The chill in the air here on the East Coast is a sharp reminder that winter is on its way. If the thought of cold makes you cringe, consider turning your thoughts to the Southern Hemisphere. While we’re settling into autumn, New Zealand is blossoming into spring and Queenstown Heritage Tours Ltd has just the ticket for you. Not only does Queenstown Heritage Tours specialize in sightseeing tours into Skippers Canyon and the Wakatipu Basin, they also come highly, and environmentally, recommended. Queenstown Heritage Tours has been recognized again as one of the New Zealand’s leading tourism businesses by Qualmark – New Zealand Tourism’s official quality assurance system. To earn the prestigious quality mark, Queenstown Heritage underwent a comprehensive on-site assessment to ensure it met general quality criteria focused on service, fleet in use, safety and business management systems in place. “We presented to our Qualmark assessor a comprehensive fleet management sheet which was developed in-house in order to prove an acceptable industry standard for our fleet,” said Yasmine Sander Ickenroth, owner of Queenstown Heritage Tours Ltd. “This new fleet management sheet forms not only the basis for our Qualmark assessment but further more enables us to monitor our carbon footprint. Our commitment to the Queenstown community, the co-operation with the Department of Conservation as well as our partnership with Carbonfund.org made it clear to our assessor that we truly deserve to be recognized as one of the country’s leading tourism businesses,” Sander Ickenroth said. We’re also pleased to share that Queenstown Heritage Tours Ltd. annually offsets its operational carbon emissions with Carbonfund.org and is committed to be part of the global movement of businesses and organizations that are leading the fight against climate change. Queenstown Heritage Tours Ltd. is committed to monitoring its energy consumption, fuel usage and kilometres travelled by its customers as well as the kilometres travelled by its employees to and from work. Those activities are a part of its environmental impact management initiative. “Like last year, we calculated our carbon footprint with an online calculator and offset the 35 metric tonnes of CO2 emissions that could not be omitted during the past 12 months,” explains Sander Ickenroth. By offsetting their non-avoidable operational emissions, Queenstown Heritage Tours Ltd. supports Carbonfund.org’s third-party validated reforestation projects. “It was very important for us to work with an organization that supports certified projects that are internationally recognized and comply with set standards,” Sander Ickenroth said. “We also sought an organization that offered verification by independent auditors. Carbonfund.org met these criteria.” So, escape to spring this fall, and book your Skippers Canyon adventure with Queenstown Heritage Tours.