Conscious travel experiences are an essential part of travelling. As a traveller, we have a responsibility to be mindful of the people, planet and wildlife we interact with while exploring the world. If you’re looking for sustainable travel experiences, it’s worth doing a little research and sourcing the best ethical travel brands and experiences. To help you choose, we’ve developed new Contiki Cares experiences on trips around the world, backed by the TreadRight Foundation. So, here are 10 of the best Contiki trips to inspire conscious travellers just like you to travel the world…
10. New Zealand Off-Grid
Ready to get off the tourist trail? Unplug and head off grid with Contiki. New Zealand Off-Grid is a new South Pacific trip, where you’ll experience New Zealand like a local. From visiting a lakeside Marae to enjoying a traditional Māori performance, you’ll leave with a greater understanding of Māori customs. Plus, there’s unique dark sky accommodations, fresh farm-to-table meals and ethical wildlife visits to see parakeets, stingrays and kiwis all included in the trip that help you give back to the local area.
9. Italian Escape & Sicily
Ciao Italy! Conscious travel experiences throughout this beautiful country await on Italian Escape & Sicily trip. Visit the Italian countryside and learn about sustainable farming at a bio farm in Noto. Then head down to Palermo and support local businesses and the civil anti-mafia movement. You’ll even visit a sustainable lemon farm in the Amalfi Coast and sip limoncello under the lemon trees. If feels good to give back!
8. Portugal City & Surf
Portugal City & Surf is the perfect wellness trip for you to find your zen. Stay at a surf camp and relax on the beaches of Portugal. Spend you days practicing yoga at sunrise, paddleboarding or learning to surf. Luckily, you’ll get to dive deep into the Portuguese culture with local cooking classes to make pastel de nata. There’s also a conscious EatWith dinner with locals in Porto and a Cascais Street Art Tour, which feeds money back into the local neighbourhood creative scene.
7. East Africa Safari
Head to Africa to experience wildlife in their natural habitat and give back to the local area. If you visit between December and April, you’ll experience the great migration in the Serengeti! On the East Africa Safari trip, you’ll spend your days on game drive through National Parks in Kenya and Tanzania. You’ll also get closer to the wildlife in a responsible way with the Contiki Cares experiences on this trip. Think visiting an elephant orphanage sanctuary, dropping by an ethical giraffe centre and much more. To experience the people and culture of Africa, head over the traditional Maasai village and learn about the Shanga Community Project. You’ll leave Africa with a completely new perspective.
6. London to Berlin by Train
Skip the coach and travel by train. London to Berlin by Train is the perfect option for any conscious traveller. Trains are a responsible way to travel throughout Europe to get off the beaten path and see a different side of any country. There are also loads of Contiki Cares experiences on this trip – you can explore London on foot with Unseen Tours led by people who have lived on the streets of London. In Amsterdam, dine with locals on an EatWith dinner and end your trip in Berlin with a walking tour by a Syrian refugee with Refugee Voices.
5. Israel & Jordan Uncovered
Filled with Contiki Cares experiences, Israel & Jordan Uncovered is the perfect trip for any conscious adventurer. Stop at the Treadright-supported Iraq Al-Amir Women’s Cooperative Society and EatWith locals inside their homes in Tel Aviv. There’s also tons of history and archaeology you won’t want to miss out on. From visiting The World Holocaust Remembrance Centre to experiencing the UNESCO World Heritage Site, Petra, you’ll return home feeling more enlightened than ever.
4. Ecuador & Galapagos Island Hopper
If you LOVE nature and wildlife, head to South America pronto! Ecuador is rich with biodiversity, nature and wildlife. On Contiki’s Ecuador & Galapagos Island Hopper trip, you can visit a conscious turtle breeding centre, go snorkelling and see sea lions in the wild. You’ll also connect with the locals by visiting an Indigenous community village in Tena. Plus, there’s lots of adventure activities like paddleboarding, kayaking and biking that you can try.
3. Eastern Road
Eastern Europe is bursting with culture and history. Contiki’s Eastern Road takes you through Germany, Poland, Slovakia, Hungary, Austria Czech Republic. With so much history on this trip, you’ll visit the Berlin Wall, Auschwitz Concentration Camp, Hradčany Castle and Szechenyi Baths. Immerse yourself in the experiences like a classical Mozart and Strauss concert in Vienna or learning to make traditional pierogi in Krakow. It’s the full and conscious Eastern European adventure.
2. Fire & Ice
Iceland is one European country that’s known for its sustainability practices. With Contiki’s Fire & Ice, you’ll experience Iceland’s natural beauty. Connect with the earth through Contiki Cares experience of planting trees in Haukadalur Valley, a local reforestation program. Once you’ve worked up an appetite, try Icelandic farm-to-table regional meals and end your trip relaxing in geothermal pools made from sustainable energy in the Blue Lagoon.
1. Asian Adventure
Tons of conscious travel experiences await on Contiki’s Asian Adventure. This trip visits countries in South East Asia such as Thailand, Laos and Cambodia. Lucky for us, there is a Contiki Cares experience in every one of these countries. In Thailand, interact with rescue elephants at the Elephant Haven Sai Yok in Kanchanaburi. Stop by the COPE Visitor Centre in Vientiene, Laos to support people with mobility-related disabilities caused by landmine explosions. Finally, in Cambodia, enjoy dinner at Friends TREE Alliance Restaurant served by disadvantaged and former street children who are trained up in hospitality skills.
Choosing a trip with Contiki Cares experiences is just one way you can give back to the people, planet and wildlife we interact with while travelling around the world. Feeling inspired? These are just 10 of our faves from around the world. There are so many more conscious travel experiences on Contiki trips, it may be hard to narrow down to just one. Learn more about Contiki Cares and sustainable travel to discover which trip is right for you.