This contest asked our Facebook followers what they love most about responsible travel and why they choose to travel responsibly. We also asked to hear about life changing responsible travel experiences.
My key words for Responsible Traveling:
R-espect other cultures
S-hop local businesses
L-earn another language
A-dvertise travel destinations
I love responsible travel for the cultural exchange. My Namibian students had intriguing mental pictures of Americans, built on the steady raft of fleeting media that floats across the ocean. All my young students knew about Chris Brown and Rihanna's issues, and assumed I knew Beyonce personally. Michael Jackson's memorial service pre-empted their evening news. After time they learned who I was as a person, as a teacher, and they learned that this foreigner is more than the sum of tabloid and CNN headlines. And I learned that many of my students had nicer cell phones than me. That their parents' had immense pride in their children, the first generation born free into their new nation. That someone arm-deep in a freshly slaughtered cow may have a 9-5 job in a classy department store in the city. That the students' appetite for the one complete set of Harry Potter books in the school library necessitates careful diplomatic negotiations by the librarian. I love this kind of travel, the kind that helps you forget about the glossy pictures and remember the warm ties that bind us.
These winners were selected by a prestigious panel of judges including:
Our first place winner received two nights at the beautiful LEED certified Orchard Hotel in San Francisco. This intimate, boutique hotel is proof that chic style and eco-friendly living can go hand in hand. Find out more about the Orchard Hotel and their green initiatives on their webpage.
This contest asked participants to submit a photo or video with a description of their sustainable trip to the CREST Facebook Timeline. The entry with the most Facebook likes won a 2-night trip to The Inn in Vermont! The winner was Conor Lorenzo Sanchez with 84 likes, and here's his entry:
Finca Esperanza Verde is one of the best places I've visited in Central America. Nestled in the remote northern mountains of Nicaragua, this eco-lodge is not only environmentally friendly and economically sustainable, it offers this gorgeous view, which should be enjoyed with a cup of local organic coffee and a swing in the hammock. Take a look here to learn more about #FincaEsperanzaVerde: http://fincaesperanzaverde.com/. #esperanzaverde #Matagalpa #Nicaragua #hammocklife #coffeecountry #rutadecafe #coffeeroute #ecolodge #offthegrid #GoGreen
The INN at Montgomery Center is a historic, rambling 6500-square foot lumber baron's home, built in 1890 in a quintessential Vermont town. The INN features an attached carriage house and views of the beautiful Trout River flowing out back. It has been renovated with great care from stem to stern, creating a warm, inviting space that embraces guests with amenities, décor, and special touches at every turn.
In addition to a range of eco-friendly outdoor activities such as hiking, kayaking, biking and skiing, The INN uses many local ingredients for the restaurant (organic syrup, veggies, eggs) and they also use green practices in housekeeping for guest towels and bedding, etc.