TBL Staff Picks 2017!

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It has become a year-end tradition to ask our ToursByLocals office staff this question: If you could visit anywhere in the world and take a tour with any of our guides, which one would you choose and why?

With over 1900 guides in 155 countries, it was a tough choice for both the Vancouver and Buenos Aires staff, but here are 10 of our staff’s top picks for 2017!

Winnie’s Pick: Private Wine Tour in the Northern Rhone Valley with Olivier

"Owing to the fact that I have been privileged enough to work with most of the guides really closely, picking just one was absolutely difficult. However, for the love of wine, this brilliant tour stole my heart. Olivier has an enthusiastic personality and this tour not only helps one discover the history of wine; but also shows how wine is important in the French culture. So the next time I am in France, Lyon will be the place and this will be the tour!  A bientôt Olivier!”

- Winnie Keji, Customer Experience Specialist

Gill’s Pick: Southwest Jeju Island Tour with Joan A

“I’ve been wanting to visit South Korea ever since a good friend of mine moved back to her country of origin. My impression of South Korea is heavily influenced by K-drama and YouTube vloggers who portray it as a network of modern cities that offer plenty of good food and well-dressed folks. As part of my dream trip, I’d like to take a break from the urban busyness by visiting Jeju Island. Joan’s 1-day tour along the coast of Jeju Island seems like the perfect choice. I look forward to exploring the natural wonders and seeing the lava rock formations along the Yongmeori Coast (a UNESCO Global Geo Park). My trip would have ended on the perfect note when Joan brings me to a local eatery to enjoy freshly caught prawns, clams, sea urchins…in sashimi style, please!”

 - Gillian Lo, User Experience Designer

Matias’ Pick: 5 day Kampala Adventure with Frank W

"I’ve always wanted to visit Africa and there is no better way to do it than with a local private guide. I’ve chosen Frank because he has a lot of different tour options and, in his tours, lots of pictures and videos where you can really get a glimpse of what you can experience with him. I have also had the chance of speaking with him earlier this year when we started our partnership and he is very professional, friendly, kind and funny”.

- Matias Pfefferkorn, Guide Recruitment Specialist

Rocio’s Pick: Great Tour of Madagascar with Roberto

“I would choose the guide Roberto C and The Great Tour of Madagascar. Since I started with TBL, Madagascar was one of my first searches and I discovered an amazing place. To be honest I only knew things about this island from the children’s movie, however by searching and talking with the guides I interviewed I found it to be a paradise! Roberto is very experienced and kind, so I would definitely trust him to make my holiday there special.”

- Rocio Souto, Guide Recruitment Specialist 

Hedi’s Pick: Terelj and 13th Century Park Genghis Khan 2-Day Tour with Adiyabold N

“It was a tough choice for me between Raju’s Amazing Buthan tour and Adiyabold’s 2 days tour of Terelj and the 13th Century Park Genghis Khan, but at the end I chose Adiyabold’s tour. There is something mysterious about each of these countries, but I find the history of Mongolia and the role of Mongol Empire in regional warfare, peace keeping, merchandising and transportation along the Silk Road fascinating. To add to all of that, this tour gives you the opportunity to see the nature and wildlife in Mongolia, and learn about the indigenous cultures and practices.”

- Hedi Ahmari, Customer Experience Specialist 

Iain’s Pick: White Water Rafting with Dunstan M

“I’m convinced that my bucket list will always be full of new and exciting places, always changing and ever evolving. Currently, the two places on top of my list are Tokyo, and an African Safari. Since I love adventure activities, as well as viewing massive African game animals, what could possibly be better than a Three Day Safari & White Water Rafting tour in Kenya! Dunstan M has been a guide with ToursByLocals since 2012, and has led tours in Mt Kilimanjaro, the Serengeti, as well as many other amazing game reserves and national parks. As a result, I couldn’t imagine a better tour for the top of my bucket list!”

- Iain McBain, Marketing

Emiliano’s Pick: The Royal Palace of Caserta with Emiliano

“I have always loved European history, and few things reflect history better than arts and architecture. This tour takes you to the beautiful, but still not very well known, Royal Palace of Caserta. Located in the Campania region in Italy, Caserta Palace is one of the highest exponents of Italian baroque arts and architecture. In this tour you will visit the palace and its gardens, and what really makes it a unique experience, is that our guides Paolo or Emiliano (both of them offer this tour) are history specialists that will make you feel as if you were living in the times of King Charles of Bourbon in the XVIII century. I can’t think of a better way to explore such a beautiful and history filled place!”

- Emiliano Curtosi, International Area Coordinator

Joe’s Pick: Desert Safari Adventure with Rami

“I would love to experience the Arabian Desert in Dubai. The tour provides so many great activities. I get to ride a Hummer H12 on the desert doing some adventurous dune driving, Camel Riding, Henna Designing, and SAND BOARDING! Quad biking is an extra, but I am definitely going to try it. After all these fun activities, I get to take a beautiful sunset photograph. And it's not done yet - there is a BBQ dinner. This tour seems too perfect for a guy like me who likes to enjoy outdoor activities.”

- Joe Suh, IT Support

Florencia’s Pick: Multiday Ski Adventure in Nordenskiold Land with Bård

“Svalbard is known for its untouched arctic wilderness and unique wildlife. This tour is the northernmost tour on our website, and an awesome quest to do. I’ve never been to snowy places, so what better opportunity to do it than with this mind blowing tour!”

- Florencia Ugolini, International Area Coordinator 

Gavin’s Pick: Ek Balam, The Mausoleum of a Mayan King & Valladolid with Alberto!

“I’ve always been fascinated by the pre-Columbian civilizations of the Americas, and particularly the Mayans, and so visiting the Ek’ Balam site with Alberto would be my choice! It is clear from Alberto’s profile that he loves nature; and with his insights into the ecosystem and geology of the area, I’m sure I would gain an in depth understanding of how the Mayans related to the natural world around them. Being an avid swimmer, getting the chance to swim in a rare fresh water cenote would also be a real treat for me! And then followed by some authentic Yucatan cuisine - sounds like a perfect tour.”

- Gavin McGhee, Quality Experience Manager 
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