Traditional home in Mongolia teaching Education & Learning tours
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Education & Learning - Best Tours & Trips 2019

Learning vacations are focused primarily on adding to your knowledge of a particular subject -- anything from digging alongside archaeologists in Egypt to learning art history in Florence. Several tour companies specialize in these types of vacations, which appeal to those who want to combine travel with an educational component.
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DEPARTURE DATES

 
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Travel Style

Trip Type Trip Type Classic Tour Groups are between 25-60 people, typically ~30-40. Usually there will be many opportunities to split off and enjoy meals and excursions in smaller groups. This is the most economical way to travel, saving up to 40% versus booking the same itinerary yourself.
Small Group Guided Experiences Small groups are usually defined as between 10 and 24 travelers, often less. If you're the kind of person who enjoys more intimate experiences and personal service this is a good choice. All else being equal you will pay a premium for this style vs a larger group tour.
River Cruise These vessels are smaller than most ocean cruisers, limiting which amenties are available. Passenger counts can vary. One of the biggest advantages of a river cruise is the ability to dock at smaller ports and local villages.
Small Ocean Cruise Small ship cruises usually have a max passenger count of 500. The primary purpose of these trips is to spend time off the vessel in local ports (e.g. Mediterranean) or experiencing nature (e.g Galapagos or Antarctica). Cabins can vary from budget to luxury.
Private Tour Private tours give you the undivided attention of a guide, and often involve special access to sites and unique experiences not available to larger groups. This is a great option for families, couples, and small friend groups. Expect to pay a bit more for the extra service.
Independent Package A travel company plans your itinerary and arranges all the logistics including lodging, local activities, and transportantion. You have the flexibility of a solo trip while still getting the convience and time savings of expert planning. Get 90% of the benefits of a tour, without a guide.
Vacation / Holiday Package Similar to a self guided tour, this usually involves a home base, such as a hotel or resort, with packaged activities and day tours as a part of the stay.
Large Ocean Cruise This is the "floating city" experience, with multiple ways to enjoy your vacation aboard the ship as much as on land. Ships are multiple floors, provide several activities, culinary, and shopping options. They often make fewer stops and have less time available for shore excursions.

Itinerary Focus

Lodging Level Lodging Level Camping Typically involves most nights sleeping in tents (sometimes permanent tented sites) or in rustic cabins and lodges.
Basic - 2 star You'll stay in no-frills, but clean and comfortable, hotels or guesthouses. A 'Basic' trip might also involve a few nights of camping.
Value - 3 star Mid-range budget with accommodations ranging from comfortable lodges, guesthouses, and homestays to three star hotels.
Premium - 4 star 3 to 4 star western hotel equivalents. While not all lodging will be 'luxury' they will be quite comfortable by western standards.
Luxury - 5 star The highest level of comfort and service. All accomodations are in four or five star hotels, boutique lodges or high-end homestays.

Price From*

$ 0 $ 10,000+

Price Per Day

Trip Length

Countries

Physical Level Physical Level Very Easy Minimal walking - motor vehicles available for all major parts of trip.
Easy Normal generally flat walking in urban or suburban environments.
Moderate Walking or physical activity half to most of day - no carrying equipment.
Strenuous All or most of day hiking or biking, hills included.
Extreme Very challenging all day hiking and backpacking carrying significant equipment.

Travel Theme

Travelers Age

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Rivers & Seas

Cities & Attractions

Activities

Solo Friendly Solo Friendly Good for Singles Trips that specifically cater to travelers looking to meet other singles.
No Single Supplement Trips where single supplement is usually not required for solo travelers.

Company

Flights & Transport

Continents & Regions

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Top Education & Learning Experiences and Attractions

Top Education & Learning Experiences

Searching for carmine bee eaters in South Africa’s Walter Sisulu Botanical Gardens

Seeing the historic WWI battlefields of Somme, Verdun, Argonne and the Marne Valley and learning the events that unfolded there

Exploring Egyptian archaeological sites along the Nile River

Learning about Maasai people, their culture and their lifestyle

Visiting the David Sheldrick Wildlife Trust’s Orphan’s Project

Learning about the unique biodiversity of Galapagos Islands

Teaching English to novice monks in Laos

Seeing Southern Hemisphere constellations and stars for the first time on a star-gazing tour in the Australian Outback

Watching a demonstration of the Haka in New Zealand

Learning to make an authentic Thai curry in Bangkok

Taking tango lessons and attending milongas (tango events) in Buenos Aires

Gaining an open water scuba diving qualification while exploring beautiful coral reefs

Learning Spanish in South America

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Education & Learning Trip Reviews

8,102 Education & Learning Tour Reviews - Summary 92% Recommend

4.5 out of 5
Excellent 5,113
Great 2,336
Average 476
Disappointing 120
Terrible 57
Value
4.5
Guide
4.5
Activities
4.5
Lodging
4.5
Transportation
4.5
Meals
4.5

Tour Reviews Write a Review

Marrakech is Memorable - Noura made it Unforgettable!

