Food safaris to nature trails: World's 50 best day tours to take

Food safaris to nature trails: World's 50 best day tours to take



Time spent with a tour guide should be akin to a great date. They will do most of the talking but the best of them will look to learn something about you too and make you feel really special.

Sloth spotting tour in Costa Rica for example my guide's attention was skewed towards a trio of female guests from Spain. As he dropped me back at my hotel he asked how long it would take me to fly home heading to England.

A great tour guide should be aware of each member of his party and be flexible and spontaneous enough as well to adapt his or her approach if eyes are starting to glaze over. A great tour guide should admit special interests and needs and bring a sense of humor.


After all long after the facts have faded away the thing you will remember most is if you enjoyed the tour and if you would recommend it to a friend or family.

Traveler's writers take all kinds of wonderful tours over the course of a year. We have worn out shoe leather on food and drink safaris hopped on to vintage motorbikes and Vespas clambered aboard helicopters and climbed into countless mini vans.

Some tours along with their charming guides stand out more than others. Let us share the ones that have stood out above the rest.

FOOD AND DRINK


WALK A MAORI FOOD TRAIL, NZ


Duration Two hours


The tour learn about traditional Maori ingredients and medicinal plants. Resident chefs of the luxurious Treetops Lodge on New Zealand's North Island point out pikopiko fern fronds, tawa berries, peppery kawakawa herbs and karengo wild nori as you explore and taste the 800-year-old indigenous forest.

Essentials The Maori Food Trail is complimentary for guests of Treetops Lodge.

TAKE A JUNIPER-THEMED CYCLE THROUGH LONDON

Duration Three and a half hours

The tour this entertaining gin-themed cycling safari explores the lesser known London suburbs of Bermondsey and Southwark. Along the way you will visit a 1000 year-old food market explore a little known graffiti hot spot and enjoy a guided tasting at one of the city's best gin distilleries.

Essential London Gin Safari £55. 

TASTE THE FOOD OF HOI AN BY VESPA, VIETNAM

Duration Four hours

The tour Kick off the Streets and Eats of Hoi An with sunset cocktails on An Bang Beach before riding an authentic Vespa through rice fields to the town's ancient trading port. This fun tour will have you chowing down with the locals on crispy banh xeo Vietnamese pancakes sampling famous White Rose dumplings and washing down whole fried fish with locally crafted beer.

Essentials Vespa Adventures Streets and Eats start from 89$ USD a person. 


EAT YOUR WAY THROUGH, SANTIAGO, CHILE


Duration Four hours

The tour Grab a brew from a street coffee trolley browse the fresh food markets feast on traditional Chilean dishes such as empanadas humitas and bean stew and knock back pisco sour cocktails in the historical and gentrified precincts of the Chilean capital. You will travel by foot public transport and funicular.

Essentials Santiago Bites and Sights starts around 77$ USD a person. 

TAKE A RAMEN TASTING TOUR AROUND TOKYO, JAPAN


Duration Three hours

The tour as the author of one of Tokyo's leading blogs Frank Striegl is ideally qualified to lead this immersive tasting tour around the city. Guests sample 6 different remains from three award winning restaurants in three separate neighborhoods. Along the way Striegl explains the history, techniques and surprising diversity of Japan's favorite dish.

Essential Ultimate Ramen Tasting Tour, ¥12000. 

SAVOUR THE FOOD CARTS OF NEW YORK

Duration Two hours

The tour Hundreds of food carts patrol New York's streets every day offering cheap filling feeds with this 2 hour tour visiting some of the best. Sample 6 dishes including Korean short ribs Mexican quesadillas and Belgian waffles. You will get to meet the vendors and understand the challenges of selling food curb side in the Big Apple.

Essential Food Cart Tour of the Financial District 48$ USD . 

