Grass Routes offers immersive travel experiences in one of India’s least explored regions; Odisha. We endeavor to do so in an ethical way by encouraging community participation. Promoting tourism that includes ALL communities; from farmers and fisher-folk to potters and weavers. Our tourism activities supplement traditional incomes and in some cases provide hope to marginalized communities outside the interests of government or development organisations.
By utilizing local skills we highlight the importance of heritage during a period of transition when many communities are forgetting their roots in the fight for a better future. Grass Routes is commited to encouraging local communities to take pride and ownership of their culture. We value their active participation as much our discerning travellers.
Our journeys reflect years of collective research, experience and understanding. We value the relationships we build with local communities as much as we value the friendships of fellow travellers. Grass Routes handicrafts journeys to provide insight into local culture and provide countless opportunities for diverse peoples to interact and share experiences.
Travelling is a privilege and it’s vital we make a positive impact on the people and places we visit. Grass Routes provides direct and personal opportunities to make constructive contributions. Whether you join our ‘Clean up the Beach’ drive or watch traditional dancers perform; you could be improving the natural environment or revitalizing declining art forms. It’s never been so easy to make a positive difference and have the time of your life doing it!
Grass Routes is an Australian-Indian partnership that draws on 30 years of collective travel industry experience. Having worked for the big-guns (largers, mass tourism organisations) Grass Routes was formed to implement global expertise at a local level. We provide tourism training to local partners and encourage active participation from diverse sectors.
You will experience bespoke professional service from Grass Routes. We handle your queries personally; from your initial booking request to face to face meet ups, you’ll be dealing with us directly, not office bound sales people. You will receive the most up to date information direct from the source and also gain practical advice from first-hand experience.
Our Local Guides draw on lifetimes of regional knowledge and a wealth of global experience. Passionate about people and places, often sharing close personal connections and friendships along the way. Each Local Guide possesses a unique sense of humour and healthy sense of adventure. You may also expect to meet local experts with specialized knowledge; classical dancers and musicians, weavers, painters and traditional healers all shed light on their unique skills from a personal perspective
Ethical Travel guides our approach and lies at the very heart of our work with Grass Routes in Odisha. We are able to offer a 10% discount to Tourism Concern Members.
Grass Routes works closely with diverse local communities in Odisha. Most are struggling with livelihood issues and face difficult decisions about their future. By providing a supplementary income based on existing local skills Grass Routes focuses attention of the wealth of knowledge they have, not (as mass media would have it) what they do not have.
This helps strengthen communities and ensures local skills are utilized. In addition Grass Routes provides information on tourism and encourages active participation. Grass Routes networks with diverse indigenous communities that would not otherwise encounter such inclusive development.
Grass Routes facilities local interaction between travellers and local communities. We take travellers to artisan communities and educate them about what is usually a labour intensive process to ensure travellers understand not only the efforts of the local community, but also the final product. We encourage travellers to buy directly from artisan and farming communities.
We select locally owned accommodation and have been instrumental in setting up a heritage homestay network throughout Odisha. In addition Grass Routes works alongside marginalised communities providing supplementary incomes to existing livelihoods. One step at a time, each tour benefits another family, distributing the benefits throughout the community.
Grass Routes values our natural heritage. We organise ‘clean up’ campaigns along coastal routes in Odisha, maintain walking tracking and ensure any plastic we bring in during jungle and forest excursions leaves with us.
We support sustainable renewable energy such as solar and bio-gas in local communities, advocate for the same in urban areas and try to bring greater attention to sustain energy solutions among our city dwellers.
Grass Routes journeys include visits to agricultural farms engaged in organic farming and preservation of heirlooms seeds. Encouraging these small-scale farmers serves not only to boost morale but also feeds into a network of supporters and strengthens distribution channels.