5.0
  • Value 5.0
  • Guide 5.0
  • Activities 4.0
  • Lodging 5.0
  • Transportation 5.0
  • Meals 5.0

What a privilege it was for my family and me to experience Marrakech with Noura as our guide. She developed and coordinated a thoughtful itinerary for our 6 day visit, and then adapted throughout the week as we rearranged our plans. Throughout our time together, she provided informative background on the history of the sites we visited. It was a perfect combination of planned at activities and "go with the flow" spontaneity -- the essence of what a discovery vacation is about.

Read more
Operator Morocco private expert

They gave us truly memorable days i

5.0
Why Jordan Tours Company Reviews
  • Value 5.0
  • Guide 5.0
  • Activities 5.0
  • Lodging 5.0
  • Transportation 5.0
  • Meals 5.0

Best tour operator ever! Mohammad and his team were so nice to us, considerate, flexible and always welcoming. They gave us truly memorable days in Jordan! Every day of our journey was planned to perfection and carefully adapted to our needs and wishes.
Thanks to the entire team and huge thanks to our driver Saleh!

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Operator Why Jordan Tours

Great work to support people

5.0
  • Value 5.0
  • Guide 5.0
  • Activities 5.0
  • Lodging 5.0
  • Transportation 5.0
  • Meals 5.0

Good time to travel with my student to learn more culture and support Vietnamese community

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Operator Go Vietnam Travel

It was the best experience of my life

5.0
  • Value 5.0
  • Guide 5.0
  • Activities 5.0
  • Lodging 5.0
  • Transportation 5.0
  • Meals 5.0

I went to Tokyo, Japan for the 2018 summer course and it was the best experience of my life, I met people from all over the world all super nice and sharing the same interest in the land of the rising sun, the activities were great and super fun with everyone. The school and dormitory were awesome. In short, if you want an unforgettable experience, it should be done without moderation!

Read more
Operator Studytrip.com

I recommend with closed eyes!!! Excellent service

5.0
Travel Zone Greece Company Reviews
  • Value 5.0
  • Guide 5.0
  • Activities 5.0
  • Lodging 5.0
  • Transportation 5.0
  • Meals 5.0

At First I was a little afraid to close the cruise for a company I didn't know and even more distance. But I recommend with closed eyes!!! Excellent service. And look I'm detail, boring really.. lol. I traded several emails with Susana. Several questions. And everything responded immediately. Susana is exceptional!! solved flawless everything for our trip! Very Happy!!!

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Operator Travel Zone Greece

It was excellent quality

5.0
  • Guide 5.0
  • Lodging 5.0
  • Value 5.0
  • Activities 5.0
  • Transportation 5.0
  • Meals 5.0

I thought the hotel was the best in Havana - it was excellent quality. The food stops were very good. I learned so much about Cuba and her people due to the great places we visited - for instance, spending the morning at a health clinic and shopping for the evening meal at the local market.

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Operator Alexander + Roberts

Education & Learning Tours and Travel Guide

Education & Learning Attractions & Landmarks Guide

Learning vacations are focused primarily on adding to your knowledge of a particular subject -- anything from studying Spanish in Mexico to digging alongside archaeologists in Egypt to learning art history in Florence. Several tour companies specialize in these types of vacations, which appeal to travelers who want to combine a stay in a far-off location with an educational component. These trips often feature lecturers and local experts to enrich your experiences. 

Well-being

One way to combine a relaxing vacation with learning something new is to learn a well-being activity, such as yoga, meditation, or pilates. Not only are these activities great for the body and mind, but they can make for a peaceful and enjoyable vacation in an exotic location. These activities can take place throughout the world, from retreats in India, to beaches in Southeast Asia, to mountain lodges in South America.

Sport & Active Outings

Traveling abroad can open up new opportunities for learning sports and active pursuits that would be impossible at home, for example, horse riding, sand boarding, and mountain climbing. It’s also a great way to learn water sports such as surfing, waterskiing, and wake boarding. Most of these sports and activities can be undertaken as a single taster course of a day or two, but setting aside an entire holiday to learn a new activity can be rewarding, as you chart your progress and improve day by day.

