As more women seek time out from the daily pressures of work and family life, push personal boundaries and forge new connections along the way, interest in women’s only travel and tours has increased significantly in the past 20 years, a trend which will continue growing.
As a result, travel operators have created unique tours in fun, safe, supportive and engaging environments with like-minded fellow travellers and 2017 is jam-packed with women’s only tours offering an extensive range of experiences in the world’s most fascinating destinations.
So whether you’re into trekking Mount Everest or surfing and yoga in Bali, eating your way through Italy or cruising in luxury through the Amazon, we’ve rounded up some of the best women’s tours for 2017 to help you out.
1. Aqua Expeditions “Women Only” Journeys
The luxury small ship cruising company’s series of unique hosted journeys, exclusively for women, offers unparalleled access to two of the world’s greatest rivers. Cruising on both the Amazon and Mekong rivers in a comfortable, safe and inclusive environment, guests will have the opportunity to discover Peru and Cambodia’s hidden gems along the river. The thoughtfully created itineraries including a range of active and immersive experiences such as biking, kayaking, hiking, wildlife viewing, cooking classes, and “meet-and-greets” with local villagers. These limited-edition experiential journeys will commence with a three-night itinerary onboard Aqua Mekong in January 2017, followed by a four-night cruise with Aria Amazon in March, with further itineraries planned for later in the year.
2. World Expeditions – Women’s Adventures
Focusing on active adventure experiences in a safe, supportive, and encouraging environment, these small group itineraries explore some of the world’s most exciting, natural destinations. There are 21 small-group Women’s Adventures to choose from, with highlights including; Larapinta Goddess Walk, a three-day getaway experiencing the beauty of the Larapinta with yoga; Women’s Heyson Trail & Flinders Ranges, a six-day fully supported trek of the Heyson Trail on South Australia’s Flinders Range; Women’s Salcantay Trek & Machu Picchu, a seven-day adventure on arguably the best short trek alternative to the classic Inca Trail; Women’s Everest Base Camp & Kala Pattar, a classic 17-day trek through Sherpa villages to the base of Mount Everest and Kala Pattar; and Women’s Vietnam Charity Challenge, a 10-day trek through the small local villages of Northern Vietnam, while raising vital funds and awareness for your favourite charity. Itineraries are fully guided and supported, and wherever possible, led by a female local guide.
3. Sisterhood Women’s Travel
This award-winning women’s tour company allows you to explore some of the world’s most fascinating destinations in a range of immersive and experiential itineraries. Driven by the passion to change the way women experience travelling, the focus is on connecting female travellers to a sense of community, adventure and freedom through like-minded people, places and memorable moments. Tours vary from one-day walking city foodie tours to four-week long international adventures, visiting the likes of South East Asia, Japan, Spain and Portugal, South Africa, China, Eastern Europe, Croatia and Italy, Canada and Alaska, to name just a few. There are also health and wellness retreat getaways, cruises and plenty of gastronomy, history, culture and shopping thrown into the mix, as well as the opportunity to customise your own tour.
4. Canyon’s River Company – Women’s River Yoga Retreat
Teaming up with adventure and yoga experts Girls at Play and Laura Fallon Yoga, this Idaho-based river and canyoning company has put together the ultimate women’s adventure retreat. Set in the stunning Idaho wilderness, this six-day trip on the remote Main Salmon River incorporates kayaking, rafting and yoga. Its completely back to nature, meaning you’ll be camping on the big sandy riverbanks and can expect to spot some amazing wildlife along the way, such as moose, black bear, and golden eagle. Another highlight are the hot springs, where you’ll get to relax with an indulgent soak. This is an excellent adventure trip for those that want to rebalance and rejuvenate their mind, body and soul, build confidence, connect with nature and form new connections with fellow travellers. The trip takes place 5-10 September 2017.
