Culture and History Tours

For history hounds and culture vultures there's never a shortage of locations to indulge your curiosity and immerse yourself in the traditions of days gone by. Vibrant living cultures infused with the olden times offer a window into the past, and hold a mirror up to our own world.

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Local Living Thailand—Hilltribe Experience (ATHL)

Asia Thailand

When most of us think "Thailand," we think bustling Bangkok, fresh and spicy Lanna cuisine, and flamboyant Buddhist temples. This trip introduces you to a side of Thailand that few see, partnering you up with a local hilltribe for an all-access glimpse into (very) rural life. Explore the village and the jungle that surrounds it, study ancient farming techniques, try your hand at bamboo-weaving, and learn about daily life in the hills from your more-than-welcoming hosts. Bangkok, schmangkok – head for the hills and discover what everyone else has been missing.

Highlights: Connect with local Black Lahu and Shah communities, savour home-cooked Thai food, experience local culture hands-on, learn about local hilltribe customs from those who live and breathe them.

6 days
From $399
Travel Style:
Local Living
Trip Type:
Small Group
Service Level:
Basic
Physical Grading:
3

Discover Arequipa & Colca Canyon (TSPACC)

South America Peru

See Peru's south before the secret's out! The 'white city' of Arequipa has a friendly atmosphere, colonial architecture (including a working convent) and the incredible El Misti Volcano towering over the cityscape. Meet its most famous resident, Juanita—a 500-year-old mummy discovered on the top of nearby Mount Ampato—then travel along mountain roads to Colca Canyon, one of the deepest canyons in the world. Spot condors and hike across the dramatic Andean scenery.

Highlights: Explore the 'white city' of Arequipa, hike the stunning vistas of Colca Canyon

6 days
From $499
Travel Style:
Comfort
Trip Type:
Independent Travel
Service Level:
Upgraded
Physical Grading:
2

Budget Egypt (DPGE)

North Africa / Middle East Egypt

This compact adventure offers maximum Egypt at minimum cost. Stare in amazement at the pyramids and float down the Nile on a felucca. Embrace the culture and meet remarkable people as you dine on traditional fare with a local family in a Nubian village. You'll enjoy basic accommodation and transport to the best sights. Walk through the Valley of the Kings or explore Karnak—it's your call. Don't just dream of Egypt, wake up in the 'Land of the Pharaohs' and open your eyes to adventure.

Highlights: Enjoy a traditional family meal, Explore ancient temples and monuments, Barter in bazaars, Sleep beneath the stars on a felucca, Visit a Nubian village, Explore the famous Khan el-Khalili souk.

8 days
From $599
Travel Style:
Yolo
Trip Type:
Small Group
Service Level:
Basic
Physical Grading:
3

Local Living Ecuador—Amazon Jungle (SEJL)

South America Amazon, Ecuador

The Amazon Rainforest is so full of life; embrace it for yourself during a week unlike any other. From Quito, you’ll travel to your new home in the jungle and meet the Quichua family who will host you in their home for the next four nights. Discover waterfalls on jungle walks and travel to an animal rescue centre by canoe. You’ll learn about medicinal plants and how to use a blowgun, experience a shaman ceremony, and visit a local school. Most importantly, you’ll befriend a people few outsiders have the honour to even meet.

Highlights: Live like a local in the Amazon Rainforest, learn Quichua traditions by interacting with your local hosts, visit an animal rescue centre, hone your blowgun skills, experience a shamanic ceremony.

7 days
From $599
Travel Style:
Local Living
Trip Type:
Small Group
Service Level:
Basic
Physical Grading:
3

Costa Rica Pass - Route 1 Adventure Bus (TCR1BN)

Central America Costa Rica

Hit two of Costa Rica's signature spots: First, head for the outdoor adventure playground around Arenal Volcano and take advantage of everything from world-class rafting to rivers of volcano-heated hot springs. Next, head to the beaches of Guanacaste, Costa Rica's northwest coast, known for dry sunny weather all year round, killer surf and beaches that stretch for miles.

