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If you have any questions or would like to get in touch with a member of YAANA Ventures, please contact us through the below methods:

E-Mail: business@yaana-ventures.com

Telephone: +66 2591-5420

Fax: +66 2591-5422

Postal Address 33/2 Tiwanon Road 28
Tiwanon Road, Bangkasor
Nonthaburi 11000 Thailand

New Tented Eco Camp Keeps Rainforest Standing in Cardamom Mountains, Cambodia

New Tented Eco Camp Keeps Rainforest Standing in Cardamom Mountains, Cambodia

A NEW tented camp is being opened in southwest Cambodia with the tagline, “Your Stay Keeps the Forest Standing.”

Guests staying at the Cardamom Tented Camp will be sustaining a conservation-friendly business that was set up to help keep an 18,000-hectare (180 km2) concession out of the hands of loggers, poachers and sand mining operations. The tract of land in Botum Sakor National Park, part of a vital elephant migration corridor, is managed by Wildlife Alliance, a Cambodia-based organisation involved in wildlife rescue and forest conservation.

Wildlife Alliance is supported by the Golden Triangle Asian Elephant Foundation, an initiative of the Minor Group.

The nature conservation concession includes diverse habitats: seaside mangroves, lowland tropical forests, and triple-tiered canopy in the hills, which reach up to 335 metres (1,100ft) elevation. Asian elephants, dhole, clouded leopards, hog badgers, sun bears, mouse deer and pangolin all rely on the mature forest habitat around the camp.

Neighbouring concessions have been taken over by companies that cut indigenous timber and replace it with rubber or palm oil monoculture trees that cannot sustain wildlife diversity. The new camp is making a stand against that trend.

Guests at the new lodge on the Preak Tachan river will be able to take guided day hikes and river trips with local rangers. While walking, guests will be able to spot wildlife and learn about the mangrove and rainforest ecosystems and the challenges of keeping naturally mature forests standing in face of pressure to ‘develop’.

Visitors can also help by replanting indigenous trees in degraded parts of the concession, go kayaking, help rangers on patrols with their camera traps, or engage in other conservation activities.

At the eco-camp, which is a three way initiative between the Minor Group, YAANA Ventures and Wildlife Alliance, a percentage of the revenue will go directly to Wildlife Alliance. Any profits will be reinvested locally.

“When we tell guests, ‘Your stay keeps the forest standing,’ we 100% mean it,” says John Roberts the Minor Group’s Group Director of Sustainability and Conservation. The Minor Group’s Golden Triangle Asian Elephant Foundation has been fully funding the ranger protection efforts for the past four years at the site.

A condition of holding the concession from the Cambodian government is that economic activity must take place. Drawing on successful ecotourism models from across the world, a low impact tented camp was chosen by the stakeholders as the best sustainable option.

Bangkok-based YAANA Ventures was invited to create the camp, based on its previous experience running the Banteay Chhmar community tented camp in Banteay Meanchey, Cambodia and the Anurak Lodge at Khao Sok National Park in southern Thailand.

“The tented camp sets an example for the local and national economy as a sustainable alternative to illegal logging, poaching and habitat destruction,” says Willem Niemeijer, CEO of YAANA Ventures. “The combined expertise of the stakeholders makes this a uniquely qualified project.”

The Cardamom Tented Camp will soft open 1 September with nine comfortable, furnished tented accommodations, each with an en-suite bathroom and a large patio area.

The camp, with a riverside restaurant, is off grid and largely powered by solar panels.

Cardamom Tented Camp can be reached by road from Phnom Penh, while Trat airport and Koh Chang in Thailand is less than a four-hour drive away.

The Cardamom Tented Camp will open bookings on 25 July for stays after 1 September 2017.  Pricing, packages with tours and activities, and all-inclusive deals, will be announced shortly.

Further information: CardamomTentedCamp.com.

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© COPYRIGHT 2018 YAANA VENTURES. ALL RIGHT RESERVED. DEVELOPED BY YAANA VENTURES MARKETING TEAM

YAANA Ventures Helps WTTC Tourism Leaders Support Bangkok’s ‘Green Lung’

YAANA Ventures Helps WTTC Tourism Leaders Support Bangkok’s ‘Green Lung’

Around 100 attendees from the World Travel & Tourism Council Global Summit in Bangkok will plant more than 300 mangrove trees in Bang Krachao, Bangkok’s ‘green lung’ across the Chao Phraya River adjacent to the Thai capital.

