Gamechangers: Travel Tours & Experiences - Full-Time Travel

Gamechangers: Travel Tours & Experiences

Gamechangers: Travel Tours & Experiences

After two years of pandemic stagnation, the hunger for adventure and meaningful moments is strong. From rare expeditions and custom quests to mind-expanding activities and responsible cultural encounters, these travel companies offer tours and experiences that go above and beyond a typical vacation.

Arcadia Expeditions

Kula Canoe, Kitava Island, Trobiand Islands, Papua New Guinea | Courtesy of Arcadia Expeditions

Arcadia Expeditions describes its culturally immersive expeditions as “like joining the making of a documentary, without the film crew.” These unique trips take travelers to remote corners of the globe, where experts and guides introduce them to people, historical sites, and one-off experiences that are rarely accessible to tourists. Arcadia Expedition’s newly launched journey, Voices on the Wind: 60,000 Years of Culture & Trade, traverses the ancient trading routes of Papua New Guinea, connecting with tribes and gaining cultural understanding through local academics. If you want a travel experience that takes you to places most people will never go and introduces you to communities most people will never meet, book a journey with Arcadia Expeditions.


Greece trip by Sojrn | By Josh Mojica

At the intersection of travel and self-improvement sits Sojrn, a company that takes curious travelers on month-long trips to dream locations around the world, books their accommodation and workspace, and creates a curriculum of educational activities to participate in during down time. If you’re one of the many adults who regrets not studying abroad when you were at college, this is your opportunity. Sign up for one of Sojrn’s “chapters” and work remotely while deep-diving into wine varietals in Tuscany, Greek Culture in Athens, cuisine in Mexico City, wellbeing in Bali or art & architecture in Barcelona. You’ll return home with newly acquired knowledge and a new cohort of friends who share your passion.

Based On A True Story 

Courtesy of Based On A True Story

There are luxury travel experiences, and then there are trips crafted by Based On A True Story, a company that specializes in expeditions and quests that place travelers at the center of their own bespoke adventure. These trips go beyond your wildest dreams, featuring surprise twists, once-in-a-lifetime encounters and even the creation of entire fantasy worlds. To use one real example, a couple on a round-the-world honeymoon touched down in Rome and used a personalized key to unlock a mansion door, where they traveled back in time 200 years to a Renaissance-era soirée. For those with a plump enough bank balance (these highly creative trips typically start at $500,000 for a bespoke two-week trip), Based On A True Story promises to craft a travel experience completely unlike any other.


Courtesy of TrovaTrip

Imagine if you could go on vacation with your favorite author/content creator/fitness coach etc., learn from them, have an adventure, and make new friends in the process. That’s the concept behind TrovaTrip, a platform and marketplace that allows expert hosts to connect with their online communities IRL in amazing locations. Hosts are often multi-hyphenate types with large social media followings, and while each trip offers a varied itinerary of experiences, a real selling point is the opportunity to benefit from your host's niche expertise through workshops and exercises. Pick up photography tips in Namibia, practice yoga in Sri Lanka, or hone your cooking skills in Italy.

Intrepid Travel

Intrepid's Carbon Neutral Whale Watching | Courtesy of North Sailing

A respected name in travel for over 30 years, Intrepid is beloved for its steadfast commitment to responsible adventure tourism that serves to support marginalized communities and conservation. This year alone, the company has announced 22 new impact initiatives – purpose-led travel experiences woven into some of its most popular tours, including carbon neutral whale watching in Iceland, a Moroccan tea house visit in support of local women, and a Lakota-led Heritage Center tour as part of Intrepid Travel’s new South Dakota Lodge Stay. If you believe travel can be a force for good in the world, Intrepid makes it easy to put your money where your mouth is. 

*Featured image courtesy of Arcadia Expeditions

"This sculpture is called "Transmission" by artist Daniel Popper. Its a reminder that we are all rooted in love, unity and the divine. She stands a towering 28 feet tall and is located on Mojave Moon Ranch in Joshua Tree. The land is private property, so you can see it from the viewing platform off of Sunfair Road. And take it from me, it's best viewed at sunset."

Reel: @johnofah

There's more to Greece than the white and blue buildings and the surrounding Mediterranean Sea. If you're planning a visit, check out these places below!

