Now that my trip to Europe is less than 4 weeks away (!!!), I figured it was finally time to share with you my awesome partners and sponsors for the trip. These are relationships I’ve been building for a long time, and I’m really excited to work with each and every one of these companies and organizations over the next few months.

Intrepid Travel

My adventure begins in Hungary, where I’ll be embarking upon an 18-day journey through Eastern Europe with Intrepid Travel. Their “Explore Eastern Europe” trip will take me through Hungary, Romania, and Bulgaria before ending in Istanbul, Turkey in mid-July. Along the way I will see countryside, cities, castles, villages, monasteries, and everything in between. Some of the highlights I’m really looking forward to include exploring cities in Hungary, staying with locals and visiting medieval villages in Romania, and going to Rila Monastery in Bulgaria. And, of course, the tour ends in Istanbul, which is a city I’ve dreamed of visiting for years!

Busabout

Just a few days after my Intrepid adventure ends, I’ll be meeting up with what is sure to be a crazy group for a 9-day Busabout “Classic Balkan” trek from Istanbul to Split, Croatia. This is bound to be a lot more rowdy than my Intrepid trip, but I’m looking forward to the change of pace (so far, it’s me and basically a ton of Aussies!). This whirlwind tour will take us through Turkey, Greece, Albania, Montenegro, and Croatia. I’m most looking forward to visiting Gallipoli, seeing the monasteries in Meteora, getting a glimpse of Albania, and walking the walls of Dubrovnik, Croatia.

Slovenia Tourist Board

From Split, I’m going to hop on up to Slovenia to recover from my month of non-stop travel and hopefully get some work done. The Slovenian Tourist Board has graciously offered to help me out for a few nights in Ljubljana, and then I’ll be heading to Bled for a couple nights on my own. From everything I’ve heard about SLOVEnia from others, I have no doubt that I, too, will fall in love.

London Pass

After Slovenia, I’m making my way to London for about 6 days, where I will not only be going to the Olympics, but am also determined to pack in as much sightseeing as possible. To make this easier, I’ve been given 2 London Passes to use during my stay, which will allow me to skip the lines at many of the city’s top attractions. I already know I for sure want to visit the Tower of London, cruise the Thames, and see Westminster Abbey.

Grayline

And, even though I know it will cut down on my sightseeing time in London, I’m planning to get out of the city, too. I’ll be teaming up with Grayline for 1 or 2 day trips from the city. I definitely want to get out to Bath and Stonehenge, and also have my eyes on Oxford and the Cotswolds, with perhaps Stratford-Upon-Avon thrown in.

Haggis Adventures

My UK adventures won’t end in England, though. I’ll be heading up to Scotland next, where, after a day or two of exploring Edinburgh, I’ll be hopping on a 5-day “Highland Fling” tour with Haggis Adventures, a sister company of Busabout. I am really looking forward to this trip, which will include Loch Ness, the Isle of Skye, and more in the Scottish Highlands. And, I have no doubt that the trip will live up to the company’s motto of being LEGEN- (wait for it…) DARY.

Roomorama

And, because a girl needs a place to sleep, I will also be working with Roomorama in both Budapest and Bled to rent rooms instead of staying in the typical hostels/hotels. In Budapest I’ll be renting a room with a woman who works as a local tour guide, and I already can’t wait to talk travel with her!

Update:

HostelBookers

Another great accommodation booking site has joined on to my European adventure! I’ll be working with HostelBookers in the UK in order to find some properties in Scotland.

Urban Adventures

I’ll be teaming up with Urban Adventures (a sister company of Intrepid) at least once, maybe twice on my trip. I’m for sure doing a “Hidden Istanbul” tour, and may jump on another in London to see some big cities from a different perspective.

——

So why all the tours?

I know it’s a question a lot of people will be asking me. After all, Europe is supposed to be “easy” to do on your own.

