. Veligandu Island Resort and Spa, in the Maldives, has been selected for a Champions Award as a result of its work and commitment to local communities.
On the list of finalists of Responsible Tourism Award 2017 is a game lodge in Botswana, a fynbos protected area in South Africa, a social enterprise in Vietnam, a tour operator working to benefit local communities in Limpopo, a European city, a group of guest cottages in Kangaroo Valley in Australia and a company enabling travellers to walk from village to village in rural India.
Reality Tours and Travel is based in Mumbai and is most famous for their Dharavi slum tour. Following the success of their ever expanding product range in the city, they have recently spread their wings to the capital, Kerala, and Rajasthan. Their tagline is “see the real India”; guests get beyond tourism to experience authentic destinations in India, and their unique social business structure supports community development projects along the way.
Based in Malaysian Borneo, Borneo Eco Tours has been a pioneer in responsible nature tours since 1991. Two of the most popular destinations in which they operate includes the iconic Kinabatagan River, where guests can enjoy their award-winning Sukau Rainforest Lodge and Borneo's famed primates, and Kudat, which provides opportunities for guests to visit and support cottage industries (supported by their partner NGO, BEST) along the scenic coast.
After a year's absence, WildAsia returned once again to stage the Responsible Tourism Awards, the region's top green honours that hoteliers and tour operators aspire towards. The winners of their 2012 Responsible Tourism Awards were announced at ITB Asia held in Singapore. This year, there were four specific award categories ranging from community engagement, culture preservation, nature conservation to resource efficiency, plus one generic category for the "most inspiring" responsible operator. Finalists had to demonstrate excellence in various areas of sustainability and, of course, responsible tourism practices. They were assessed based on the Global Sustainable Tourism Council’s Criteria.