Eastern Turkey & Georgia: Legacy of Empire

The rugged sunburnt Anatolian Plateau of Eastern Turkey and the steep-sided green valleys of Georgia are brilliantly paired on this unusual back-road exploration. Begin among the folded hills of out-of-the-way Anatolia, rich with the traces of early civilizations, and continue along the balmy Black Sea Coast to the unfamiliar little country of Georgia, where guests are welcomed at tables laden with some of the finest food and wine on earth. Read More


Russia’s Southern Steppe: Land of Cossacks, Kalmyks & Caviar

Discover the southern Russian steppe, an unfamiliar region spiced with a spirited array of independent cultures, including freedom-loving Cossacks and descendants of the Golden Horde. Explore Volgograd’s massive memorial before learning about the food of kings – caviar – in historic Astrakhan on the Volga River Delta. Visit Buddhist Elista, land of the formerly nomadic Kalmyk people (and home of Chess City); Rostov-on-Don, ancestral home of the Don Cossacks; Krasnodar, headquarters of the Kuban Cossacks; and the balmy Black Sea resort of Sochi.Please noteThis itinerary is currently only available as a custom or independent program.  For a small group tour to this region, see Russia’s Imperial Capitals & Ancient Villages.Read More


Classic Western Russia: Moscow, Novgorod & St. Petersburg

This indispensable introduction to some of Russia’s great cities gives an insider’s view of the real Russia, spotlighting not only the glittering palaces and dignified official edifices of the Russian Empire, but also a birch bark crafts class in historic Novgorod and the unforgettable warmth of a meal in a Russian home.Please noteThis itinerary is currently only available as a custom or independent program.  For a small group tour to this region, see Insider’s Russia: Moscow & St. Petersburg Rediscovered.Read More


Mongolia & Tibet: Steppes to the Roof of the World

The peoples of the Mongolian steppe and of the Tibetan Plateau have much in common. Both espouse Tibetan Buddhism and unfurl painted silk thangkas on festival days. Both were originally nomads, the Mongolians relying on the horse and the Tibetans on the yak for sustenance. From the “Roof of the World” to the Gobi Desert, dive deep into both enduring cultures.Please noteThis itinerary is currently only available as a custom or independent program.  For a small group tour to this region, see Mongolian Explorer: The Gobi & Beyond with Naadam Festival.Read More


Mongolia & Kyrgyzstan: Lands of the Last Nomads

On this search for Mongolian and Kyrgyz nomads, travel from the vast Mongolian steppe to the jailoo, the Kyrgyz summer pastures, visiting nomadic families in their gers and yurts and getting a feel for a way of life that is rapidly disappearing. Learn about the trusted folkways, traditional methods of grazing animals and hunting game, familiar music, epic poetry and dance, the hospitality of the steppe and the close-knit life of families on the edge – some of the things that don’t change in this precarious, and inexorably changing, way of life.Please noteThis itinerary is currently only available as a custom or independent program.  For a small group tour to this region, see Mongolian Explorer: The Gobi & Beyond with Naadam Festival.Read More