Responsible Travel

The pristine wilderness of the Franklin River |  <i>Glenn Walker</i> Our porters in Nepal are the best equipped and happiest |  <i>Brad Atwal</i> Stay at our exclusive private eco campsite at Landruk in the Annapurna region |  <i>Mark Tipple</i> School kids trekking in Vietnamese countryside |  <i>Nick Hardcastle</i> In Nepal you'll receive one of our famous red kit bags to use - and keep! |  <i>Brad Atwal</i>

Travelling Responsibly

World Youth Adventures is committed to responsible travel and true sustainability. Well-defined environmental plans exist on every adventure across all continents.

We believe that travel should be as rewarding for the host community as it is for the traveller. We aim to maximise the positive benefits of tourism for host communities, including training and employing local staff, using local suppliers and supporting the development of sustainable local businesses.


We also support the United Nations' Sustainable Development Goals (UNSDGs). Each of our Service Learning Community Projects is designed with the Sustainable Development Goals in mind. 


We are aligned with Leave No Trace, an international organisation that has set the global standard for outdoor ethics to ensure that our recreation in natural places is sustainable. Through targeted education, research and outreach, its mission is to ensure the long-term health of our natural world. 


In its simplest form, Leave No Trace is about making good decisions to protect the world we all enjoy. The 7 principles of Leave No Trace that World Youth Adventures subscribes to are:


  1. Plan Ahead and Prepare 
  2. Travel and Camp on Durable Surfaces 
  3. Dispose of Waste Properly
  4. Leave What You Find 
  5. Minimise Campfire Impacts 
  6. Respect Wildlife 
  7. Be Considerate of Your Hosts and Other Visitors 


Visit your nearest Leave No Trace website to learn more: 

Leave no Trace USA | Leave No Trace - Australia  | Leave No Trace - New Zealand | Leave No Trace - United Kingdom | Leave No Trace - Canada

WYA believes every traveller can reduce their impact when travelling. We will provide each student with our award winning Responsible Travel Guidebook before departure to provide practical tips on how to minimise your footprint while travelling.

Since 2015, the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) has been working with governments and partner organisations around the world towards fulfilling the Sustainable Development Goals - an ambitious set of 17 targets that together provide a blueprint for a better world by 2030, covering everything from poverty, hunger, health and education to responsible consumption, clean water and climate action. 

Each of our Service Learning Community Projects is designed with the UNDP’s Sustainable Development Goals framework in mind. Read more.

Your group will witness first-hand the range of simple but effective measures that we follow to help preserve both the environments and cultures. WYA is operated by World Expeditions, an award winning and highly regarded leader in environmental and sustainable tourism.

World Expeditions FoundationThe World Expeditions Foundation (WEF) is an Australian based not-for-profit entity whose main aim is to raise donations for education based projects in underprivileged communities across the globe.

It’s philosophy reflects a focus on education as paramount in improving the standard of living in poor and indigenous communities, believing it empowers young people with a valuable asset for the future and in turn helps to assist developing countries to reduce poverty and achieve sustainable development. 


Get involved - learn more here.

We aim to ensure that our destinations retain their natural character and cultural diversity for future generations. This can only be achieved with the support of all of our travellers and business partners.

The Responsible Travel Guidebook has been written by our parent company, World Expeditions, as an educational tool to ensure that our travellers and partners are aware if the role they play in our Responsible Travel efforts.

The booklet sets out our environmental objectives and practices, provides examples of responsible tourism initiatives we put in place in the field and outlines how travellers can play a part in reducing the impact on environments and cultures around the world.

We hope you find reading our award winning Responsible Travel Guidebook useful. Please share it with your friends.

View the Responsible Travel Guidebook

World VisionChildren working and living in tourist areas are especially vulnerable to physical, emotional and sexual abuse. 


