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SPOTLIGHT: World Responsible Tourism Day events worldwide

Serena-Khaplu-PalaceThe central focus of World Responsible Tourism Day each year is the series of events that take place at World Travel Market in London. But as well as this, all over the world companies that have committed to supporting the event use the day to draw attention to the issues around responsible tourism in their own communities, and they do this in many different ways. Here are five of my favourite World Responsible Tourism Day events that took place around the world in 2013.

Greener Pastures is an ecotourism organization based in Northeast India, focussed on supporting local communities through sustainable development and responsible tourism.The company marked the day by organizing an . All the children were students at Parijat Academy, an inspirational school for children from poor backgrounds, which started with just three students back in 2003 and today has more than 500. First the children were taken on a 2 hour jeep safari through the park, where they saw – most if not all of them for the first time – elephants, rhinoceros and many rare birds. After that the group was joined by Nipen Nath, a local environmentalist, who gave a talk about, the importance of wildlife conservation, and most importantly, the conservation of rhinos, which are under threat from poachers in India just as they are in Africa.

Savannah Guides is a network of professional tour guides and tour operators based in the tropical savannahs of northern Australia. On the 6th November 2013, Savannah Guide Ken Fairbairn took local school students on an educational excursion on the Gulflander Train in Normanton to promote and develop the concept of Responsible Tourism. Before the day students had been asked to fill in a questionnaire on Responsible Tourism. If they completed the answers and had shown good attendance rates and grades during the term, they got to join a special tour on the Gulflander Train in Far North Queensland on World Responsible Tourism Day, while engaging in responsible tourism discussions with the guide on the way.

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