A popular active learning vacation is sailing, where you can take in a few days or weeks of learning how to sail, while also exploring a region. Another is scuba diving, where you can spend days learning about diving while exploring an underwater world, and receive a qualification at the end. 

Dancing

Taking dance lessons can be a great way to learn a new skill and also learn about the culture of a specific region. Tango, for example, is an integral part of the culture of Buenos Aires, and taking some lessons here will open up a whole new side of the city to you. While salsa lessons are available throughout the world, learning the dance in Central or South America allows you to not only learn the steps, but to surround yourself with the culture of salsa, too.

There are a wide range of dance lessons available worldwide, from the well-known dances of Latin America, to tribal dances of Africa, or Bollywood dancing in India. So you can plan the location around the dance, or plan the dance around the location.

Creative

There are countless opportunities for combining a vacation with pursuing a creative passion. If you’re interested in fashion, why not try making your own clothes or jewelry? For those interested in photography, travel can open up a whole new world of photography adventures, allowing you to both pursue your hobby and to improve your skills. Or for those who enjoy writing, a writing retreat can be a great opportunity to focus on your passion, while meeting like-minded people.

Cooking

Where better to learn to cook authentic cuisine than in the home of the cuisine itself? Cooking courses can range from a single lesson to weeks spent exploring the culinary world of a country, and are a great way to experience the tastes of a region while learning a new skill to take home. Cooking courses can take place anywhere in the world, so all you need to do is pick a cuisine or country that interests you.

Language

There’s no better way to learn a language than by immersing yourself in it. Many language immersion courses are quite limited in where they take place (If you want to learn Mandarin, China is the obvious choice!). But others can take place in a wide range of countries. For example, if you’d like to learn Spanish, you can go pretty much anywhere in Central or South America, or of course, to Spain itself!

Be careful when choosing a location to learn a new language, though, as different places have different regional accents and dialects. The French spoken in France is far different to that spoken in Quebec, or throughout West Africa! So do your homework before you go, and find a course that’s right for you.

Top Education & Learning Travel Companies

Things to Know Before You Go

What is an educational tour?

On an educational tour, the ultimate goal is to learn something new while traveling. 

An educational tour can be age specific. For example, learning vacations and educational tours for adults are particularly popular. Some of the best providers of these kind of tours include Road Scholar (previously known as Elderhostel), a company known for its educational cruises and other easy and convenient trips, and Smithsonian Journeys.

An educational tour can take many forms. Perhaps you want to learn more about ancient Incan society at Machu Picchu by hiking the Inca Trail, or you want to learn the history of what was formerly Yugoslavia by rail, or you want to walk the spice trails in Petra -- all of these trips could be (and are!) educational tours.

Service Learning Tours

Another sought after form of educational tour is a learning tour with a service component. Like the traditional educational tour, the intensity of the service and amount of service per trip can vary drastically. Service is a great way to give back to the community you’re visiting, and can help make a trip much more meaningful.

Some examples of service you could be doing while traveling include working at an elephant sanctuary in Thailand, helping run an ESL after school program in Costa Rica, or helping perform animal conservation research in South Africa.

How to Pick your Educational Tour

Size
Once again, group sizes vary dramatically per tour and by company. Generally, large groups are a better price and boast group discounts. Smaller groups, while more expensive, usually offer a more thorough and personalized experience. If you are an independent person, you might even be interested in a self-guided tour -- whatever you’re leaning toward, however, Stride is your best resource to compare and contrast different tour providers and trip options. Check out our educational tour reviews to see what real people have actually experienced.  

Interest
One obvious distinction between tours, even in the same countries, is what topic the learning tour is focused on. For example, you could experience the south of Italy in a variety of ways. You could learn to wine-taste by visiting its rustic and beautiful vineyards, or maybe you want to get a fuller experience of the countryside by cycling through its small towns … or perhaps you’d rather stick with a more traditional vacation, with guaranteed stops at all of Italy’s most popular monuments and attractions.

Transportation 
Deciding your means of transport is another important decision in picking your tour. Although a tour may be learning-focused, it might be a combination of other things -- for example, many educational tours are done on bicycle, or conducted from the comfort of a cruise ship. Walking tours are also another popular form for educational tours.

All Education & Learning tours, river cruises, expedition cruises, and adventure trips. Find the best guided trips and expert planned vacation and holiday packages. Average rating of 4.5 for all Education & Learning trips.

1,203 trips from 100 tour companies with 8,102 reviews

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