The aim is to draw attention to environmental issues and the continuous pressure to develop one of the last green areas of the city.

The greening effort on 28 April is part of the global Tourism Cares non-profit initiative, which unites tourism industry members to give back to local communities and is held in close collaboration with the WTTC.

“I think WTTC tourism leaders will be pleasantly surprised by the wonderful 16 km2 of orchards, canals and rural walkways that we have on the doorstep of downtown Bangkok,” said Willem Niemeijer, CEO of YAANA Ventures, a sustainable tourism facilitator company which was chosen by Tourism Cares to organise a green event after the summit.

bang krachao

“Bang Krachao is Bangkok’s last oasis of calm, home to hundreds of bird and plant species. The pressure to pave it over in the name of ‘development’ is immense. We should keep it green. Our tree planting is a small step in that direction,” said Niemeijer.

There is a three-year scheme with the Royal Forestry Department, Kasetsart University and petroleum company PTT to enhance public green spaces and ensure at least 60% of the area remains green.

However, changing Bangkok lifestyles and developers offering to pay around 24 million baht (US$700,000) for an 80 x 80 metre plot of land mean that pressure to sell is immense.

Increasing numbers of the Thai capital’s walkers, cyclists and kayakers use Bang Krachao as a convenient escape to nature, a five-minute ferry ride from Bangkok. The eco-friendly solar powered Bangkok Tree House hotel in eastern Bang Krachao is indicative of how sustainable tourism is now popular in the area and could help keep Bang Krachao mostly green.

WTTC members will inspect the area first hand on Friday.

“It will be an important day,” said Gerald Lawless, WTTC Chairman. “One where we can personally demonstrate and inspire others by showing we are hands on, caring and engaged and leaving a positive contribution to the city of Bangkok.”

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Khiri Travel Announces New Eco Tours in Thailand and Indonesia

Khiri Travel

Khiri Travel Announces New Eco Tours in Thailand and Indonesia

New eco tour experiences in Phitsanulok, Loei, Chiang Khan and North Lombok revealed ahead of ITB Berlin

Khiri Travel will unveil two new community and nature based tour experiences in northern Thailand and North Lombok at ITB Berlin. The emphasis is on unique insights into lesser-known corners of popular destinations, with the trips giving flexible options, depending on budget and interests.

In Thailand

Continuing its mission to reinvent tourists’ perceptions of Thailand, Khiri Travel will introduce its “Hidden Gem: Phitsanulok to Loei & Udon Thani” 4D/3N trip at ITB.

Chiang Kan Thailand

In it, guests enjoy a trip to Phra Buddha Chinnarat in historic Phitsanulok and a trip to Phu Hin Rongkla a former 1970s communist stronghold in the mountains and the strange Suan Hin Pha Ngan geological karst formations.

There’s a bicycle ride to a weaving village, lunch in an eco farm and overnight in Chiang Khan, a teakwood settlement with narrow lanes on the southern bank of the Mekong river overlooking Laos. Guests have the option of staying in a Thai-style villa with pool overlooking the Mekong or a chic hotel in town beside walking street.

From there guests can travel on to Vientiane and Luang Prabang in Laos or on to Udon Thani via Phu Pra Bat historical rock formations for air connections.

In Lombok, Indonesia

Khiri Travel Indonesia is launching a two-day community based experience combining Sembalun*, North Lombok, the gateway to Mt Rinjani and the Gili islands of East Lombok.

Gili islands Lombok Indonesia

Guests ride a bicycle through verdant fields in Sembalun to a weaving village for coffee and a chance to listen (and play) traditional gamelan music, then ride through a bamboo forest to see a community school where the emphasis is on learning while playing.

The trip then takes guests to East Lombok for overnight camping on a deserted island in the eastern Gili islands. The Khiri guide takes guests by boat to a mangrove conservation area on Gili Petagan, to a remote beach on tiny Gili Layar and on to Gili Kondo for overnight camping.

In the morning enjoy snorkeling, beach exploration and relaxing followed by a beach barbecue then back to the mainland.

