At an emotional ceremony at the Royal Geographical Society in London, UK, last week Wanderlust magazine announced the winners of the third Paul Morrison Guide Awards and we are thrilled that the top GOLD accolade went to Intrepid’s Esam Abd El Salam!
Set up to recognise the difference that a great guide can make to travel experiences, a shortlist of eight was whittled down from a record entry of 170 nominated guides from around the world.
“Egypt is a country with some of the most highly regarded and experienced guides in the world and Esam has done incredibly well to stand out,” commented Lyn Hughes, co-founder and editor-in-chief of Wanderlust magazine.
We are very excited to announce that Weerapong Thanachana (Noi) has been selected as the most outstanding tour guide at this year’s Thai Tourism Awards. Noi joined Intrepid over 6 [...]
A tuk tuk can cough up 1.1kg of CO2 per person on a return trip from Khao San Road to Bangkok’s Grand Palace, and even hiking to Everest Base Camp can peak at emitting 4.0 grams of CO2 per person each day. Calculating all your holiday carbon emissions could seem impossible, but Intrepid knows it can be done!
When Intrepid set course to be a carbon neutral company by 2010 we knew it wouldn’t be easy, but we also understood that as a responsible travel company it was the only way forward. So we have employed the help of professionals and are definitely on track to achieving this important goal!
A big (and exciting) step in our journey towards carbon neutrality is the release of our first Carbon Offset trips. We’ve taken 38 of our favourite Intrepid adventures, such as Cambodia Basix, Roam China and Moorish Spain, carefully assessed their greenhouse gas emissions and reduced them where possible. Then we will offset the remaining emissions on these trips with our already pre-purchased carbon credits.
Nancy Mills looked forward to admiring the art deco architecture of Casablanca, exploring medieval Fes and watching the sun set over the Sahara, but it was what she didn’t expect that turned out to be to her liking in Morocco …
“I looked forward to riding a camel on my Intrepid trip to Morocco. I never imagined I would be eating camel, much less enjoying it!
Wandering the Meknes souq’s labrynth had certainly made us hungry. The wonderful aroma of frying meat and onions promised relief. But this was not to be a ‘Big Mac’ moment.
First we had to buy our meat and so we followed our guide’s directions to the butcher shop – buried deep in the interior of the souq. The giant camel’s head overlooking the stall confirmed that this was not to be an ordinary carnivorous experience.
“I recently did this The Reunification Express tour through Vietnam with my partner and a group of 6 others. We had a great local guide who became our good friend [...]
“After living in Australia for almost eight years and never venturing outside of Perth, I decided I wanted to explore more of this beautiful continent and booked a trip to Sydney in my last university holidays. By chance, I happened to grab my second-hand copy of Looking for Alibrandi, by Melinda Marchetta as reading material for the flight.
What luck to be reading a book set in Sydney while travelling around Sydney! Looking for Alibrandi depicts the struggle for identity of a teenage Italian-Australian living in Sydney. The novel has a unique perspective for the traveller as it is written with the familiarity of the native Australian, as well as with the cultural observations of the outsider.
The champagne corks are popping again because Intrepid Travel has received the top award for being Australia’s fastest-growing and most innovative company at the 2008 SmartCompany Awards.
Geoff Manchester, Intrepid Director and co-founder said, “This is a great honour and one that Darrell, my fellow co-founder and I will cherish, because it recognises the 20 years of hard work our employees and industry partners have put in to helping build Intrepid.”
Camel rides through the desert in India, elephant rides in Thailand, pony carts in Luxor and donkey rides to the Valley of the Kings. These a just a few of the many animal riding opportunities offered as part of the experience in tourism destinations. But is it cruel for the animals? Or is it actually a good thing because your payment is helping fund the handlers and enable them to better care for the animals?
We asked animal welfare organisations for their views on animal riding…
“Travelling with my parents, they’ve always impressed upon me respect for other cultures and how learning some words in their language can be fun and show respect.
So – at age 11 – I learnt ‘calimera’ meant good morning in Greek, for when we were travelling through some of the islands there.
So one morning, I walked along a beach at the front of our hotel, picking up shells and nodding my head at passers-by and calling them ‘squid’ (calamari) instead. *nod* Squid! *nod* Squid!
To this day I love learning bits and pieces of the language when we travel – I love seeing people’s faces light up in delight that you have taken the time and care.” Kirsten Jackes, Intrepid Express reader.
When Express reader Louise Macfarlane and her boyfriend decided on a picnic in France, little did they know it would end up more like a funniest home videos sketch than a romantic afternoon…
“One of the most memorable afternoons I have experienced whilst travelling, was in southern France. We were travelling on Intrepid’s Classic Europe trip and having a free afternoon, my boyfriend and I borrowed rickety bikes from the hotel and filled the baskets with delicious French fare for a picnic lunch in the surrounding grape-laden countryside.
We found the perfect location to lay our sarongs (always the most useful things in our backpacks!). We wanted to set up an idyllic picnic photo to record this special day, so we unwrapped our spread of fresh fruits, cheese, crusty breads, sweet wine and even a bunch of red radish for effect!