Highlights: Catch glimpses of Arenal Volcano, raft jungle waters, relax at a natural hot spring, laze on a beautiful Guanacaste beach.

8 days
From $629
Travel Style:
Classic
Trip Type:
Independent Travel
Service Level:
Standard
Physical Grading:
2

Costa Rica Pass - Route 2 Adventure Bus (TCR2BN)

Central America Costa Rica

See two sides of Costa Rica's incredible natural playground. Get your fill of outdoor adventure around Arenal Volcano with everything from world-class to volcano-heated hot springs, then check out Manuel Antonio, home to the country's most popular park. With protected beaches, awe-inspiring wildlife and great nightlife, it's easy to see why.

Highlights: View magnificent Arenal Volcano, relax on the beach at Manuel Antonio, explore Costa Rica's first national park.

8 days
From $629
Travel Style:
Classic
Trip Type:
Independent Travel
Service Level:
Standard
Physical Grading:
2

Costa Rica Pass - Route 3 Adventure Bus (TCR3BN)

Central America Costa Rica

Drive from the clouds to the sand. Spend two days in the world-famous Monteverde Cloud Forest looking for the beautiful but elusive quetzal before heading south to the sun and sea around Manuel Antonio, home to the country's most popular park. See scores of monkeys or sloths, swim or hike along pristine beaches, or dance the night away—the local nightlife is some of the best around.

Highlights: Hike in the cloud forest reserve near Monteverde, zipline through the treetops, relax on the beach at beautiful Manuel Antonio.

8 days
From $629
Travel Style:
Classic
Trip Type:
Independent Travel
Service Level:
Standard
Physical Grading:
2

Costa Rica on a Shoestring (CRBC)

Central America Costa Rica

Hit two of Costa Rica's famed features—volcanoes and beaches—on this exciting trip that isn't too hard on the wallet. Get the adrenaline pumping in La Fortuna, then soak up the hippie spirit of Montezuma and relax on the beach. While you're free to choose your own adventure and optional adrenaline-inducing activities like waterfall rappelling, your accommodation and transportation are included and our expert CEOs will help you make the most of your time. Take a trip that's packed with just the essentials—eight days of maximum Costa Rica at minimum cost.

Highlights: Try adrenaline sports like whitewater rafting and waterfall rappelling, take in the views of Arenal Volcano towering over La Fortuna, chill out on the Pacific, try to catch some waves.

8 days
From $649
Travel Style:
Yolo
Trip Type:
Small Group
Service Level:
Basic
Physical Grading:
2

Costa Rica Pass - Route 1 Self Drive (TCR1DN)

Central America Costa Rica

Hit two of Costa Rica's signature spots: first, head for the outdoor adventure playground around active Arenal Volcano, and take advantage of everything from world-class rafting to rivers of volcano-heated hot springs. Next drive on to the beaches of Guanacaste, Costa Rica's northwest coast, known for dry sunny weather all year round, killer surf and beaches that stretch for miles.

Highlights: San José, Guanacaste, La Fortuna, Arenal Volcano.

8 days
From $649
Travel Style:
Classic
Trip Type:
Independent Travel
Service Level:
Standard
Physical Grading:
2

Costa Rica Pass - Route 2 Self Drive (TCR2DN)

Central America Costa Rica

See two sides of Costa Rica's incredible natural playground: get your fill of outdoor adventure around active Arenal Volcano, famous for everything from world-class rafting to rivers of volcano-heated hot springs. Next point your rental car down the Pacific coast to Manuel Antonio Park, the country's most popular. With pristine, protected beaches, wildlife that practically dances for you (monkeys!) and some of the best nightlife in the country, it's easy to see why.