EXPLORE THE TAPAS OF MADRID, SPAIN


Duration Three hours

The tour enjoy a sociable evening as you nibble and imbibe your way through classic Spanish tapas and wine and learn about the cultural and gastronomic history behind this splendid evening dining ritual.

Essential Gourmet Tapas Tour with Insider's Madrid €375 for 2 people.

THE BEST OF SOUTHERN FOOD, ATLANTA, US


Duration Three and a half hours


The tour This entertaining tour deftly combines the city's gourmet credentials with its civil rights history. You will sample Southern classics including fried chicken candied yams and banana pudding from seven different outlets and visit key sights from the civil rights struggle and learn about the city's most famous son Martin Luther King Jr.

Essential Downtown Southern Food Walk 75$ USD. 

TAKE A PROGRESSIVE FOOD TOUR IN TOKYO, JAPAN


Duration Three hours

The tour a local takes you on an evening hop from yakatori bar to traditional confectionary shop and on to a neighborhood restaurant for some classic monjayaki with a side of insight and entertainment.

Essential Tokyo After 5 with Urban Adventures, 118$ USD. 

SNOWMOBILE TO A CABIN FOR DINNER, WHISTLER, CANADA


Duration Four and a half hours

The tour Snowmobile through Whistler's glorious back country at dusk to reach the rustic Sproatt Mountain cabin for a hearty three course steak dinner cooked over an old fashioned wood stove. After dinner jump back on your snowmobile for an return night journey along undulating tree-lined trails.

Essential Sproatt Steak Dinner tour, from 239$C a person. 

TEA APPRECIATION CLASS, HONG KONG


Duration Two hours

In this interactive and informative class with certified tea master May Chan you will learn how to distinguish the 6 main types of tea get lessons in pouring technique and discover its purported health benefits.

Essential Homeland Tea Appreciation Class, 380HKD a person. 

MEET THE GUIDE


TONY MUIA, BROOKLYN, NEW YORK


Born and bred in Brooklyn, Muia loves showing visitors the borough's best chocolate , pizza and Christmas lights on one of his entertaining bus tours. 

ADVENTURE


SEE REUNION ISLAND BY HELICOPTER


Duration From 25 to 55 minutes

The tour It's too sharky to swim on Reunion Island so make like a bird instead and swoop over the extraordinary interior. You might feel like you have stumbled on to the set of a Jurassic Park sequel as you nose into canyons hover in front of waterfalls and survey the cirques that make up this rugged Indian Ocean idyll that's officially an outpost of France.

Essentail The 25-minute Two Cirques tour costs €210 an adult.

SNOW MOBILE AND GLACIER FLIGHT COMBO, YUKON, CANADA


Duration One day

The tour rip through the fringes of the Yukon territory's Kluane National Park in Canada's north west on a snowmobile passing through snow blanketed wilderness, forests ,frozen plains, abandoned cabins and more. Then take to the skies aboard a lightweight Cessna to view some of the world's largest non-polar glaciers and perhaps a grizzly or 2.

Essential Kanoe People offers guided snowmobile excursions dog mushing tours and other adventures. Rocking Star Adventures' 30 minute flight seeing tour over Donjek Glacier 160 $CA a person. 

SEE AN ACTIVE VOLCANO BY CHOPPER, WHITE ISLAND, NZ


Duration Two hours

The tour Located 48 kilometers off the coast of the Bay of Plenty White Island is one of New Zealand's most active live volcanoes. This tour starts with a spectacular fly by over the island before landing in the volcano's crater for a hike through a sherbet yellow landscape of roaring steam vents  bubbling sulphuric mud pits and steaming acid lakes gas masks provided.

Essential White Island Volcano Adventure, 695$NZ. 

MAKE LIKE A CASTAWAY, FIJI


Duration Nine hours from Denarau Marina

The tour after fast-tracking to Mana Island in the Mamanucas via high speed catamaran board a romantic 15 meter timber-decked yacht and sail to uninhabited Modriki Island, which starred in the Tom Hanks film, Cast Away. Leap from the yacht and swim to shore, then head to Yanuya Island for a kava ceremony and handicraft shopping. The crew might break out guitars for a singalong on the return trip to Mana.

