Intrepid explorer and independent travel consultant Nancy Richer has traveled with Classic Journeys 15 times over the past 15 years, including to Provence; the French Riviera; Vietnam, Laos and Cambodia; Croatia’s Dalmatian Coast; India; Argentina and other far-flung destinations.
And although Nancy, an avid runner and yoga practitioner, was initially drawn to Classic Journeys through its unique blend of cultural immersion with an active component, it’s the interpersonal experiences that keep her coming back.
Whether it’s lunch with a professor and writer in Vietnam whose wife’s grandfather was the country’s last emperor, or dining with a retired general in India where no questions were off limits, or crafting a homemade pizza on Italy’s Amalfi Coast alongside the cheese-maker who made the mozzarella himself, it’s the people and the experiences they offer that stand out the most in her memories.
It’s also why Nancy doesn’t hesitate to recommend a Classic Journeys trip to her clients—at least the ones with a healthy sense of curiosity and a penchant for straying from the beaten path.
“A person who goes on a Classic Journeys’ trip is a traveler, not a tourist,” she says. “To me, the difference is that a traveler is someone who’s interested in immersing themselves in the country and culture—not only by seeing the sights mentioned in the guidebooks, but by putting their feet on the ground and seeking out the places where the tourists don’t go.
“I want to see the country through a different set of eyes—a local’s eyes,” she continues. “Not just viewing points of interest through a tour-bus window, but striking out to really feel, smell, taste and touch what the country is all about.”
Next up for Nancy? Classic Journeys’ Myanmar Cultural Walking Adventure.