Highlights: San José, La Fortuna, Arenal Volcano, Manuel Antonio/Quepos Area

8 days
From $649
Travel Style:
Classic
Trip Type:
Independent Travel
Service Level:
Standard
Physical Grading:
2

Costa Rica Pass - Route 3 Self Drive (TCR3DN)

Central America Costa Rica

Drive from the clouds to the sand! Spend two days in the world-famous Monteverde cloud forest looking for the beautiful but elusive quetzal, before driving your rental car south to the sun and sea around Manuel Antonio Park, the country's most popular. See scores of monkeys or sloth, swim or hike along pristine beaches, or dance the night away--the local nightlife is some of the best around.

Highlights: San José, Monteverde Cloud Forest, Manuel Antonio/Quepos Area

8 days
From $649
Travel Style:
Classic
Trip Type:
Independent Travel
Service Level:
Standard
Physical Grading:
2

Golden Triangle (AHGT)

Asia India

This compact Indian journey will introduce you to three very different northern cities and the colourful rural life of Rajasthan. From the hectic pace of Delhi with its bustling markets, magnificent monuments and colonial past, travel by private transport to Agra and the mesmerizing beauty of the Taj Mahal—truly one of the wonders of the world. Discover why Jaipur is called the 'Pink City' and get a taste of village life in Abhaneri with its magnificent stepwells. Photographers and culture lovers won't be disappointed on this classic adventure.

Highlights: Wander around modern and ancient Delhi, revel in the Mughal magnificence of the Taj Mahal and Fatephur Sikri, visit rural villages and historic forts, explore India's vibrant cities

8 days
From $659
Travel Style:
Classic
Trip Type:
Small Group
Service Level:
Standard
Physical Grading:
2

Northern Hilltribes & Villages (ATHV)

Asia Thailand

From the luxury of Bangkok's malls and gleaming highrises, head north to Thailand's hills. Eating and sleeping with the hilltribes will bring you face to face with these colourful cultures. We’ll leave plenty of time for fun in historic Chiang Mai with its night market and delicious cuisine. Our CEOs will help you get off the beaten path—but you'll stay flexible by being able to choose the activities you really want.

Highlights: Experience the bustle of Bangkok, explore the vibrancy of Chiang Mai, trek through northern hilltribes and meet the locals, ride on the back of an elephant and float on a bamboo raft.

8 days
From $699
Travel Style:
Yolo
Trip Type:
Small Group
Service Level:
Basic
Physical Grading:
3

Cuban Rhythms (CCCR)

Central America Cuba

For too many people, Cuba is nothing more than a beach resort. That’s crazy; the island practically buzzes with energy and you should do likewise—get moving. Journey through the culture-soaked streets of Trinidad and Old Havana for your fill of drinking and dancing. The music here pours out of open windows. Hit the beach and explore the outdoors then connect with the locals in homestays and make friends for life as you hit the sites with other young people like yourself. Boring? Impossible!

Highlights: Dance the night away with other young travellers in Old Havana, mingle with the locals at overnight homestays, sample the local rum and cigars, connect to the salsa culture on the dance floor, move those hips to incredible live music, explore colonial Havana's alleyways, laze under the Caribbean sun.

8 days
From $699
Travel Style:
Yolo
Trip Type:
Small Group
Service Level:
Basic
Physical Grading:
2

Best of Panama (CPPQ)

Central America Panama

Panama has been a destination on the cusp of the mainstream for ages, but somehow still remains a secret. More greatness for us to enjoy, we say. This 8-day trip opens the lid on the natural splendour of this overlooked gem of a country, giving travellers the chance to hike cloud forests, snorkel the Caribbean and even discover where that delicious morning cup of joe comes from at a coffee plantation. Panama is spectacular, and the best way to promote it is by word-of-mouth. Tell your friends!

Highlights: Snorkel in the crystal-blue Caribbean waters in Bocas del Toro, take in the crisp air of the lush green highlands in Boquete, explore the Panama Canal, learn where your morning coffee comes from on a tour of a local plantation.

