Gesar Tours offers tailor-made programs for individuals, private groups and educational institutions to the most remote and beautiful regions of the Eastern part of Tibet. The establishment of Gesar Tour is committed to serve and empower marginalized Tibetans, by building their capacity to develop sustainable business constructively and competitively.
Tsebtrim: “Our professional team of guides and office staff know Kham and Amdo area better than anyone, since we were born and grew up in these regions.
Our company is different than other tour companies as the management has ten years of NGO work experience. This has led to an deep understanding of social responsibility. We therefore provide locals an opportunity to participate in our tours, which benefits the local community and local people.”
The Kingdom of Nangqing
Tsebtrim: “We operate trips in the Nangqing area, an area rich in history. Nangqing was the historic seat of the Nangqing King and his palace and monastery can still be visited. Since Nangqing is my home town, the company has intimate knowledge of the area. Due to this knowledge we can offer a unique home stay tour opportunity to our clients.
We also operate trips in Yushu area, since most our staff are from Yushu. Our goal is to become the source for ecotourism tours in Yushu. By operating tours in the guides hometown we directly benefit their communities. Gesartour pays guides a higher rate than it’s competitors.
Gesar Tours is currently developing handbooks to distribute to all of its guides. This resource will help guides teach visitors local folk songs, legends, history, language and the significance of local sites.
Empowering the locals
Tsebtrim: “Specifically, by establishing Gesar Tour to creates employment opportunities to local people, we set up a model for starting business beneficial to the local economy and we try to build up the confidence of the local people to utilize their potential and abilities to improving their living conditions. We also try to promote cultural preservation and to protect the environment by only offering sustainable and responsible tourism products.
In choosing Gesar tour, you can be sure that you are traveling with a travel agency that takes its commitment to sustainable tourism seriously. We do our best to operate to the highest environmental standards and are committed to supporting local economies and local education projects in the areas we operate in.
How does my work support the local people?
- By creating employment opportunities for local Tibetans (office staff and tour guides, drivers, chefs and horse guides). There are for example nine local Tibetan people working in our office right now.
- By supporting Tibetan entrepreneurs (restaurants, home stays, hotels). For example there is a home stay in Rebkong run by a Tibetan family. Every time we visit Rebkong we stay there and eat there, with the Tibetan family.
- By providing tour guide skill training for local young Tibetans. For example we have organized a guide training in December 2012 for 8 local young Tibetan and we continue to give training.
- By helping clients, who are interested in supporting Tibetan communities, find reliable people to connect with and make introductions to different reliable social projects (for example an elderly care center, an orphanage and students who need scholarships for education). We managed to collect a grant of 23.000 RMB in the form of donation to the senior residents care center in Yushu this year. In addition, it is agreed by one of our generous donors to donate 50,000 RMB annually to this facility.
Giving free training to young Tibetans on guiding skills and English language.
We are trying to support local NGOs who do good work, by introducing our guest to NGOs.”
The staff and guides of Gesartour have taken part in multiple ecotourism and sustainability workshops, organized by Columbia University. These workshops addressed the destructive nature of mass tourism without direct benefits to the local economy and causing environmental damage.
By training local Tibetan guides in cultural knowledge, Gesar Tours ensures that the Tibetan culture will remain strong within the hearts and minds younger generations; by training our guides in sustainable tourism practices, it establishes a business model that is beneficial to local economic growth. We aim to increase the confidence of the local Tibetans in order to realize their potential regarding the improvement of their living conditions.
Tsebtrim has been taking a course, organized by Global Nomads, to study French for 6 months and go on a study tour to France. He also had the unique chance to observe and study snow leopards in Yushu Sanjiangyuan Natural Reserve with an American biologist for 8 months.
Tsebtrim Renqing - Founder & managerFrom Yuhsu autonomies prefecture
Working in NGOs for almost ten years, Joined in Gesartour in 2010, likes to talk about Tibet and has a lot of local stories to tell you.
Qiuji Lhamo - AccountantFrom Yuhsu autonomies prefecture
Working as accountant from 2005, she is very sensitive for all the others in the office.
Kanzhuo Lhamo - GuideTibetan from Yushu, she is working for Gesartour as part time job, other times she is volunteering in a elderly care center.
Pasong Tesren - DriverFrom Yuhsu autonomies prefecture
He is the older son of the family and a monk, but in order to take care of the family he takes part time job as a driver for Gesartour, to support the family, if you have any question about the monks life, he is right person to ask.
Mencuo - Site chefFrom Yuhsu autonomies prefecture, makes great Tibetan food, also likes to joke a lot, but when you first meet her she does not dare to talk much.
Dangrup Choeckyi - Office ManagerI was born in small Tibet village which is located Yushu Tibet autonomous prefecture Chengduo county Lhabu Village.
After I completed my study in English Training program (ETP) Qinghai normal university, I worked as a tour guide in a travel agency since 2011, and through those years I got great opportunity to learn more my own culture and history, religions, arts. After I have more experience of be a guide I decided to become an office manager and working in sales market, as I am a local Tibetan girl I always like to show the best of Tibet to my guests and design every possible best trip for my clients.