A bigger world. A better you.
Your travel choices make a profound impact on the world. Which is why BonViage takes a responsible approach to travel before, during and after your trip. Whether it's staying at a locally-owned hotel, visiting an elephant rescue or experiencing the wonder of the natural outdoors, our goal is to deepen and create meaningful travel experiences for you to enjoy while supporting the social and environmental surroundings of the places you visit. This is the root of our travel philosophy. Some ways we do this are:
Support local communities.
From our hiring of local guides who strive to preserve their natural and cultural environment to staying in non-chain hotels and eating in family owned restaurants, your travel dollars stay in town.
Keep a low profile.
We limit our group size to 8. This means no gas guzzling buses or tour megaphones. We travel by public transportation and/or in small vehicles to get off-the-beaten-path and try to blend in.
Be good guests.
We minimize the impact left behind and encourage travelers to bring your own refillable water bottle, respect wildlife and be considerate to others.
Donate for change.
As a small business, our humble efforts are intended to make the world a better place. But, sometimes bigger pockets are needed for greater change. There is one belief at our core – which will never falter – compassion for people and respect for the planet matter. We proudly donate to Amnesty International to advocate for a world where human rights are enjoyed by all.
What is Sustainable Tourism?
According to the World Tourism Organization Network, sustainable tourism can be defined as: "Tourism that takes full account of its current and future economic, social and environmental impacts, addressing the needs of visitors, the industry, the environment and host communities." If we translate that definition in our own words, sustainable tourism is a means of travel where we take into account People-Planet-Profit. For us, we add the Pleasure of traveling.
What is Eco-Tourism?
Ecotourism refers to forms of tourism spent in nature; where the tourist appreciates the beauty of nature, interprets the value of it, minimizes the negative impact upon the natural and socio-cultural environment, and supports the maintenance of natural areas. Our trip to Rwanda could be categorized as Ecotourism. Most travel time is spent in the exceptional beautiful national parks of Rwanda, much less-visited than the safari parks of her neighbor countries Tanzania and Uganda. We travel with a local guide, overnight in privately owned hotels and guesthouses and hire local safari guides in the nature reserves. We learn about the value of nature while support the local communities and nature organizations as much as we can. Visiting the mountain gorillas is the highlight of the trip and undoubtedly one of the most memorable experiences in a life time. To protect the threatened gorillas every family of mountain gorillas receives maximum 1 visit of a small group of tourists per day. Therefore, the gorilla permit cost of $750, a huge amount of money, is well spent to help these gorilla families survive.