Essential Seaspray Day Adventure, 249$FJ adult.

GO HELI-FISHING, DUMARESQ RIVER, QLD


Duration Nine hours

The tour leave the glitz of the Gold Coast when you sweep inland by helicopter over the eucalypt-covered ridge lines of Springbrook National Park. After landing at the 365 hectare Dumaresq Homestead, spend the day kayaking and fishing for Murray cod from the ghost gum lined banks of the Dumaresq River. Celebrate your success with a gourmet barbecue lunch before being choppered back to the city.

Essential Go Fish Australia's one-day Outback fishing trip, 2560$ a person. 

EXPLORE WILDERNESS BY PLANE, SOUTH-WEST TASMANIA


Duration Six hours

The tour Fly from Hobart into the heart of Tasmania's Southwest National Park a wild remote World Heritage listed region of foreboding mountains  glacial lakes and peat bogs. After landing at a hand built gravel runway at Melaleuca  you will explore the region's rich Indigenous history take a cruise around Bathurst Harbour a pristine waterway the size of Sydney Harbour and enjoy a gourmet lunch of Tasmanian product.

Essential Par Avion's Southwest Wilderness Experience, $599. 

MEET THE GUIDE

IAN WEBSTER, BARBADOS, CARIBBEAN


Webster's deadpan delivery and poetic turns of phrase are one of the highlights of his intrepid jeep tour around the island of Barbados. 

NAHUEL ALONSO, BARILOCHE, ARGENTINA


Named after the region's largest lake Nahuel personifies outdoor adventure can coax the laziest visitor up steep mountainsides and has a knack for finding the most secretive and splendiferous of vantage points. 

ACTIVE


EXPLORE NORTHERN PATAGONIA'S LAKE DISTRICT, ARGENTINA

Duration Four to five hours

The tour Cruise around Lago Nahuel Huapi in Argentina's Lake District in northern Patagonia hike through forests of ponderosa larch and sequoias on Victoria Island and picnic on a secret beach rimming one of the lake's turquoise bays.

Essential The Luxury Lakes, Islands and Mountains of Patagonia tour, around $400 a person. 

SKI THE BACK COUNTRY IN BRECKENRIDGE, US


Duration One day

The tour Get behind the scenes of avalanche ski patrols in this Colorado resort and discover hidden powder stashes in back country terrain that will test the limits of your skiing prowess.

Essential Go Beyond with Breck Guides Experience, $US940 for up to six people plus lift tickets. 

KAYAK AT SUNSET, RANGITOTO ISLAND, AUCKLAND, NZ


Duration Six hours

The tour Leaving Auckland late afternoon this guided tour starts with a gentle paddle to the Hauraki Gulf's youngest and most accessible volcanic island, Rangitoto. After a one-hour climb to the summit to watch the sunset guests tuck into a barbecue dinner before a magical moon lit kayak back towards the twinkling city.

Essentail Auckland Sea Kayak's Sunset Sea Kayak Tour, 185$NZ. 

ICEWALK THE MALIGNE CANYON, JASPER, CANADA


Duration Three hours

The tour Follow an icepick wielding veteran guide into a frozen wonderland, the deepest accessible canyon in Jasper National Park. While learning more about the geography and topography of the region you ll pick your way through mesmerising natural ice sculptures, frozen waterfalls, and perhaps a few daredevil ice climbers to boot.

Essential Maligne Canyon Tour, 69$CA a person.

MOUNTAIN BIKE FORT COLLINS, COLORADO, US


Duration Half-day full-day and tailored multi-day tours

The tour an hour north of Denver the college town of Fort Collins has some of the best mountain biking trails in Colorado. Front Range Guides will help you find the best tailored to your ability levels from technical single track, to downhill action and everything in between. This is also one of the brewing capitals of the US.

