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Call for Applications: T+L's 2013 Global Vision Awards

Global Vision Awards lunch

Do you know a travel company that's making a difference?

Each year, Travel + Leisure recognizes the standard-bearers for responsible tourism in our Global Vision Awards. From airlines that are lightening their footprints to hotels that are investing in the communities around them, the winners represent travel's best ideas for a better world. (You can find the 2012 Global Vision Awards here.)

Please drop a note to TLGlobalVision@aexp.com if you know of a company or organization that should be among this year's winners. The deadline for the 2013 Global Vision Award application, available here, is April 1, 2013.

Photo: Editor Nancy Novogrod speaks with the jurors and winners of the 2012 Global Vision Awards at the annual luncheon in October.

Photo by Diane Bondareff/Travel + Leisure

TODAY Show: Places to Reinvent Yourself

Visit msnbc.com for breaking news, world news, and news about the economy

Travel really can transform your life, and these are a few of the trips that will make it happen.

Globe Aware Volunteer Trips

A volunteer vacation in another country can help you put your life into perspective. Globe Aware, for instance, operates trips in 15 countries, from Costa Rica to Cuba, Brazil to Vietnam. You’ll assist in rural schools, build wells, and deliver supplies to orphanages, teach English and computer lessons, or distribute fruits and vegetables to low-income families. Travelers come home and say that every aspect of their week was meaningful, and that they felt that they were able to give back to the community. Rates range from $1,140 to $1,390 per week depending on the trip. Cost covers meals, accommodation, and on-site travel (but not airfare).

Related: See the Best Life-Changing Trips

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Seeking Nominees: T+L's 2012 Global Vision Awards

global vision awards

We're looking for a few good visionaries.

Travel + Leisure is now accepting applications for our annual Global Vision Awards. Do you know of a travel company or organization that's changing the world for the better—preserving cultural heritage, saving environments, or giving back to the communities we travel through? Please drop us an email at tlglobalvision@aexp.com or encourage a representative to fill out this year's application, available here (travel companies) and here (other organizations), and return it to us by April 6, 2012.

For last year's winners, see travelandleisure.com/responsibletravel.

Illustration by Gracia Lam

Cinque Terre News: Flood Devastates Vernazza, Italy

Vernazza, Cinque Terre, Italy

The before/after photographs are harrowing: in the first, a postcard-perfect Italian village, with pine-green shutters and lemon and rose façades, lapped by the turquoise waters of the Mediterranean. In the next, the same village buried in a horrifying avalanche of mud, its harbor now the color and consistency of cement.

On October 25, flooding from a freak rainstorm devastated the town of Vernazza, one of the five villages that make up the celebrated Cinque Terre in Liguria . Rivers of water and mud cascaded down the steep and narrow streets, burying the town’s lowest levels in as much as 13 feet of debris, while also overwhelming the railroad tracks that provided the primary way in or out of Vernazza. (Part of the Cinque Terre’s allure is that four of its cliff-hugging villages are accessible only by train, boat, or hiking trail.)

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A Meeting of the (Green) Minds at T+L's First Global Vision Awards Luncheon

201110-b-globalvisionjpg

In our November issue, which just hit newsstands, you’ll find our seventh annual Global Vision Awards, which recognize the new leaders in responsible travel. This year, our winners included everything from Misool Eco Resort, a visionary property that’s responsible for setting up the first shark and ray sanctuary in Indonesia, to Rancho La Puerta, a luxury spa in Baja, Mexico that’s championing ecological restoration and education in the local community. In their own unique ways, these progressive thinkers represent the travel community’s best, most innovative solutions to some of the world’s most vexing problems: climate change, environmental degradation, cultural erosion, and economic inequality.

Last Friday, we invited our jurors and winners to New York City for our first-ever Global Vision Awards luncheon and round-table discussion, which took place at The Lambs Club in midtown’s Chatwal Hotel. Read on to see how the conversation unfolded.

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Just Back: Myanmar—Why Go Now?

Myanman

For years, Myanmar—better known by its colonial name, Burma—has been high on my list of places I wanted to visit. But the tourism boycott called by Nobel Peace Prize laureate Aung San Suu Kyi and the country’s unstable politics held me back. The military junta’s brutal crackdown on monk-led protests in 2007 also left a bad taste for many a conscientious traveler.

Recently, though, the country has opened up a bit following elections last year—which admittedly were engineered in favor of the military-backed party—and Suu Kyi’s release from house arrest. (Suu Kyi also reversed her stance on tourism two years ago.) The chance to go to Yangon—or, Rangoon—cropped up recently, and I leapt at it.

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Seeking Nominees: T+L 2011 Global Vision Awards


Do you know a travel company that's changing the world? We want to hear about it.

Travel + Leisure's annual Global Vision Awards recognize the outstanding efforts of individuals and organizations that are working to preserve the world's natural and man-made treasures.

Last year’s winners included everything from the enormous CityCenter complex in Las Vegas, a pioneer in green-building techniques, to Kenya’s Micato Safaris, which is helping to fund the education of thousands of children in Nairobi.

If you know of an organization that we should consider for the 2011 awards, please drop us an email at tlglobalvision@aexp.com or encourage it to fill out this year's application, available here (Travel) and here (Non-Travel).

The winners will appear in our November issue.


Amy Farley is the news editor at Travel + Leisure.

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