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  Best Travel Websites Best Cultural Immersion Travel Organizations and Programs

Best Cultural Immersion Travel Organizations and Programs

From the beginning "Cultural Travel" has been an essential part of our mission at Transitions Abroad.

We chose to name this growing selection of travel programs "Best Cultural Immersion Travel," since the term "cultural travel" is now often used by travel agencies to describe group tours that primarily visit monuments, museums, and historic sites with less emphasis on contact with the local people and culture. In our original definition of the term, cultural immersion travel however, implies respectful contact and interaction with the people and culture of a destination—culture defined as the way of life, activities, and traditions of a people, and not simply a country’s historic sites and scenic attractions.

For this section we have chosen our favorite travel organizations who specialize in providing the more authentic cultural experiences for travelers, based on sharing the lives, traditions, and activities with the local population.

Please feel free to add your own suggestions for organizations who adhere to these values in the comments section.

Note: Our extensive section on Cultural Travel and Tours includes many in-depth and illustrated articles involving cultural immersion travel experiences, undertaken both independently and in small groups, as appropriate to such factors as location and age.

A violinist in Poland
A violinist makes wonderful music in the streets of Krakow, Poland. Photo by Jim Kane of Culture Explorers from Culturally Sensitive Photography.

Culture Explorers offers small-group cultural immersion tours in Peru, Mexico, Brazil, Guatemala, and provides travelers with an insider's access into the local culture and living traditions.

The Experiment in International Living is an international nonprofit membership association that offers home-stays, group travel, study abroad, language training, work exchange and other cultural immersion programs, with members in 20+ countries worldwide. The summer immerse cross-cultural exchange programs are for high school students.

G Adventures is an operator offering many small group tours, including adventure, classic, family, cooperation with National Geographic Journeys, and other trips emphasizing cultural immersion travel. The emphasis on small groups allows for more responsible travel in the contact with local people.

Global Awareness Through Experience offers cultural immersion programs, women's spiritual quests and pilgrimage opportunities in Latin America. GATE strives to create an awareness of other cultures and their realities through people-to-people connections.

Holbrook Travel: Cultural Travel offers cultural immersion trips designed to help travelers experience foreign cultures, foods, and traditions worldwide in-depth while being in close contact with locals.

Intrepid Travel is a tour operator that seeks to offer "grass-roots" small group tours worldwide to allow for rich cultural immersion travel and inter-cultural exchanges in a responsible and respectful manner. Basic, Original, and Comfort travel styles are offered, depending upon your preference, though we believe the most basic mode of travel allows for the greatest immersion as a rule.

Wild Frontiers is an award-winning tour operator emphasizing cultural immersion travel, responsible travel, adventure travel, and exploration in small groups.


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