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The environments we travel through and the societies we meet are vital to your enjoyment and our ability to continue to run our adventure programmes. Mongolian Ways aims to take very good care of the landscape and we respect the people and cultures whose lives we share.
We experience the tension between modernisation and the preservation of the ancient traditions of Mongolia's peoples on a daily basis. There is often a fragile balance between exposing the indigenous population to the outer world and sharing our learning, and influencing their culture with the values of our so-called developed world. However, we also appreciate that there are technological benefits which we can introduce to the communities we meet, such as solar panels to produce free energy, and satellite dishes and TVs to link remote villages with the rest of the world. Some communities have even been connected to modern society via Smartphones.
Where the environment is concerned, our position is clear. All too often, wealthy corporate businesses have taken advantage of the vulnerability of local communities to seize land, destroy cultural and historical monuments and make changes to the environment that harm not only its eco systems and its unspoilt beauty, but the way communities maintain and practise their traditional lifestyle. We appreciate the potential harmful impact of tourism to remote Mongolian regions. From littering to the construction of accommodation and service facilities, there are threats to the ecological balance of the environment.
Mongolian Ways facilitates cultural and eco-friendly trips in remote regions. We do not operate the facilities we use but we adhere to strict policies and principles throughout our trips.
Among these, are:
- Leave No Trace: We leave behind only memories.
- Eco-lodging where available.
- Consume local produce, to provide the local community with an income.
- Employ local people wherever possible.
- Cross-Cultural sharing of experiences, ensuring that visiting local people is an active two-way experience rather than one-sided inquisitive invasion.
- Wherever possible, we use well-established marked trails, routes and roads.
- Engage, formally and informally, with education of local communities about responsible tourism and its benefits to the community and its people.
- Educate travellers about the local ethics, heritage and customs of the societies we meet.
- Educate travellers about ecology, wildlife and the immediate and long-term threat of local circumstances, thereby making them good-will ambassadors for the greater cause.
- Contribute and donate to local communities. While we are not a large business, we aim to make cash donations where we can. We also encourage our travellers to donate in kind, for example, playing football with children in an orphanage or helping with daily tasks. Travellers also leave behind items that they no longer need, such as clothing and sleeping bags and even medicines which they required during the trip and won’t need during their return journey.