Nothing beats adventure travel, but who has time to organize it? Fortunately, you don’t need to plan every detail of your next trip, because there are countless adventure tour companies that can do it for you.
The global adventure travel market has boomed in recent years, reaching a value of $586 billion in 2018. The market has taken a hit in 2020, although the best travel companies have all adapted quickly to the Covid-19 era. This includes implementing strong health and safety guidelines and allowing late cancellations.
To help you plan your next trip, we compiled the following list of the 10 best adventure travel companies. The list begins with the best travel companies overall and ends with the best travel companies for segments of the population such as families, young people, and seniors.
G Adventures was founded in 1990 by Bruce Poon Tip, who wanted an alternative to big tours and backpack trips. Today, G Adventures is one of the biggest adventure tour companies on the planet, with hundreds of tour options at any given time. G Adventures is well-known for its unique themes, such as ‘Local Living’ tours and the Jane Goodall Collection, wildlife adventure trips endorsed by the legendary primatologist herself.
Our favorite trip: Local Living Italy-Tuscany San Gimignano. 7-day deep dive into the towns, vineyards, and countryside of central Tuscany, through the eyes of locals.
Intrepid Travel is another of the pioneers in adventure travel. Founded in Australia in 1989, it is now the largest small group adventure tour company in the world. It is also the largest travel company to be certified as a B Corporation – a certification for businesses that balance profit with ethical behavior. Whatever your preference – family trip, under 30s group, vegan food tours – Intrepid travel has adventures for every niche.
Our favorite trip: Mexico Unplugged Lonely Planet Experience. 15-days of exploring the heart of southern Mexico’s Aztec, Zapotec, Maya, and Spanish cultures.
The National Geographic brand needs no introduction, although it’s less-known that Nat Geo offers world-class adventure tours for regular travelers. When you travel with National Geographic Expeditions, you get a unique expedition curated by National Geographic and led by Nat Geo’s own expert geographers, educators, filmmakers, anthropologists, and ecologists. Adventure travel doesn’t come any more professional than this.
Our favorite trip: Epic Patagonia. 20-day expedition tracing the Chilean Coast aboard the National Geographic Explorer, a state-of-the-art, ice-class expedition ship.