How to make the most of your guided holiday
Fortunately, the “Today’s Tuesday, it must be Belgium” guided holiday has become a relic of the past. No longer content to “do Europe in three days”, holidaymakers are increasingly demanding that their guided holidays be adventurous, exciting and innovative, giving travellers a chance to explore off-the-beaten track destinations and experiences they would not ordinarily have been able to reach on their own.
Thinking of going on a guided holiday this year? In addition to guaranteeing 2016 holidays at 2015 prices, Trafalgar has these five must-follow tips to make sure your guided holiday is a success:
- Your new BFF, the Tour Director
Get the most of your guided holiday by telling your Tour Director about your specific interests. Tour Directors are chosen for their knowledge, attention to detail and ability to bring the destination to life through storytelling. Unless you tell your Tour Director about your avid interest in World War II, he won’t know to mention the little-known 17th century farm you’re passing by that sheltered fleeing refugees.
- Live like a local
Grab opportunities to live life like a local with both hands. Toast your che bella giornata with the Telli family on a secluded island on Lake Maggiore or join Béatrice, the owner of a beautiful 17th century French Chateau in Villandry to hear about life on the Touraine vineyard circuit and taste some of her authentic local dishes. On your own, discovering these local experience would likely only cross your path if you were particularly persistent in seeking them out. A guided holiday with insider experiences ensures you have access to the locals without having to work for it.
- Travel in 2016
Ditch all thoughts of the plummeting rand exchange rate. Travel in 2016 at 2015 prices and you can save up to 30% on your guided holiday package which leaves you with a little more spending money to enjoy free time exploring your destination. Break away from the group now and again for some ‘alone time’. Get up early and take an early morning stroll to the local market in Amsterdam or enjoy coffee and a croissant at a bistro in Paris. Although you’re on a guided holiday, it doesn’t mean you can’t enjoy it totally on your terms and now you can afford to too.
- Skip the queues
Tap your inner culture vulture and get set to wander around Europe’s exquisite museums. And don’t let your enthusiasm be squashed when you see the long queues in front of Paris’ Louvre or Rome’s Colosseum. Ignore your impending guilt trip and choose a guided holiday that will allow you to simply skip those queues. Imagine visiting the Vatican before any other groups or tourists get to enter it. Ignore the ‘do not enter’ signs and get a sneak peak behind the scenes treading where no other tourists are allowed to tread.
- Say yes to new things
Travel is an opportunity to try new things, experiences you would ordinarily not have an opportunity to experience when at home, unique flavours you would rarely enjoy other than in the destination you’re visiting. Take advantage of the off-the-beaten-track adventures offered on a guided holiday. Ask your Tour Director to introduce you to local customs, cultures and traditions. Try your ‘feet’ at the flamenco, learn how to make sushi in Japan or let a Dutch artisan show you how to hand-paint Royal Delft Pottery. Saying yes, means an even more enriching guided holiday experience.