At Cicerone Granada, we believe in sustainable, responsible tourism and have been practicing it for years. That is why, to contribute to the efforts to achieve the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) created by the United Nations in 2015, we focus our activities on equality among people, protecting the planet, our economic prosperity… and because our work takes place in one of the most beautiful historical cities that we know, we focus as well on the preservation and protection of our historical heritage.
To show our support for the SDGs, we at Cicerone joined the Biosphere community in 2021, a form of internationally acknowledged tourism sustainability certification. The Responsible Tourism Institute (RTI) certifies that Cicerone has been evaluated and demonstrated that it meets the requirements in the Biosphere standards.
Biosphere certification is approved by the The Global Sustainable Tourism Council (GSTC), which establishes and manages global standards for sustainable travel and tourism and provides international accreditation for sustainable tourism Certification Bodies.
Cicerone has also joined the Future of Tourism Coalition, which shares a global mission: to place destination needs at the center of tourism’s new future.
It is precisely because of the fact that we are a local company, and we strive to take care of our environment. In fact, we have also joined the REDAC (Andalusian Network to Fight Climate Change), a project managed by Cátedra Hidralia and the University of Granada. It is a group of organizations in Andalusia committed to fighting for a more sustainable society.
To that end, we make sure that our guides are local, that they know Granada and its history well and that they love their whole city, looking after the protection of its historical resources during their work. We want to spread this passion on to our visitors and, to do so, Cicerone Granada long ago decided that our groups should be kept as small as possible. That way our customers get to enjoy a unique experience while, at the same time, the way we make our living does nothing to keep the daily life inside the historical city and its shops from running in a normal way. It’s a win-win situation for everybody!
We started out with the idea that Granada belongs to us all and that, its inhabitants, visitors and businesspeople must always coexist in the city’s historical center of the city with a positive mindset towards the common good as a result.
Our commitment to the planet’s sustainability
- We run small groups to make sure pedestrians and vehicles are able to move normally and prevent crowds of people, with the noise and disturbances they can cause. We pay special attention inside the historical monuments, very important for us.
- The guides who work with us are tourism professionals trained to provide accurate, proven information to all our guests. Being experts in their fields of knowledge, they also hold great respect for our historical and cultural heritage, and they convey the importance of this respect to the visitors.
- We encourage our employees, the people we work with and our guests to follow proper health practices when travelling. As a result, our tours are all done on foot, and if we have to use some sort of transportation so that our guests can reach certain parts of the city, it will be public transportation.
- We encourage people to use the train and bus. Although these modes of transportation also cause pollution, they emit less carbon than cars do and allow us to leave the smallest possible ecological footprint, because we avoid individual greenhouse gas emissions, another essential way to help achieve the Sustainable Development Goals.
- We support the local economy, helping our guests appreciate local products and promoting them, as well as contributing to the diversification of their purchases by avoiding preferential or favorable treatment towards specific shops.
We further environmental awareness by recommending that our employees, guests, partners and collaborators use one single water bottle that can be refilled at water fountains and taps.
- We seek to ensure that all our collaborators, suppliers, guests and employees use as few disposable plastics as possible and recycle all waste properly, recommending that they be placed in the appropriate containers to keep them from ending up in a landfill. We encourage them all to reduce, reuse and ultimately recycle by increasing their awareness of the time it takes for each piece of waste to degrade. And ultimately, we encourage them to reject, avoid and say no to anything that is packaged in plastic.
- With organized groups, we use communication systems on mobile apps, thus avoiding undesirable noise, as well as rechargeable battery devices, which are highly polluting. We also ask participants to bring their own headphones, thus avoiding disposable units that cause more pollution, because they are made of copper and plastic wire.
- We also show our commitment to sustainability when acquiring goods and services, prioritizing those of environmental and socio-cultural relevance.
- Among our employees, collaborators and guests, we promote protection of the natural environment around us, encouraging cultural hiking respectful of the environment without going through unsafe natural land which is not prepared for walking traffic, and at the same time remaining aware that human beings are responsible for modifying the distribution of space and the way ecosystems work at the greatest speed.
- We are aware of the astonishing effect that tourism can have on people’s health and welfare, because of its role as a vehicle for transmitting ideas and customs. That is why we reinforce healthy practices among our employees, collaborators and guests, with a view to creating awareness about health and well-being, thus contributing to the construction of a bridge for understanding between cultures. Through our sustainable practices, we seek to achieve the welfare of our visitors and the local population.