Essential Front Range Ride Guides, tours from 169$US a person.

KAYAK THE TASMAN PENINSULA, TASMANIA

Duration 10 hours

The tour This diverse kayak trip heads beneath some of Australia's highest sea cliffs to the tip of Cape Hauy and the famed Totem Pole sea stack. There are fur seals for company and an exposed shipwreck to explore. Trips include return transport from Hobart.

Essential Roaring 40s Kayaking, 220$.

GO CANYONING AT CRADLE MOUNTAIN, TASMANIA


Duration Eight hours

The tour Some of the best things at Cradle Mountain are deep in the cracks of the Earth where Cradle Mountain Canyons leads groups through narrow Dove Canyon. The journey involves wading,  abseiling, swimming and leaping from the tops of waterfalls. You won't forget the Laundry Chute cave slide in a hurry.

Essential Cradle Mountain Canyons, 245$.

WALK TO THE BURGESS SHALE, YOHO NATIONAL PARK, CANADA


Duration 11 hours

The tour One of the world's most important archaeological sites high in the Canadian Rockies, is only accessible on this guided hike in Yoho National Park. In Walcott Quarry, site of the oldest fossils to shed light on evolution, there are a multitude of 500 million year old fossils imprinted into the rocks. The mountain views are a mere bonus.

Essential Burgess Shale Geoscience Foundation, 126$.

MEET THE GUIDE


ALEX KIME, ALASKA, US

After buying a horse in a bar at 3am for 25$, this entertaining cowboy has spent the past 30 years running pack trips into the Alaskan wilderness. 
DAVE "NUGGET" DOWNIE QLD

Downie's gentle, patient approach and encyclopaedic fishing knowledge he's been a fishing journalist for more than 40 years make him the perfect fishing guide. See 

JIMBA PHUNTSHO, BHUTAN

No one knows more about Bhutan than Jimba the guide who trains the guides. A 300 plus veteran of the Tiger's Nest Monastery climb he's a great companion for first timers. Bonus: once there  he will take a fabulous photo of you.

NATURE

SEE NESTING TURTLES IN TORTUGUERO NATIONAL PARK, COSTA RICA


Duration Two hours

The tour From June to October endangered green turtles dig nests and lay their glistening eggs along the black sand beaches of Tortuguero National Park on Costa Rica's Caribbean coastline. Spotters alert guides where to find a nesting turtle in the dark. Lights are permitted on walking tracks but phones and cameras must be put away while observing the turtles at work.

Essential Lodges such as Evergreen Lodge will book you onto one of two nightly departures, 35$US. 

DELVE INTO THE DREAMTIME, GOLD COAST, QLD


Duration Two and a half hours

The tour Receive an ochre blessing from an Indigenous guide before taking a guided walk around the Dreaming mountain known as Jellurgal within Burleigh Head National Park. As fitness fanatics zip past the ancient shell middens and ochre pit learn how the Gold Coast's first inhabitants lived.

Essential Jellurgal Walkabout, departs 10am, Monday to Friday, 30$ adult.

HUNT A MUD CRAB, COOYA BEACH, QLD


Duration Half-day or full-day

The tour Walk on Kuku Yalanji country with Indigenous guide Juan Walker. After being picked up from Port Douglas, Mossman or Daintree Village participants learn how to find food and medicine in the bush and on the beach and try their hand at traditional hunting practices such as spearing a mud crab.

Essential Cultural Experience tours, $165/$209 a person. 


WALK THE DREAMTIME THROUGH RAINFOREST, FAR NORTH QLD


Duration One and a half hours

The tour Join an Indigenous guide on a walk through the world's oldest living rain-forest. Learn about trees, plants, bush tucker sources and culturally significant sites including traditional bark shelters, before taking a dip in a glorious water hole. At walk's end tuck into freshly baked damper and steaming billy tea.

