History - Best Tours & Trips 2019
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Relaxed A lot of free time, with very few inclusions. Ideal for independent and/or low-key travelers and cruisers.
Full on For those looking to maximize their sight seeing time. You thrive on a packed day’s schedule from 8 am to 6pm, with some (but limited) free time. Most activities and meals included.
Mixed You will have solid amounts of both free time and structured time with some activities and meals included.
Group 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 Tour 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 Ship 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 Guided 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.
Self Guided / Independent Tour 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 Ship 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.
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 Per Day
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.
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Rivers & Seas
Cities & Attractions
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.
Flights & Transport
Continents & Regions
Stride Gives Back Stride Gives Back This trip visits a destination impacted by climate change. When you opt in to the Stride Gives Back program, we will donate 10% of our net revenue to organizations that help mitigate climate change in these destinations and across the globe. Learn more
Impacted by Climate Change
- CITY TOUR in Rome, Florence, Bologna, Paris and London
- ORIENTATION of Siena, Venice and Lucerne
- VISIT St. Peter's Basilica and the Colosseum in Rome
- CRUISE the Seine River in Paris
- VIEW the ancient sites of Rome, Juliet's Balcony in Verona, St. Mark's Basilica in Venice, the spectacular Alpine scenery of Switzerland, the Chapel Bridge in Lucerne, the Eiffel Tower and Notre Dame Cathedral in Paris and the White Cliffs of Dover
- SEE the Vineyards of Burgundy and the Somme Battlefields
- Gain special access to the excavations of Pompeii with a local expert and peer into the crater of Mount Vesuvius alongside a volcanologist.
- Gaze at the spectacular mosaics of the Villa Romana del Casale and descend into fascinating catacombs in Palermo.
- Visit eight UNESCO World Heritage sites, from the dramatic Amalfi Coast and ancient Syracuse to the Valley of the Temples in Agrigento.
- Hike through a landscape transformed by lava on Mount Etna and enjoy breathtaking views of Taormina and the coast.
- Visit Angkor Wat
- Enjoy a boat cruise on Mekong
- Explore the stunning Royal Palace complex, home to the Cambodian royal family.
- Learn about the rescued Sun bears at the Phnom Tamao Wildlife Rescue Centre
- Enjoy a unique experience in Elephant Valley Project
- Drive Kartie to see Dolphins
- Explore Thmor Sarus Crane Reserve that now holds more than 200 bird species
- Explore Prek Toal Bird Sanctuary
- Visit the immense walled city Angkor Thom
- Enjoy a boat ride on the Tonle Sap
- Enjoy the lush landscapes, exotic flowers and stunning birds
- Visit Gold Museum, home of the world’s largest collection of pre-Columbian gold
- Get to know the cultures and traditions of ancient and existent indigenous tribes
- Learn about the Spanish colonization, Inquisition era, and pirate sieges
- Scenic Drive through Oak Creek Canyon, Desert View Drive in Arizona, Mount Carmel Highway
- Iconic Train journey aboard the historic Grand Canyon Railway
- Visit Sedona, Grand Canyon National Park, Historic Cameron Trading Post, Monument Valley, Lake Powell, Zion National Park, Bryce Canyon National Park
- Enjoy active adventures featuring kayaks, expedition landing crafts, and biking as you focus on the region's natural history.
- Visit sites such as the campsites used by the Corps of Discovery and the eclectic Maryhill Museum with its collection of Native American basketry and beadwork
- You'll discover the region's culinary delights, aboard ship as we’re underway, and at a family farm and winery
- Pass through the series of eight locks that raise or lower the ship over 700 feet—a monumental triumph of engineering that deserves to be observed up close
- Visit the Columbia River Maritime Museum, which chronicles the history of river navigation and this port town
- Explore beautiful Galway Bay and take a nice walk along the promenade
- Explore Connemara area of Ireland
- Explore Killarney and experience the Cliffs of Moher
- A beautiful drive to Ring of Kerry, Killarney
- Discover Blarney Castle, Dublin
- Visit Scotland Oban
- Oban, Scottish Highlands
- Explore Stirling, Edinburgh
- Discover Edinburgh
- Discover the highlights of the ancient Maya civilization
- Take an amazing boat ride through Rio Dulce national park
- Enjoy the benefit of natural hot springs
- Overnight shore excursions to Marrakesh and Fez give you more time to explore Morocco’s wonders.
- Discover Madrid’s sprawling plazas and savor a performance of flamenco music and dance.