Visit Khiri Travel at ITB Berlin at Hall 26 B, Stand 226 to find out more about new travel experiences in Indonesia, Thailand and around Southeast Asia.

ITB Khiri

*  The Khiri Travel bicycle rides in Sembulan were developed as part of GIZ-SREGIP, a German-Indonesian cooperation project. Khiri Travel shares its best practices through GIZ-SREGIP to community partners to improve their knowledge on how to develop the trip with consideration of environment, local culture and visitor satisfaction levels.

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YAANA Ventures and Khiri Travel Pick Up Two Awards

YAANA Ventures and Khiri Travel Pick Up Two Awards

It was a good night for YAANA Ventures companies at the 27th Annual TTG Travel Awards 2016 in Bangkok, 29 September.

TTG - Awards - Bangkok - 2016 - Sustainable - Yaana Ventures

TTG – Awards – Bangkok – 2016 – Sustainable

Newly formed YAANA Ventures won “Most Sustainable Travel Company.” Khiri Travel won “Best Travel Agency – Indochina.”

Receiving the sustainable company award on stage, Niemeijer told the audience of 450 travel trade professionals: “There never has been a time when a focus on sustainability is more important. Business can no longer afford just to be about financial gain, or even client satisfaction. The focus has to be equally on communities and the environment.”

Khiri Travel CEO Richard Brouwer accepted the best travel agency, Indochina, award on stage and thanked TTG Asia readers.

TTG – Awards – Bangkok – 2016 – Sustainable

TTG - Awards - Bangkok - 2016 - Sustainable - Yaana Ventures

TTG - Awards - Bangkok - 2016 - Sustainable - Yaana Ventures

Niemeijer launched Khiri Travel in 1993 and grew it into a leading and highly respected Asian DMC with a strong focus on sustainable and responsible tourism.

In March this year, Niemeijer relinquished the Khiri Travel CEO position to set up YAANA Ventures, which has since invested in a continuously growing stable of innovative and responsible travel and hospitality companies such as GROUND (educational travel for young people and companies), Anurak Community Lodge (a new eco-resort in Khao Sok, southern Thailand), Grasshopper Adventures (bicycle tours in Asia) and Banteay Chhmar Tents in Cambodia. Each entity is firmly committed to sustainable tourism practices.

TTG - Awards - Bangkok - 2016 - Sustainable - Yaana Ventures

TTG – Awards – Bangkok – 2016 – Sustainable

Organized annually by TTG Asia, the TTG Travel Awards honor the best of the best in the Asia Pacific travel trade. “It marks a time for the industry to recognize the exemplary organizations that raise the bar of excellence,” said TTG.

Voting for the TTG Asia awards is done annually online by readers of TTG Asia’s assorted travel trade publications. The Outstanding Achievement Awards, including Most Sustainable Travel Company are made by TTG Asia’s editorial team.

Khiri Travel CEO Richard Brouwer said: “Khiri Travel is honored to be hailed as the best travel agency in Indochina. Khiri continues to stretch its wings in its other destinations such as Indonesia, Sri Lanka and the Maldives by using the same sustainable Khiri values to create memorable high quality travel experiences, all with an emphasis on authenticity in those destinations too.”

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Let It Grow – Initiating Sustainability

GROUND Asia

Let It Grow – Initiating Sustainability

Students, colleges and businesses increasingly want to show their relevance and positive contributions to helping communities in need across Asia. The challenge is for them to do it sustainably, in a way that brings meaningful results for both schools and villages in need.

Picture a scene where the villagers, say in Cambodia, are asked what kind of community development they need most. This could be health care, water supplies, sanitation, housing, education, community infrastructure, capacity building, even sports coaching. On the environmental conservation side it could be reforestation, re-greening projects, wildlife conservation, or animal rescue.

The challenge is then to match those needs with a proactive international school, college or business in Hong Kong or across Asia, especially if it’s a college where community development or comparative culture studies are part of the curriculum. It’s even better when participating in a community development project in a managed and structured way counts towards end-of-year exam grades. Making these projects relavent to students is key.

This is why GROUND was created – to make the community development projects a reality – and to match those basic community needs with proactive colleges in affluent countries.

Ground Students

After consulting with a community about what their needs are – we’re talking school facilities, environmental conservation, health care, water supplies and so on, not a bunch of iPads – the college or business in the affluent donor country typically raises funds.