Essential Ngadiku Dreamtime Walk, 78$ adult. 

SNORKEL CORAL GARDENS, LORD HOWE ISLAND, NSW


Duration Two hours

The tour You could launch yourself from the beach into the lagoon but Lord Howe Environmental Tours' glass-bottomed boat takes you straight to the most spectacular of the island's coral gardens. Look for turtles, double header wrasse, staghorn coral, painted rock lobsters, stingrays, butterfly fish and more.

Essential Ultimate Snorkelling, $60 adult. 

REJUVENATE IN NOOSA ON A MEDITATION WALK, QLD


Duration Two to three hours

The tour Take a guided meditation walk through the pristine Noosa National Park where koalas are often spotted snoozing in gum trees. This rejuvenating tour ends with a mind clearing experience overlooking the ocean followed by a brunch of local organic produce.

Essential Taste of Luxe, from $440 a person minimum of four people. 


MEET THE GUIDE

MALIK AL AMRI, OMAN

Gentle-natured and thorough, Malik discerns the tiniest of details embedded fossils, pomegranate buds from among the greater splendours of Jabal Akhdar striking mountain vistas, jagged gorges, ancient frankincense trees. 

DHAN BAHADUR CHAUDHARY, NEPAL


Lifelong resident of the Chitwan National Park region, DB is a gentle observer of this tiger habitat has an extensive knowledge of its diverse bird life and has helped pioneer ethical elephant tourism at Tiger Tops Tharu Lodge. 

CULTURE

SEE WHERE A CLASSIC NOVEL WAS PENNED, ATLANTA, US

Duration One hour

The tour Head to Atlanta's Margaret Mitchell House to see the ground-floor apartment where Mitchell wrote her epic historical romance Gone With the Wind. Many visitors including a few named Tara, after the fictional plantation leave notes saying how the book, and the film it inspired, changed their lives.

Essential Altanta History Center tours, $US13.

VISIT THE NOBEL PEACE CENTRE, OSLO, NORWAY

Duration One hour

The tour Housed in a re-purposed railway terminal the Nobel Peace Center showcases the Nobel Peace Prize the work of the laureates and the story of Alfred Nobel. A tour through the exhibitions encourages participants to reflect on war, peace, social issues and conflict resolution.

Essential Guided tours included in the ticket price of 120NOK. 

EXPLORE BALI'S SPIRITUAL SIDE, INDONESIA

Duration Full-day

The tour Trace the creation of the Balinese Hindu religion with visits to temples and monuments. Your tour starts with ginger tea at the home of Bapak Anong Ishmail the leading expert on the World Heritage listed Pakerisan River area. Highlights including a visit to Bali's first Hindu temple and a trek into a hidden temple alley where ancient chambers are carved into rock.

Essential Seven Temples of Enlightenment, 185$US a person. 

BACKSTAGE TOUR OF THE BOLSHOI OPERA AND BALLET THEATRE, MINSK, BELARUS

Duration One and a half hours

The tour The only way to top a performance at the wedding cake theatre is by starting the evening with a guided, backstage tour. See where the costumes and props are made, visit the ballet school, see the orchestra pit, and if you're lucky, catch a rehearsal.

Essential National Academic Bolshoi Opera and Ballet Theatre, 10$US a person. 

EXPLORE A FAMOUS RECORDING STUDIO, ALABAMA, US

Duration One hour

The tour In 1969 four session players broke away from FAME Studio to open Muscle Shoals Sound Studio at 3614 Jackson Highway the address is also the title of the studio's first release Cher's debut solo album. The Rolling Stones also dropped by to cut tracks including Brown Sugar and Wild Horses.

Essential Muscle Shoals Sound Studio tours, $US15. 

