Looking for adventure? A small-group tour can be the way to go, especially to far-flung corners of the world where organizing your own trip...
Looking for adventure? A small-group tour can be the way to go, especially to far-flung corners of the world where organizing your own trip can be tough. And Seattle is a hotbed of adventure-travel companies — and travelers.
Local companies offer everything from cultural adventures in Central America to Himalaya treks and Africa safaris, and in styles (and price ranges) from backpacker to luxury. Group sizes usually range from a dozen to 18 travelers, although they can be a smaller. Many companies also will arrange private trips.
Here’s a sampling of Seattle-area adventure-travel companies. (To find more, check with the Seattle-based Adventure Travel Trade Association, www.adventure.travel, or The International Ecotourism Society, www.ecotourism.org.)
Adventure Associates: A small company with big-hearted tours, emphasizing connections with local communities in Mexico, Tanzania, Nepal and beyond. www.adventureassociates.net/
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Arctic Odysseys: A pioneer of High Arctic travel with small-group tours in the far north of Canada, Russia and beyond, from wildlife-watching to dog-sledding and ski treks. www.arcticodysseys.com.
Crooked Trails: Community-based trips that include homestays or service projects in indigenous communities in Bhutan, Peru, Kenya and more. www.crookedtrails.com.
Erickson Cycle Tours: Family-run company with van-supported cycle tours in Europe, from Vienna to Venice, around France’s Provence, and more. www.ecycletours.com
Go South Adventures: Treks in Patagonia and Peru, including to Machu Picchu, plus Galapagos trips and more. www.go-south-adventures.com
MIR Corporation: Tours to where Europe and Asia intersect, from hiking to more luxurious cultural explorations in Central Asia, Russia, Mongolia and beyond. www.mircorp.com
Mountain Madness: High-level climbing expeditions (Everest, anyone?); lower-elevation treks and climbs in the Himalayas and Alps; and walking safaris. www.mountainmadness.comMountaineers Global Adventures: A few international outings are offered each year through the Seattle outdoors club, with upcoming Nepal treks and New Zealand backpacking. www.mountaineers.org/
Red Lantern Journeys: Custom-designed adventure trips, for independent travelers and small groups, in Asia. www.redlanternjourneys.com
REI Adventures: An offshoot of outdoors retail-giant REI, it offers hundreds of trips worldwide each year, from physically arduous treks and kayaking to multisport trips that combine outdoors fun with sightseeing. www.rei.com/adventures.
TCS & Starquest Expeditions: Money truly no object? TCS specializes in private-jet expeditions to faraway places, including an ultraluxury South Africa safari. www.tcsandstarquestexpeditions.com
Wildland Adventures: Trips with an intercultural, environmentally conscious focus, from family trips to Peru and Central America to Kenya safaris and off-the-beaten track Ethiopia tours. www.wildland.comZegrahm Expeditions: Adventure tours to every continent, including African safaris, expedition cruises to Antarctica and circumnavigations of Sicily or Ireland. www.zeco.com
Kristin Jackson: firstname.lastname@example.org