At Archipelago Choice we believe that you, as visitors to the tiny biosphere reserve of Príncipe, should be a benefit to the islands community and environment so that in 10 or 50 years’ time, the local people have an island they enjoy living on and the biodiversity remains sustainable and intact for the visitors to enjoy.
How do we ensure your holiday to Príncipe contributes to sustainable tourism?
All our partners on the island consciously strive to support the community and protect the environment.
Between them, Bom Bom Eco Lodge, Hotel Roca Sundy and Praia Sundy (coming soon!) directly employ 270 local people to work in their hotels. Indirectly, the visitors, through construction, agriculture and forestry, they provide a source of income to around 15% of the population.
The team of hotel staff they employ received a year’s training from the Azores School of Tourism and a structure exists for them to gain promotions if they wish.
As much as possible, the hotels use food from the island in their restaurants and they have given training to the community to produce products they can sell. For example, at the gorgeous kitchen gardens at Paciencia (which you’ll visit), the community make delicious cocoa butter, jams and dried fruits that are used at the hotels and sold to visitors. This all helps the sustainable message.
Also, a group of local ladies were given the opportunity to join a fully funded trip to Ghana to learn how to make glass jewellery that they sell to the visitors.
Half of the money you pay for your evening turtle watching trip goes to the Príncipe Trust and helps pay a wage to beach rangers who protect the turtles from being dug up for food. The rangers also tag the turtles and take measurements which contribute to conservation efforts as well making sure you learn all about the turtles you see.
As they can take up to 150 years to break down and have to be exported back to Europe to be recycled, plastic water bottles are not used at the hotels. Instead glass bottles are sterilised and filled with filtered water for you. The hotel pays a small local business to take old glass water bottles away, crush them and make them into material that can be used in construction; the crushed glass is then purchased back for use in their renovations.
For four years, the hotels have supported the Príncipe Trust which now runs independently as an NGO. Among other great projects, the Trust supports guides to set up their own small businesses; the guides set their own prices and maintain the trails so that you can discover their amazing island while contributing directly to the local economy.
Together we make sure your holiday to Príncipe contributes to its sustainable development through tourism. With an area of just 136 square kilometres, the only way tourism can be sustainable is for it to be small scale, exclusive even and carefully managed. For this we have to pay a little more.
We hope you agree this is the right way for it to be.
Find out more about Príncipe in our post ‘Why is Príncipe so special?‘.
How do I get there?
Holidays are very personal to each of us and planning a trip to somewhere less travelled requires good advice and careful planning. For over 20 years the team at Archipelago Choice has travelled extensively to all the special destinations we offer and have unrivalled knowledge based on our own personal travel experiences.
Sao Tome and Principe are incredibly special islands to visit and if you think these islands are for you, then love to hear from you. For a friendly chat, please call 00 44 (0) 17687 721050 or email: firstname.lastname@example.org
If you’d like a free brochure then please click on the link – São Tomé holiday brochure
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