So how can you make your trip more sustainable?
Thank you for choosing Cicerone Granada to visit Granada. Granada is an amazing city filled with unique stories and landscapes. Here are a few tips you can follow to get ready to enjoy your stay with us.
- When planning your trip to our destination, take time to research and perform the necessary steps to have all the documentation, travel insurance and medical checks you may need up to date. Furthermore, from the time you arrive in our country, you should follow the recommendations made by the authorities at all times, especially in the event of an emergency. At CICERONE, we offer you an online consulting service so that you can avoid any problems while preparing for your trip. Contact us!
- Whenever possible, learn about the cultural aspects of the destination you are visiting (customs, cuisine, languages and dialects, traditions, heritage, etc.). With us, this will be the best thing you will take home from your trip. That’s for sure!
- Try not to leave behind any traces of your time among us, so that everything you take with you, including products or experiences, do not cause a negative impact on the travel destination:
– Pay attention to recognize how the destination is managed and the infrastructures which it includes (historical centers, monuments, buildings, transportation, housing, public spaces…) so that your visit does not cause any disturbances to local life. Moreover, contribute to the preservation of tourist attractions by following the rules and using the entrances designed for their upkeep and protection. If you choose us, we will remain by your side to help you with it all.
– Make sure you know about local social norms to prevent behaviors which may be offensive or embarrassing to your host community. With us by your side, you can rest assured that we will give you all the advice you need.
- Make your trip more sustainable: Reduce your Carbon Footprint by staying at your destination longer and making the most of the necessary transportation (the most polluting factor in your entire trip). How can you do this? By enjoying not only the best-known, most popular activities and attractions, but also the small museums, towns and authentic, original and unique natural areas that you cannot find in other destinations, making your stay even more memorable. Ask us about all of the possibilities we can offer you in the city and its environs so that you can enjoy your stay with us.Choose our online consulting service before planning your trip. We are experts on Granada!
- Support local businesses by consuming products or services that are produced at the destination, with both direct and indirect benefits spread across a wide range of society, while also favoring the most vulnerable groups. Similarly, when you purchase any goods or services, only buy what you truly need and do so at a fair price so as not to destabilize the local economy or the living conditions of local business owners and their employees. Check to make sure that the products or services you consume have been produced under decent, fair work conditions that integrate the local population and people at risk of social exclusion, and those which prevent sexual or child exploitation, animal abuse and unhealthy conditions, among others. In the same way, treat all workers respectfully at the businesses in the destination to which you travel. If you choose us, we will help you make the right sustainable and fair choices at all times.
- Enjoy only products, services and experiences that ensure the sustainable use of the water and land resources in the destination and which are respectful of the natural habitat of the native and foreign flora and fauna, avoiding the mistreatment of animals and destruction of the environment. Also display responsible behavior by preventing waste production and collaborate with the sanitation and cleaning programs implemented in the destination to avoid the deterioration of natural spaces while maintaining biodiversity. Avoid excessive or wasteful consumption of water and choose modes of transportation with low or no emissions whenever possible. Also, calculate your carbon footprint and offset it as much as you possibly can. We are already doing this and promise to be a good example to you.
- Place a priority on those products, services and experiences that include new technologies and innovative methods that contribute to the destination’s sustainability through savings or better use of resources, information or communications, whenever possible.At CICERONE, we have already shifted towards these practices, with full digitalization of our processes. The strides we have made through our virtual experiences are another fine example of this.
“Sustainable tourism, a development tool”
Natural resources should be used optimally, respecting the communities which receive the visitors and ensuring that the economic activities are viable in the long term and that the profits are distributed fairly between those involved.
Tourism is a powerful tool in ending poverty, protecting the environment, the historical heritage and improving quality of life. Well-devised and managed, this sector can significantly contribute to the three elements of sustainable development (economic, social and environmental). It is related to other sectors and can generate decent jobs and commercial opportunities.
It is key that all members, tourism companies included, are as aware of the opportunities as they are of the responsibilities which come with this activity and therefore act in a way that ensures the impact on the communities is both positive and guarantees sustainability.
As travellers, the diversity of the world we live in is what brings us together and gives us the opportunity to explore and experience, first-hand, the best of each culture and community. Respecting our world and everything that makes us different and unique will make your trip an even more valuable experience.
We always appreciate your feedback on our sustainable behavior, too. You can tell us what you think by following this link to our questionnaire.
We are always looking to improve!