Traveling to Learn

Acquiring a new skill or hobby (or simply gaining a fresh perspective) can be one of the most rewarding aspects of travel. These trips will ensure you come home a more well-rounded person.

From a cultural immersion in Spain complete with cooking classes and salsa lessons to a yoga retreat in a far-off corner of New Zealand, here are some of our favorite educational travel experiences.

Art & Design

Aesthetes are natural explorers—and there is no better way to gain insight into the worlds of art, design and photography than by touring some of the cultural capitals intimately associated with these mediums. Favorite destinations include Scandinavia, where connoisseurs can shop at design stores in Copenhagen and enjoy private tours of Stockholm museums. Journeys to iconic art capitals like Paris, Florence and Madrid can encompass such larger-than-life experiences as dinner for two at the foot of Michelangelo’s David and studio meetings with artists. Trips to far-flung destinations can be tailored to specific interests, from the contemporary artworks of Naoshima, in Japan, to the ornate palaces of India and the gardens of Morocco. Such journeys are best led by expert guides who can provide in-depth historical and conceptual context to artworks, bringing locations to life.

Food & Wine

For accomplished (or aspiring) foodies and oenophiles, a culinary-focused trip can mean traversing Europe’s gastronomic capitals. Activities may include navigating the markets of Rome, taking cooking classes in the Spanish Basque region or dining at a much-buzzed-about restaurant, such as Noma, in Copenhagen. Closer to home, a bespoke restaurant tour of Napa, Montreal or Mexico City can complement wine tastings and food-market visits. Further afield, in Peru, Israel or Japan, Indagare can tap our network of plugged-in gourmet guides to organize backstage access to everything from cocktail bars and street food vendors to Michelin-starred chefs.

Active Pursuits

Adventure seekers have their choice of dozens of destinations where they can learn a new sport or participate in an adrenaline-pumping activity. For those eager to explore the crystalline waters of the South Pacific or the Maldives, our trip designers can book a private yacht from which to dive and snorkel with a guide who knows the best spots to view exotic sea flora and fauna or arrange a heli-fishing excursion to admire the beauty of the reef from the air. Other options include surfing in Mexico or Biarritz; guided hiking through Peru, Nepal or Chile; horseback riding in Montana or Argentina; and skiing in the European Alps—all accompanied by expert instructors skilled at teaching beginners or perfecting the technique of pros. For wildlife lovers, we can arrange once-in-a-lifetime animal experiences with penguins in Antarctica, Komodo dragons in Indonesia or blue-footed boobies in the Galápagos. And African safaris can be customized to suit travelers’ specific interests, including birding and conservation.


Those interested in improving body and soul will want to take advantage of the array of Indagare-adored wellness facilities featuring programs like yoga certification and fitness boot camps as well as truly special spas. Many offer educational sessions, like instruction in Reiki and meditation at Mii Amo, in Arizona; and science- and holistic-medicine-focused multiday retreats at Aro Hā, in New Zealand. Lake Austin Spa, in the lush hill country of Texas, hosts lectures on wellness and stress management, while SHA Wellness Clinic, on Spain’s southeastern coast, has special programs targeting such areas as weight loss, fitness and life-expectancy enhancement. For a truly exceptional learning-meets-wellness experience, a trip to Bhutan can include visiting rural villages, meeting monks and camping beside mountaintop monasteries and temples, complemented by hot stone baths with spectacular views.


There’s no better way to understand history than to visit a destination that shaped it. This could mean a World War II–focused excursion through Europe (from a guided tour of Normandy’s beaches to an emotional journey through Poland’s most impacted locations), island hopping to view ancient Greek sites or exploring early settlements in Puglia. For a deeper delve into human history, travel to Ethiopia or Beirut to learn about the world’s oldest civilizations through the artifacts and ruins they left behind, or to Egypt, one of the most culturally rich destinations of all time, to follow Egyptologists around the Pyramid Fields and other sites like the Sphinx’s temple, in areas otherwise off-limits to the public. Finally, to gain perspective on more recent—and challenging—events, go to South Africa for a tour with a former prisoner of Robben Island, where Nelson Mandela spent 13 years in captivity, or to see a township with a local community leader.

Indagare Matchmaker: Finding the Right Guide for You: Whether you’re looking for a hefty dose of history or a light-hearted afternoon to keep the kids entertained, our team has traveled with different guides around the world, so we’re able to confidently match you with the perfect guide. Our roster of on-the-ground experts includes expats and locals; English-speakers and foreign language instructors; and passionate insiders with a particular niche, from foodies and archaeologists to ceramicists and scientists. Indagare can connect you with a Maasai warrior in the Serengeti, a hilarious Gaudí expert in Barcelona, a government consultant on religious affairs in the Middle East and more. Call us at 212-988-2611 to start planning.

Published onNovember 22, 2019

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