GROUND will then create a program or itinerary for the college students in consultation with the host community, college teachers and administrators.

Over the years, we’ve found that a successful community development trip should include cultural orientation, educational lessons, and some traveling in the destination in order for students to see the bigger picture of the country. Yes it’s community development, but it’s development that is linked to educational travel that broadens horizons.

The core of the trip is the hands-on constructive work in the village. This may mean building classrooms, helping with a community health project, improving sanitation facilities, planting trees, and so on.

During the trip the students are typically asked to reflect on what the have seen and done, how circumstances on the ground varied from their pre-trip perceptions and what personal lessons they have learned. We encourage thoughtful interaction between the host community and the students.

After the trip, GROUND encourages the students to keep in touch with the project and will continue to work with the villagers and invite other international colleges and businesses to contribute to the project. We don’t want to leave the village in the lurch, since the core idea is sustainable community development.

The idea for GROUND came after Khiri Travel (GROUND’s sister company) successfully handled trips for student group for 10 years. These included experiences in Cambodia for the American Youth Leadership Program, programs in northern Thailand for international schools in Singapore, and BISJ students visiting the Mekong Delta, and more. Each trip had a strong community development, cultural exchange and learning element. Satisfaction levels on all sides were high. We saw the potential.

GROUND now taps into all that understanding and has honed the travel and community development experience to strengthen leadership skills, build resilience, and teach cross-cultural understanding.

The full range of GROUND’s projects and services can be seen online at GROUNDasia.com, including testimonials.

GROUND is a member of the World Youth Student and Educational Travel Confederation and will participate in the confederation’s conference in Belgrade in September.

By: Jack Bartholomew
 
 

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Travel Organizations Mobilize to Support Orangutans

Khiri Reach Orangutan Indonesia Forest Fire

Travel Organizations Mobilize to Support Orangutans

Khiri Reach and partner organisations such as Wow BorneoAsia Transpacific Journeys and Khiri Travel Indonesia have united to draw attention to thousands of orangutans and other wildlife whose habitats are being destroyed by annual forest and peat fires in Kalimantan, Borneo.

Tens of thousand forest fires, many set by palm oil growers, have destroyed habitats. At their peak, August to October this year, the fires raised haze levels beyond acceptable limits to humans and animals. While the haze and burning has eased due to seasonal rains, the orangutans and other wildlife will remain threatened when the slash and burn starts again next year.

Even within national parks and forest reserves such as Sabangau, Tanjung Puting, and Katingan, hundreds of ‘hotspot’ fires this year impacted an estimated 10,000 orangutans and other species such as cloud leopard and hornbills, causing displacement, death and injury as well as massive habitat destruction.

Dozens of orangutans rescued by the Borneo Orangutan Survival Foundation (BOSF) now need shelter, medication and nourishment before being reintroduced into areas where native forest still exists.

“We want to mobilise the support of partner organisations, not just in Indonesia, but across the region to help the orangutan, preserve forest habitats, and encourage a halt to the burning of forests,” said Pharatah Senapan (or Kaew), Chief Ambassador for Khiri Reach. “A long-term sustainable solution is needed to ensure protection for the habitat of this unique species.”

Kaew said an alliance of travel related companies were now supporting the BOSF, which has saved dozens of orangutans, many of them emaciated, dehydrated and injured while fleeing the flames or inhaling smoke for weeks on end.

A BOSF spokesperson told Khiri Reach: “The foundation welcomes initiatives on orangutan and habitat conservation from partners. We are keen to fulfil the Orangutan National Action Plan – to put all orangutans in the rehabilitation centers back in the forest by 2015.”

Apart from a donation to BOSF, Khiri Reach has started an awareness campaign for staff and travel industry partners called, “Everyone Needs a Home.” It uses poignant visuals of orangutans trying to survive in burnt forest landscapes.

“We can’t stand still and not take part to help with the situation,” said Khiri Reach Indonesia spokesperson, Elske de Vries. “In fact, we believe everyone should join.”

In the meantime, members of the travel industry and the public can support the rescue work being done by BOSF by either donating funds online or adopting an orangutan at donation.orangutan.or.id. Click here for more information of the awareness campaign.

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