Escape Adventures, endeavour to ensure that our actions always benefit the people, communities, economies, environments and eco-systems we visit.
Our Kenya and Tanzania (KT) Cycle tour is our longest running tour. Our very first KT cycle tour departed from Nairobi in June 1999 and today is still our most popular tour. The following are specific ways how we aim to make a difference in Kenya & Tanzania
Escape Adventures supports Local Kenya & Tanzania Businesses
We charter our awesome KT support vehicle “The beast” from Innocent, a Nairobi local and a small owner/operator. Escape Adventures is Innocent’s biggest client and we lease his vehicle for 5-8 months of the year. In the days (sometimes hours) between tours Inno and his crew leap in to action on the beast, often working from dawn till dusk (sometimes longer) ensuring her mechanicals and services is up to spec and making sure she shines like a new one ready for each of our cycle tours!
We have employed Innocent’s his brother Joseph as our driver, interpreter and local knowledge (and fix-er) for 5+ months of the year since 2009 and he continues to be our longest standing team member. If you have biked with us in Kenya & Tanzania in recent years you will know Joseph well!
All of the accommodation we stay in – in Kenya & Tanzania are small businesses, locally owned guesthouses, community run campsites and local families who we have made long term relationships with.
Both Kenya & Tanzania grow fabulous produce!! Bananas, mangos, pineapple, papaya, coconuts and coffee! Beautiful sun ripened tomatoes, avocados, peppers, cucumbers, onions, plantain… just to name a few! We buy lots of this delicious locally grown fruit and vegetables either directly from the farmers or from local markets. When we eat out we use small locally owned establishments that rarely see tourists.
The Sheldrick Wildlife Trust and Elephant Orphanage
“Best known for our work to protect elephants, the Sheldrick Wildlife Trust operates the most successful orphan elephant rescue and rehabilitation program in the world. But we do much more than this.” (SWT)
The Sheldrick Wildlife Trust and Elephant Orphanage in Nairobi is a long standing and hugely successful trust an amazing organisation that rescues and rears orphaned elephants and other wildlife before releasing them back into the wild.
All our Kenya & Tanzania cycle tours visit the Sheldrick Wildlife Trust and Elephant Orphanage where our entry fee helps to rescue and care for orphaned elephants. Escape Adventures also financially fosters two orphaned elephants: Kamok, a 7 year old female, orphaned at birth and Jotto, a 5 year old male orphaned after being trapped in a well.
The Giraffe Centre, Nairobi. (African Fund for Endangered Wildlife)
All of our Kenya & Tanzania family cycle tours also visit the Giraffe Centre in Nairobi which was created to preserve the endangered rothschild giraffe and is also an education centre for Kenyan school children. As well as learning about the rothschild giraffe and the programs to preserve it – the highlight for Escape Adventures kids is getting to pet and feed the giraffes in the sanctuary.
In East Africa where natural wildlife habitat is under threat, the National Parks and reserves provide a safe place for wild animals to live and prosper! National Park entry fees, mostly from tourists, is a vital source of funding to maintain the parks, pay the park rangers and protect the wildlife. Without this funding most of these parks and indeed any wildlife in East Africa would cease to exist.
During your Kenya & Tanzania cycle tour you will visit three national parks and reserves … Amboseli Nat Park in Kenya and the Ngorongoro crater and Saadani National Park in Tanzania. Not only do our park fees help towards the preservation of these wild spaces and the protection of the wildlife, we also pay local operators to host and educate us and of course it provides you with the amazing opportunity to see these wonderful animals in their natural habitat.
School Visit at Mkuzi School Usamabara Mountains in Tanzania
We have been visiting Mkuzi Primary School in the Usamabara Mountains in Tanzania on all our KT cycle tours since 2000. The focus of our visits is to provide a mutual exchange of culture and knowledge. It is intriguing how a rural school in East Africa functions. The children and teachers are equally intrigued to learn something about life and education systems of the countries that our bikers represent.
Back in 2004-2005, with donations from our bikers, we employed local carpenters to build more than 100 much needed new school desks for the school. While it was amazing to be able to help out; we are very careful for our relationship with this school not to become one of charity and gift giving but more a learning experience for both our bikers and the students. We are very aware of the risks and issues involved with charity and gift giving and the effect this can have with expectations and Government school funding so any assistance we give is carefully considered so as to have no negative effects in the short or long term.
Escape Adventure LOVES planting trees!
In 2013 we began our relationship with Friends of Usambara. Friends Of Usambara Society is a locally instigated, non-profit grassroots organisation that uses tourism to benefit local conservation development.
We wanted to plant trees and help out locally – so what a great idea combining tree planting with our school visits (helping the local kids to learn to value the replanting program). We plant 10 trees here for every biker and every crew member on our Kenya and Tanzania Cycle Tours and we have planted over 3200 trees in the last 6 years.