Well, I’ve opted for so many guided tours for a few reasons:

  1. I’m not one to pass up a great opportunity, and I consider working with these companies to be just that.
  2. I support these brands. Most focus on sustainable, responsible travel, and all have a young, fun philosophy that I can appreciate. These are companies that I legitimately want to work with.
  3. Guided tours are not the devil.
  4. I’m lazy. I’ve also just spent the past 8 months working my butt off in grad school. Honestly, if I had decided to do this trip completely on my own, it would not be nearly as long or as epic as it’s going to be, simply because I would not have had time to plan anything. And I’m a planner at heart — for me, it’s half the fun!
  5. I write about traveling on a “normal” person’s schedule and budget. And, despite all my blogger friends who travel long and far, the reality for most of us is that we usually only have a few weeks at best in which to travel, and we don’t want to have to stress about the details along the way. Guided tours can be perfect for these sorts of travelers, and so I want to try out some that I think would be perfect for the sort of audience who reads this blog.

——

So I think that’s it! A big thanks to all these partners and sponsors. I can’t wait to work with you!

 

Have YOU traveled with any of these companies before or used any of these services?

 

*This page will be updated if/when I partner with other brands/companies.

**Yes, I am receiving things for free/at a discount on this trip. But, as always, opinions will be 100% my own, as I am in no way being paid to say anything, good or bad.

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58 Responses to Introducing My Summer Travel Partners

  1. Lindsay says:

    Nice! You’re going to have a blast!

    Also – I’m going to be in London during the Olympics too. We should grab a pint! I’ll be there 27 Jul to 12 Aug (with quick trips out of the city to see friends in Manchester and Oxford).
    Lindsay recently posted..Local Food in Byward Market

    • DangerousBiz says:

      Sweet! I’ll be arriving in London on July 27, too, and will be heading up to Edinburgh on August 2. Not sure what my plans will be, except that I’m going to the Olympics to see some gymnastics on July 29! I’d love to meet up if we can work it out!

  2. Andrea says:

    Sounds like an amazing adventure! I love the Western Balkans and hope to visit the rest of the Balkans this summer. We might even bump into each other! ;)
    Andrea recently posted..5 Tips for Visiting Cologne

    • DangerousBiz says:

      I’m very excited! These are all places I’ve dreamed of visiting for the past few years, and the fact that I’m actually going to go now is just amazing to me!

  3. Congratulations, Amanda! As always, I’m looking forward to seeing your adventures in Europe!
    fotoeins | Henry recently posted..Hamburg, Germany in June

  4. Leah Travels says:

    This will be great, Amanda. I’m especially jealous of your trip to London during the Olympics. The summer Olympics is on my bucket list.
    Leah Travels recently posted..My Give-a-Damn’s Broken

    • DangerousBiz says:

      Seeing gymnastics at the Olympics is on my bucket list, too, Leah — and I am SO stoked that I’ll get to cross it off this year!

  5. Sarah says:

    I enjoyed my Eastern Trekker trips (at least that’s what they were operating as at the time, not the main Busabout name), and also Haggis. I also did a Topdeck tour at one point through Scandinavia, and the experience was terrible compared to what I had with the Busabout family of tour companies. I’m sure you’ll have a blast!

    • DangerousBiz says:

      Awesome to hear, Sarah! I’m really looking forward to the locations on both the Busabout and Haggis trips, so I’m sure I’ll enjoy myself!

  6. Had a great experience with BusAbout on their Croatian Island Hopper cruise and many people from my group had done the Balkans trip beforehand and raved. You will love it!
    Caroline Eubanks recently posted..What’s In My Carry On Bag?

    • DangerousBiz says:

      Awesome! Two of the guys on my Busabout trip did the same trip last year… so it must be pretty good!!

  7. Gaelyn says:

    This sounds like an Awesome trip. And although I so enjoy the plan I can appreciate letting someone else help out. Besides, I assume you’ll be blogging along the way.
    Gaelyn recently posted..Ring of Fire from Annual Solar Eclipse

    • DangerousBiz says:

      Oh yes, I’ll definitely be blogging along the way! It will be nice to let someone else worry about most of the details for a change. :)

  8. Wow, you have been busy! I went on a BusAbout trek in the East, and it was fantastic. You should have a great time.

    • DangerousBiz says:

      Haha, yes, I have been very busy!! It’s great to hear all the positive feedback about Busabout! I can’t wait!

