Here are some of my favourite tours, blogs, trips and things I have found useful over the years. As I continue to travel, love and experience it will be a list that never ends.
I don’t go on many tours but when do I always come back to one company, G Adventures. They run small group tours across most of the world and their social enterprise organisation Planeterra gives back to the communities in which they travel. Check out their range of travel styles including YOLO, Family, National Geographic Journeys and Active to name a few. All their tours have guaranteed departures and lifelong deposits if you need to cancel.
San Blas Adventures
On a wall in a hostel in Ecuador I saw an A4 piece of paper with a tour company on it, San Blas Adventures. I took down the name and saved it for later, and Boy George am I happy I did. San Blas Adventures runs a 4 day Island Hopping Tour through the San Blas from Colombia to Panama and vice versa. They take a speed boat from island to island and sleep on the islands with the Kuna People. As with G they support the local community which is the Kuna People who share their islands with you. I wholeheartedly recommend not only the San Blas Islands but San Blas Adventures to explore it.
Call me a traditionalist, but since I started travelling in 2003 when the internet was nowhere near what it is today I took my Lonely Planet Central America on a Shoestring with me and it didn’t steer me wrong. Fourteen years and many guide books later, to me, they are still a staple for anyone who is researching a destination and heading off by themselves
The man in seat 61
This site was absolutely invaluable for my trip to Myanmar catching trains and boats everywhere. It has timetables, routes, costs, photos. The detail is quite unbelievable and it covers the worlds trains.
Getting a visa to Russia can be tricky, especially if you’re not on a tour, with invitation letters required and hotel bookings etc. This blog was totally on point, we got our visas efficiently and we were able to book our trains from St P to Moscow through her recommendations as well. You will need a Russian friend to translate the payment page when booking the trains though.
Hostelworld – Accomodation
Hostelworld has pretty much done all the research on hostels that you ever need to do. There are ratings, photos, reviews and of course you can book through them. They have also now branched out into blogs, travel information and countdown lists. It sure beats the old days of carrying your backpack around in 40 degrees looking for a place to stay, not that that wasn’t all part of the adventure. Sometimes it’s nice to move with the times though.