Vegetarian Peru Adventures is an independent licensed Tour Operator, based in Cusco, Peru, inscribed in DIRCETUR, the regional directory of exterior commerce and tourism in Cusco. Our mission is to provide good quality tours with a highly personalised service (small group travel, individual travel and bespoke tours), providing the maximum amount of contact with and benefit for the rich indigenous cultures and its peoples, mainly in Peru, sometimes also in Bolivia and Ecuador. We provide deep insights into the Andean way of life and therefore we promote a SLOW and HOLISTIC way of TRAVEL, allowing our guests sufficient time to learn through intercultural meetings with indigenous communities (the Quechua community of Taquile Island at Lake Titicaca, Peru, the Quichua community of Peguche in Ecuador, the Matsiguenka community at their own Lodge Casa Matsiguenka in Manu National Park, Peru serve as some examples) and plenty of contact with locals, e.g. school projects like the free Waldorf school of P’isaq in the Sacred Valley (www.kusikawsay.org), local weavers (for example we sometimes visit projects of weavers in Willoq near Ollantaytambo and also Chinchero), musicians playing very pure autochtonous music (we have arranged a number of private concerts for our clients with some of the best musicians of Peru and Ecuador), local artists whose workshops we visit, farmers, healers and Andean ritual specialists with whom we perform ceremonies and offerings for Mother Earth and the Apus (mountain spirits).

We try to lessen the negative impacts of tourism by supporting the local economy, favouring small family run guesthouses rather than hotel chains and corporate businesses. When meals are included we make sure that these are the highest quality, preferably local Andean dishes prepared with organic ingredients where possible. The health and wellbeing of our guest are our utmost concern.

All our staff and business partners are locals. We actively support several Quechua communities by our scheduled visits, through paying entrance fees to the community and hiring the services of local accommodation (homestays with indigenous families on Taquile Island), food preparation, porterage and local guides as well as weaving demonstrations and musical events. We also support a farming family with two disabled children (we are godparents to one of the boys) from Hatuncolla in the Altiplano who receive donations from us and sometimes from our clients who become inspired through our visits there. Furthermore, we encourage our clients to leave donations for the Pisaq school and other projects where appropriate, like school utensils on Taquile Island.

One important aspect of our visits to Taquile Island is that we visit families that live fairly far away from the village centre where tourism usually conglomerates. By staying in a more remote part of the island we support families that have otherwise little opportunity to participate in tourism as nearly all tour operators and individuals prefer to favour families that have their homes very centrally located. Apart from income through the provisions of transport (we use their own boats to travel from Puno), lodgings and food, we also provide income for them through the services of porterage, guiding services, weaving demonstrations and musical events as well as encouraging the purchases of their handicrafts.

On our trips to Manu National Park, we use the community run Matsiguenka Lodge as our destination, thus generating income not for an individual enterprise but for the Matsiguenka community at large.
Our new condor sightseeing trips benefit the community of Chonta through the purchase of an entry ticket organised by the municipality of Limatambo. We also employ local guides and donate US $ 5 per person towards projects of conservation and/or community projects for Chonta. We also contract local mule drivers for the transportation of our picnic lunch infrastructure to the Mirador of the condor, thus providing an additional income for members of the local community.

On our trips to Ecuador, we have engaged in community tourism at Peguche, near Otavalo, spending a whole day with members of the community shopping for food at the local market which we then prepared and ate together, before visiting textile cottage industries and musical instruments workshops learning to make our own panpipes. The day was rounded off with a private concert by Ñanda Mañachi, local musicians with whom we interacted. Evidence of some of these events can be found on our channel on YouTube (veggieperu)

As a general rule, we pay the official rates to our providers (guides, drivers, cooks etc) and do not haggle to bring the prices down in order to be more ‘competitive’ as this would only create a chain reaction of economic hardships. We are concerned about Fair Trade and pay our providers on time and provide them with the necessary perks and comfortable working conditions.

By favouring SLOW TRAVEL in the first place we try to lessen the impact made by CO2 emissions, as instead of being on the move every day we try to leave days free (of using transportation) for hikes and interaction with the local communities. We favour hotels, lodges and guesthouses that have an ethical approach towards the environment in as much as possible, like Yoga Limatambo Guesthouse (already a member of responsible travel) which uses only cruelty-free soaps and shampoos. It does not use bleach in their laundry. Organic fruit and vegetables from the guesthouse garden are used in the food preparation.

Although our clients are of course, free to do as they please, in our included meals we do not provide meat dishes for both ethical and health reasons (cruelty to animals, hormone injected meat etc.), but also for reasons of political consciousness as 7kg of vegetable protein are necessary in order to create 1kg of meat which creates a high negative impact on the environment. Instead, we promote typical Andean dishes prepared from local harvests.

