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TTC Tour Brands Continues Commitment for Sustainable Tourism
Global tour operators Trafalgar, Contiki, Insight Vacations and Luxury Gold have introduced new travel experiences across global itineraries that support Indigenous-owned businesses and allow travellers to learn from Native people about their history, communities and culture.
TTC Tour Brands has made partnering with indigenous organizations, guides and reservations a priority, as a way to support the preservation of their native lands, traditions and cultures.
These conscious travel activities, dubbed 'MAKE TRAVEL MATTER Experiences,' include visits to Indigenous reservations, demonstrations on how to identify and use the medicinal properties in plants that have been passed down for generations, traditional tobacco ceremonies, dance, storytelling and more.
"Learning about Indigenous cultures not only gives travellers more of an appreciation for the traditions that have influenced our lives for thousands of years but also supports those who work so hard to keep these cultures alive and make huge contributions to the tourism industry as a result," says Melissa DaSilva President, TTC Tour Brands, North America.
"As leaders in travel, it's important that our conscious travel experiences offer opportunities to both support and learn from native cultures that have shaped and protected our planet with histories deeply rooted in nature, all throughout the world."
Here are some examples of TTC tour brand Indigenous opportunities:
Contiki, the social tour company for 18-35-year-olds, is striving to ensure travellers get a variety of perspectives on Indigenous culture by prioritizing the voices of the Warrior Women of Sturgeon Lake Cree Nation. On 'Canada and the Rockies,' travellers will be invited to a fireside chat on traditional First Nation land that is now part of Jasper National Park. There, Warrior Women's Matricia will share details of her culture, experience as a musician and time spent teaching the traditional craft of making of drums, leather binding, moccasin and traditional mitten making and more.
New for 2022, Insight Vacations is showcasing the longstanding ceremonies of a Canadian tribe on Prince Edward Island. On 'Landscapes of the Canadian Maritimes,' travellers will visit the Abegweit Mi'Kmaw Nation, a small First Nation dating back 10,000 years according to oral tradition. During the visit, guests will experience an authentic smudging ceremony, honor song and dance plus learn about the Seven Sacred teachings.
New for 2023, Trafalgar brings travellers on a unique visit to the Rosebud Sioux Tribe Reservation to meet with the Lakota Youth Development, a program that aims to connect youths in the tribe with their native culture and lifestyle. On the 'National Parks & Native Trails of the Dakotas' tour, guests will enjoy a traditional Lakota meal with a host from the reservation for a Be My Guest experience where travellers will learn about and taste the ingredients from their native land that Lakota ancestors have lived on for thousands of years. Following the meal, travellers will embark on an Indigenous plant walk to learn more about the medicinal and ceremonial properties of wild edibles and the longstanding idea that every plant has a purpose.
On luxury tour company, Luxury Gold's 'Inspiring Australia' itinerary, travellers will embark on an aboriginal walking tour through historical neighborhood, The Rocks in Sydney to learn The Dreamtime, the important features of Aboriginal spiritual beliefs and existence.
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