Collette’s Impact Tours are a great way to leave your mark on the world.
A global leader in travel and tourism for the past 100 years, Collette’s Impact Travel touring provides travellers who possess a global conscience to make a difference.
These tours offer fantastic sightseeing opportunities in some of the world’s most beautiful locations with the chance to volunteer for the betterment of local communities.
A non-profit organisation, The Collette Foundation supports Impact Tours in South Africa, Ecuador, Kenya, Cambodia, Poland, Costa Rica, India, Peru, Australia and Fiji.
With more than 5000 dedicated volunteer hours contributed over the past year, the foundation’s 1 Million Meals Program is part of the global fight for hunger.
When travellers Chris and Dotty Carey were asked if they were interested in a different type of holiday, one where they would volunteer part of the time to help give back to the communities they were visiting, they jumped at the chance.
“The trip turned out to be just what we needed,” said Dotty. “While in Quito, Ecuador, we did the normal tourist things but also spent a day each of the two different centres run by Children International.
“Collette helps to support these centres as a way of giving back to the people in the countries they tour. Their foundation had fully outfitted a clinic room for the doctors in one and assisted with various projects in the other.
“We (also) worked with the adults harvesting and planting organic vegetables, which they were being taught to (help) grow for feeding their families.”
The Careys’ tour group also spent three days with an indigenous community, breaking into smaller groups, and staying in their individual homes.
“We spent a day painting the exterior of all the buildings, including the cafeteria which had been donated by the Collette Foundation. The parents and a number of children joined us in this endeavour,” added Dotty.
“We felt more energetic than at the end of most vacations. Helping others was really good for the body and soul. We loved the smaller group which provided strong camaraderie. In addition to touring, we learned a lot about the Ecuadorian people and their culture.
“Hopefully, our presence left behind a positive impact on their lives going forward; it certainly left a positive impact on ours.”
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South Africa Impact Tour
A tour to South Africa is unlike any other. The rugged scenery, winding coastlines and natural beauty will stay with you forever.
Beginning in Johannesburg and ending in the cosmopolitan city of Cape Town, this tour blends traditional sightseeing with volunteer opportunities in the communities you visit.
Tour the historic sites in and around Johannesburg, including the Apartheid Museum, which chronicles the rise and fall of apartheid in South Africa. You’ll also tour the township of Soweto (an acronym for South West Townships), created in the 1930s by the white government and once the largest black community in South Africa.
Go on safari as you search for the “Big Five” in Kruger National Park, before heading to the town of George where the Collette Foundation works with a local school that was funded by The Knysna Education Trust. Here you can choose your volunteer activity, from helping children to read, to assisting with lesson plans, or helping with an educational craft.
For those who prefer a more hands-on activity, other options include painting of classrooms, or helping to maintain one of the veggie gardens that the children of Knysna depend on daily.
The following day, you will visit the Featherbed Nature Reserve for a lagoon cruise, followed by a 4×4 adventure deep into the forest for a leisurely paced walking tour. After lunch, drive the lush Garden Route between the mountains and the balmy Indian Ocean towards the stunning city of Cape Town.
Upon arrival, you’ll marvel at the panoramic views of the city, Lions Head, and out to Robben Island, a rock quarry off the coast of Cape Town where Nelson Mandela was imprisoned for 18 of his 27 years behind bars.
You will also visit the stunning Western Cape region of Stellenbosch, one of the oldest European settlements in the country. Volunteer with the Pebbles Project, assisting the local children and community leaders with classroom decorations and the preparation and distribution of lunch.
After your walking tour of the delightful Stellenbosch area, time is spent distributing Hippo Rollers for the storing of fresh water.
Departs: 9 November 2018
Priced from: $4,354
Cost Rica Impact Tour
Lush forests, majestic waterfalls, towering volcanoes, endless coastlines … Costa Rica is a true paradise.
One of the most biodiverse countries in the world, this Central American destination is teaming with unique wildlife like the sluggish sloths and brightly coloured billed toucans.
During this trip, you will volunteer with CEPIA (Culture, Education and Psychology for Infants and Adolescents), a Collette partner in Guanacaste.
Your journey begins and ends in the capital city of San Jose. After a brief city tour, you will stop by a coffee plantation outside of town, on your way to the coastal city of Guanacaste, in the Central Valley region.
In the secluded Monteverde Cloud Forest, set off on a nature walk among trees that grow to an impressive 100-feet tall, as you admire the lush flora and unique fauna.
Back in Monteverde, you’ll have the chance to explore one of the world’s largest butterfly gardens, with a dazzling gallery containing more than 100 beautiful hummingbirds, before joining an expert for a “Hanging Bridges” walking tour.
If adventure is more your speed, you can take an exhilarating ride on one of the longest canopy zip line tours in Costa Rica. Zip over the tree tops and skirt the rainforest canopy.
Cross the beautiful mountains on your way to Arenal, where you will enjoy a lake cruise. Marvel at the spectacular Arenal Volcano, before volunteering for the day at CEPIA. Projects here can include beautification of schools or parks where children learn and play.
On your way back to San Jose, you will explore a fanciful topiary garden with its specially carved trees and shrubs in the town of Zarcero.
Departs: 24 January 2019
Priced from: $2,709
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