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Travel Abroad

Responsible Travel in Asia

Responsible Travel in Asia

 Featured Articles on Responsible Travel in Asia

An Elephant Escape: South India Elephant Sanctuaries Double as Eco-Lodges and Learning Centers by Deborah McLaren
Ethical Travel in China
The Rebirth of an Island: Thailand ’s Koh Phi Phi Dive Camp Is Open for Business 
Conserving Elephants in Thailand 
Wildlife Volunteering in Thailand: Work with Elephants
Ecotourism in a Southern Province of Thailand: Libong's Bounty by Victor Paul Borg
Travel to Bhutan: The Land of the Thunder Dragon
Ecotourism in a Bhutan Village
Beyond Ecotourism in the High Himalyas with Crooked Trails
Harvest the Himalayas with the Ladakh Farm Project, an Ecological Program
Wwoofing in Japan: Cultural Immersion Through Volunteer Vacations
Unspoiled Laos: With Barriers Down, Responsible Travelers Are Warmly Welcome
How to Visit Burma: Why Traveling to the Country May be in the People's Best Interest

Global Vision International
GVI has a huge range of volunteer programs to suit the environmentally conscious traveler who seeks adventure and new experiences in Asia. Be it teaching English in Laos or Thailand, or trekking amongst the highest peaks in the world in Nepal, you will find a range of exciting opportunities with GVI. Visit our website for further details!

Resonsible Volunteering in Asia with GVI Contact in USA: 888-653-6028
Website: www.gviusa.com
Featured

China Giant Panda Tours
Volunteer Tour with GPS Tracking to Trace Wild Wolong Pandas
Offers Sichuan and Chengdu Wolong giant panda trips, adventure tours in the wild, tracking and tracing the wild panda using GPS, photography in the ancient forests, and volunteer work in Wolong.

Contact: service@chinagiantpanda.com, www.chinagiantpanda.com

ECoSwiss (Europe Conservation Switzerland)
Mergui Archipelago Biodiversity Research program (MABR) run by ECoSwiss aims to promote nature conservation in the Mergui Archipelago, Myanmar (Burma).
Our program consists in research expeditions onboard our catamaran led by a competent scientist or coordinator and assisted by enthusiastic eco-volunteers. Each expedition focuses on a specific topic varying from coral reef surveys, forest trekking, birdwatching, mapping, etc.

Contact: info@ecoswiss.org, www.ecoswiss.org

Global Exchange
Responsible Travel in India
Two annual Global Exchange tours to India offer a look at the legacy of Mahatma Gandhi (led by his grandson, Dr. Arun Gandhi), and at the truly unique "Third World Model" of the state of Kerala. Our tours focus on people-based models of development, environmentally sustainable growth, gender and globalization. We also offer a unique volunteer opportunity with an Indian NGO, Seva Mandir, in the city of Udaipur, state of Rajasthan, northern India.
Responsible Travel in Vietnam
Global Exchange offers a unique look at this remarkably beautiful and dynamic nation. Neither a “tour of the battle fields,” nor a “shopping and eating spree in the beauty spots,” those who join the tour will see the real Viet Nam as she is today. A mix of socialism and capitalism, a country still healing the war wounds, and an energetic and proud society eager to re-enter the world’s stage. Our tours are led by an International Relations officer of the Viet Nam Women’s Union - this gives our participants an insider’s connection to both urban and rural communities.

Visit: realitytours@globalexchange.org, www.globalexchange.org/tours

Greenway (Cultural Exchange & International Living)
Mid- and long-term volunteering in fields of teaching, eco-tourism, etc.

