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No more 15-cities-in-10-days: Touring like a local is officially the new way to travel

The coach tour has grown up and is ready to take you to some of the world’s great destinations, it is time to tour.

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GONE ARE THE DAYS of stereotypical coach trips, when travellers would spend their holiday searching frantically for an umbrella-waving tour guide; be content posing for a few happy snaps before being whisked off to the next tourist attraction; or ticking off 15 cities in 10 days in a bid to say they’ve ‘done’ Europe. Nowadays, travellers expect more from a coach trip. They want to immerse themselves in a new culture and experience new destinations through the eyes of a local (away from the selfie-stick holding tourists). These travellers are looking for real, authentic experiences that allow them to escape the constraints of day-to-day life, but with the comfort and security of travelling with a local expert.

Travellers don’t want to pass through the underground Turkish city of Cappadocia, they want to see it through the eyes of a local family, the generations of which have lived there for centuries. They won’t settle for a tour of a famous perfume factory in France – they want to create their very own fragrance. And being lectured about eight centuries of architecture and culture in the historical Swiss town of Gruyères won’t cut it – they want to immerse themselves in it, savouring a traditional meal in the town’s spectacular 13th-century castle.

This craving for experiential travel has forced touring companies to evolve their offerings. The availability of more adventurous, tailored and engaging itineraries caters to the demands of this sophisticated market and debunks the stereotypes associated with coach travel. “Experiencing a new country shouldn’t be limited to ticking off the big-ticket items. The best memories are created when you discover the unexpected finds and quirky spots that are found off the beaten track. And this is where escorted coach companies like Globus can help,” says Chris Fundell, National Marketing Manager of Globus. “We have expert local guides based all over the world who know what’s going on behind the scenes in their destination and can bring it to life through their in-depth knowledge of the destination’s history, culture, traditions and insider secrets.” It’s safe to say, seeing the world from the window of a coach has come a long way; you can now expect a truly immersive, authentic experience. All you need to do is focus on the tough decisions at hand, like whether you’d prefer a full-bodied red or a light and refreshing Moscato to accompany a mouth-watering pizza following an afternoon exploring the vineyards of Southern Italy. It’s a tough life.


Hidden Treasures of Southern Italy

This tour takes guests on a journey to discover world-renowned treasures in art, architecture and history. A feast for the mind, body and soul, this escorted tour of Southern Italy will satisfy your curiosity in art and history – as well as your spirit of adventure – with hidden local treasures waiting to be discovered along the way. Nine days from $2,649 per person.

The Croatian

Spectacular scenery, historic sites, and special experiences await on this fantastic tour of Croatia. Along the way, guests will take in UNESCO World Heritage sites, experience the beauty of the Dalmatian Coast and discover Dubrovnik’s Rector’s Palace, a Gothic-Renaissance palace dating back to the 15th century. 11 days from $3,359 per person.

Top of Switzerland

Enjoy six days amid spectacular Alpine beauty on this guided tour of Switzerland. Visit a local dairy and sample world-class cheeses before setting off for Interlaken, nestled between Lake Thun and Lake Brienz. Venture to Europe’s highest railway station serving the 4,158-metre summit of the Jungfrau mountain. This Alpine wonderland offers a wealth of activities and experiences. Six days from $1,928.


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