Our wildlife tours and hikes are conducted in a manner that we leave only our footprints. Our clients are briefed properly about the code of conduct of visiting protected areas (like the Mirador of the Condor) or National Parks and/or local communities which include: walking gently and quietly without making noise in order not to disturb wildlife, not walking in areas not designated to wildlife observation in order not to disturb birds nesting or other species, not using highly toxic insect repellents but citronella based brands, dress code (wearing colours that blend in with the environment in order not to frighten and disturb animals), so that our impact on the areas visited will be minimal.

All littering is strictly prohibited, we ask our clients to keep their personal rubbish including used toilet paper and organic wastes which we later collect in order to take it back to the nearest rubbish tip.

On Taquile Island we recommend our guest to stick to the squat down toilets rather than water toilets, the reason being that there is still no running water on the island and every drop of water has to be collected from the wells by the teenage daughters. Not only is there a severe water shortage (we ask our guest to adapt and have ‘cat washes’ only or dip in the lake as long as they wear a modest bathing costume for this), but the problem is also dealing with the sewage in an appropriate way and so far there are no provisions made for this which is why the squat down toilets are a lot more sensible. We provide a shovel for heaping up earth on the human wastes which can be composted.

Although there are rubbish bins on Taquile Island we collect all our garbage and take it back to the mainland in order to decrease the negative impact that our visit may have on the islanders.

We do not allow the use of soap, shampoo and detergents in the rivers. We encourage people to have their plastic bottles refilled with drinking water rather than buying a new bottle.

We avoid wasteful packaging with our boxed lunches as we use recyclable materials only (metal cutlery and plastic dishes). Our condor sightseeing trips donate US $ 5 per person to conservation projects and/or community projects of the area visited.

Another one of our mottos is that small is beautiful. Therefore we work with small groups only (max. 14 people), this lessens the impact on the environment as well as the local communities visited whilst it enhances the quality of our tours as we can give more attention to the individual needs of our clients.
By favouring SLOW TRAVEL in the first place we try to lessen the impact made by CO2 emissions, as instead of being on the move every day we try to leave days free (of using transportation) for hikes and interaction with the local communities. We favour hotels, lodges and guesthouses that have an ethical approach towards the environment in as much as possible, like Yoga Limatambo Guesthouse (already a member of responsible travel) which uses only cruelty-free soaps and shampoos. It does not use bleach in their laundry. Organic fruit and vegetables from the guesthouse garden are used in the food preparation.

Although our clients are of course, free to do as they please, in our included meals we do not provide meat dishes for both ethical and health reasons (cruelty to animals, hormone injected meat etc.), but also for reasons of political consciousness as 7kg of vegetable protein are necessary in order to create 1kg of meat which creates a high negative impact on the environment. Instead, we promote typical Andean dishes prepared from local harvests.

Our wildlife tours and hikes are conducted in a manner that we leave only our footprints. Our clients are briefed properly about the code of conduct of visiting protected areas (like the Mirador of the Condor) or National Parks and/or local communities which include: walking gently and quietly without making noise in order not to disturb wildlife, not walking in areas not designated to wildlife observation in order not to disturb birds nesting or other species, not using highly toxic insect repellents but citronella based brands, dress code (wearing colours that blend in with the environment in order not to frighten and disturb animals), so that our impact on the areas visited will be minimal.

All littering is strictly prohibited, we ask our clients to keep their personal rubbish including used toilet paper and organic wastes which we later collect in order to take it back to the nearest rubbish tip.

On Taquile Island we recommend our guest to stick to the squat down toilets rather than water toilets, the reason being that there is still no running water on the island and every drop of water has to be collected from the wells by the teenage daughters. Not only is there a severe water shortage (we ask our guest to adapt and have ‘cat washes’ only or dip in the lake as long as they wear a modest bathing costume for this), but the problem is also dealing with the sewage in an appropriate way and so far there are no provisions made for this which is why the squat down toilets are a lot more sensible. We provide a shovel for heaping up earth on the human wastes which can be composted.

Although there are garbage bins on Taquile Island we collect all our garbage and take it back to the mainland in order to decrease any negative impact that our visit may have on the islanders.

We do not allow the use of soap, shampoo and detergents in the rivers. We encourage people to have their plastic bottles refilled with drinking water rather than buying a new bottle.

We avoid wasteful packaging with our boxed lunches as we use recyclable materials only (metal cutlery and plastic dishes). Our condor sightseeing trips donate US $ 5 per person to conservation projects and/or community projects of the area visited.

Another one of our leitmotivs is that small is beautiful. Therefore we work with small groups only (max. 14 people), this lessens the impact on the environment as well as the local communities visited whilst it enhances the quality of our tours as we can give more attention to the individual needs of our clients.