Wednesday, 14 December 2016

Ways to travel, another approach

When we hear the phrase "ways to travel", it is usually referred to the means that we will choose to travel and sleep on our route. I won’t talk about that in this post.
What I am going to write is about our mental dispositions, our expectations when we travel.
I’ve choose three words for three different trips: Being, passing or knowing.
Let us see the meaning of the words according to the dictionary:
• Being: Said of a person or a thing: To exist, to be in this or that place, situation, condition or current way of being
• Pass by: Carry, drive from one place to another. Change, move to another place. Cross from one part to another.
• Knowing: To ascertain by the exercise of the intellectual faculties the nature, qualities and relations of things
But according to the culture and concern of each person, the concept of travel is different:
- There are groups of tourists whose motivation is to visit the maximum of monumental sites, shopping areas and shows, indistinctly. They tend to lean more on the fame of the site than on their own personal interest. These are those of the BEING group.
- There are groups of tourists whose objective is to take the photo in front of the most emblematic places that appear in the guides of the places they pass through. These are those of the PASS BY group.
- There are other people who decide to travel to discover from the visited places different customs, unusual meals out of their daily diet and discover a different natural surroundings than they have in their usual comfort living places. These are those of the KNOWING group.

In Conyegar we like to give guided walks and interpreted walking tours that are aimed at the third group. We combine the comments about the species that we find in the nature of the area, with debates about photography and legends of the place, to finish tasting traditional cuisine of the region.

Extremadura, Spain

Monday, 15 August 2016

Guided tour = tour operator?

There are humble projects that are born with the idea of helping to know to the travelers the customs and surroundings that they visit. These simple projects, are very distant of the tourist packages proposed by the big operators.
We are a small family businesses where the workers, encouraged by the desire to collaborate in the knowledge of places and people, offer a close and personalized treatment to our visitors.
The illusion in our proposal and the knowledge of the environment, allow us to transmit our personality giving singularity to the experiences of the traveler.
Neither can we, nor is it our goal to compete with the big bets of multinational companies. The scope of our work is local and often not understood in our own area of influence by people who live in the area:
"... The roads are indicated and signposted ... whoever wants to see them can finds them ..."
Is a phrase we can hear from the locals, and somehow is true.
Guided tourism does not pretend to discover anything hidden; Nature, heritage, peoples, are there for those who want to find them.
Guided tourism linkes the anecdote to the place, the legend to the environment, the didactic explanation of the geological formation of mountains and valleys, as well as the story of the origin of the settlements of towns and their people.

We like to call this guided tourism "active cultural tourism" and it is an ageless tourism, it only requires sensitivity and interest in knowledge.

Sustainable tourism

Friday, 29 July 2016

Family Experience

We have for some time been defining the term "active cultural tourism", differentiating it from "active tourism" witch is related to risk activities.
Going camping with our son is tourism, because we leave the comfortable environment where we usually live, is cultural because we know places, customs or gastronomy and is active because it requires a dynamic attitude.
It is an activity that is frequently declined in third parties for its accomplishment: school, farm educational centers, companies specialized in camps and so on. But when we choose this way to approach our children to nature, parents are not involve, they are not there.
The difficulty to do it ourselves is that usually we don't know the places to do it with guarantees of success, being sure our family will be safe.
If you want to enjoy an adventure experience with your kids, there are companies that give us technical support and safety guarantees.

Your family will have an experience they will always remember because being in an environment far from the usual of our life, always leaves a mark.

Holidays with children

Saturday, 16 April 2016

Any age...

... is suitable for walking, knowing, tasting, with no hurry.
I would say even more; walking, knowing, tasting with no rush is advisable at any age.

Nowadays the access to information is really easy and that lead us to label, fit, facts with moments, ages with activities, environments with behaviors.
I have noticed that there is less and less personal commitment in individual actions, it seems that the most comfortable thing is to follow the script of what is expected from us according to our circumstances. This makes today's trips are based mainly on the tour packages. Today the agencies are even able to prepare an 'adventure product' with all naturalness, omitting the strong contradiction that it entails.
I recall the memory of a friend with who I went on an impromptu trip to central Europe and after 9 days of travel he said to me: Aren't we having a good time?"
It was the first time he was on a trip without a well defined objective and he was lacked references.
I think this new way of tourism has led to us to move more around the world but do fewer trips. There are more visited monuments and cities but less known places,

This is what encourages us to struggle for active cultural tourism, for the trips made for knowing, for vacations full of walking, observing, discovering. This is the purpose of Conyegar.

Knowing places with Conyegar, Spain