5. The Classic Safari Company – The Secret Women’s Series
If small-group exclusivity, sophisticated luxury, exceptional culture immersion and the companionship of like-minded female travellers is what you’re after, then look now further than The Classic Safari Company’s newly launched The Secret Women’s Series. Designed specifically for women, by women, these engaging and mindful escorted journeys are accompanied by an experienced ‘leading lady’, with the added support of the best specialist guide in the destination visited, ensuring you get authentic, immersive and out-of-the-ordinary experiences. There are nine tours scheduled for 2017, which include a mix of inspirational, exotic and adventurous destinations such as Africa, India, Peru, Russia, Oman, Iran and Croatia. The tours are created to benefit local communities and you can expect to immerse yourself in ancient cultures, explore untouched wilderness, view exotic wildlife and shop ‘til you drop in some of the world’s most exciting cities.
6. Crooked Compass – Women’s Only Journey Through Nepal
From the snowy, majestic Himalayas to the lush tropical jungles abundant with exotic flora and fauna, Nepal is a traveller’s paradise. The 10-day itinerary kicks off in the dynamic capital city Kathmandu, 10 September, where you’ll experience day-to-day local Nepalese life and culture amongst bustling markets, beautiful ancient temples and palaces, rickshaw rides, and witness monks doing their morning prayer. A visit to Chitwan National Park is certain to be an experience you’ll never forget, as you’ll get to enjoy some very special encounters with elephants and other wildlife. Other highlights on the tour include a river boat safari, cultural performances, visits to local villages and tribal homes, trying local delicacies, natures hikes, and unique health and wellness experiences, all set against the backdrop of breathtaking Himalayan sunrises, panoramic mountain views and terraced valleys Nepal is renowned for.
7. SHE Travels – ‘Earth to Ocean’ Yoga & Surf Retreats, in Bali and Sri Lanka
SHE Travels’ tailored holidays combine activity and learning something new with pampering, great dining experiences and plenty of time to yourself. Taking a relaxed approach to travel, the small-group tours are designed for women who want to step out of their comfort zone but share the experience with like-minded women in a comfortable and safe environment. In 2017, SHE Travels offers three incredible seven-day yoga and surf retreats, allowing you to escape the stresses of daily life and reconnect, recharge and rejuvenate in the tranquil settings of Bali or Sri Lanka. Suitable for complete beginners right through to the experienced in both yoga and surfing, the experience is all about opening yourself up to new opportunities. You’ll stay in beautiful ‘barefoot luxury’ accommodations surrounded by the tranquility of nature and pristine beach right at your doorstep. The first retreat takes place in Sanur, Bali, 6 March, followed by the east coast of Bali, 17 July, and finally, the west coast of Sri Lanka, 24 November.
8. Women’s Own Adventure
With options ranging from European cycling tours and wilderness treks, to Antarctic expeditions and adventure cruises, Women’s Own Adventure creates incredibly adventurous and eye-opening experiences in some of the world’s most unique destinations. With an emphasis on small group tours, all tours are designed with cultural sensitivity and environmental respect in mind and cover a vast range of interests, activities, immersive experiences across a variety of popular and off-the-beaten track destinations. Highlights for 2017 include the Larapinta Desert Trek in August, Mountain Gorilla Tracking Adventure in Uganda in September, and Everest Base Camp Trek in Nepal in October.
9. Inspired Travel
Inspired Travel takes great pride in creating women’s only tours where female travellers can relax and be themselves in a safe, encouraging and supportive environment. Tours include activities such as spa visits, cooking classes, wine tastings, health and wellness, visits to gardens and art galleries, evening entertainments, shopping excursions and in-home visits to learn about the lives of women of other cultures. There is great emphasis placed on immersing with the culture and mixing with the locals is done wherever possible to offer travellers a true insight into other people’s lives and cultures in an authentic experience. Upcoming highlights include the eco-focused Classic Galapagos Adventure, Painting holidays in Tuscany and Sicily, foodie-centric Vietnam Culinary Discovery, and history tour Treasures if Ireland
10. Chapters Holidays – Women’s Activity Week
For something quite different, the Women’s Activity Week is all about breaking up the monotony of modern every-day life and exploring the natural world. Staying in Hassness Country House on the tranquil shores of Buttermere Valley, in the Lakes District, UK, the activities and experiences make the most of this beautiful area with its dramatic fells, farms and woodland, and three lakes. There is a daily selection of hill and Nordic walks, swims, days spent roaming the lush countryside, circuit training and aerobics, and plenty of opportunity to restore and unwind with yoga and pilates as well as indulge with beautifully prepared home cooked meals and freshly baked cakes.