📍Kokkinopilos. Preveza
📍Verliga Dragon lake, Thessaly
📍Ithaca island, lonian Sea
📍Aoos springs lake, Epirus
📍Lake Prespes, Macedonia
📍Balda di Stringa waterfalls, Epirus
📍Meteora, Thessaly
📍Pelion, Thessaly
📍Lake Zorika, Epirus
📍Mt Lakmos
📍Crete island, Aegean Sea
📍Gistova Dragon lake, Macedonia

Reel: @farawayfarers

Swim or kayak through the limestone cliffs of the Twin Lagoon, a must-visit destination for those traveling to Coron, Palawan, Philippines. It is called "twin" lagoon because it consists of two lagoons separated by a limestone cliff, with one lagoon on top of the other. The water in the inner lagoon is warm and clear, with a stunning turquoise color that makes it popular for swimming and snorkeling.

Reel: @travelifejournal

Take a dip in a series of seven saltwater lagoons located in the Atacama Desert of northern Chile. The Lagoons of Baltinache are known for their beautiful turquoise waters and unique geological formations. The high concentration of minerals in the water gives it a unique buoyancy that makes swimming in the lagoons a unique experience.

Reel: @everchanginghorizon

Watching the sun rise above the clouds at Haleakalā National Park is one of the most memorable experiences you could have. Haleakalā is a Hawaiian name that means “House of the Sun” and is an awesome place to watch the clear night sky and stars fade away as the sun lights up the sky and the earth.

Reel: @girlchill_sunset

Just 1 hour from Shanghai by train, Cherry Blossom Valley is a popular tourist destination, particularly in the spring when the cherry blossoms are in full bloom. The valley is named after the thousands of cherry blossom trees that cover the area and create a stunning display of pink and white flowers. The trees were originally planted in the 1980s by a group of Japanese experts who were invited to China to help with reforestation efforts. The best time to visit is typically in late March or early April. Get there early to beat the crowds!

Reel: @cyncynti

New Zealand is unbelievable. See it for yourself:

1. Fiordland National Park
2. A classic backcountry hut trip
3. Blue Pools walk
4. Hooker Lake
5. Milford Sound
6. Lake Pukaki

Reel: @kylekotajarvi

Surrounded by lush greenery, towering karst mountains, and the river flowing through, the Detian Waterfall is a popular tourist attraction and a symbol of the close relationship between China and Vietnam. It is the largest waterfall in Asia and the fourth largest cross-border waterfall in the world.

Reel: @sophoebelous

Escape to a serene and peaceful oasis away from the bustling city of Marrakech at Le Jardin Secret—a beautiful and historic garden where visitors can escape the noise and chaos and enjoy the beauty of nature. The garden was originally built in the 16th century and is home to many different species of plants, including exotic flowers, citrus trees, and palm trees.

Reel: @hypermiggzz

For a magical moment and bucket list travel experience, visit the end point of the annual monarch butterfly migration. Starting in August, the monarchs travel 2,800 miles south from Canada, making a temporary home amid the towering trees of the Monarch Butterfly Biosphere Reserve in Mexico, where the two most popular sanctuaries to view them are el Rosario in the state of Michoacan and Piedra Herrada in Estado de México. Standing in silence while thousands of delicate wings beat in unison is something you'll never forget.

Reel: @juliiathompson

There's just something beautiful about snow covered landscapes like this popular attraction in southwestern Utah. Known for its unique geology, @brycecanyonnps_gov consists of a series of natural amphitheaters, called "hoodoos," formed by erosion of the rock layers.

Photo: @nathanleeallen

As we experience a couple more weeks of winter, we can't help but dream of tropical destinations like Hawaii. The warm water, sunny skies, and consistent waves make it an ideal destination for surfers. Hawaii has a vibrant surf culture and community and is also a beautiful place to explore outside of the water, with lush green mountains, stunning beaches, and unique cultural experiences.

Reel: @christopherballadarez

1. @sequoiakingsnps, California
2. @canyonlandsnps, Utah
3. @olympic_nps, Washington
4. @whitesandsnps, New Mexico
5. Vermillion Cliffs National Monument, Arizona
6. Knik Glacier, Alaska

Reel: @nathanleeallen