Fair Trade Travel Pass

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Who we are

Voted 1 of the 25 most ethical travel experiences, we are a collaboration of 7 Backpackers who have all been Fair Trade accredited, having committed ourselves to the growth of our local and culturally diverse communities through a journey under the African sun.

What we do

The choice is yours – we work according to your preference, organizing it all!  Choose your length of travel (14 to 35 days);  a mode of travel (bus or car); and your activities (volunteer programs, guided cultural/historical tours, shark cage diving, fishing, horse riding, surfing, hiking, or relaxing on a beach).

What makes us different

We grant you the opportunity to travel with a conscience. Immerse yourself in our local cultures, knowing that every cent spent on your journey is used to the benefit of our local communities of South Africa through the development projects of our backpackers.

From little things, big things grow.

7 buccaneers-backpackersThe Fair Trade Travel Pass gives you the freedom of choice to visit the most beautiful and culturally diverse parts of South Africa knowing that the Community where you spend your money is going to see the benefit.  Take the hassle out of trying to make the right choice and have a positive impact on local people and environs with this collection of leading Fair Trade in Tourism community lodges and activities.

Our Travel Pass takes you to the most breathtaking parts of South Africa from mountains to sea; surf, volunteer and meander along virtually untouched beaches!  You also choose your mode of transportation – either take an affordable rental car along your journey or travel on the South African backpackers bus: The Baz Bus.  Don’t worry, we will even pick you up at the airport!  Choose to be involved with volunteering programs and take an adventure with shark cage diving, surfing or meandering along beaches that are mostly undisturbed by man.  Local guides will show you the hidden gems, learn something new like fishing or horse riding, taste local authentic food you have never tried before or just relax in a hammock and read a book.

With the FTTP you can build the trip that’s best for your time and budget without missing out on the rich history and culture of ZA.  Make friends from all over the world while staying at some of the most unique and eco-friendly destinations South Africa has to offer.

17  Bulungula Children

Stay at award-winning, Fair Trade certified backpackers and soak in a truly memorable holiday – all while knowing your trip made a difference.

Lebo TourYou can purchase the Travel Pass by emailing us here.

Remember that by staying in these chosen establishments and going on these selected tours, you are assured that your travel benefits local communities and economies, and that the business is operated ethically and in a socially and environmentally responsible manner.

 

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Please note that the itineraries below are additive: in other words, Itinerary 3 includes Itineraries 1 and 2 plus the additional experiences listed under Itinerary 3.

 

Itinerary 1: “Mandela’s South Africa” (14 days)

24 Lebo Beach

Days 1 – 3 Soweto

You will begin the trip gaining an important cultural and historical foundation about this incredible rainbow nation.  The iconic township of Soweto has been home to anyone and everyone famous involved in the liberation of South Africa and so is rich in culture and heritage.  Here you’ll stay at the famous, funky Soweto Backpackers.

Soweto is a melting pot of cultures from around the country and the continent creating a funky vibrant atmosphere you cannot find anywhere else.  You will get a chance to experience this all at street level on one of Lebo’s famous bicycle tours which will leave you in awe of this crazy country of ours.

The next day it’s off your bike and on with the walking shoes as you enjoy the fantastic Jozi Walking Tour that allows you to absorb the sights and sounds of this great world city.

 

21 Sani PassDays 4 – 7 Drakensberg/Lesotho

Spend two days in the beautiful mountain nation of Lesotho.  Visit this nation of sheepherders and learn about the rural lives of the Sotho people. Learn how Lesotho remained an independent nation within South Africa by staying in a local homestay.

Eat, drink and breath the mountain village air with your new village family during your homestay – hike in the wild Drakensberg mountains and discover the legends of the San Bushman.

Pack your woolly socks…you might even see some snow in these mountains!  Throughout your journey you will be expertly guided and cared for by Drakensberg Adventures.

 

 

hike wild coastDays 8 – 14 Hike the Wild Coast

Visit the untouched beauty of the Transkei region – Mandela’s childhood home.  By hiking, surfing and staying in villages you will gain a deep appreciation for the region and the Xhosa people who call it home.  You will have a personal guide to hike with you between backpackers lodges and homestays along the coast.

Jump off sea cliffs, surf untouched waters, drink local brews by the campfire all with a local Xhosa guide.  You will quickly understand why those who make the special effort to reach the Wild Coast end up spending their lives finding ways to return.

For the less adventurous, you can spend this week relaxing on breath-taking beaches and learning about traditional Xhosa culture while at the same time chilling and exploring beautiful coastal villages.

Whether hiking or relaxing, you will stay at the following Fair Trade lodges: Mdumbi BackpackersThe Coffee Shack and Bulungula Lodge.

