Ethical family holidays
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Date: 29 April, 2005

Costa Rica - Bird



'A thrilling holiday discovering the fascinating culture, varied landscapes and surprising wildlife of this tropical paradise.'

As summer approaches it's time to start thinking about a holiday that will keep the kids amused whilst also giving parents a well deserved break. Jennifer Everest from surefish partner Responsible Travel makes some suggestions.

Why should family travel solely consist of a place in the sun with a pool and a beach? Why can’t it be inspiring, educational and enjoyable for adults and children alike? And ethical as well?

Well now it can be. There are many specially designed holidays available, across the world, with itineraries that have children at the core. Holidays that will immerse the whole family into the local culture and where discovery and learning is achieved through adventure and excitement.

And because they are so geared around the local people and environment, they not only give you and your family a better holiday, but are also designed to ensure that the local community benefit as they should from your visit and that their culture and environment are protected from the ravages of mass tourism.

This year, seek out a bit of adventure and have a real and ethical holiday that you and your children will remember forever.

Farmstay in Le Marche, Italy

accommodation A charming small country housein a 185-acre organically run farm near the town of Urbino (registered in UNESCO's World Heritage List), nestling in a landscape of gentle, rolling hills, rich in wild flora and fauna. We grow our own organic wheat, fruits and vegetables and raise our cattle, pigs and poultry with 100 per cent natural feed. The smiling service and high standards of both food and accommodation will best suit persons seeking superior quality in an elegant and tranquil setting, the perfect location for exploring the delights of Central Italy and many famous Renaissance towns.

Price: B&B from 48 euros per person per night.
Find more information here

accommodation Andalucia holiday accommodation

A sophisticated and relaxed little hotel in the middle of quiet historic Cartajima, one of Andalusia’s smallest mountain “ pueblos blancos”. We have five double rooms equipped with AC/heating, balconies with spectacular views, fully equipped bathrooms, and many other special treats. This quiet village lies amongst lush chestnut trees and spectacular mountain scenery. It offers marvellous walks for the energetic, a convenient centre for cultural expeditions for the enthusiastic, peace and quiet for the world-weary. This romantic part of hidden Spain is only 45 km from the bright lights of the popular Costa del Sol, and one and a half hours from Malaga airport.

Price: From €110 per room / night.
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Algarve holiday accommodation

accommodation Built in 1730, this is an enchanting 6-ha estate situated in the countryside of the Algarve in Portugal. Only 5 km from Lagos and 1 km from the beach it’s an ideal base to explore the Algarve. Both guesthouses are centrally heated, have lots of character, magnificent views of the rural country and surrounded by trees and flowers. There is a lot of space for children to play, animals to watch and a large swimming pool with a separate section for small children.

Price: 1 bedroom apartment, €62 ,50 – 103 per night. 2 bedroom apartment: €85-145 per night depending on the season.
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Family adventure holiday in Spain accommodation

An action packed week, in a charming and unspoilt region of southern Spain. Your base is a village of narrow, whitewashed streets topped by a Moorish castle. In the surrounding countryside there are numerous trails perfect for cycling and walking. You'll paddle kayaks on the Barbate Lake situated in a nature park and go whale-watching in the Straits of Gibraltar - it's even possible to make a day trip to the Moroccan port of Tangiers. You'll also have a day in Seville, home to legendary figures like Carmen and Don Juan.

Price: From £679 Adult, £636 Child (8 days) inc flights, Mar-Oct departures.
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accommodation Egypt family holiday: Feluccas & Pharaohs

If you want more from your family holidays than a standard, stay-put package, or a sterile world of creches and kiddies' clubs you'll love this! Your kids will probably already know about the Pyramids and Tutankhamen, but there's nothing like seeing the real thing for yourself! Not only will you see both the Pyramids and King Tut's gold, but you'll sail on a felucca, see the Valley of the Kings in Luxor and swim and snorkel among colourful fish in the Red Sea. Even the smallest children are overcome with awe at the sight of these wonders of the ancient world!

Price: From £759 inc flights (Adult), £684 inc flights (Child), Land only from £499. May-Dec. Special teenager departures also available.
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A thrilling holiday discovering the fascinating culture, varied landscapes and surprising wildlife of this tropical paradise. Explore ancient cities, cycle through traditional villages and visit an elephant orphanage to see dozens of adult and baby elephants as part of this action-packed adventure. After a day to relax, travel by train through stunning mountains to the Kelani River for optional activities such as jungle trekking and whitewater rafting. A real adventure suitable for the whole family!

Price: Adults from £1089, Children from £952 inc flights from UK. Special teenager and single parent departures also available.
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Family holiday to Portugal

This unspoiled region of Portugal offers a stunning contrast between coast and country. Inland the wide River Mira winds through gently rolling hills and protected parkland whilst the coastline is characterised by steep rocky cliffs, sandy bays and beautiful beaches. This gentle activity week makes the absolute most of these features combining land, sea and river based activities. Our base for this holiday is the Portuguese town of Milfontes a short walk from the town centre and with direct access to the beach.

Price: From £450-£725 (7 nights) per adult excluding flights, from £410-£685 per child (under 14), depending on the number of activities. July and August departures.
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Family self drive holiday in South Africa

Explore some of South Africa's long history at your leisure. The Garden Route offers a rewarding experience for the adventure and nature based tourist. Self-drive is very common in South Africa with generally good quality roads and they drive on the left. This trip can be arranged at any time and can be tailored to fit your own unique requirements, interests and budget. It can also be incorporated into a longer visit to South Africa to include wildlife safari, scuba-diving, horse riding.

Price:   Starting from £695 per adult and from £570 per child (up to 12 yrs) based on a family of 4 people, including accommodation (B&B), some excursions and car hire (based on Nissan Sentra), but not international flight.
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Slovenia family holiday

Little Slovenia is big on geography and big on nature! Steep mountain cliffs, punctuated with castles, slice into densely forested valleys. Jurassic lakes are fed by rivers from the glacial peaks of the Alps. Gentle hillsides and vineyards roll towards the warm Adriatic Sea, and on the way are some of the most spectacular cave systems in Europe. This is a classic adventure trip where responsible tourism can be seen in action and a great taster of a tiny country.

Price: From £565 (8 days) including flights, from £425 excluding flights. May – Aug departures.
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Family holiday to India, Taj, Tigers and Palaces

A fascinating introduction to Northern India. Visit the Taj Mahal (one of the Wonders of the World) and exotic palaces and then head away from the main tourist track and experience rural India where time has stood still. Transport is varied: a local train to reach the little-visited town of Bundi, for instance; or by jeep in the Ranthambore tiger reserve - ever hopeful of catching a glimpse of the majestic big cat. You can even travel by cycle rickshaw and have a chance to stay in a converted Maharajah's Palace.

Price: From £1299 (12 days) including flights, from £699 excluding flights. Oct, Dec and Apr departures.
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For more great suggestions with holidays from leading responsible operators log on to


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