About

The Ethical Travel Guide is produced and developed by Tourism Concern, a charity registered in the UK (charity number 1064020). Tourism Concern has two main aims:

We expose tourism’s worst human rights abuses and campaign against them.

We promote tourism that benefits local people in tourist destinations.

The purpose of the Ethical Travel Guide is to promote tourism that benefits local people and that helps travellers in making better decisions about where to go, who to go with, where to stay and what to do in accordance with principles of ethical tourism.

For more information on how places are selected please see our FAQ page.

For each country we list ethical travel considerations, local projects to support, community voices on the impacts of tourism, ethical places to stay and see and ethical tour operators and volunteering organisations that can help make your stay better for local people and better for you.  The initiative intertwines two essential strands of how Tourism Concern works:

  • We seek to give a voice to communities where tourism takes place, sharing their concerns and recommendations in order to encourage more equitable and sustainable tourism.
  • We aim to help travellers to take responsibility for their impact by choosing ethical options for what to do and where to stay, and being responsible, sensitive and well-informed whilst travelling.

Ethical Travel Guide

Thousands of grass roots, low impact, high sustainability initiatives all over the world struggle to tell tourists they exist. Very few of these inspirational initiatives have the resources or skills to market themselves in an industry dominated by multinational companies.

Our Ethical Travel Guide is a challenge to this dominance, seeking to redress the balance in order to make tourism more fair. The Ethical Travel Guide is a chance for local communities in destination countries, who are often extremely poor, and dedicated local entrepreneurs to talk to their customers, to promote a more authentic and local experience which they are uniquely able to provide. While this unique Guide provides holidaymakers with fantastic ideas for authentic and guilt free holidays, it also raises vital awareness of the negative impacts of tourism. If you know of any organisation that you think should be listed please tell us

Tourism Concern

Our Vision  

Tourism which is ethical, fair and a positive experience for both travellers and the people and places they visit

Our Mission

To ensure tourism always benefits local people by challenging bad practice and promoting better tourism

Our Principles

  • Independence
    • We are a non-industry based organisation and strongly believe that our independence is vital to our role.
  • Listening
    • We believe in listening to the opinions and perspectives of our partners in destination communities. Many campaigns have been sparked off by communities asking us for help.
  • Shared values and vision
    • We believe in working with organisations that share our values and vision and we strive to work collaboratively towards common goals.
  • Inclusivity
    • We believe that all people have the right to participate in all decision-making that affects them.
  • Ethical practices
    • We believe in, and strive to adopt, low impact “green” policies and practices, purchasing and promoting fair trade products.

Our approach to tourism development

  • Local communities must have the right to participate in the decision making about tourism development where they live.
  • Tourism industry operators and governments must be accountable to the people whose land and cultures are being utilised for the benefit of tourists and tourism businesses.
  • Strategies must empower people to have a say in the development of their communities and country.
  • Attention must be given to marginalised and vulnerable groups such as women, children, minorities, illegal workers and indigenous people working or affected by the tourism industry.