Responsible Tourism

In-depth knowledge and a close working relationship with local and international conservation groups relevant to our destinations help us to underline our responsible attitude towards tourism.

Travel offers some of life’s most memorable experiences and it can also bring tremendous good to the world. We believe Responsible Tourism is about finding the right balance between minimising our impact on the environment while never losing the ability to open minds through new experiences and interaction with cultures different from our own. It’s also important to remember the economic value of tourism, and how it can support local livelihoods, sustainable development and conservation.

One way to take responsibility for our travel is to make each journey count to the full – fly less frequently, stay longer and do more. Of course words are cheap and have to be backed up by action and we therefore feel it is appropriate to put a proportion of the money we derive from selling you a holiday back into preserving our world.

Over the years, Discover the World has raised significant sums of money for organisations such as the World Wide Fund for Nature (WWF), the Whale and Dolphin Conservation Society and the Born Free Foundation, doing our little bit to support causes that tackle some of the most pressing issues facing our planet. We have also contributed to the Scott Polar Research Institute (SPRI) and the Iceland Nature Conservation Association (INCA).

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Find out about some of the projects we support:

Iceland Nature Conservation Association

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Having operated the very first whale watching trips in Iceland back in 1993, whaling is an issue we do not take lightly. In our campaign to end whaling in Iceland we support the Iceland Nature Conservation Association (INCA). Established in 1997, INCA is a conservation NGO with the primary objective of conserving and protecting the wilderness of Iceland. In 2007, Árni Finnsson, chair of INCA’s board, was awarded the Animal Action Award, for his role in whale conservation.

The Husavik Whale Museum

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Discover the World is also proud to have donated significant funds to developing The Husavik Whale Museum in North Iceland. This organisation is also at the forefront of the fight against whaling. We would encourage all our clients to take at least one whale watching trip when visiting the country and visiting the Whale Museum in Husavik if you are in the area.

South Georgia Heritage Trust

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We are proud benefactors of the South Georgia Heritage Trust, which has worked tirelessly to rid the islands of rats and other non-native rodents. In 2018, the charity reported, “World’s largest rodent eradication project a success: The UK Overseas Territory of South Georgia is officially declared free of rodents for the first time since humans arrived on the island over 200 years ago”. This hugely important project ensures the protection and survival of the fragile wildlife and ecosystems of this sub-Antarctic island – not only saving native birds from extinctions, but increasing by millions the numbers of endangered seabirdas that breed there.

The AfriCat Foundation

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Discover the World is proud to support the AfriCat Foundation and sponsor a cheetah called Dune. Click here to read Dune’s story. The AfriCat Foundation is a non profit organisation, founded in the early 90s to ensure the long-term survival of Namibia’s predators in their natural habitat. More than 1000 predators have been saved since its inception and over 80 percent of these have been released back into the wild. Best known for its work with cheetahs, AfriCat also tackles the plight of leopards, lions, hyenas and wild dogs. Orphaned or injured animals are cared for in the its Carnivore Care Centre before being rehabilitated to the wild or released in the 200 square kilometre Okonjima Nature Reserve.

Polar voyages

The polar regions have long inspired fascination and awe, from intrepid early explorers to modern day travellers in search of some of the world’s most beautiful and remote landscapes. Rather than having a negative impact on the environment, we believe that responsible tourism to Antarctica and the Arctic can help to raise awareness of the issues facing our planet. Visitors come away with an enhanced sense of the value of the natural world and become more aware in everyday life of ways to help preserve this legacy.

Discover the World is committed to working with leading travel partners in the conservation of the delicate Polar Regions. We only work with IAATO or AECO accredited voyage operators.

IAATO is the International Association of Antarctica Tour Operators, a member organisation founded in 1991 to advocate, promote and practice safe and environmentally responsible private-sector travel to the Antarctic. IAATO’s focus on protection, management and education promotes a greater worldwide understanding and protection of the Antarctic with the goal of leaving it as pristine and majestic for future generations as it is today. Discover the World is proud to support IAATO’s commitment to protecting the region.

AECO is the Association of Arctic Expedition Cruise Operators, an international association dedicated to managing responsible, environmentally friendly and safe tourism in the Arctic and striving to set the highest possible operating standards. AECO’s key objective is to initiate and support measures that are designed to ensure that cruise tourism in the Arctic is carried out with the utmost consideration for the natural environment, local cultures, cultural remains, as well as the challenging safety hazards at sea and on land.

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Scott Polar Research Institute

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Part of the University of Cambridge, SPRI was formed in 1920 as a memorial to Captain Scott and his colleagues and is now a well-known centre for polar research investigating environmental and social issues relating to the Arctic and Antarctic. The Friends of SPRI offer practical and financial support to the Institute.

Antarctic Heritage Trust

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Preserving the heritage of human endeavour in the Antarctic is the purpose of this coalition between trusts in the UK and New Zealand. The principle aim of the UKAHT is to conserve Britain’s history of exploration and scientific research in Antarctica and support the New Zealand trust in conservation of the historic huts in the Ross Sea region, including those used by Scott and Shackleton. The Trust also operates the historic base, post office and gift shop at Port Lockroy.

Ozondjou Trails Elephant Conservation

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A unique opportunity to experience the life of an elephant conservationist, we can arrange for you to track Namibia’s desert-adapted elephants with the Elephant Human Relations Aid (EHRA) team. Ozondjou is the Herero word for elephants and this iconic animal is the focus of a new camp located close to the EHRA’s basecamp. Your stay will not only benefit EHRA financially, but a portion of the turnover goes to local farmers who are essential partners in the conservation of these desert giants.

Pack for a Purpose

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If you would like to take some supplies to Africa with you to help local communities, Pack for a Purpose conects travellers with local projects, such as a school in need of notepads and pencils or a health clinic requiring medical supplies. You can leave the supplies with a company, often a hotel, and they will distribute it for you. Click here for a list of all the projects you can help support in Namibia. Several of them are hotels that we recommend, such as Doro Nawas and Damaraland Camp.