ToursByLocals Staff Picks 2018!

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It has become a January 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 in 2018, which one would you choose and why?

With over 2300 guides in 155 countries, it was a tough choice for our staff in Vancouver, Buenos Aires, Glasgow and Kuala Lumpur, but here are 10 of their top picks for 2018!

The Netherlands! Endless tulip fields, windmills and Dutch villages with Elke
-Nuria Galfore, International Area Coordinator, Buenos Aires

Ever since I joined ToursByLocals I was amazed by the tours all of our guides deliver and for sure they have motivated me to go on a trip around the world! If I had to choose only one tour, and being a flower lover, I would definitely go to the Dutch countryside with Elke, in the springtime. The northern area of Holland is where the largest area of flower fields is located (though the south is more popular and, therefore, where most tourists go); this, combined with the small villages and windmills, leads to a true local experience. I have spoken to Elke this year and, just by listening to her, I know that it will not only be a fantastic and exclusive sightseeing experience but also I will leave the tour with a feeling that will always take me back to those amazing tulip fields and peaceful villages.

Peru! Lima City Tour and Culinary Experience with Aaron
-Facundo Oviedo, Guide Recruitment Specialist, Buenos Aires

If I could take a tour anywhere, I would probably choose one of our guide Aaron’s tours in Lima to discover Peruvian cuisine. I consider it something that everyone should try at least once. On the other hand, one of our brand new guides in Campania Region, Liz, offers Diving Tours in the Gulf of Naples where you can discover the ruins, which were covered by the sea. This is definitely something I will do when I visit southern Italy. (Can’t I have two picks??)

The Philippines! 3-day El Nido Palawan Tour with Fidel P
-Adam Vinesh, Tour Connection Specialist, Kuala Lumpur

My passion for island-living has always dared me to consider Palawan, Philippines as a destination that must be ticked off my list. I believe I will not find something more breathtaking than El Nido in this lifetime. El Nido has been voted as one of the best places to be on the planet. Our guide Fidel’s 3 days 2 nights tour has everything El Nido has to offer me in experiencing the beautiful beaches, coves and lagoons in the island. I believe that Fidel, being a local from Palawan, which is the country's largest province, can definitely share some interesting stories of Palawan since it was where the first Filipino once lived. My interest in learning the history and cultures around the world can definitely be a met in Palawan, Philippines.

Rapa Nui! Easter Island Wonders with Patricia
-Karolina Kascakova, Accountant, Vancouver

I’ve always wanted to visit Chile and especially this magical island, Rapa Nui! I think to discover the real mystery of this place would be way easier with a great local guide. Patricia has 15 years of experience guiding and has lots of tour options to choose from!

The American Southwest! Death Valley Tour with George G
-Kevin McKenna, Tour Connection Specialist, Glasgow

I’ve still not had the chance to visit Nevada and wish to do so for many reasons. Firstly, I would love to go to Death Valley National Park at night. Due to its low light pollution in the area, you can see countless stars along the Milky Way. I would also love to visit Hoover Dam, Grand Canyon and Zion National Park, then maybe a little visit to the Las Vegas strip to try and win some money back!

Japan! Walking tour to Geisya town in Kyoto with Ken
-Angela Miller, Tour Connection Specialist, Vancouver

I’ve been wanting to visit Kyoto for many years as I’m fascinated with its old world charm and history. I would love to see Geisya town to get a better understanding of the art form and schools found there. So naturally my choice for a tour would be “Walking tour to Geisya town in Kyoto with a private guide” with Ken S. This tour covers so much history as well as some of the best shrines; it would be a tragedy to miss.

Patagonia! Special Ushuaia Photographers' tour with Paula
-Vanille Brisard, Tour Connection Specialist, Vancouver

When I travel I like to go places very far from where I am from. I want to be amazed and impressed with beautiful and pure landscapes. I know that my next destination will be in South America for sure; however I was still hesitating to pick the perfect location. I set my mind on Ushuaia in Argentina. I would go on a tour with Paula G, our local guide in Patagonia: her profile is just telling me what I need to know, she is passionate, she can help me arrange a private tour far from the touristy places and she has really good reviews. I would be interested in her “Photographers tour” as I love taking pictures and capturing beautiful moments. This tour will take me off the beaten track; it should be a unique experience where I would be able to take shots of unknown places.

Mayan Riviera! Tulum, Cobá and Grand Cenote Tour in Mexico with Juan Miguel P
-Malena Pinasco, Guide Recruitment Specialist, Buenos Aires

México has always been in my ‘MUST visit’ list - I’ve always loved the beach and the ocean, but the fact that in Mexico you can combine this with amazing archaeological sites, has made me become more and more excited about this place. And, on top of that, discovering the underground rivers and cenotes: you just have to see this place with your own eyes at least once in your lifetime. All of our guides in the area are remarkable - and I think Juan Miguel would be an excellent choice for this kind of tour. I’ve had the chance to talk to him personally, and (even on the phone!) you can tell he is truly passionate about his town. So: I’m hoping that on my next vacation, he will have an available day to explore some of the main sites of the Riviera Maya with me!

Kenya! Masai Mara Lodge Safari with Dunstan
-Kalai Muniyandi, Tour Connection Specialist, Kuala Lumpur

Being an adventure lover, this would be one thing I never want to miss experiencing. Of all the tours in Kenya, this was the one that captured my eye with lively photos of wildlife. Dunstan is one of the most famous tour guides in Kenya and he has years of experience. His many reviews let me know is very reliable and knowledgeable. Also the tour was described in detail and sounds extremely interesting. So, without a doubt this is my best pick!

Russia! St Petersburg with a Cultural Historian
-David Young, Travel Agent Support, Vancouver

I’d like to spend time with our guide Irina in St Petersburg. I am fascinated by Russian history and St Petersburg in particular. What a spectacular city! So much culture and beauty everywhere. Given Irina’s background in history I think she would be a great help in educating me about both the city and Russia, too. Also, she gets great reviews! The glowing comments definitely make me want to tour with her.

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