How to Win a Volunteer Ecotourism Trip to Thailand

Have you ever won a holiday? I’m slightly surprised, delighted and grateful to say that I have been selected to join a 20 day volunteer ecotourism project in Thailand.

Here are three tips to help you get selected and win your own Inspiring Adventure:

1. Be Connected

You have to hear about relevant competitions from somewhere.  Start a meet up  or a twitter account or a Facebook page around something you are passionate about.  Connect with other people who are interested in the same things.  Help these people find relevant, exciting, interesting opportunities, and they will help you too. I saw the competition on Facebook in April, entered it, and shared it on the Inspiring Adventures Facebook page and Twitter.  Did you see it?  Did you enter? What are you doing to build your own relevant connections?

2. Enter the competition

As Woody Allen says, “90% of success is just showing up”.  If you don’t enter because you don’t think you will win, you will never win.  Do you know how many other people entered?  Do you definitely know that someone else is going to win?  Sign up for the competition and try. You might just surprise yourself. Continue reading

Copacabana or Ramsey – The Final Beach Walking Video?

Farewell for now Brazil. It was a wonderful journey.  I hope you enjoyed following the adventures, and the inspiring stories from the social entrepreneurs.  Have you been inspired to take your own Inspiring Adventure?  I hope so!

Together with you, I visited all five regions of the fifth largest country in the world in just over five weeks.  I feel very lucky to have been able to meet and share the stories of more than 15 social entrepreneurs with you.

Inspiring Adventures is now has more 2600 followers. My fun YouTube videos have been viewed more than 50,000 times, and my articles are starting to be published on major online content providers. Thank you for your interest and support!

I feel very grateful that my stories will continue to spread, and I am happy to be part of a positive journalistic movement.  I strongly believe that we can all find amazing people doing inspiring work where ever we look.  From exotic locations on the other side of the world, to right in our own local neighbourhood.

As you can tell from the video, I’m now back in the UK. I will continue to share fun adventures, along with stories to inspire you to start your own adventures.

The journey is the reward

Lagoa Do Cassange – Social, sustainable, and a beautiful place to stay.

Lagoa do Cassange – one of the most sustainable and socially beneficial guesthouses in the state of Bahia.

I was connected with this place by Alison Mcgowan  of HiddenPousadasBrazil, and if anyone knows guesthouses around Brazil, it’s her.  She’s spent the last 4 years documenting and recommending the best around Brazil on her website. I think HiddenPousadasBrazil is likely to see quite a lot of growth as the World Cup and Olympics get closer.

When Alison recommended Lagoa do Cassange, I knew I had to visit.  As I arrived after my 9 hour door to door journey from Salvador,  I could tell it was something very special.  Pallm trees lined a deserted beach. My bungalow overlooked the sea.

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After a delicious breakfast on my first full day there, I had the chance to spend some more time with one of the owners of the guesthouse, Flavio Hauser.  He explained to me in more detail why Lagoa Do Cassange had recently been awarded first place for an internationally recognised socia-cultural award.

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As well as their sustainability policies, including solar power and recycling, Flavio, and fellow co-owners Marcelo & Isney started a number of unique projects in the area.

I’ve written about these in detail for ResponsibleTravel.com, why they are so important, and the massive positive effect it is having on the local population. Here’s the link to my full article on ResponsibleTravel.com.

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In short, they ran a free adult education course for 5 years, and built a kindergarden school that now has 30 students.  They have run computer classes for over 100 local residents, and teach environmental awareness through beach clean up days, and a fascinating honey project.

Of course, you’d never necessarily know that these projects are going on.  It’s just a beautiful place to stay, and by choosing Lagoa do Cassange, you’re also helping to reinvest back into the local community.

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The Social Butterfly of the most Beautiful Beach

My adventure to the remote Marau Peninsula started from Salvador, in the North East of Brazil.  Up at 7am, I’d be there by 3pm.

The ferry left Salvador at 8.30am.  I’d just missed one when I turned up, but it’s kind of great that I did.  On my same ferry, were a couple of British expats.  Lewis, Chloe, and her daughter Anna.  It turned out we were going the same way.  When I got on the coach after the ferry, and found myself sitting next to Lewis.  Lewis spends most of his time in Ibiza, running a private concierge service, and is thinking about spending more time in the beach paradise that we are both headed towards.

Chole, who used to be nurse in Peckham, London, decided to switch her life for another destiny. She’s spent the last 5 years building a beautiful lodge called Butterfly House, just next door to the one I was planning to visit.

It turned out that it was Chloe’s Birthday, so of course there was a party at Butterfly House, to which I was kindly invited. What would you expect from the social butterfly of Butterfly House? Thanks Chloe!

After getting lost on a deserted beach, which is pretty hard to do, I arrived in time for Lewis’s signature cocktail, his Caiprioska.  As you probably know, it’s just like Caipirinha, but with vodka instead of Cachaca.  A couple of hours later and we were doing shots of tequila, and I was invited to stay the night in a gorgeous double room, complete with coconut light switches that I think look a bit like boobs with large nipples.

After the gourmet-amuse bouche, from super friendly head chef Ilious, there was a delicious home made chocolate cake, which we finished off for dessert at breakfast.  Luckily Ilious had lived in Portobello Road, London, and knew exactly how to make scrambled eggs and bacon for a wondering Englishman (well.. Manxman).

I had a wonderful time in the Butterfly House, and recommend it to anyone looking for a slice of bohemian luxury on the Marau Peninsula.