Global Citizenship- Basket weaver in a Colombian village. Photo: Tonya Fitzpatrick

“Learn to do common things uncommonly well; we must always keep in mind that anything that helps full the dinner pail is valuable.”

― George Washington Carver

What does it mean to be a responsible traveler?   It means much more than just traveling light, recycling plastic bottles or even reusing your hotel bath towels.  Those things are great first steps but being a responsible traveler is a “heart action”.

Social responsibility has given a new dimension to tourism and people are indeed acting responsibly & changing the way they travel . A social responsible traveler has a heart for people.  He/she ensures that negative social, economic and environmental impacts are minimized and that positive footprints that enhance economic benefits for local people and host communities are the only thing left behind.

Bottom line, a social responsible traveler is a global citizen and ambassador for humanity. Whenever you visit any new place be aware of the impact of your actions and reactions, choose social responsibility and contribute in a positive way.


A temple in the Chiang Mai province in Thailand.

Discovering Traditional Arts in Thailand’s Golden Triangle

By Katie Dundas

The Golden Triangle region of Northern Thailand sits at the intersection of three Southeast Asian countries along the Mekong and Ruak Rivers: Thailand, Laos, and Myanmar. A visit to this area is an incredible way to learn about the culture, history, and traditional arts of the region, which have been … Read more   Read more

Asia History The Arts Social Responsibility
Budapest, Hungary

How Budapest’s Cafe Culture is Lifting Social Stigmas

By Tara Tadlock

Hungary, and Budapest more specifically, was once known for its mistreatment of those with physical and intellectual disabilities.   Read more

Europe Accessible Food & Drink Social Responsibility
Ayahuasca Tourism | Shaman

Ayahuasca Tourism: The Commercialization of Culture

By Jessica Barrett

Used by Indigenous tribes in the Amazon for medicinal purposes for centuries, it’s only in the last 50 years or so that Westerners have come to learn about ayahuasca   Read more

Central and South America Off the Beaten Path Events & Festivals Social Responsibility
Manatee

Meet the Manatees of Crystal River, Florida

By Cara Siera

The Crystal River National Wildlife Refuge shelters solitary manatees year-round, but their numbers increase to around 600 individuals from mid-November through March, when they retreat to the Three Sisters and other natural hot springs as ocean temperatures drop.    Read more

United States Experiences Social Responsibility
KOA Campsite

What to do about Racism and Bigotry as Travelers of Conscience and Culture

By Ian Fitzpatrick

With everything taking place in the world from the coronavirus pandemic, global recession, and America’s racial reckoning, even a brief escape from these problems can be an elixir for the body, mind, spirit, and soul.   Read more

United States Backpacking & Camping Insights Social Responsibility
Grinnell Lake from Grinnell Glacier Trail. Photo: Ali Wunderman

Glacier National Park: A beautiful place with an ugly history

By Ali Wunderman

It’s been a tough summer living right next to Glacier National Park. With international borders closed to U.S. travelers, Americans have set their sights on road tripping the national parks, especially in places of low population density, and by extension low COVID-19 cases.   Read more

United States History Social Responsibility
volcanoes national park at sunset

Exploring the Depths of Hawaii’s Volcanoes National Park

By Michael Fil

Lush rainforest and land transformed for millions of years by volcanic activity, all spread across 520 square miles of protected space. Welcome to Hawaii’s Volcanoes National Park!   Read more

United States Adventure History Social Responsibility
Photo courtesy of McLeod Plantation Historical Site

A South Carolina Plantation Shows Us the Way Forward

By Erica Chatman

It is no secret to anyone that tourism is a major industry and draw for Charleston, South Carolina. However, on my most recent visit, I became a fan of their county parks because of one particular experience. I visited MacLeod Plantation Historic Site.     Read more

United States History Social Responsibility
A street in Mumbai's Dharavi Slum--one of the largest in Asia. Photo: Bianca Caruana (with permission from Be The Local Tours)

A Walking Tour Highlighting a Mumbai Slum’s Innovative Industry

By Bianca Caruana

Dharavi, in central Mumbai, is considered one of the largest slums in Asia, but deep within this neighborhood, below the shanty grey roofs, loosely comprised of scavenged, upcycled metal, lives a resourceful and innovative community that plays an imperative role in Mumbai’s city-wide waste management.   Read more

India Off the Beaten Path Social Responsibility
Candi Plaosan, also known as the 'Plaosan Complex', is one of the Buddhist temples located in Bugisan village, Java, Indonesia.

An Indonesian Village that Changed its Fate with the Internet

By Rose Munday

When it comes to Indonesia, you might wonder how islands like Java can compete with the likes of Bali.   Read more

Asia Technology Social Responsibility
Volungearing photo by Bianca Caruana

Volungearing: A New Way to Do Good

By Bianca Caruana

A new kind of volunteer tourism has entered the travel industry with an innovative approach; Volungearing, conceived by TribesForGOOD, taps an individual’s skills to pair him or her successfully in the social impact sector.   Read more

Asia Volunteer Travel Social Responsibility
Mapuche house in Chile #Indigenous #heritage

Chilean Tourism and the Indigenous Mapuche

By Leijia Hanrahan

The regions of Biobío and Araucanía, which lie somewhere in the middle of the 2,653 miles that stretch from Chile’s top to bottom, are nevertheless known as “the south.”   Read more

Central and South America Indigenous Social Responsibility
An example of unethical animal tourism. Riding an elephant in Thailand.

Animal Cruelty for Tourists’ Entertainment: An Industry in Need of Reform

By Bianca Caruana

As selfies with tigers, primates and other wild species front Instagram and Facebook feeds, tourists are now forced to question the morals and ethics of their encounters with captive animals.   Read more

The World Insights Social Responsibility
Burundi village

A Burundian Lesson in Hospitality

By Breana Johnson

It’s evening in the small African nation of Burundi, and the waning sun throws shadows over the city of Bujumbura. In the old Land Rover, we bump and jostle our way through the crowded dirt roads of the capital. Before we left the mission station where my husband’s family lives, … Read more   Read more

Africa Off the Beaten Path Social Responsibility
Montana wild bison

Responsible and Cultural Travel in Montana

By Tara Tadlock

Whitewater rafting in crystal clear waters. Horseback riding through the tall prairie grass. Purple mountains as the backdrop for local craft breweries. Sounds like a dream, but it’s actually Montana.   Read more

United States Adventure Off the Beaten Path Social Responsibility