Responsible Travel

WHAT DOES RESPONSIBLE TRAVEL MEAN TO US?

We at Adventure Unbound believe that responsible travel demands constant dedication and innovation. Our responsible travel practices follow the highest criterion of environmental and cultural stewardship in the locations we operate.

Responsible travel puts into action practices which respect and protect the natural environments we visit as well as the sociocultural environment. Responsible travel also raises awareness of the impact travelers can have on the environment they visit and inspires others to become active advocates for further conservation efforts.

At Adventure Unbound, responsible travel means we aim to connect people in a sincere and personally meaningful way to each of the locations we visit.

 

MINIMIZING OUR FOOTPRINT  

We found all our travel practices on the core ethics of protecting and respecting the Earth in all of its unique beauty. In practice, this means we try to minimize our footprint through discriminating energy use and the principles of reduce, reuse, and recycle. We tailor these ethics into all of our practices, from our field operations into our office operations.

Check below to see a list of ways we make like bigfoot and leave no trace:

  • Many Adventure Unbound trips are largely human powered—exploring countries by foot, kayak, raft, or bike. When we travel by motor, we partner with local operators who use the most fuel-efficient vehicles available.
  • All our camping trips practice “Leave No Trace” procedures, and have since we began in 1979 (check out what “Leave No Trace” means to us here).
  • We respect wildlife and their habitats on all of our trips, making sure we don’t disrupt them or make them uncomfortable as we witness them in their habitats. For instance, motorized boats and white noise disrupt whales’ sonar communication, so we rely on kayaks.

 

CONNECTING PEOPLE TO PLACE

Responsible travel necessitates learning about and understanding the wildlife, ecosystem, and culture of the places we visit. We believe that having guides who can share the region’s natural and cultural history with our guests in a meaningful, relevant way enriches the travel experience and encourages further stewardship.

Over 75% of our USA-based travel guides are Certified Interpretive Guides through the National Association of Interpretation. All of our guides are dedicated to illuminating the natural history of the animals and plants we observe as a way to forge intellectual and emotional connections between people and the places we visit.  

 

GIVING BACK TO LOCAL COMMUNITIES

Responsible, sustainable travel involves supporting the local communities we visit as much as protecting the environment. At Adventure Unbound, we are genuinely invested in the people and culture of the places we travel, and we support the communities in a number of ways. 

Responsible Travel in Practice: Our Galápagos Story

We are highly active in the Galápagos, where sustainable tourism practices are at their most critical. Here’s how we support the Galápagos community:

  • As endorsed by the Galápagos National Park Service, we employ many local guides and fishermen to aid the transition to a tourism-based economy.
  • We visit and support the Pescado Azul Women’s Association, dedicated to increasing the quality of life of fishermen, their families and the Puerto Villamil community, on Isabella Island.
  • We financially supported the purchase of four-stroke engines for several of our local fishing boat operators.
  • Our land-based Galápagos tours invest a large percentage of our total trip revenue in the local Galápagos economy. Our commitment to international, small group trips means we use independent, locally owned restaurants, hotels, and transportation.  

Supporting Communities Global and Regional 

  • We hire local guides as a way to support the local economy.
  • We purchase supplies and services from many local businesses.
  • We donate more than $15,000 a year in goods and services to charities in Idaho, Washington, and Montana.
  • We run an annual “Raft for the Cure,” a practice started in 2008, which raises over $2,500 a year in support of our local Coeur d’Alene, Idaho chapter of Susan G. Komen for the Cure.
  • We began an annual “Raft to Remember” in 2009, a benefit tour for the Alzheimer’s Association and our local chapter that raises more than $1,000.

 

WE BELIEVE IN HIRING LOCAL  

Hiring local guides plays a significant role in the authenticity of our international and national adventures as our guides provide guests with an inside-perspective of the country and location visited. We carefully select each of our guides to ensure that they enrich your Adventure Unbound travel experience.

Furthermore, hiring local guides serves as an excellent opportunity to support the local economy and give back to their community.

Here’s how our guides give back to you as well:

  • All our international guides are certified guides, hold degrees in subjects related to natural history, and are bilingual.
  • Many of our guides, whether national or international, are local to the region visited—a position that gives insight and opens surprising doors to the local culture.