Travel inspiration for World Coffee Day

Oh…coffee! The elixir many of us rely on to usher in our days is celebrated on October 1 – World Coffee Day. What better reason do you need to explore coffee bean producing countries and, while you’re there, make a difference? Expand your palate by discovering new varieties of coffee while exploring fascinating regions of the world.

luxury volunteering in bali indonesia

Here are some ideas to inspire you:

Costa Rica

Embark on a fair trade coffee tour to learn how coffee is grown and harvested sustainably for the benefit of producers. Mix that (pardon the pun!) with the ziplines, hot springs, volcanoes and lakes of Arenal, the wildlife and spectacular beaches of Manuel Antonio, Corcovado or other gems.

Luxury Volunteer Vacations in Costa Rica

Make a difference: Enrich your stay in Costa Rica by assisting at a wildlife rescue center: prepare meals for monkeys, parrots, etc., feed them, maintain their enclosures, and assist the veterinarian on his daily visits. You and your family will learn a lot about animals.

Where to stay: Arenal Nayara Tent Camp.

Best time to visit: November to March.


Belize, although a small producer of coffee beans, has a place where coffee is grown and grown organically under the shade of the Mayan rainforest at the Gallon Jug Estate in western Belize. Gallon Jug Coffee is Belize’s leading coffee brand, producing superb 100% Arabica coffee beans. Chocolate making sessions are also offered in Belize, as are wildlife viewing, diving, snorkeling, Mayan ruins, kayaking and more.

Belize Luxury Volunteer Trip

Make a difference: Make your trip to Belize meaningful by installing an eco-friendly stove for a Mayan family of rural farmers. These stoves are amazing; Here’s why:

they are enclosed and replace open flames and thus reduce burns, which are particularly common among young children who run around; they have a chimney to expel smoke, reducing respiratory problems such as asthma; and they are much more efficient, use less fuel and are better for the environment.

Where to stay: Copal Tree Lodge.

Best time to visit: November to March.


From citrus tasting to chocolate tasting, coffee from Peru is one of the best in Latin America. Peruvian coffee is increasingly recognized as one of the best coffee producing regions in the world. Peru’s microclimates in the Andean regions, with their variations in altitude, humidity, sun and heat, allow coffee trees to develop individual flavor profiles unique to Peru.

Head to Peru for your luxury family vacation in August and you’ll have the chance to visit coffee fairs, tastings and barista contests all celebrating coffee. The main coffee producing regions are Amazonas, Cusco, Cajamarcas, San Martin and Puno (where Lake Titicaca is located). Combine tasting a good coffee with Machu Picchu, biking in the Sacred Valley, condor watching in the Colca Canyon, kayaking on Lake Titicaca, whale watching on the coast and whale watching wildlife in the Amazon.

Luxury volunteering Peru

Make a difference: Make your trip to Peru meaningful by building a toilet block for the villagers of the Sacred Valley. Roll up your sleeves, kick off your shoes and start making the adobe bricks – it’s muddy and so much fun!

Where to stay: Inkaterra Hacienda Urubamba.

Best time to visit: June to September.


Coffee in Guatemala is grown at altitudes of over 5,000 feet (1,650 m), which explains its robust and distinctive flavor. Guatemala’s unique growing region, with a mild subtropical climate, combined with nutrient-rich volcanic soil, creates an ideal environment for growing some of the most delicious coffee beans. Antigua and Atitlan are the main growth regions, and these match the tourist highlights of colonial Antigua and Lake Atitlan, with fascinating villages dotted around this spectacular lake. Other highlights of a luxury family vacation in Guatemala include the colorful markets of Chichicastenango and the breathtaking Mayan ruins of Tikal.

Make a difference: Be fulfilled on your trip to Guatemala by helping to build a house for a family in need of decent housing. Base yourself in charming Antigua as you build.

Where to stay: Villa Bokeh

Best time to visit: November to March.


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Home to perhaps the most bizarre coffee beans in the world: Kopi Luwak coffee beans pass through a civet cat, whose digestive enzymes partially digest the coffee cherries, leaving lightly fermented coffee beans in the cat’s poop. These beans are then picked by hand, washed, dried and roasted.

Kopi luwak is produced mainly on the Indonesian islands of Sumatra, Java, Bali, Sulawesi and East Timor. The problem is that civet cats are usually caged and force-fed in appalling conditions. An ethical travel agency can take you to the few producers that use 100% wild beans. Bali is our top pick, home to the best hotels, plus cooking classes, gorgeous beaches, mountain biking, hiking, surfing, rafting, and the arts.

Make a difference: fund and build a disability-accessible bathroom for a paraplegic in a remote village in Bali. As Bali is a Hindu island, babies born with disabilities are considered bad karma and often grow up isolated, hidden from the community. By building these accessible bathrooms, you provide the recipient with a previously unknown degree of autonomy and independence, which significantly improves their quality of life.

Where to stay: Amankila

Best time to visit: May to September

Wherever you decide to go, enjoy your coffee… and make a difference!

Christopher Hill is founder and CEO of Hands up. Hands Up Holidays is an award-winning travel agency specializing in bespoke luxury family travel that combines sightseeing with hands-on service projects.

If you would like to be a guest blogger on A Luxury Travel Blog to raise your profile, please contact us.

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