TAKE A LIVE MUSIC BUS TOUR OF NASHVILLE, US

Duration Two hours

The tour This innovative product combines a tour of Nashville's Music Row the epicentre of America's country music industry with a performance by 2 of the city's leading songwriters. Learn about the region's rich music history while travelling around the city in a 30-seat bus with a small stage where two songwriters perform a selection of their original songs.

Essential Songbird Tour of Nashville, 45$US. 

MEET THE GUIDE

TREY BRUCE, NASHVILLE, US

After penning top Ten hits for the likes of Randy Travis and Faith Hill Bruce now performs his songs on an innovative live music bus tour around Nashville's Music Row.

URBAN

TAKE AN OFFBEAT CITY TOUR, PERTH, WA

Duration Two to four hours

The tour This award winning operator has a range of walking tours that showcase the best of Perth's , food, bars history and culture. What differentiates them from other offerings is that they help visitors understand the stories behind the sites the people and events that have helped shaped the city.

Essential Two Feet & a Heartbeat tours, from $35 a person. 

TAKE A TRABANT TOUR OF BERLIN, GERMANY

Duration One hour 15 minutes


The tour Explore East Berlin at the wheel of perhaps its most iconic emblem the functional but laughably rudimentary Trabant motor car. Join a convoy of brightly coloured Trabants as a driver or a passenger that putter around the capital, stopping at the Berlin Wall and Checkpoint Charlie.

Essential Berlin Compact Tour, €49. 

VIEW THE POLITICAL STREET ART OF BUENOS AIRES, ARGENTINA

Duration Two hours.

The tour Learn the political origins of Buenos Aires' stunning street art scene while discovering why Argentina's capital is renowned for this medium. The tours are developed in conjunction with artists and even finish at a bar with an artist's studio out back.

Essential Graffitimundo, 20$US a person. 

TAKE A VINTAGE MOTORCYCLE TOUR, SHANGHAI, CHINA

Duration Four hours.

The tour Spin through the old Shanghainese traditional neighborhoods experiencing the markets, architecture, card games and culture of China's rapidly modernising city on a vintage motorcycle and side car. The tour skilfully contrasts old with new with additional stops along The Bund and a photo stop near Shanghai Tower.

Essential The Mighty Ride by Sidecar, Insiders Experience tour, CNY2800 one or two adults. 

MEET THE GUIDE

DZMITRY MAROZAU, BELAGRO TRAVEL, MINSK, BELARUS

Nature lover cultural heritage specialist, communicator extraordinaire Dzmitry has an insider tip for every occasion: stay overnight in Mir Castle, order a shot of krambambula visit Zhodino for the world's biggest trucks. 

MEET THE GUIDE

DIEGO JARAMILLO, ECUADOR

In the capital Quito and beyond, Diego's wide-ranging skill set includes tracking down the nearest salsateca (he's a music lover) and street vendors of espumilla guava meringue. 

HISTORY

TOUR MONT ST QUENTIN, SOMME, FRANCE

Duration One hour

The tour Historian and former Royal Marine Pete Smith dramatically recreates General John Monash's 1918 Battle of Mont St Quentin, following Australia's advance up the ridge. In Australia's most significant Western Front effort, troops seized this pivotal German position near Peronne without tanks or protective barrages. 8 VCs were awarded, 3000 men lost.

Essential The tour of Mont St Quentin is included in a Mat McLachlan Battlefields Tour.

EXPLORE ODESSA'S JEWISH HISTORY, UKRAINE

Duration Three and a half hours

The tour Jewish people thrived in this Black Sea city before World War II and you will tour synagogues monuments and Holocaust memorials and the homes of renowned Jewish residents such as the writer Isaac Babel.

Essential Jewish Odessa is offered as a shore excursion on Viking Cruises' Kiev to the Black Sea itinerary.

