Our mission

“Whenever you travel, wherever you travel, remember to respect nature, respect culture, and respect your host. You can be the change you want to see in the world. You can be an ambassador for a better future”.

  • Taleb Rifai, United Nations World Tourism Organisation Secretary-General Travel.Enjoy.Respect campaign of 2017

"Travel is the only thing you buy that makes you richer"

  • anonymous

Do you know what being a responsible traveler means?

Responsible tourism aims to create a positive interaction between visitors and local host communities so that economic, social and cultural benefits of tourism are fairly shared among participants while the environment is protected and cared for.

In simpler terms - it's a way of giving back while doing something we all enjoy - travel and being guests.

In other words - responsible tourism is the opposite of commercial tourism, which causes problems such as mass tourism (which leads to overcrowding) or unethical tourism. Think of Venice, Barcelona, Amsterdam, Great Wall of China, Louvre Museum, elephant rides in Thailand or intrusive visits to tribal communities in Africa. These are examples of negative effects tourism can create.

Romanian Friend's mission is to support responsible tourism in Romania through our tours, trips and activities that are carefully selected, crafted and reviewed by us, natives, so that local communities in our country will benefit from the financial and inclusive impact tourism can have, while giving you a memorable and authentic travel experience in Romania.

How do we do that? We make sure that all tours on Romanian Friend are:

  1. conducted by our local, independent partner-guides with extensive knowledge and connections in a particular area, proud of their roots and what they do
  2. include services and products from the local economy: meals or food tastings with regional ingredients or recipes, stays at traditional guesthouses, etc.
  3. include visits to lesser-known attractions and sights where paying a small entrance fee helps support the maintenance cost of historic or cultural buildings, natural park or wonders
  4. you will meet real locals - villagers, craftsmen, artisans or producers, talk to them, hear their stories, see them at work and be able to buy a hand-made and authentic souvenir from them

... and many others.

Our tours will take you outside of major cities and into traditional regions such as Transylvania countryside,
Maramures or Bucovina, where you will discover the fascinating cultural heritage, natural beauty and unique way of life of Romanian people.

Why do we do it? Because many parts of Romania are underdeveloped, neglected by the government and local authorities and provide few economic opportunities for younger generations. This led to a massive migration from villages to major cities or even other countries in Europe, in search for a better life. And this started in the early 2000s.

Meanwhile, only elders are left behind in villages and small communities to preserve customs, crafts and the traditional Romanian way of life. Responsible tourism is our way of fighting back against this trend by helping people and giving them an economic lifeline through tourism. So this is our mission and we hope you will help us by choosing to book a tour with Romanian Friend!

Here are our favourite choices for responsible tours in Romania and a couple of pictures so you can see what responsible tourism looks like: