5 Sustainable Summer Holiday Ideas For The Family

For this year's summer break, why not explore some ideas that will reduce the harm we do to the planet with our holidays x
Learn more about India's traditional architecture at workshops           Photo credit Indi Architecture
Learn more about India's traditional architecture at workshops Photo credit Indi Architecture

The rise in responsible, slow, and immersive travel is leading to travelling as a force for good, rather than one that trashes local host communities. When you are planning your summer break, bookmark this list of holiday ideas where you learn something new, in the midst of some stunning landscapes in India, and also give something back to the local community. That's a win-win situation for all.

Hone Your Thangka Making Skills

The Norbulingka Institute in Dharamshala, named after the Dalai Lama's summer palace in Lhasa, is a haven for Tibetan culture. As artisans around the world struggle to preserve age-old traditions and techniques in a fast-paced and mechanised world, the institute helps preserve this form of community ancestral knowledge. And as a visitor, you can sign up for one of their workshops and stay in their guesthouse. They have nine workshops, including thangka painting, statue making, thangka applique, woodcarving, applique, wood painting, tailoring, weaving, and screen printing. You can even pick up products made by them at the store or online.

More details here.

Camp And Learn In A Wildlife Sanctuary

For all the wildlife enthusiasts who run in your circles, gift them certificate courses in subjects such as ornithology, herpetology, biodiversity conservation, butterfly studies, botany and marine conservation. Eaglenest Wildlife Sanctuary is situated in West Kameng district of Arunachal Pradesh and is also a birder&rsquos paradise.&nbspFor more information, visit bnhs.org.

Pick Up Soil Science

Ever wanted to learn how to grow vegetables, herbs, and fruits, but weren&rsquot confident enough about how to go about it Or perhaps you did not think you had enough space in your flat or house to do so Or have you been looking for the perfect family holiday option which teaches your kids all about nature, the soil, and earth We found the perfect solution for you. Smell Of The Earth is a gorgeous farmstead located in Birbhum (near Shantiniketan), run by a couple who gave up their life in the USA and decided to settle down in the land of Tagore. They bought land, built a beautiful earth-friendly house and over the years, set up a self-sufficient farmstead which is now the hub of lessons on permaculture, growing food, and leading life in an eco-friendly manner. More about them here.

Volunteer In Ladakh

For many, it&rsquos cooler to get a tan from building solar plants than from sunbathing. Here&rsquos your chance. A body called the Students&rsquo Educational and Cultural Movement of Ladakh (SECMOL) offers volunteering opportunities for a minimum stay of three weeks. You can help the staff by teaching school droputs. They also look for Indians who can prepare Class 10 students for exams in April-May or October-November. More about them here

Pick Up The Ropes Of India's Vernacular Architecture

A growing number of people becoming interested in natural building with a desire to build their own homes from natural materials with their own hands. However, no one was offering opportunities to learn directly from master artisans. This is where an organisation like Indi Architecture comes in. It is a social enterprise located in Spiti, Himachal Pradesh which strives to protect, conserve and teach the methods of vernacular architecture - a path to sustainable living.&nbspwherever&nbspone still finds traditional architecture dominant, you will also find traditional culture thriving.&nbspIndi Architecture&nbspoffers two different models for tours. The first is that of&nbspworkshops, wherein they seek out artisans, learn from them their unique vernacular tradition, and then collaborate with them to devise a workshop showcasing them and their skills.&nbspOn these tours, Indi Architecture takes guests off the beaten path to meet interesting locals, explore hidden villages, experience diverse ways of living, meet inspiring people and enjoy home-cooked local cuisine. The workshops and tours enable people to travel and learn something new. That could be learning about Rajasthani plasters or Mohrakashi lime frescoes, or it could be learning about the culture of the Spiti Valley.

Read more about them here.

Learn more about India's traditional architecture at workshops           Photo credit Indi Architecture
Meet These Three Heroes Championing A Greener India

Related Stories

No stories found.
Outlook Traveller