4 Getaways That Give Back
From mentorship to baby turtle releases, hotels are adding “voluntourism” to the amenity list
Volunteering at Kahumana Farm on Oahu
Take a break from the mai tais to get your hands a little dirty in Hawaii. Four Seasons Resort Oahu at Ko Olina has joined forces with Kahumana Farm, where volunteers can harvest and wash produce, care for animals, and pull weeds. Physical labor may not be a part of your island itinerary, but those extra calories burned mean a helping hand and an excuse for another cocktail (rooms from $825).
Vidanta Resorts, a collection of luxury hotels at Mexico’s top beaches, founded Fundacíon Delia Morán, a nonprofit that supports underprivileged children through extracurricular activities. Their Nueva Vallarta resort organizes after-school programs, from English and math tutoring to painting classes and sports. Their Nueva Vallarta, Riviera Maya, and Acapulco locations also run a sea turtle program. Last year they released more than 330,000 newly hatched baby turtles into the ocean (rooms from $1,020).
For more reptile rescue, the Four Seasons Resort Punta Mita arranges baby turtle releases through February. During sunset, guests take a guided walk to the beach before learning facts about the process, like how most female turtles return to the same beach where they hatched every time they nest. All proceeds are donated to the release program (rooms from $695).
At The Ritz-Carlton, Kapalua in Maui, individuals and groups can customize volunteer opportunities. Guests have cleaned beaches, planted trees, and researched the local ecosystems through the resort’s Ambassadors of the Environment Program (rooms from $450).