Like most great things, it started with a problem. We simply sought a solution.
It was 2018 we were planning our next trip away.
Unable to find a trusted source that would enable us to ‘vote with our wallets’, i.e. book a travel experience that mirrored our values, ethics, and basic understanding of unbalanced tourism, we felt stuck, lost, confused, torn, frustrated… (I’m out of adjectives).
At this point, we figured there must be others like us who felt the same way. Why was finding travel experiences which put people and the planet before profit so damn hard?
So, we started to imagine a place where information was easy to access and even easier to digest. And you didn’t need a degree in sustainability to figure it all out.
We knew of various travel brands that had invested in ‘talking’ about doing good – but we wanted to shout from the rooftops about the hidden gems that did more of the ‘walking’ and less of the ‘talking’. Places that took meaningful action and more ambitious steps in the face of climate change.
With remorseless pressure on the environment, extreme inequality, and the increasing frequency of natural disasters, we wanted to find places around the world that evoked hope.
What started out as our own trip – turned into something much BIGGER and more exciting.
What Makes Kiwano Unique?
We tell it like it is. No single trip (not even an eco one) is perfect.
- Planning a sustainable, regenerative trip might seem daunting at first, but it’s worth remembering that taking a few considered actions is better than taking none at all. Whether it be ditching the overcrowded destinations to seek out lesser-known destinations OR switching up your chemical, toxic sunscreen for a mineral-based one. Perhaps a trip where your money is more likely to reach the local people OR opting for a zero-waste hotel? Whichever you do it’s not about doing it all, but choosing an area you’re most passionate about and growing it from there. We hope our handy guide here supports you on this journey.
We do the work so you don’t have to. Empowering you to be smart about travel.
- We aren’t another booking platform hosting 100,000s of properties with the impossible task of properly verifying each one when it comes to their ethics, values, and practices. We’re proud to take our time to research and really get to know each travel experience we share here. Looking across 9 criteria inspired by the planetary boundaries, we hope to empower you to make smarter choices on where you travel to. These 9 criteria you’ll discover on each profile feed into a leaf rating system. So, if you’re passionate about zero waste, read up on it. If protecting wildlife is what motivates you most, awesome, check out biodiversity. In short, we empower you to decide which places and hosts deserve your money most based on the actions they are already taking.
Travel experiences you can trust. The clue is in the name 😉
- Kiwano is a fruit. A horned melon to be more specific, with a luminous green centre. It’s not that great looking, but on the inside it’s beautiful. With greenwashing now rife, with misleading information, and countless sustainability certifications it’s not easy to see the true custodians of people and place. That’s why we look from the inside out and get to know each place before ever recommending them to you. Once we’ve really understood a place, its mission, and values we ensure that it also provides incredible service and a great experience, based on customer reviews.
3 Reasons To Use Kiwano
1) We Host The World’s Only Book Club All About Saving The Planet…
A staycation, a holiday to a faraway place, or time at home are all ideal opportunities to lose oneself in a good book. Discovering a great book and getting lost in its pages is the ultimate joy.
In fact, reading is proven to reduce stress and improve our mental well-being. So, switch off that Netflix series, take a deep breath and get comfy with a good old-fashioned page-turner.
From heartfelt climate change stories to uncovering the hidden life of trees, discover the perfect book for any eco-conscious traveller.
Subscribe to our monthly eNewsletter to gain access. Click ‘stay updated’ in the menu.
2) We Match You With An Eco-Travel Expert Who Does All The Research, Planning & Booking…
Winning you back precious time, instead of hours spent wading through websites, and giving you confidence that there is no better-matched travel experience based on your needs, budget, and values.
Each talented travel expert brings an exciting new dimension to your Kiwano experience.
Whether you’re looking for an eco-conscious honeymoon or a sustainable family trip these wonderful experts are on hand to organise every single element of your trip. Without the extra cost.
Crafting experiences that redefine what it feels and looks like to take a holiday. And not just when you leave the front door, but the moment you enquire.
With outstanding Trustpilot reviews, ATOL and ABTA protected, and each with a wealth of knowledge and expertise in their area of specialism, once you’ve tried holidaying like this you’ll never go back.
Tells Us What You’re Looking For…
3) We Don’t Do Carbon Offsetting. We Inspire 1000s to REWILD our Planet.
I once saw someone write that ‘carbon offsetting is like paying someone else to diet for you.’
The problem with carbon offsetting is it’s firstly unregulated, often lacks transparency, and is geared to perpetuate the behavior which got us into this mess. Presenting a romanticised view that planting trees is all that we need to do to help fight climate change and feel less bad about our carbon footprint is not the train we’re jumping on here at Kiwano.
We’ve chosen to focus our efforts on rewilding as locking up carbon is only one side of the story. Biodiversity is the other.
Rewilding is hope. It’s the light amongst the darkness. And that’s why we have been working alongside our trusted environmental partner Mossy Earth to light up the darkness.
From educational talks and storytelling Rebecca has inspired over 150+ travel businesses to start taking action through the incredible world of ‘Rewilding’, with projects in Africa, Portugal, and Scotland.
Inspired by Ayana’s Ted talk, we’re investing in something far more wide-spreading than tree planting – based on a carbon calculation someone came up with. We’re investing in changing the hearts and minds of 100’s businesses, which have the ability to influence 1,000’s more, and so on.
A domino effect has already begun…
Watch this space as Co-Founder Rebecca will be visiting Knepp in Sussex later this year. A pioneer of Rewilding in the UK. Now home to some of the rarest birds and insects in the UK.