Category Archives: luxury volunteering

African Honeymoons …. luxury with a touch of adventure

Over the years, Europe, Asia and tropical islands have been the preferred choice for honeymooners the world over. Despite the rugged beauty and amazing safari lodges and wildlife experiences, the African Continent has been a little neglected…. well, it seems that is changing. The world over couples are seeking out the path less trodden.

Here are 5 destinations that have been catching the eye of honeymooners around the globe:

Botswana Safari lodge1. Botswana

Picture yourself drifting on your private makoro (essentially a wooden dug out propelled much like a gondola in Venice), the sun set reflecting like lightning rods off the canals in the Okavango Delta, as a herd of Elephant feed on the lush grass. Makoro and walking safaris are the norm here and they are an incredible way to soak up the wilderness experience before retreating back to your luxury tented camp to enjoy some champagne. Other amazing places to visit are Gabrone Dam and Mokolodi Natural Reserve.


Honeymoon in Zanzibar2.  Tanzania

Ever thought of marking your honeymoon with a personal challenge? Breathing the rarefied air on the stunning Mount Kilimanjaro may not be for everyone, but would certainly be a unique experience for those seeking something very different. Your challenge surmounted, you can then relax and enjoy some African gems, like Lake Tanganyika. The deepest lake on the continent and home to some of the rarest sea animals in the world. Then head to the Zanzibar archipelago a stunning collection of islands with gorgeous beaches and wonderful eco-luxe retreats. The capital Stone Town even boasts, a UNESCO world heritage ranking as one of the most ancient cities of East Africa.

Honeymoon in Kenya3.  Kenya

Kenya has long been synonymous with african safaris. Sharing together with Tanzania on elf the most amazing animal migrations on the planet as thousands of wildebeest (sadly they have seen a 80% drop in number sin the past 30 years) go in search of new pastures. Combine all manner of wildlife experience, with some of the most luxurious resorts and tented camps in Africa and you have a recipe for a magical honeymoon. The stunning scenery of the Great Rift Valley, the volcanoes of Hell’s Gate National Park and the Crater Laker Game Sanctuary, should also not be discounted, but the rustic “outpost chic” islands of Lamu will make the perfect conclusion to your honeymoon adventure.

Honeymoon Mozambique4.  Mozambique

If you are looking for a relaxed beach style honeymoon, then Mozambique with fabulous cuisine and gorgeous beaches should be on your list. It boasts exotic flora and fauna, crystal clear water and luxurious resorts. Consider Manta Reef at Inhambane and if you are lucky you can cement your life together with a sighting of one of the most graceful and elusive rays on the planet.

Honeymoon in South Africa5.  South Africa

Wonderful food, wine, beaches, wildlife and one of the most beautifully situated hip cities in the world, if not for your honeymoon, then come here at some stage in your life. Enjoy lazy picnics in the Cape Winelands, hike the Cape Peninsula, watch the famous table cloth descent upon Table mountain and drive the beautiful Garden Route. When you have had your fill of scenery and culture, you can visit some of the best safari parks in the world. Certainly a fantastic option to celebrate your future together.


If you would like to add a give back element to your honeymoon and make it a meaning full shared experience, then contact Hands Up Holidays and one of our consultants will help you plan an unforgettable honeymoon experience.





Voluntourism in New Orleans, and beyond

As we write this, Hurricane Isaac is lashing against the Gulf Coast of the USA, in particular New Orleans. It has extra weight as it makes landfall on the anniversary of that most destructive of hurricanes, Hurricane Katrina, which pre-empted the country’s worst ever manmade disaster when the levees failed. The hurricane has already left a trail of destruction in its path, a reminder of nature’s power. It’s a timely reminder that first world and developing countries alike are prone to these things, and our projects are spread across a wide variety of geographical destinations – New Orleans being one of them. If the news coverage of any of Isaac’s havoc has inspired you to help people blighted by natural disaster, please take a look at our voluntourism website and see how you can make a real difference in rebuilding the lives of communities everywhere.

And click for a voluntourism adventure in New Orleans.

Luxury voluntourism

Luxury voluntourism

Now you can enjoy eco-luxury accommodation whilst on a voluntourism vacation

We’re often asked about the luxury element of our ethical incentives experiences. There are many benefits to having high-end accommodation as part of such a trip.
Firstly, the properties are eco-friendly where available, and this, added to the volunteering part of the trip, means that you can treat yourself to a slice of luxury with no guilt attached.
Luxury accommodation helps makes voluntourism accessible to people who want to make a difference, but like to retain their creature comforts, such as:
Companies – for incentive trips or meetings.
Naturally you don’t need to stay in luxury in order to give back, but now there is that option.

Inspiring you to a volunteer vacation

A satisfying by-product of the Olympic Games is that we’re presented with the diversity of our globe, and see people from all over the world join together to participate in one event. If that doesn’t inspire you to get out and explore this Earth of ours, we’re not sure what will. We want to take you to the most exciting, most inspiration corners of the globe, and at the same time do good there, as if you were ambassadors for your own country. We feel this is in the true spirit of the very first Olympic Games, fostering understanding, empathy and friendships. Come and get inspired for a meaningful voluntourism vacation that furthers cultural interaction and understanding, take a look around our website.

Beyond the buzzword: eco-luxe voluntourism

Eco-luxe voluntourism

Eco-luxe voluntourism

The travel industry seems to endlessly be coming up with buzzwords and jargon. “Staycations”, “glamping”…every season sees a new passing trend. When you hear the term ‘eco-luxe’ travel, you may be tempted to pass it off as just another of these flashes in the pan, but here at Hands Up Holidays, it’s an essential part of our voluntourism ethos.

A popular misconception is that you have to rough it to volunteer…perhaps that is because volunteering is associated with students. We understand that there are people who want to help and make a difference, and who want fabulous accommodation as well. The magic is in the mixing of the volunteer projects and then time in luxury hotels that also meet our sustainability standards.

Kenya - Eco-luxe voluntourism

Kenya - Eco-luxe voluntourism

You could stay in a luxury tented camp in Morocco, a solar-heated lodge in Brazil or a sustainably-built hotel in Thailand. If you’d like to contribute to and enrich your next holiday destination – while staying in style – then check out the eco-tourism page on our website.

Voluntourism for all



The great thing about people is that they’re constantly surprising. You may think that voluntourism is only for a certain kind of person, but here at Hands Up Holidays, we help people from all walks of life broaden their travel horizons.
Many of our clients are:
– Families
– Honeymooners
– Baby boomers or retirees
No matter what your experiences, expectations, loves or lifestyles, we’re confident we’ve got something to tempt you. Just take a look at the kinds of people we help discover this amazing world of ours, and make a difference in it.
Join us for an inspiring voluntourism experience – just open you mind and you never know, you just might surprise yourself.