- Examine the exquisite interiors and lush gardens of the Alhambra, a magnificent Moorish palace.
- Visit the village of Huayllabamba
- Experience 2-hours hike leads to Intipunku (Gate of the Sun) which overlooks the awesome Machu Picchu
- Enjoy the climb magnificent views of the mountain ranges.
- Visit the Runkuraqay and Sayacmarca ruins
- See the highlights of China in this quickly-paced itinerary, including the cities of Shanghai, Beijing and Xian
- Make a stop in Chengdu to visit the famous Panda Center
- Stroll vineyard-striped hillsides and taste wines from Hungary’s Lake Balaton to Goriška Brda in Slovenia.
- Hike Slovenia’s stunning Alpine scenery: from snow-covered peaks and glacially carved valleys to pristine Lake Bohinj.
- Discover medieval history at a floating grain mill and herders’ cone-roofed huts.
- Delve into the otherworldly limestone cathedrals of Škocjan Caves, a UNESCO World Heritage site.
Must-see sights in China - Mutianyu Great Wall, Forbidden City, Terracotta Army
- Walk into a local Chinese family, interact & dine with the hosts in their home
- Try biking on the Ming Dynasty City Wall of Xi'an, or tour by electric car
- Cruise on the Huangpu River to take in the impressive skylines of Shanghai
- Preservation: Explore World Heritage sites and learn about preservation efforts from Cubans who are passionate about their architectural heritage.
- Art Traditions: Discover Cuba’s sophisticated art traditions during visits with artists in their studios.
- Religion: Learn about the African origins of Cuba’s Santeria religion as you engage with practitioners at a local museum.
- Music: Hear the complex rhythms of Cuban music, from son to rumba and jazz, and learn about these uniquely Cuban music styles.
- Unique to our program! Attend a special panel discussion with a diverse group of experts, which takes place in Miami prior to your departure for Cuba.
- Please note: Our November 10-19, 2016 departure runs on a 10-day schedule.
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Top History Experiences
Learning about the Inca civilization in Peru
Visiting the 3000 years old Pyramids of Giza
Seeing the Colosseum and the Forum in Rome
Visiting Neuschwanstein Castle in Germany, once a protective fortresses now a beautiful castle
Listening to the various theories of the purpose of Neolithic monument, Stonehenge
Seeing the magnificent Great Wall of China
Finding yourself travelling back to ancient civilization while the tour guides narrate the stories
Taking a small ship cruise to explore the surroundings
History Trip Reviews
5,141 History Tour Reviews - Summary 99% Recommend
History Tours and Travel Guide
History Attractions & Landmarks Guide
Many tours and small ship cruises have an element of history in their itineraries. For true history buffs, however, some destinations especially lend themselves to making history the focus of the trip: Rome, Athens, Angkor Wat, and Egypt to name a few. You can find specific tours and trip itineraries that cater to historically minded travelers, and even some tour operators who specialize in the field.
Going Beyond the Museum
For a truly immersive historical experience, it’s far more interesting to trace the footsteps of ancient people and cultures, than staring at artifacts encased in glass. The pasts represented by said artifacts come alive after experiencing the history outside the museum walls. On the other hand, the definition of museum has loosened in recent years. Many are outdoors, more interactive than they used to be, and also more specific. Could you believe that a museum exists in Portland, Oregon just about hats? Or a museum dedicated to vampires can be found in France?
There’s so many avenues through which to get a sense of culture and history, and your tour will hit on many of them. Food, art, architecture, clothing, even where water sources come from, all feed into the history of people and places. The information you learn on a history tour will enhance your appreciation in countless ways.
Discover how ancient people used to build their dwellings, eat food prepared from ingredients that would have been available to middle class families in Victorian England, learn how to dance traditional folk dances, trace the footsteps of famous authors and artists. No matter where you're traveling, interactive history tours provide an exciting link to the past. Especially if you’re traveling with children, activities where “history comes alive” are an absolute pleasure, and are often included on tours which are not history specific.
Temples, Ruins, and Castles
From the spectacular Angkor Wat temple, to the proudly standing ruins of the Forum in Rome, to every anglophiles dream at Lancaster Castle in the UK, history tours will undoubtedly showcase impressive architecture. Buildings such as these, whether they still exist intact or are mere skeletons of their former glory are always engaging and interesting to visit. They also offer spectacular photo opportunities!
Popular Historic Sites:
All History tours, river cruises, expedition cruises, and adventure trips. Find the best guided trips and expert planned vacation and holiday packages. Average rating of 4.7 for all History trips.