A wake-up call around 4 a.m. began our day. Within 30 minutes, we were on the bus. Despite the yawns, excitement charged the air. Time was of the essence. We were on track to arrive at our destination before dawn. Once there, though, we still needed to locate the perfect place to watch the sunrise. After all, we weren’t the only ones wanting to see the sun rise over Angkor Wat. Being able to do so was an anticipated highlight of our trip to Cambodia.
Adding a Dimension of Meaning to Travel
Eating delicious Cambodian food also ranked high on the list! A search for locally popular Phnom Penh restaurants led us to Friends The Restaurant. Run by former street youth and their teachers, this Tree Alliance restaurant provides training and the promise of a career for youth who previously saw no future.
Friends the Restaurant has become a destination for travelers looking to enjoy amazing Cambodian dishes. And they do so while supporting a meaningful cause. What a dynamic combination!!!
Friends International demonstrates what is possible when addressing needs through social enterprise. The businesses they have created through training facilities provide services enjoyed by tourists and locals alike.
What Does Meaningful Travel Mean to You?
Reflections such as these inspired Ripple Effect Journeys and prompted questions like:
- How can we create travel programs that move beyond the sights to stories about experiences shared with the people who live there?
- Is it possible for those experiences to be mutually beneficial to travelers as well as communities of people in the country being visited?
- If so, what does that look like? How does performing service differ from learning service?
I invite you to join us on a journey that explores questions like these.
I’d also like to learn from you.
- How would you describe meaningful travel experiences?
- Does the thought of “giving back” while traveling appeal to you?
- If so, what types of experiences would enable you to give back?
- Have you ever participated in a service trip? Tell us about about your experience.
I look forward to exploring the world of meaningful travel with you.