TAKE A NOSTALGIC TOUR OF THE QE2

Duration About one hour

The tour Cruise fans and history buffs will enjoy this entertaining fact packed tour of the storied Cunard liner QE2. Now permanently moored in Dubai as a floating hotel, its 39 year career at sea began in 1967. It has hosted a galaxy of star passengers including Titanic survivor Millvina Dean.

Essential Inside the QE2 Heritage Tour, AED 170$. 

DISCOVER EPHESUS WITH AN EXPERT, TURKEY

Duration Five and a half hours.

The tour Even top ancient ruins such as Ephesus are bare stone skeletons to the uninitiated. Tour with chief archaeologist Genghis Icten, though, and history comes alive.

Essential Ephesus & Terrace Houses tour is a Silversea Cruises shore excursion from Kusadasi, 179$US. 

SAVOUR CAPE MALAY COOKING, CAPE TOWN, SOUTH AFRICA

Duration Three hours

The tour Explore the colorful district of Cape's Town's Bo-Kaap once a slave quarter housing the Cape Malay people who were brought here as slaves from Indonesia, Malaysia and elsewhere in Africa before recreating some of the spicy dishes they carried with them.

Essential Cape Malay Cookery Course, about $93 a person. 

STEP INSIDE CHERNOBYL EXCLUSION ZONE, UKRAINE

Duration Full day

The tour two-hour drive north of Kiev brings you to the decommissioned Chernobyl Nuclear Power plant where on April 26, 1986 reactor No. 4 exploded. Enter the 10 kilometer exclusion zone and visit the ghost town of Pripyat where you can walk amid the abandoned schools, sports stadiums houses, and amusement park.

Essential The Chernobyl Exclusion Zone Tour is part of Intrepid Travel's 13-day Moldova, Ukraine and Romanian Explorer. 

TOUR WORLD HERITAGE-LISTED HERITAGE GEORGE TOWN, PENANG, MALAYSIA

Duration Three hours.

The tour The multi-layered and multicultural history of George Town in Penang comes to life in the company of eccentric entertaining guide Mr Yeap, who helps explore its back-street oddities, food and favourite local spots.

Essential Guided Heritage Walk with Penang Heritage Trust, MYR 160 a person minimum two. 

JOURNEYS

RIDE THE TEQUILA TRAIN, MEXICO

Duration Full day

The tour Is 8.30am too early for a margarita? Not on the Jose Cuervo Express, a luxury train that runs from Guadalajara to the town of Tequila in Mexico's west. Enjoy cocktails, snacks and a tequila tasting class during the two-hour journey, before alighting at Tequila for a tour of the Jose Cuervo distillery.

Essential The Jose Cuervo Express, $US131.37 a person, one way.

RIDE THE RAILWAYS OF YANGON

Duration Six to seven hours

The tour In Myanmar even a simple rail journey takes on a special resonance given how long the country was closed off from the rest of the world. Get an insider's view of the outer suburbs of Yangon on a fascinating rail tour that passes through local towns and markets and well beyond the usual tourist sights.

Essential The Let Yangon Take You For a Ride rail tour, from $51. 

HOW TO BOOK THE BEST TOUR

ASK THE HOTEL CONCIERGE

Hotel concierges know their towns and the best activities on offer. Pick a quiet time to chat to the concierge in depth about what you hope to experience during your visit and what tours and companies they would recommend.

DO YOUR RESEARCH

Some tours are so popular they are booked out well in advance San Francisco's Alcatraz Island tours for example. If you have your heart set on a particular experience reserve your spot well before leaving home.

HIT THE INTERNET

Tossing up between tours? See what others have said about the various experiences on reviewer sites such as TripAdvisor.

WHAT'S ON KLOOK?

Klook founded in Hong Kong in 2014 offers more than 80,000 experiences, including tours, activities and transportation in 250-plus destinations. Travelers redeem the services using QR codes or e-vouchers. 

CONSULT FELLOW TRAVELERS

Strike up conversations with your fellow travelers. Ask them what activities they have already ticked off and if they would recommend them.

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