What is Sustainable Spiti?
Sustainable Spiti is an initiative by Spiti Expedition in Collaboration with EarthRoute to bring
forth to people the true and indigenous cultural practices of the inhabitants of Spiti Valley since years before Spiti was discovered by mainlanders and how it has always been 100% sustainable and in harmony with the ecosystem in its nature.
The experiences listed under are all entailing an element of the ancient indigenous cultural as well as religious practices that bring about peace, harmony and sustainability, our endeavour is to bring this out to the world for world peace comes from peace within, peace with your habitat and coexistence.
Sustainable Spiti Projects
Promoting Homestays in Spiti that follow Sustainable Practices:
With tourism coming in and lack of awareness among locals, many are following incorrect
practices for hospitality that is harmful to the ecosystem of Spiti. Building of western toilets is
one of them. Spiti is a high altitude dessert where the water supply comes from the glacier and water is a scarce resource in Spiti. Western toilets consume almost 95% more water than the traditional dry toilet which is an indigenous practice in Spiti, Ladakh and Tibetan lands. The dry toilets are 100% sustainable in nature where complete human waste (Excreta) is recycled as fertilizers for organic cultivation of sweet peas. Western toilets not just increase waste footprint but is also consuming water relentlessly in a land that cannot support this kind of water consumption. At Spiti Expedition we only promote and serve at homestays that practice the use of a dry toilet for all our tours, treks, experiences.
Promoting Woman Run Small-scale enterprises – World of Wool:
The women of Spiti are the backbone of the ecosystem. They work harder and are stronger
than men itself. They are the core of everything running for the long years of struggle that the land has seen due to its remoteness and harsh climate. From building the roads to farming to managing cattle along with households everything is run and done by women and even after they do so much, they still find time to knit and create beautiful woollen goodies and the range of products created by them is endless and something you will not find anywhere in the world. This is also how they earn their pocket money.
We wish to help them earn their share and help them feel more confident about earning and
growing using their skills and talent. We are working with the women to create various
products that will look great on you and in your home
Promoting locally and organically grown produce to travellers who travel to Spiti
Seabuckthorn is a wild berry that grows close to the river beds in high altitude regions. It grows naturally every year and has high health benefits. Sea buckthorn leaves and flowers are used for treating arthritis, gastrointestinal ulcers, gout, and skin rashes caused by infectious diseases such as measles. A tea containing sea buckthorn leaves are used as a source of vitamins, antioxidants, protein building blocks (amino acids), fatty acids and minerals; for improving blood pressure and lowering cholesterol; preventing and controlling blood vessel diseases; and boosting immunity. Sea buckthorn berries are used for preventing infections, improving sight, and slowing the ageing process.
The seed or berry oil is used as an expectorant for loosening phlegm; for treating asthma, heart disorders including chest pain (angina) and high cholesterol; for preventing blood vessel disease; and as an antioxidant. Sea buckthorn oil is also used for slowing the decline of thinking skills with age; reducing illness due to cancer, as well as limiting the toxicity of chemical cancer treatment (chemotherapy); balancing the immune system; treating stomach and intestinal diseases including ulcers and reflux esophagitis (GERD); treating night blindness and dry eye; and as a supplemental source of vitamins C, A, and E, beta-carotene, minerals, amino acids, and fatty acids.
We are working closely with communities to create various organic health products for the
body and mind, we are working on creating them to be 100% eco-friendly and sugar-free,
packaging them in eco-friendly packaging.
Barley is locally known as “Tsampa” is considered a blessing in the high and harsh lands of Spiti. It is also called “The Lama Food”. Spiti has a wide range of delicacies to offer in their local cuisine made of Barley. Barley and other whole grain foods have rapidly been gaining popularity over the past few years due to the various health benefits they can offer.
Whole grains are important sources of dietary fibre, vitamins, and minerals that are not found in refined or and enriched and grains. Refining grains removes the bran, germ, and most of their fibre and nutrients.
Choosing whole grains over their processed counterparts can help reduce the risk of obesity, diabetes, heart disease, cancer, and other chronic health problems.
Here are some key points about barley:
- Consuming barley might have benefits for the heart, blood pressure, and bones.
- Barley may be useful in maintaining a healthy weight
- Barley provides a high percentage of an individual’s daily requirement of manganese
- Thanks to barley’s versatility, it is easy to incorporate into meals
In all homestays in our tours, you will get at least once a taste of Barley and we have much
more to offer to those that are keen.
Volunteer – Spiti Culture Restoration
With an increase in tourism, like other beautiful places, Spiti has also begun to see negative impacts. Spiti has been isolated for years and the Spitian have had a very hard life. The harsh high dry mountain terrain and lack of greenery made Spitians
come up with sustainable solutions to live, however, an increase in tourism is causing age-old traditions almost getting extinct. This is a program that has been created to travel with a purpose of saving a village, by being a part of implementing an awareness based resilient model for tourism, so as to tourism or the village isn’t harmed in anyway.
Program Details: This program entails working directly with villagers and panchayats of villages in Spiti for increasing awareness about eco-tourism and preserving indigenous cultures. The traveller will be given a complete de-brief and manuals to be able to successfully participate and deliver and will also be accompanied all the times by a local guide. The fundamental of this program is to preserve and promote homestays in villages of Spiti which includes food and sanitation (dry toilets) along with waste awareness and helping in creating a holistic standard of service common to all homestays in a
village for a fair trade system.
All stay and meals during the program (in Spiti) and a local guide/translator.
Transportation from Manali to Kaza, Stay in Manali, any meals in Manali or outside of homestay (Can be arranged on