Thursday, May 1, 2008

Volunteer Travels - Responsible Travel Ideas

I just returned from visiting my friends in Japan - and I already started thinking about my next trip.

A friend of mine jokingly reprimanded me for being self-indulgent with my travels, right after Japan - and I'm planning to go to Thailand?! He said.

Then I thought - "Maybe he's right, maybe I am being a tad self-indulgent."

Next thing I know - I started looking into different sorts of travels - not simply for sight-seeing and pleasure, but something more...

Then discovered Lonely Planet's "Volunteering Travels", also tagged as responsible travels. They provide fantastic resources for people to travel to different parts of the world and be more in touch with the locals and real life - not just cocoon ourselves in the resorts and marinate our livers in alchohol.

I really like the Scotland retreat where travelers get to help establish stands of aspen trees to help provide the habitat for a range of rare insects, mosses, lichens and fungi that are dependent on these trees.

But I'm really eyeing the sessions where volunteers can help restore an old village in the French Providence. Cause that just sounds like fun.

What kind of responsible travel ideas do you have? Do share!

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I found more incredible Eco-tours in Asia, each one sounds like quite an adventure on its own:

1. Bangladesh ecotour http://www.bangladeshecotours.com/ (home stays with local tribes) ranging from beach and offshore to hill tract and tribal and rainforest to suburbia. US$75 - $120 per person per day. +88-001-8931-8345
2. Borneo Eco Tour @ http://www.borneoecotours.com/ - based in Sabah, Malaysia, offering nature-based tours with botanical and bird watching, jungle trekking and journeys through tropical rainforest. Vary from 3 hours to 14 days, operating a 20-room eco-lodge supported by sustainable energy sources like rainwater and solar energy. +60-88-438300
3. Kyrgyzstan in Central Asia - trekking, horseback riding, bicyle riding in mountainous setting. http://www.ecotour.kg/
4. Kerala, Kashmir, or Goa of India on preserving the natural resources http://www.natureboundindia.com/
5. PaddleAsia specilizes eco-tours at Phuket, Thailand http://www.thaiwildorchids.com/ involving paddling a canoe to experience the waters, islands and hidden lagoons at Phang Nga Bay and Khao Sak national Park. Cycling, mountain biking, wild-ilfe-spotting, mountain climbing and rafting activities available.
6. Rainforest retreat is located in Karnataka, India's rainforest - visit the tropical evergreen forest, an organic spice plantation and trip to sacred Cavery River. Customized tours are also available. http://www.rainforesttours.com/
7. Tree Top Jungle Lodge in Weliara, Sri Lanka http://www.treetopsjunglelodge.com/, offers true jungle experience with treehouses and wood huts blend into the forest - home to wild elephants and 161 bird species. Travelers will bathe in freshwater well, with no electricity and all meals are cooked on wood fire in native style.

Think you can be that green?

5 comments:

Fruitful Vine said...

No ideas just wanted to say that I love the new header. It looks great!
Jenn

Curiosity Killer said...
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Curiosity Killer said...
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simon said...

Maybe check out my ezine for some more ideas - www.andamanadventures.com/ezine.shtml ?

Koh Lao Liang is in there, it's the greenest ecoresort I've ever come across

C. K. said...

Thanks, Fruitful Vine. :)

Thanks, Simon! That's a really cool website. I'll totally look into it when I plan my next trip!