Written by Eliane – Student Researcher from Sharing Seeds
Traveling sustainably and responsibly has been trending within the past few years. An awareness regarding cultural loss and increasing levels of pollution due to mainstream tourism has been raised and tour operators as well as travelers are longing for a change. But how can one travel sustainably?
One option to do so can be found in Sarangkot Pandeli the beautiful village near the tourism capital of Nepal, Pokhara City which is a gateway to the world-famous Annapurna conservation region.
Sarangkot, a small village close to Pokhara, Nepal, is known for its beautiful sunsets and the view over Pokhara and Phewa Lake. However, if you look beyond the well-known sights and mainstream tourist spots, you can learn much more about the community, culture and the production of local products.
Explore Evenmore Tour and Travels, in partnership with not-for-profit Sharing Seeds, aims to promote sustainable tourism in this area by focusing on guiding visitors off the mainstream routes and towards the local communities.
Knowing what is best for the community, Aabiskar Thapa, Founder and Managing Director of Sharing Seeds, and his team run three projects that concentrate on the production of local products, like coffee and honey and work to help women gain independence in their communities.
More information on some of Sharing Seeds’ Projects:
Organic Arabica Coffee Farming Project:
- Goal: Sustainable, local production of coffee; creating job opportunities
- How: Providing training and support to local farmers in coffee production
- Progress: 600 coffee tree plantations have already been planted in cooperation with 95 farmers
Recyclable Handicraft Project:
- Goal To empower local women to achieve financial independence
- How: Providing basic sewing training for women
- Progress: 40 women have already been trained through the program
Organic Bee Farming Project:
- Goal: Sustainable honey production
- How: Explain the importance of the role of bees to farmers
- Progress: 70 bee hives have been installed in cooperation with 5 bee farmers
In collaboration, Explore Evenmore Tour and Travels and Sharing Seeds developed a tour that combines hiking with learning to create added value for the visitors as well as the community in Sarangkot. The popular tour Secrets of Sarangkot: Arabica Coffee experience and local life guides the visitors along the beautiful Phewa Lakeshore, through the community jungle and stops at every project.
While visiting the projects the visitors get in-depth insights into the local life and working processes of local products while enjoying the beautiful landscape all along Pokhara. Through observation and conversations with locals, the visitors are immersed in the Nepalese culture and understand the impact that local organizations have on these communities. Furthermore, there is added value for the community through the exchange of knowledge with the tourists which helps to contribute to sustainable development in Nepal.
To sum up, Explore Evenmore Tour and Travels, in collaboration with Sharing Seeds, offers a unique experience to visitors while raising awareness about the local culture, food and products and the importance of maintaining them.
There is also added value for the community through the exchange of knowledge with the tourists which helps contribute to sustainable development in Nepal.
About Sharing Seeds:
Sharing Seeds is a not-for-profit social enterprise whose mission is to empower local farmers by providing knowledge and resources to cultivate organic Arabica coffee and practice organic beekeeping.
Visit https://sharingseed.org/ to learn more about their inspiring work.