Travellers have a part to play in creating a safer tourism environment for children - our small actions can make a big difference to help protect children from abuse and exploitation. When you travel we encourage you to take the following actions that have been put forward by World Vision: 

ACTION 1: If you are concerned about the welfare of any child, tell your tour guide immediately. 

ACTION 2: Instead of giving money directly to children begging or selling food or souvenirs, support their families and communities or donate to reputable children’s charities. 

ACTION 3: Treat children like you would in your home country. Before taking photos of children, always ask for their permission. 

ACTION 4: Never take a child anywhere without the supervision and permission of their parents or guardian. 

ACTION 5: Before visiting or volunteering with vulnerable children, research the organisation to ensure they have standards and procedures that protect children’s physical and emotional wellbeing. Please don’t support ‘orphanage tourism’. 

ACTION 6: Spread the word about Child Safe Tourism. Share this information with your friends and family while you travel and when you return home. 


Keeping with our commitment to Child Safe Travel we have a Child Protection Code of Conduct in place. This Code of Conduct relates to travellers over the age of 18 spending more than one day working on a community project at a school.  


World Youth Adventures does not support orphanage tourism.


Visit to learn more.

WYA does not support riding elephantsIt's difficult for travellers to resist the temptation to ride on the backs of these beautiful and incredibly intelligent creatures. 


In recent years there has been much research into the impact of tourism activities on elephants’ well-being and although it is possible to have mutually positive encounters with elephants the research shows that the overriding situation for elephants in the tourism industry is very negative. 


From the brutal taming of baby elephants called 'the crush' to ongoing confinement and the mere fact that the elephants spine is not meant to carry heavy weights there are many instances where incorrect management results in a negative impact for the elephant. 


Because of this World Youth Adventures discourages travellers from riding on the back of elephants and we do not include elephant rides in our itineraries.


The best elephant experience is a wild one >> as part of a wildlife safari, viewing wild elephants in their natural environment.

Nepal permanent eco-camps in the Everest regionThanks Sadly, only 25% of Everest’s original forest remains intact. 


Teahouses and lodges burning wood for cooking and heating, mainly for you tourists, just add to the problem of deforestation. 


Our Permanent Eco-Campsites in the Everest & Annapurna regions are key to our sustainable approach to trekking in Nepal, and adventure travel in general. 

These campsites are exclusive to World Youth Adventures and offer a truly a unique and safe experience in the Himalaya for school groups


Benefits for the environment 

1. To ensure that the environmental footprint of our permanent eco campsites is significantly smaller than that of a tea house/lodge based trek through close scrutiny of the following components:

  • Water usage - all campsites use a rainwater tank
  • Waste management - all non-biodegradable refuse is incinerated or carried out and composting toilets are used.
  • Fuel in the Everest region - we burn yak dung
  • Fuel in the Annapurna region - yak dung is not available in the lower Annapurna regions (below 4000m), however there is a surplus of dead wood on the forest floor in the lower Annapurna region, and so we burn surplus dead wood at the Annapurna permanent campsites in the lower Annapurna
  • The wood used to construct World Youth Adventures' campsites is brought from sustainable forests in India. 


2. Minimise deforestation to:

  • Reduce the threat to the biodiversity of the regions flora and fauna.
  • Reduce the risk of landslips, which can be catastrophic for villages in their path. 

3. To set the benchmark, demonstrating how commercial trekking groups should be operating in this delicate environment. 

Benefits for local communities

  • A camping base trek provides year-round employment for local people—nearly 25% more than lodge-based treks.
  • Contribute in a positive way to the social, cultural and economic aspects of life for the Sherpa people by providing training, purchasing of local goods and produce and interacting with the local people respectfully and with high regard. 

Benefits for trekkers

  • Gives trekkers a unique insight into Sherpa culture via the dedicated Nepali crew accompanying their trek.
  • This is trekking at its best with spacious tents, raised beds with foam mattresses, composting toilets, washbasins, hot showers and some of the finest views on the planet
  • All meals are served in the comfort of a heated dining room.