Green Steps…towards a local insight!
‘GREEN’ is to know before you go…
- Get a good guidebook, go on-line and learn about the local destination: lifestyle, culture, environment…
- Responsible tour operator… Choose a tour operator who cares about people and the environment. Check if they have a ‘responsible tourism’ policy. Is there any clear information about how people and nature benefit from their tours? Please don’t choose the cheapest tour!
- Engage with Local Issues… find out before you go… E.g. are their water shortages in your holiday destination? Ask your tour operator or travel agent what you can do to help.
- Essential language…“Hello, please, thank-you, nice to meet you, excuse me, delicious…” learn a few words before you arrive!
- Need to book? It can be difficult for communities to accommodate guests if they only know a day or two in advance. Please help by booking at least a week in advance.
‘STEPS’ is how you tread in the community…
- Sacred and special places…are highly important to local community members. Always listen to your local guide carefully in sacred sites, and please follow their advice. Be careful not to climb or touch any sacred objects.
- Take time… local life is lived by seasons, rather than seconds! It’s best to spend at least 3 or 4 days in the community, so you have time to get to know your hosts, and explore!
- Enjoy the differences… It’s the differences from home that you will remember… so join in, get involved and have fun!
- Photography… take time to talk to people before you take pictures, so that it’s a shared memory. Send a copy back to your new friends!
- Spread the benefits of tourism… by supporting local craftspeople, and small sellers…you also help their crafts and culture to shine on!
Don’t forget to put this in your bag!
- Many communities are still traditional. It’s always a good idea to pack some modest dress… long-sleeved shirts, long shorts / skirt;
- Bring a sarong for bathing in the community;
- Bring pictures of home to show your homestay family;
- Bring a sense of humour and open heart to live, learn and share local life!