Promotions Available! 8 days
From $764
$899
Travel Style:
Classic
Trip Type:
Small Group
Service Level:
Standard
Physical Grading:
2

Moroccan Desert Adventure (DCMD)

North Africa / Middle East Morocco

Marrakech—whisper it and instantly your mind goes to a place of seduction and spices. Experience it for yourself. This intense 1-week journey reveals the secrets of Morocco and is crammed with all the activities and energy you crave. In the company of other young travellers, dance beside a campfire in the Sahara, go rock climbing in Todra and hang with the hippies in Essaouira. Explore the kasbahs, coast and desert and lose the herd on a trip you’ll never forget.

Highlights: Get lost in ancient medinas, dodge snake charmers, ride a camel to a desert camp, bargain in exotic souks, hang with the hippies of Essaouira, experience this land of mystery for yourself.

8 days
From $799
Travel Style:
Yolo
Trip Type:
Small Group
Service Level:
Basic
Physical Grading:
2

Croatia Adventure - Zagreb to Dubrovnik (ECZD)

Europe Croatia

A trip from Zagreb to Dubrovnik is not your backpacker’s typical European tour—it’s way better. In one week, scramble from historic Zagreb along the Adriatic Coast to stunning Dubrovnik. Along the way you’ll hit the highlights—did we mention Pag and Hvar, along the coastline? But you’ll also discover a Europe too often ignored by travellers. Party in exclusive clubs and wander historic and picture-perfect old lanes. Come away from Europe with more than just great photographs—travel with young and fun travellers and you’ve got friends for life.

Highlights: Make new friends over drinks along the Adriatic, scramble around medieval fortresses, connect with the culture in charming old villages, discover the rich and varied countryside of the Balkans, explore Diocletian's Palace on a guided tour.

7 days
From $799
Travel Style:
Yolo
Trip Type:
Small Group
Service Level:
Basic
Physical Grading:
2

Best of Sumatra (AESM)

Asia Indonesia

Fabled for its rainforests and wildlife, Sumatra remains a destination most travellers resign to their “someday” list. Someday is now. One of the largest islands in the world, this lush Indonesian gem is ideal for adventurers looking for something beyond the ordinary. Beginning in Medan, this 8-day trip will bring you face-to-face with orangutans, the impressive supervolcano at Lake Toba, coffee plantations, village life in Berastagi (famed for its delicious passion fruit) and much more. What, exactly? You’ve gotta get here to find out!

Highlights: Explore Bohorok National Park and meet the orangutans, watch the sunrise from the top of a volcano, relax on an island resort, learn where famous Sumatra coffee comes from, soak in the natural hot springs

Promotions Available! 8 days
From $849
$999
Travel Style:
Classic
Trip Type:
Small Group
Service Level:
Standard
Physical Grading:
2

Cambodia on a Shoestring (ATRC)

Asia Thailand, Vietnam, Cambodia

Marvel at the incredible Khmer ruins of Angkor Wat and the clear turquoise waters at Sihanoukville. This journey packages Cambodia’s treasures into 10 well-paced days. Brave Ho Chi Minh City’s jam-packed streets with other travellers your own age—you can be sure they’ll keep pace with you—or check out the more laid back waterways of Vietnam’s Mekong Delta. With your accommodation, transportation and general trip logistics arranged, you can concentrate on choosing the activities that interest you most.

Highlights: Explore bustling Bangkok, catch the sunrise over Angkor Wat, enjoy a delicious local Khmer meal in a small village, walk the bustling streets of Phnom Penh, chill out on golden beaches, connect with the locals on an overnight homestay, cruise the Mekong Delta, discover intriguing Ho Chi Minh City.

10 days
From $849
Travel Style:
Yolo
Trip Type:
Small Group
Service Level:
Basic
Physical Grading:
2

Southern Thailand Sojourn (ATSS)

Asia Thailand

From Bangkok nightclubs that never close to laid-back beachside drinks on Koh Tao, experience the energy of southern Thailand. Hike through the magnificent lowland rainforest of Khao Sok National Park, where tigers still roam, or laze in a riverside hammock. This is your trip—so tread your own path. With an expert CEO leading the way, you're free to snorkel beautiful coral reefs or work on your tan. Enjoy the best of the beachside sun and backpacker nightlife in nine amazing days.

