adventures travellers to stay in a traditional home inside Bromo-Tengger-Semeru National Park and enjoy day trips as part of a community developed hike. The new homestays will be fully owned and managed by the Tengger tribe and allow for older residents to diversify their income, while creating jobs for the next generation. Select tours that will empower travellers to contribute to this community’s well-being include the nine-day Best of Java, priced from $1,299pp and travelling from Jakarta to Sanur.
For more information or to book, visit www.gadventures.com.au or call 1300 180 969.