Green and Philanthropic Travel Organizations

BlogHer Original Post

Lots of sustainable/green/philanthropic news in my mailbox over the past few weeks. Note that these are organizations that arrange trips. I'm not endorsing any of these - but I do think that the travel model is an interesting one. Stay tuned, I'll be talking with providers about what makes them special and how to pick an organization when you want a sustainable/green/philanthropic focus to your travels.

Here are a few bites:

Elevate Destinations is a Cambridge, Massachusetts-based sustainable travel company that designs tours that help participants gain a better understanding of the environmental, socio-cultural and economic needs of the places they visit. This summer the travel company has organized a 10-day donor safari in Kenya for KickStart International, a 7-day journey to Kenya and Uganda for Direct Relief International, and a 10-day tour of Ethiopia for WaterPartners International.--From Elevate Destinations, a philanthropic travel organization.

Once again, San Juan Marriott Resort is leading the way in eco-friendly initiatives with the introduction of a climate friendly travel program. The San Juan Marriott has joined forces with Sustainable Travel International (STI) on its pioneering TravelGreen™ program, which will allow them to offer carbon neutral accommodations – the first hotel in Puerto Rico, and the Caribbean, to do so. Carbon neutral means the point at which greenhouse gas emissions have been identified, measured, reduced where possible, and 100% of the remaining emissions have been offset through high quality renewable energy or energy efficiency projects.--From Sustainable Travel International (I inteviewed STI's Brian Mullis here.)

Using Africa as an example, a day in the itinerary of an Exquisite Safaris trip could go something like this: early morning game reserve tour; late morning spa treatment; and then an afternoon visit to a sub Saharan township, where individuals like Kew may be coordinating the implementation of banana trees to create a source of economic stability.

In the evening, travelers return to their quarters, such as a private lodge or mobile camp. They enjoy a gourmet meal under a canopy of stars and then fall asleep in the comfort of a deluxe tent or cottage, complete with en suite bathroom, hot running water, electricity, and, maybe, a plunge pool built in to the veranda deck.--From Exquisite Safaris

And, I met the folks from Seattle's Crooked Trails at our neighborhood street fair last weekend.

We work in conjunction with indigenous people around the world facilitating cultural exchanges that allow visitors and hosts opportunities to share in each other's lives.

During our exchanges, we enter our host's community with openness and respect and with a willingness to ask questions, to listen and to offer friendship. By listening to their stories and partaking in their daily lives and activities we honor their knowledge of place, and of a life well lived.

Pam blogs about travel and other adventures at Nerd's Eye View.

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