At Country Walkers, we’re passionate about sustainable travel—supporting a healthy planet as well as the local communities where our friends, guests, and colleagues live, work, and play. In addition to our broad company-wide projects—including carbon offsets and a forthcoming transition to biodegradable water bottles, we’ve developed a Travelers Fund with initiatives to support specific projects in the regions where we travel. For every Country Walkers guest, we make a financial contribution to support local culture and sustainability—whether it’s a wildlife conservation project, or a broader initiative to help provide clean water to areas of the world that need it most. Country Walkers Travelers Fund primarily supports organizations fostering environmental conservation, supporting local communities, and preserving cultural and historic traditions.
If you, like us, love sustainable travel, here are 10 top Country Walkers vacations with local Travelers Fund initiatives for 2024:
Wilderness and Marine Conservation
- Canada: Banff, Yoho & the Canadian Rockies Guided Tour supporting Yellowstone to Yukon Conservation Initiative: Yellowstone to Yukon’s large-scale land conservation acts as an antidote to climate change and biodiversity loss by connecting and conserving large landscapes. This unique approach reverses habitat loss, prevents habitat fragmentation, and restores natural resilience to climate change—giving wildlife the space they need to move to new places for shelter, families, and food.
- Washington: Olympic National Park Guided Tour supporting the Center for Whale Research: Since 1976, the Center for Whale Research has been studying the Southern Resident killer whales in their critical habitat: the Salish Sea. The organization performs health assessments to ensure the viability of the whale population, informs elected officials of their ecosystem needs, and shares the whales’ story with the world.
- Spain: Balearic Islands, Mallorca & Deià Guided Tour supporting Arrels Marines: The mission of Arrels Marines is to protect and preserve the beauty of the Balearic Sea and islands through the development of projects included in 3 fundamental pillars: marine conservation; environmental education; and eco-social transition. Arrels Marines is a local organization made up of people from the Balearic Islands—a fact clearly reflected in its values and objectives.
Local Landscape Stewardship and Rescue
- Ireland: Cork, Killarney & Dingle Guided Tour, supporting Kerry Mountain Rescue Team: The volunteer team at Kerry Mountain Rescue Team assists mountaineers in distress throughout southwest Ireland—an area which boasts 15 of Ireland’s highest peaks. The team trains regularly in disciplines such as casualty care, technical ropework, helicopter winching, search management, navigation, radio communication, and 4WD techniques.
- Vermont: Fall Foliage Guided Tour supporting the Green Mountain Club: Founded in 1910, the original goal of the Green Mountain Club was to build a long-distance hiking trail that spans the length of Vermont’s mountains—which eventually became the Long Trail. The modern-day Green Mountain Club protects and maintains the Long Trail System and fosters, through education, the stewardship of Vermont’s hiking trails and mountains.
- England: The Cornwall Coast Self-Guided Tour supporting the South West Coast Path Association: The South West Coast Path Association (SWCPA) has been caring for Cornwall’s South West Coast Path since it was first created in 1973. The South West Coast Path is 630 miles long and is the longest established National Trail in England. The SWCPA is a voice for the Trail and the communities which it connects at local, regional, and national levels.
- Maine: Acadia National Park Guided Tour supporting Friends of Acadia: Friends of Acadia preserves, protects, and promotes stewardship of the outstanding natural beauty, ecological vitality, and distinctive cultural resources of Acadia National Park and surrounding communities for the inspiration and enjoyment of current and future generations.
- England: Bath and the Cotswolds Guided Tour supporting the Cotswolds Area of Natural Beauty: The Cotswolds Area of Natural Beauty was designated in 1966. It was created to conserve and enhance the natural beauty of the English landscape and promote quiet enjoyment of the countryside in a way that respects the interests of those who live and work there. With an area of nearly 800 square miles, this is the largest designated Area of Natural Beauty in England.
Community Culture and Social Justice
- Italy: Sicily Guided Tour supporting Addiopizzo: A Sicilian grass-roots movement, Addiopizzo promotes a “cultural revolution” against institutionalized corruption while supporting social justice. The organization assists victims of extortion and usury—providing free legal support during and after trial, both outside and inside the courtroom. The association and its lawyers also bring civil actions, alongside victims.
- Italy: Matera, Otranto & the Puglia Coast Guided Tour supporting Le Costantine: Le Costantine is a women-owned and operated social and economic enterprise which began in the early 1900s, dedicated to preserving the traditions and artisan crafts (in particular weaving) of the region while simultaneously providing economic independence to women in this small community outside of Otranto, Puglia. Today, the foundation boasts both fine weaving (carried out with traditional methods) combined with biodynamic agriculture and the provision of instruction and social care to young people.