Exactly 125 years ago today the National Geographic Society was officially formed. Its founders set out to create an organization “for the increase and diffusion of geographical knowledge” and considering everything that Nat Geo has accomplished over the years, I’d say they succeeded. The Society will celebrate this important milestone in a variety of ways throughout this year, including adding a number of special itineraries to their award-winning travel service, National Geographic Expeditions.
Exploration and discovery have long been at the heart of what drives the National Geographic Society forward and the trips that they have scheduled to celebrate their 125th anniversary reflect those values quite clearly. All told, there are ten itineraries to choose from, ranging from a seven-day excursion to Mayan ruins with Nat Geo grantee William Saturno to a 38-day epic journey through South America that includes stops in eight countries. Other options include a visit to East Africa to spot primates and a sailing adventure along Canada’s wild coast. There are even four specially designed photographic adventures that combine amazing destinations with photo workshops. Those destinations include places like the Grand Canyon, Tanzania and Morocco.
Of course, many of these itineraries are available from competing travel companies, often at a lower price. But what sets the Nat Geo Expeditions tours apart are the amazing men and women that you’ll have the opportunity to interact with along the way. For instance, on the photo expeditions you’ll hone your own skills by learning from Pulitzer Prize-winning photographers, while the other trips are led by NG Explorers-in-Residence, writers, biologists and more. These extraordinary people can provide experiences and insights that simply can’t be found elsewhere.
Checkout the entire list of National Geographic Expedition tours on the company’s website and help Nat Geo celebrate its 125th anniversary in style.
[Photo Credit: National Geographic]
Yesterday, National Geographic Expeditions announced an exciting new addition to its already outstanding line-up of adventurous travel itineraries.Thanks to a special license, issued to Nat Geo by the U.S. State Department, the company can now begin offering excursions to Cuba, with the first trip schedule to take place in November of this year.
This new ten-day expedition is aptly called Cuba: Discovering Its People and Culture, and features a great mix of history, art, music, and more. Highlights include exploring Spanish architecture throughout Old Havana, visiting the Bay of Pigs, as well as Ernest Hemingway’s home and a tour of one of Cuba’s legendary tobacco plantations. As with all Nat Geo Expeditions, travelers will be led by an expert on the chosen destination. In this case, that expert is travel writer Christopher Baker, who has years of experience traveling in Cuba, and has written several books about his experiences there.
Back in January of this year, the Obama Administration announced plans to ease travel restrictions to Cuba in an effort to normalize relations with that country and allow visitors from the U.S. to more easily venture there. This new itinerary from National Geographic is an indication that those restrictions are being lifted even further, potentially paving the way for unrestricted travel in the future. While it has been relatively easy for Americans to go to Cuba via a third-country, I know plenty of travelers who will welcome the ability to go directly there.
For dates, pricing, and a full itinerary for this trip, click here.
[Photo credit: National Geographic Expeditions]
The very name National Geographic evokes images of adventure and thoughts of exciting journeys to far away places. The iconic Society has probably done more to inspire travel than any other single entity ever. Several generations have grown up gazing at breathtaking images in the organization’s popular magazine and reading about daring explorers on those beautiful, glossy pages. Now, in what seems like a long over due move, Nat Geo is throwing its hat into the adventure travel ring, announcing 11 unique trips that will offer a compelling mix of cultural and physical activity with some of the most stunning scenery on the planet as the backdrop.
The aptly named National Geographic Adventures have itineraries that are sure to appeal to any adventure traveler. For instance, they offer a 15-day trek through the Himalayan kingdom of Bhutan that takes you to the 23,997-foot Chomo Lhari – the most sacred mountain in the country. If you prefer your trips keep you closer to sea level however, then perhaps the 9-day Alaska excursion would be more to your liking. That trip features sea kayaking and whale watching in Glacier Bay National Park. Meanwhile, backpackers will likely be enthralled with the 14-day hike through Chile’s stunningly beautiful Patagonia region. Other itineraries take travelers to Everest Base Camp in Nepal, on safari in Tanzania, and across Mongolia on horseback.
Each of the itineraries has been specifically crafted with the help of a National Geographic expert, who has applied their knowledge of the various regions to create a series of trips that are unlike any other. Those trips come with an activity level rating, with easy, moderate, strenuous, and “ultimate challenge” options available. Accommodations range from luxury tents to quaint mountain lodges and inns, and the group size is capped at just 16 to ensure the best travel experience possible.
To find out more about these new adventure travel options, click here, and for the full line up of trips from Nat Geo, check out the National Geographic Expeditions website as well.