About Crooked Trails


Crooked Trails is an educational non-profit organization
 helping people broaden their understanding of the impact of travel on the world’s cultures and ecosystems 
through educational outreach, community development and sustainable travel programs.


“Celebrating Cultural Diversity”

Who We Are

crooked-trails-cultural-exchange_revCrooked Trails was founded in 1998 by Christine Mackay and Tammy Leland on the premise that tourism does not have to threaten the cultures and environments of popular tourist destinations and fragile regions. Our aim is to create more environmentally and culturally sensitive travel opportunities that hold long-term sustainability for host communities, as well as to educate travelers with guidelines and methods for making responsible travel choices.

We believe that together we can improve cultural, ecological, and economic conditions around the world by changing the way people travel.

Meet Our Team

What We Do

Nepal girls walkingCrooked Trails offers immersive travel programs built around the ethics of sustainable travel in support of indigenous peoples around the world. We only collaborate with communities that have personally invited us, and community members choose and develop the projects we work on locally. Our travelers provide funding and labor assistance, and as a non-profit organization we also raise funds for additional support.

Our travel programs are true cultural exchanges that make positive contributions to host communities and have lasting, transformational effects on our travelers.

View Our Sustainable Travel Destinations

Educational Outreach

Crooked Trails educates travelers on how to travel more respectfully and how to lessen the negative Bhutan cultural exchange Crooked Trails travelimpacts – both environmental and cultural – on the places they visit. We also work with tour operators, both at home and abroad, to incorporate those ethics into their programs. Our travelers receive in-depth pre-departure materials to equip them with best practices for maximizing the positive impact of their visit.

Our co-founders, both experts in the field since 1998, offer presentations throughout the year to the general public, schools & universities, travel conferences and clubs on sustainable travel and cultural stewardship.


Crooked Trails Federal Tax ID number (EIN): 73-1669742
Crooked Trails is a registered 501(c)(3) non-profit organization. As such, a portion of our travel program fees, as well as any donations to Crooked Trails, are tax-deductible. We send tax receipts for all donations and program fees with applicable federal tax information.




Crooked Trails is a non-profit organization focused on transforming tourism into a positive force in the world. We create travel programs that reflect our values and are worthy of the trust placed in us by our travelers. By traveling with us, you can be assured that your money will go to support our partner communities, the causes we support, and our on-going work to make tourism better. We do this by:

  • Selecting locally-owned hotels, restaurants and transportation in order to ensure your money benefits local people.

  • Employing experienced local guides who are paid a fair wage.

  • Offsetting the environmental impacts of travel through initiatives such as our Travelers Against Plastic (TAP) campaign, demonstrating ways to protect local resources, and encouraging the purchase of carbon offsets.

  • Educating travelers in cultural sensitivity and the social, economic, and environmental impacts of their travels.

  • Acting on our commitment to the social and cultural protection of people in our host countries.

  • Offering unique experiences and opportunities for authentic engagement.

  • Donating a portion of your trip fees to the community development projects we support.

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