Visit: www.greenwaythailand.org

Grass Routes Pvt Ltd
Cultural Immersion Travel and Spiritual Journeys in India
Orissa Highlights
Classic, timeless Orissa, thriving traditional cultures topped with tranquil natural beauty. Stand in awe at India’s earliest and most majestic temples. Delight in medieval towns where the past is very much part of today. Traverse palm fringed paddies and tap into the simple pleasures of rural India.
Art & Culture in Orissa
Unlock ancient art and craft traditions. Meet the people behind the products and discover what it means to paint mythology, dance legends and weave symbolic stories. Behold the irrepressible man-made marvels of ancient India’s earliest temples at Konark. Discover the source of a community’s culture and celebrate the ancient, living traditions that miraculously continue to thrive.
Festival of Faith (Rath Yatra) in Orissa
A riot of colour, spectacle and sweat; the festival of faith is one of India’s most electrifying festivals. Attracting thousands of pilgrims every year the elaborate procession continues a tradition that dates beyond centuries. Infused with ritual, devotion and fervour close to mayhem, the festival of faith is a unique experience for the spirited traveller!
Nature & Wildlife
Nature’s paradise revealed. Step into forests echoing the trumpet of elephants, drift along perennial rivers, walk along ancient tracks and meet communities that abide seasons of change and systems of thought aligned with the natural world. Traverse verdant jungles, majestic mangroves and wandering waterways. Cruise the vast tranquil waters of Asia’s largest estuarine lagoon, sample succulent seafood and camp under the stars.
Orissa Odyssey
An epic adventure through timeless India; stretching from the bustle of India’s renown cultural capital Kolkata, through vast tracts of pastoral plains and palm-fringed paddies, to dense mangroves and tranquil boat rides. From natural wonders to the irrepressible man-made marvels of ancient India’s earliest temples. Join festive weekly markets where indigenous cultures converge and tap into the simple pleasures of village life in timeless rural India.
Tribal trails
A tribute to the original spirit of discovery! An unforgettable journey crammed with quintessential India experiences; from train journeys whistling round hills to prehistoric cave temples and lively local markets. Following in the footsteps of India’s ‘original people’ tracking indigenous heritage and ancient ways of living. An adventure of a lifetime bursting with new experiences and amazing discoveries.

Contact: info@grassroutesjourneys.com, www.grassroutesjourneys.com

Himalayan Connections
Mindful Travel in the Himalaya of Northeast India

Join a Mindful Travel program in the heart of the Himalaya, surrounded by rugged and lofty peaks, monasteries and chanting monks, bustling markets and sacred groves, delightful birds and blossoming flowers, and a collage of contemporary and indigenous cultures. Mindful travel is a way to engage the world as fully as possible, by cultivating a mindful awareness of oneself and others, and using that mindfulness as a springboard for compassionate and caring exchange. Instruction provided.

Contact: info@himalayanconnections.org, himalayanconnections.org

Himalayan High Treks’ Enlightened Travel to Tibet, Bhutan, Ladakh, Sikkim, Nepal and India
Himalayan High Treks offers small-group treks throughout the Himalaya: Tibet, Bhutan, Ladakh, Sikkim, Nepal and India. We draw up 18 years experience offering personalized services and full itineraries for unforgettable Himalayan travel. We offer organized treks to prime locations (average 6 participants) or custom itineraries and arrangements for independent travelers.

Contact: info@hightreks.com, www.hightreks.com

Himalayan Light Foundation – Solar Sisters Program
The HLF Solar Sisters Program offers international volunteers an incredible opportunity to travel to some of the most remote and majestic locations in the world and stay with an indigenous community while installing solar energy lighting systems in schools, monasteries, health centers, and community buildings in Nepal, Bhutan and Sri Lanka. HLF is a Nepal-based NGO whose mission is to link human rights and environmental protection through the use of and education about sustainable, renewable energy systems in remote and impoverished areas in Southeast Asia.


Contact: US: Dawn Peebles, dawnp@hlf.org.np, Nepal: Sapana Shakya, sapanas@hlf.org.np, Web: www.hlf.org.np.

