Good Practice Guidelines for Susceptible Activities and Excursions

Responsible Travel in the framework of its sustainability policy makes public a series of good practices to ensure the least negative environmental and social impact when carrying out the different activities offered within our services. We appreciate that your presence contributes to the development of responsible tourism.

Code of Conduct for Wildlife Spotting and Visits to Protected Areas and National Parks

  • Do not feed wildlife.
  • Respect wildlife and their natural habitat. Keep no less than two meters distance from the animals so as not to affect their behavior.
  • Avoid consuming disposable goods, do not throw organic waste or any kind of waste until you find a place to throw it in, as they can significantly affect the development of the ecosystem in which it is located. Try to recycle or reuse all solid waste.
  • Respect the recommendations given by the park rangers and the entrance hours of each area.
  • Stay inside the trails and respect the signs. Do not destroy infrastructure.
  • Carry out campfires, camping and other activities only in the permitted zones of each area.
  • Special care is required during the breeding, molting or rearing season. Do not place yourself between two animals, especially between a mother and her young, some species are highly protective and may attack if they suspect their young are threatened or leave the young more vulnerable to predators.
  • Hunting of animals, entry with weapons and alcoholic beverages is strictly forbidden. It is also forbidden to damage the flora, take plants, animals, or geological remains. Check the list of permitted objects for entry to the corresponding Protected Area.
  • Avoid taking flash photography so as not to alter the normal behavior of wildlife. Filming, professional photographs for commercial purposes, and the use of drones require authorization from the corresponding Protected Area’s Management.
  • Do not support illegal trade of flora and fauna species.
  • Use environmentally friendly insect repellent, completely avoid aerosols. We recommend using cream-based repellents or other alternatives.

Code of Conduct for Visits to Indigenous and Traditional Communities

  • Research and gather information about the indigenous community before the trip. Understanding the history, culture, codes of conduct and the indigenous groups link to nature will also help you to appreciate their customs. You can do it by the hand of our travel advisors and on your own initiative.
  • Refuse nor request any activity related to the commercial sexual exploitation of minors or of any kind of exploitation.
  • Report any type of related irregularity.
  • Leave as small a footprint as possible. Preserve water, fauna and flora and ask the guide what can or cannot be done.
  • Buy only those pieces made by local indigenous artisans, since many indigenous groups do not have their intellectual property registered.
  • Avoid buying handicrafts made from endangered species. Irresponsible buying can drive a demand that could lead some species to extinction.
  • Do not take any objects from archaeological sites, as this could cause irreversible damage to cultural heritage assets associated with indigenous communities and their beliefs.
  • In areas managed by indigenous communities, enter only those places open to tourists. Some spaces or rituals have spiritual significance and are therefore considered sacred or may simply be off limits or unsafe for tourists.
  • Always ask permission before taking a photograph of indigenous people, significant places, or rituals. In some communities it is considered inappropriate to be photographed.
  • Ask for the consent of community members and the service of a local guide if you wish to participate in private spiritual ceremonies and rituals.
  • Ask lots of questions. Ask the tour operator, guide, lodging establishments and indigenous communities about their environmental practices and their commitment to protecting indigenous rights.
  • Asking questions helps create a demand for environmentalism and responsible tourism throughout the tourism sector.
  • Avoid giving money or gifts to children. This does not improve their future, as it makes them dependent on the charity of tourists. If you wish to show solidarity, talk to the guide or a community leader about how to contribute.
  • Remember that indigenous cultures are constantly evolving and changing, like any other culture, and be aware that they may not meet expectations of authenticity. A visit to a community should be understood first and foremost as a learning experience.

Code of Conduct for Visits to Cultural and Historical Sites

  • Refuse nor solicit any type of activity related to the commercial sexual exploitation of minors or of any kind of exploitation. Report any type of related irregularities.
  • Not to discriminate against the local population based on race, gender, beliefs, or any other reason.
  • Avoid using language or conducts that may be offensive or intimidating.
  • Avoid consuming disposable goods, do not dispose of waste until a suitable place is found, and try to recycle or reuse all solid waste.
  • When learning about the historical and cultural heritage, purchase local and sustainable handicraft products, avoiding counterfeits or those prohibited by local and international legislation.
  • Do not take or acquire cultural or heritage property as a souvenir of your trip.
  • Do not damage the heritage infrastructure, for example, do not scratch walls. Respect it and learn from it.
  • Respect the signaling, the distance agreed upon with the heritage or archaeological objects and the advice given by the guide or local representative.

Code of Conduct for Marine Activities

  • Do not step on coral. Always pay attention to your feet and fins, if always used.
  • Avoid stirring up sediment.
  • Do not touch or chase marine life.
  • Do not feed the fauna.
  • Do not throw garbage into the sea.
  • Do not buy handicrafts made from coral or marine life.
  • Do not support fishing for sharks or other animals protected by law.
  • No harpooning.
  • Do not anchor on coral reefs.
  • Do not collect marine life, dead or alive.
  • Do not wear gloves, as this encourages divers to touch or pick up corals or marine life.
  • Wear a lifejacket on the surface.
  • Use mooring buoys
  • Report environmental violations
  • Participate in conservation projects
  • If anyone in the group, or even the guide, does not respect these rules, correct them, and report them to the organizers.
  • Use “reef safe” sun protection, e.g., sunscreen marked as such or wear rash vests / similar
  • Use environmentally friendly insect repellent, completely avoid aerosols. We recommend using cream-based repellents or other alternatives.

Code of Conduct for Visiting Captive Animal Attractions

  • The taking or harmful intrusion of fauna and flora is prohibited.
  • Do not touch or handle the animals, you could transmit diseases, infections, or parasites to them (and vice versa).
  • Do not feed the animals or lure them with food.
  • Also try not to eat during the visit (this could transmit diseases or provoke animal attacks).
  • When you finish the activity, take all garbage with you, including fruit skins or organic remains that you might consider harmless.
  • Do not provoke the animals or try to attract their attention by shouting, making noises or exaggerated movements. This may stress them, frighten them, interrupt their natural behaviors or they may even interpret it as a threat and attack.
  • Avoid eye contact with animals, for some species it can be threatening.
  • Try not to damage plants, when walking or driving vehicles, in areas or on slopes covered by mosses or lichens.
  • Minimize noise to avoid scaring wildlife.
  • Be predictable and consistent in your behavior. Avoid making sudden movements.
  • Do not introduce non-native plants or animals.
  • Respect the maximum time allowed for sighting.
  • Respect the rules regarding the maximum number of visitors allowed. Too many people can stress the animals, make them nervous and they may even move away from their area.
  • If someone in the group, or even the guide, does not respect these rules, correct them, and report them to the organizers.

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