Sustainable Tourism

Nepal has an international reputation as a prime ecotourism destination. The Nepalese mountains are not just a water tower of Asia but also an attractive destination for ecotourism. The Ghale Kharka - Sikles Eco trek in the Annapurna Conservation Area is popular for experiencing both nature and culture within relatively short periods of time. HSFF promotes carbon neutral tourism and provides rural experiences through home-stays.

The concept of volunteer tourism continues to grow within the global tourism industry. Volunteer tourism consists of holiday-makers who volunteer to fund and work on social or conservation projects around the world and aims to provide sustainable alternative travel that can assist in community development, scientific research or ecological restoration.

Rural villages in the mountains and hills serve as ideal destinations for the growing demand of volunteer and eco-tourism. By emphasizing education, villages such as Thak, Tang Ting and Sikles will provide a deeper and more meaningful eco-experience that pushes the boundaries of environmentally and socially responsible tourism. Such education will be practical, personalized and 'hands on'. It will require participation—indeed work—from the visitor. In this sense, the villages create an experience that lies at the intersection of eco-tourism and volunteer opportunities. This conjunction facilitates a particular brand of volunteer tourism in which visitors can participate and work in many aspects of the School of Sustainable Living. Some of the activities include:

  • Construction of eco-friendly nature park
  • Construction of campsites, eco lodges and public schools
  • Creation and maintenance of trekking trails
  • Eco certification for hotels and lodges in the mountains
  • Development of home-stays sustainable tourism
Sustainable Tourism

Visiting Inspiring Places

HSFF organises group visits to inspiring places in the mountain areas including the Madmi Kuidmi and Kohala Sothar in Annapurna Conservation Area in Nepal. These regions, immersed in spectacular mountain views are not only landscapes teeming with rare fauna and flora but also contain high cultural significance.

Himalayan Sustainable Future Foundation (HSFF)
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Yarsa Gumba Expedition

Yarsagumba is a rare and unique fungus that parasitises caterpillars in the meadows above 3,500 meters in the Himalayan region of Nepal. It has been regraded as an expensive life saving tonic. It is also believed to be a cure for sexual impotency - a Himalayan Herbal Viagra. “Yarsagumba," meaning "summer grass, winter worm," is a specimen created when a parasitic fungus infects caterpillars underground which, were they not forestalled by the fungus, would produce ghost moths. It is revealed that 500 grams of top quality Yarsagumba can sell for up to $13,000 in Lhasa, Tibet, or up to $26,000 in Shanghai. Education is the key element to promoting sustainable resource conservation. Knowledge of fungal reproduction and an end-date to the collection season might allow for sufficient spore dispersal to guarantee sustainability.

This Himalayan "gold rush" buoys rural economies. Keeping it around for future generations is a central challenge. Annually, during June/July, HSFF organises a special high altitude trip in the Kori area of the Annapurna Conservation Area- the aim is to advance knowledge of this mysterious species for scientists, researchers, conservationists, and other interested groups.