Ibike Tours / International Bicycle Fund
Ibike Vietnam Cultural Collage
Small group, immersion, bicycle tours, designed to get you out of the box, enrich your life and introduce you to the rich diversity of the people, their culture and the environment of the area. IBF programs are designed to provide participants an opportunity to learn more about the world at a person-to-person level not usually available to tourist. Itineraries highlight the cultural, historical, economic and physical diversity of the area. Features include: introduction to the religious, ethnic, cultural, ecological and climatic diversity of Vietnam.
Ibike South Korea Sojourn
Visit historic cities, villages temples and rural areas to gain a better understanding the lifestyles, history, culture and economics of the people of South Korea.

Contact: ibike@ibike.org, www.ibike.org/ibike

International Society for Ecology and Culture
Formerly called the Ladakh Farm Project. Participants are placed on a Ladakhi farm with a Ladakhi family for one month in the summer to help with farm and household work and to take part in family life. Educational workshops included.

Contact: c/o ISEC (International Society for Ecology and Culture), P.O. Box 9475, Berkeley, CA 94709; 510-548-4915; infousa@isec.org.uk; www.localfutures.org.

Lao National Tourism Administration
Ecotourism Laos
This site showcases ecotourism program and projects recognized by the Lao National Tourism Administration

Visit: www.ecotourismlaos.com

Mandore Guest House in India: Homestay and Volunteer Work
We believe that tourism should be about interacting with other cultures, not exploiting them. This could mean more working and travelling with local people on public buses rather than looking at them through the window of a private tour bus. We bring people together from different regions, states, countries, cultural heritage, social and political backgrounds. We do have a priority and positive role in preserving and protecting our cultural and natural resources which also meets the need for ecologically sensitive travel.

Visit www.mandore.com

The Mirror Art Foundation
Cultural Experience Eco-Tour
Treks, volunteer community service, and study tours can be arranged to local hilltribe villages, including homestay with village families.

Visit: www.mirrorartgroup.org

Sacred Earth Trust
Sustainability Project in the Heart of Buddhist India
Sacred Earth Trust is a registered non-Governmental organization (NGO) working for environmental sustainability in one India's most historic centers — Bodh Gaya. Located in the central Indian state of Bihar, Bodh Gaya is the place where the Buddha attained enlightenment some 2,500 years ago. Sacred Earth Trust is looking for volunteers to help design and implement projects. Volunteers live in Bodh Gaya and have the unique opportunity to work with community members on sustainable agriculture, youth and women's environmental leadership, and community-based waste management. For more information please see our website.

Contact: volunteer@sacredearthtrust.org, www.sacredearthtrust.org

Spirit in Nature Ecotours
Travel with time for reflection. Indian Himalaya, South India, Bali and Lombok, Australia, New Zealand. Explores wildlife, indigenous cultures, and traditions of sacred land. Travel with Dr. John Broomfield, author of the thought-provoking book Other Ways of Knowing: Recharting Our Future with Ageless Wisdom.

Contact: Twainhart Hill, Tour Registrar, The Eagle Connection, 649 Juniper St., Elko, NV 89801; 775-738-6884, fax 775-738-0463; eagle@ts.co.nz, www.eagle-tours.co.nz.

Thailand Hilltribe Holidays Cultural & Authentic Tours — Northern Thailand
Thailand Hilltribe Holidays offers cultural and authentic tours around Northern Thailand, in a non-tourist setting. Specialising in trips to hilltribe villages and homestays - based on responsible and sustainable travel principles that aim to preserve the environment and allow locals to benefit directly from tourism. Offers small group travel and customized trips around your interests.

Contact: mja1906@hotmail.com, www.thailandhilltribeholidays.com

WWOOF International (Willing Workers on Organic Farms)
Many countries in Asia participate in this unique worldwide exchange organization. In return for volunteer help, WWOOF hosts offer food, accommodation and opportunities to learn about organic lifestyles. WWOOF organizations link people who want to volunteer on organic farms with people who are seeking volunteer help. Each country works slightly differently, but generally a very small membership fee is charged in exchange for a listing of available opportunities.

Visit: wwoofinternational.org

 

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