Cost: R11,450 (approx: US$1050)
For bookings please contact Melanie Samuels: melaniebackpack@gmail.com

 

Itinerary 2: “Xonnect with South Africa” (21 days)

9 volunteer-africaThis trip includes all the discovery of Mandela’s South Africa (itinerary above) plus the opportunity to make a real difference in a Xhosa village. Through Volunteer Africa you will spend your days in Chintsa immersed in the Wild Coast Pre-Schools Community Services Project.  This program involves working closely with our wonderful pre-school teachers, bringing important skills to the lives of young learners in the Chintsa community.  Working under the guidance of professional volunteer teacher coordinators, you will aid in arts, playtime, music and all educational aspects for this age group.  Your afternoons may involve running a homework club at a farm for vulnerable and orphaned children, surfing or helping with sports programs as part of our youth development initiatives.

Cost: R16,705 (approx US$1500)
For bookings please contact Melanie Samuels: melaniebackpack@gmail.com

 

 

Itinerary 3: “The Rainbow Nation” (28 days)

 

1 backpack swimming poolAfter you discovering South African history, hiking along the Wild Coast and delving into the Xhosa community during the “Xonnect with South Africa” tour above, you will fly from East London to Cape Town – one of the most beautiful and fascinating cities in the world.

You will be collected from Cape Town airport and brought by shuttle to The Backpack, the multi-award winning backpackers lodge in the city centre where the swimming pool winks at the mountain and the Café’s food hits the spot!

4 gansbaai-great-white-sharks (9)On one of your days in Cape Town you’ll have the once in a lifetime opportunity to go Shark Cage Diving or Boat-based Whale Watching with the leading, ethical operator in this field: Marine Dynamics.  Here you will also be given a list of community based activities recommended by the locals.  Don’t miss out on the opportunity to hike Table Mountain (recently named one of the natural wonders of the world), tour the world famous Stellenbosch vineyards and hang out with the penguins at boulder beach.  This is also the perfect spot to pick up some souvenirs at the local craft markets in the city centre before you go home.

Cost: R22,780 (approx: US$2070) (+flight from East London to Cape Town)
For bookings please contact Melanie Samuels: melaniebackpack@gmail.com

 

Itinerary 4: “Wild South Africa” (35 days)

 

marinevolunteerAfter 28 days of experiencing “the Rainbow Nation” (see above itinerary) you will spend one week in Gansbaai, South Africa (The Great White Shark Capital of the World!) assisting with operations at Marine Dynamics Shark Cage Diving, Dyer Island Cruises and Dyer Island Conservation Trust.

As a Marine Volunteer you will work closely with a team of shark-specialists and marine biologists.  You will experience a wide range of South African marine wildlife while studying shark behaviour, biology and ocean conservation.  You will have access to informative lectures and research facilities and even have the opportunity to take place in community projects.  You will spend most days on the shark cage diving boat and have regular access to cage diving opportunities!  This is an incredible opportunity to learn about the marine ecosystem of South Africa from experts in the field!  You will stay with other volunteers from all over the world and make connections that last a lifetime!

Cost: R25,318 (approx: US$2300) (+flight from East London to Cape Town)
For bookings please contact Melanie Samuels: melaniebackpack@gmail.com

 

NOTES/OPTIONAL EXTRAS

coffeesurf* All prices include accommodation in a shared dormitory.  Single and double rooms are available; please enquire about costs when making your booking.

* The pass has been coordinated to work along the popular backpackers bus “Baz Bus”.  The Baz Bus is especially great for single travellers because you meet other adventurous spirits easily along your journey.  You must arrive in Johannesburg on a Monday or Wednesday to fit along the Baz Bus route.

* Please let us know if you would prefer to self-drive the pass, this way we can arrange an affordable rental car.  Please note that a self-drive will be a more affordable option for groups of two or more. Otherwise the Baz Bus will be scheduled for your travels.

* Through the Wild Coast a shuttle can be arranged instead of a hiking option if preferred.

* It is highly recommended that you purchase a South African cell phone and SIM card upon arrival in Soweto.  Many of the rural destinations you will be staying will not have reliable internet access and some areas will have limited cellphone service.

14 Bulungula Lodge

* Food is not included but can be purchased affordably at all accommodations.  Cooking areas are also provided at all locations, however please note that you will need to buy provisions in some areas located some distance from the lodges.  For example, there are no stores along the Wild Coast, please buy all snacks and provisions before you arrive.

* Please do not hesitate to contact us with any questions or concerns.  We have tailored these itineraries to create a unique opportunity and get tourists off the beaten path.  Based on advice from other travellers we have customized the trips to create the most meaningful experience.  We are extraordinarily proud of what our nation has to offer and we want the world to see South Africa in a way that builds positive, memorable relationships for both the traveller and the local communities!

All companies associated with the Fair Trade Travel Pass are Fair Trade certified, community based organizations.  By travelling in the Fair Trade way you become more than just a “tourist”, by interacting with our communities you become a “traveller.”

18 Mdumbi Lapa with Pool Table

* This is not a trip for the weary.  Pack your hiking boots, sense of adventure, willingness to learn, a hungry tummy and a big friendly smile.  You are about to have one serious and maybe even life changing adventure!

For bookings and pricing please contact Melanie Samuels: melaniebackpack@gmail.com

 

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