Highlights: Explore bustling Bangkok, enjoy nature at Khao Sok National Park, relax on the white-sand beaches of Koh Samui and Koh Tao.

9 days
From $849
Travel Style:
Yolo
Trip Type:
Small Group
Service Level:
Basic
Physical Grading:
2
6 days
From $499

Discover Arequipa & Colca Canyon (TSPACC)

8 days
From $599

Budget Egypt (DPGE)

7 days
From $599

Local Living Ecuador—Amazon Jungle (SEJL)

8 days
From $629

Costa Rica Pass - Route 1 Adventure Bus (TCR1BN)

8 days
From $629

Costa Rica Pass - Route 2 Adventure Bus (TCR2BN)

8 days
From $629

Costa Rica Pass - Route 3 Adventure Bus (TCR3BN)

8 days
From $649

Costa Rica on a Shoestring (CRBC)

8 days
From $649

Costa Rica Pass - Route 1 Self Drive (TCR1DN)

8 days
From $649

Costa Rica Pass - Route 2 Self Drive (TCR2DN)

8 days
From $649

Costa Rica Pass - Route 3 Self Drive (TCR3DN)

8 days
From $659

Golden Triangle (AHGT)

8 days
From $699

Northern Hilltribes & Villages (ATHV)

8 days
From $699

Cuban Rhythms (CCCR)

Promotions Available! 8 days
From $764
$899

Best of Panama (CPPQ)

8 days
From $799

Moroccan Desert Adventure (DCMD)

Promotions Available! 8 days
From $849
$999

Best of Sumatra (AESM)

10 days
From $849

Cambodia on a Shoestring (ATRC)

9 days
From $849

Southern Thailand Sojourn (ATSS)

Trip Length Style Service Level Starting Price
Local Living Thailand—Hilltribe Experience (ATHL) 6 days Local Living Basic
From $399
Discover Arequipa & Colca Canyon (TSPACC) 6 days Comfort Upgraded
From $499
Budget Egypt (DPGE) 8 days Yolo Basic
From $599
Local Living Ecuador—Amazon Jungle (SEJL) 7 days Local Living Basic
From $599
Costa Rica Pass - Route 1 Adventure Bus (TCR1BN) 8 days Classic Standard
From $629
Costa Rica Pass - Route 2 Adventure Bus (TCR2BN) 8 days Classic Standard
From $629
Costa Rica Pass - Route 3 Adventure Bus (TCR3BN) 8 days Classic Standard
From $629
Costa Rica on a Shoestring (CRBC) 8 days Yolo Basic
From $649
Costa Rica Pass - Route 1 Self Drive (TCR1DN) 8 days Classic Standard
From $649
Costa Rica Pass - Route 2 Self Drive (TCR2DN) 8 days Classic Standard
From $649
Costa Rica Pass - Route 3 Self Drive (TCR3DN) 8 days Classic Standard
From $649
Golden Triangle (AHGT) 8 days Classic Standard
From $659
Northern Hilltribes & Villages (ATHV) 8 days Yolo Basic
From $699
Cuban Rhythms (CCCR) 8 days Yolo Basic
From $699
Best of Panama (CPPQ) 8 days Classic Standard
From $764
$899
Moroccan Desert Adventure (DCMD) 8 days Yolo Basic
From $799
Croatia Adventure - Zagreb to Dubrovnik (ECZD) 7 days Yolo Basic
From $799
Best of Sumatra (AESM) 8 days Classic Standard
From $849
$999
Cambodia on a Shoestring (ATRC) 10 days Yolo Basic
From $849
Southern Thailand Sojourn (ATSS) 9 days Yolo Basic
From $849