Harmony in the Himalayas: A Responsible Odyssey in Binsar, Uttarakhand

Source: Author

Nestled among the majestic peaks of the Himalayas, lies a peaceful abode called Binsar in Uttarakhand. My travel to this pristine destination was not just an escape, but an experience of responsible exploration, where every step I took echoed with mindfulness.

As I delved further into the region, I was greeted warmly by the charming villages of Binsar. The locals were eager to share their cultural traditions and their harmonious coexistence with the natural surroundings. I made a conscious decision to support their communities by selecting handmade souvenirs and relishing in the locally sourced cuisine, which was prepared using ingredients from neighboring farms. Every interaction I had contributed to the beautiful mosaic of responsible tourism.

Source: Author

During my journey, I had the pleasure of staying at the Binsar Eco-Resort. This retreat stood out to me for its strong commitment to the environment and sustainability. From the moment I arrived, I was struck by the beauty of the surrounding nature and the thoughtfulness that went into every detail of the property. My cozy cottage was powered entirely by solar panels, demonstrating the resort’s dedication to clean energy. I appreciated the opportunity to experience the comforts of home while doing my part for the planet. The rainwater harvesting system was also impressive, ensuring that the water supply was sustainable and responsible. The eco-resort was a true haven, providing a perfect blend of luxury and conservation. I felt a deep sense of fulfillment knowing that my stay helped to preserve the natural beauty of Binsar. Every aspect of the resort was designed with sustainability in mind, making it easy and natural to make responsible choices.

Through our estimeed Ranjana’s eyes we’ve witnessed and welcome
the strong values and commitment of Binsar Eco-resort
to boost a greener hospitality and a better world”

Hector de Castro, CEO of LUSH,
Luxury Sustainable Boutique Hotels Int’l Association

Source: Author

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As a responsible traveler, I took my first step towards sustainable tourism by exploring the local culinary culture of Binsar, Almora. I experienced the traditional flavors of the region through a wide range of local delicacies and hearty meals prepared using locally sourced ingredients from nearby farms. In an effort to contribute to the local economy, I also purchased locally made beverages, which were crafted by the hands of the community. Drinking these beverages helped me feel a deeper connection with the land and its people, as each sip seemed to carry the essence of Binsar, creating a symphony of flavors that embodied the spirit of responsible tourism.

When traveling to a new destination, it’s important to be respectful of its cultural and religious beliefs. During my recent trip to Jageshwar Dham, Kainchi Dham and Golu Temple, I made sure to dress appropriately in order to show my respect for the sanctity of the sites. I also made sure to abide by the ‘no photography’ rule inside the temples, and refrained from taking any pictures of the sacred deities. Instead, I fully immersed myself in the prayers, trying to add to the peaceful and serene atmosphere of the sites without disturbing the sacred environment. Being mindful of the local customs and traditions can help us to be responsible and respectful travelers.

The experience was a testament to the delicate coexistence between human visitors and the wild inhabitants of Binsar,
a harmonious balance maintained by respectful observation”.

Ranjana Tiwari

Source: Author

One of the highlights of my journey was the trek to Binsar Wildlife Sanctuary. With like-minded trekking partners, we pledged to leave nothing but footprints on the trail. No food wrappers, no litter—just the sounds of nature echoing through the sanctuary. We refrained from carrying any food or alcoholic beverages or engaging in activities that could disturb the delicate balance of the ecosystem. Reaching the Binsar Zero Point was not just a physical achievement; it was a victory for responsible exploration. The breathtaking views from the summit were a reward for our commitment to tread lightly and leave behind only memories.

As I bid adieu to Binsar, I carried with me not just photographs and souvenirs but a profound sense of fulfillment. My journey had been more than a mere vacation; it was a harmonious dance with nature and culture—a reminder that responsible travel is the key to preserving the treasures of our planet. The experience was a testament to the delicate coexistence between human visitors and the wild inhabitants of Binsar, a harmonious balance maintained by respectful observation.

Dr. Ranjana Tiwari, author and LUSH member
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