Why Andaman Discoveries
Award-Winning Responsible Tourism
Responsible travel is about minimizing the negative impact of your travel and directly giving back to the communities you visit. It is about understanding the story behind the price you are paying, and knowing the local people who are working hard to make your holiday an enjoyable one. At Andaman Discoveries, we strive to help you do just that with our award-winning programs and customer service.
Genuine responsible tourism operators have a duty to the communities they serve. This requires understanding local priorities and sense of place, and then using this information to develop an appropriate program. It doesn’t happen overnight. All too often tour operators — even ones with good intentions — raise hopes and artificially inflate local economies without understanding the consequences of their actions. The results can be disastrous, and there are numerous examples of villages that have suffered from loss of traditional livelihoods and money-driven conflict.
That’s why Andaman Discoveries is committed to supporting consistent progress in an imperfect world. Often this means working with opposing viewpoints, even within a community. Communities do not always speak with one voice, and by maintaining balanced relationships, we are able to work with all parties. The mutual respect we have earned with our community partners is a testament to the effectiveness of our long-term projects and inclusive viewpoint.
A Community-based Focus
All Andaman Discoveries activities and itineraries are designed in collaboration with the villagers themselves, based around the principles of community-based tourism. Andaman Discoveries is committed to providing local people with a complimentary source of income while still continuing their traditional way of life.
Our translators allow guests to really engage with the villagers and assist the local guide when highlighting points of interest and explaining the region’s fascinating eco-systems. Andaman Discoveries has specially-designed comprehensive support material including a Visitor’s Guidebook, and Thai Phrasebook to allow people to make the most of their time in village and to facilitate cross-cultural exchanges.
Award- Winning Community-Based Tourism
In 2014 Andaman Discoveries won the Thailand Green Excellence Award for our volunteer program and were announced as finalist for the 2014 Wild Asia Award for Cultural Preservation highlighting our program with the Moken on Koh Surin.
Thailand Green Excellence Judge’s comment: It is rare to come across a volunteering organization that is as well thought-through, transparent and honest as Andaman Discoveries. They really are trying to use volunteers in a productive way to improve lives.
For a full list of our awards won please see here: Our Awards