Travel Spotlight

The Trips That Got Me Hooked on Travel

Since participating in her first Indagare Journey, in 2010, Marina Purcell has been a devotee of these special trips. Here, the longtime member and passionate photographer speaks with Indagare’s Simone Girner about what makes them so exceptional.

When I signed up for the Insider Journey to Morocco in 2010, I knew absolutely nothing about Indagare,” laughs Marina Purcell, who lives in New York City with her husband and two children. “I was excited about visiting Morocco, but I had no idea how much the trip would exceed my expectations. Everything was so well-planned, from incredible guides in Marrakech to hiking in the Atlas Mountains. I was immediately hooked on the Insider experience.”

Like many of Indagare’s favorite programs, Indagare Journeys grew out of an inspiring exchange between the company’s founder, Melissa Biggs Bradley, and its members. The carefully scouted, vetted and planned trips are designed to offer maximum immersion in a destination’s history, culture and local life with behind-the-scenes access and introductions to local insiders, intimate experiences made possible by the small size of the groups. They also invariably include many of the special unscripted moments that happen when we are on the road with an open heart and mind, ones that bring about lasting transformation in our lives.

Related: 10 Transformative Trips in Our Members' Words

Soon after inception, another benefit surfaced: the opportunity to connect with like-minded, passionate travelers. “Initially it was about exploring a new place,” says Marina, who has been on more than a dozen Indagare Journeys to various locations, including Myanmar, Uruguay, Japan, Argentina, Nicaragua, Turkey and India. “But my experiences with the groups have become an equally important piece. I have made great friends with people who have the same love that I do for adventure and exploration. A few women in particular have become my travel tribe.”

Related: Just Back From... Japan

What started as a few one-off journeys in 2010 has evolved into a robust program, and the announcement of annual destinations is widely anticipated among Indagare members and fans. Upcoming Indagare Journey highlights include an exploration of Botswana with a legendary wilderness guide and a Milan design trip hosted by the editor of Cabana magazine.

“It’s impossible to choose a single favorite trip or memory,” says Marina, whose incredible photographs illustrate these pages. “Looking at my photo books immediately transports me back to those specific places. I see the amazing light and colors around me, the textures and the details of the architecture, the faces of the people we encountered.”

A few select Indagare Journey moments do stand out for her, however, including floating in a hot-air balloon above the temples of Myanmar’s Bagan at sunrise, having cocktails with the maharaja of Jodhpur on the terrace of his home and viewing spectacular Cambodian sunsets from the deck of a boat on the Mekong River.

“I always come back from these trips feeling incredibly grateful and like I’m just a better person in my life,” says Marina. “I’m totally addicted to them now.” Her next Insider Trip will be to Rwanda this month.

Curious about Indagare Journeys? Learn more and sign up for one of our upcoming trips.

Published onSeptember 1, 2017

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