A scenic cycling tour for sustainable & responsible travel
Peloton Against Plastic
The Peloton Against Plastic is a tour of some special parts of South East Asia, with a different perspective. It is a cycling trip that will have you visiting some remarkable sites, by the blue of the ocean and the lush green of the trees, while connecting with locals, enjoying the food and having some fun while making a difference. This tour gives a unique opportunity to see some of the 'less tourist areas', because the bikes can take you into places that other vehicles can't. Along the way, some of the issues that locals are facing with plastic pollution will be highlighted.
Phu Quoc Island, Vietnam. Image credit: Mane Collective
Australians love to visit places like Cambodia, Thailand & Vietnam for the scenery, low budget food and shopping, but most don't think about their impact or the waste that they leave behind. The idea with this tour is to avoid single-use plastic which includes bags, bottles, straws, styrofoam and containers. Any plastic that is used, will be carried on the trip so that at the end you can see how much couldn't be avoided.
Vietnam doesn't have recycling as we know it. Image credit: Mane Collective
These countries don't have the capacity to deal with all the waste that is created by themselves, let alone the tourism, so this tour has been designed to show how you can travel responsibly and also to generate conversation about prevention of plastic pollution.
A site in Phu Quoc, Vietnam where there is more plastic than beach. Image credit: Mane Collective
This concept is being led by sustainability advocates Paul Hellier, of Fair Food Forager and Jamie Lepre of Environment-To-Be and Mane Collective, will accompany the journey and film a documentary of the tour. Musician, Ash Grunwald, has also confirmed he will be joining for some of the ride too.
Paul Hellier said "Trying to avoid single-use plastic is a challenge and we might not always be successful. We will film honestly as we battle the language barrier to avoid straws, plastic bags and Styrofoam."
A scenic bike ride in Vietnam. Image credit: Intrepid Travel
Peloton Against Plastic is between 16 June - 12 July 2018. The ride departs from Hanoi, Vietnam, travels through Cambodia to finish in Bangkok, Thailand. Bikes are provided and some of the longer distances will be covered by train rides or vehicles. You have the option to participate in the full tour, half tour or if you're living, working or holidaying in the area, you can join the tour for a day or more. Booking and flight details from Australia can be found here.
Angkor is a special place to visit. Image credit: Paul Hellier
Through the ride, local businesses and community groups who address plastic pollution will be showcased, and you'll see how they in turn, boost local jobs and provide long-term economic empowerment for local communities. The aim is to hear the ideas and solutions from locals about the future of the plastic and to raise awareness.
Vietnam Clean and Green, beach clean. Image credit: Paul Hellier
Rehash Trash is a social enterprise who takes roadside rubbish and uses this to create stylish fashion and homeware goods. Not only does this create useful products while cleaning up the environment, it empowers women to gain new skills and employment. If you book onto the Peloton Against Plastic trip, 10% of the trip cost will be donated to Rehash Trash and matched dollar-for-dollar by The Intrepid Foundation.
The aim of this tour is to create awareness of the issues and also to present a story of hope that people in South East Asia are acting to reduce the plastic problem through education, initiatives, innovation, business solutions and cleanups. It's about listening to their ideas and learning from each other. You'll get to see some of the amazing beauty that these countries offer, and you can even be featured in the documentary too.
Amazing scenery in Vietnam. Image credit: Paul Hellier
Ash Grunwald said "We don't always see this in Australia, because although the sea is full of plastic, we don't always see it, but you see it in South East Asia. A lot of us enjoy travelling and it's a good chance to give something back".
If you can't make the tour, but want to support it from afar you can follow through social media. Or you can see how you can help out here.
For more information see the website or email firstname.lastname@example.org.
You never know who you will meet, Image credit: Paul Hellier