  9. Wow! You have some incredible people/companies/tour boards to work with in the coming months! Your plans so SO incredible. I’ll be heading through the Balkans starting next week so I’ll be exciting to read about YOUR experience there! Cheers!
    Chrystal McKay recently posted..Battle of the Koran Schools in Marrakech Morocco

    • DangerousBiz says:

      I still kind of can’t believe all of these companies want to work with little ol’ me! Haha. But it’s very exciting, for sure!

      Have fun in the Balkans!! I can’t wait to get a glimpse of them myself in July.

  10. Steve Whitty says:

    That look a busy schedule you have there. If you are in Edinburgh during August you will get to enjoy the Edinburgh Festival. It will be busy. I also recommend the Cotswolds during the summer months too. You will enjoy Bath too as it is a interesting place to visit. Being from the UK I am of course biased.

    • DangerousBiz says:

      I think I will JUST miss out on all the summer festivals… but we’ll see! I’m really looking forward to the UK in summertime. I’ve heard it’s lovely that time of year!

  11. How exciting! You have partnered up with some great companies. Have the BEST time!!!!!!
    Andi of My Beautiful Adventures recently posted..Macau: Day 2 (Part 3)

    • DangerousBiz says:

      Thanks, Andi! I can’t WAIT to get traveling this summer! Like you said, I’m working with some amazing companies!

  12. Taylor says:

    Nice list! I usually steer clear of tours but I think I’m going to to have rethink things. Maybe give one of your travel partners a shot. They don’t look like the run-of-the-mill tour operaters I’m used to running away from. :)

    • DangerousBiz says:

      Tours definitely have their place, and I’ll be the first to tell you that. I’ve traveled all sorts of ways – in HUGE groups, solo, with my family, on tours, on my own… you name it! If you find the right tour, you really can have a fantastic time. And I hope to do just that on all 3 tours I’ll be taking this summer!

  13. I like tours if you find the right ones. That’s the key.

    I have to admit I am really starting to not like you (OK I am just really jealous!). You are going to one of my favorite places on earth (Eastern Europe) and the top destination on my list (the UK – I love Scotland and have written a lot about the culture).

    As for the Haggis tour, I laughed at that one considered I tossed my haggis last month ( you will have to read about that one!) :)

    Have an awesome trip this summer and know that I don’t like you very much right now :)
    Jeremy Branham recently posted..A northern California hiking video and travel guide – Horsetail Falls

    • DangerousBiz says:

      Haha oh no, please don’t hate me! Can I win back your friendship by maybe buying you a drink sometime at TBEX? Lol.

      I’m really, really excited about this trip… and it’s coming up faster than I ever thought it would! Still lots to do before June 21…

  14. Congrats on all the partnerships! Looks like it will be a load of fun. Might see you somewhere on your travels too as we explore Europe this summer.
    Cole @ Four Jandals recently posted..Destination Itinerary – 48 Hours in Edinburgh

    • DangerousBiz says:

      Thanks, Cole! Let me know where you might be this summer — I’d love to meet up with some of my favorite traveling Kiwis!

  15. Dominic Joshua says:

    You are so lucky because you have got the opportunity of traveling the Europe with your great working partners. I think you have enjoyed much your tours and learned more about each country. Its really great.

  16. Juliann says:

    This sounds incredible!!!! I am so jealous! I’ll just have to travel vicariously through your blog posts until I can take some of these trips myself.

    And, I think going with tour groups is a great idea. This is a lot of countries to squeeze in.
    Juliann recently posted..Behind the Scenes – Border State

    • DangerousBiz says:

      Don’t be jealous, Juliann! I’m sure some of it will be less than glamorous… I’m going to be wiped out by the end! Haha.

      And yes, it definitely is a lot of countries to squeeze in! If I wasn’t on so many tours, I probably wouldn’t be going to half these places!

  17. Daisy says:

    Wow sounds like a lot of fun! Can’t wait to hear of your adventures in London & Scotland. You go girl!
    Daisy recently posted..What Is a 529 Plan?

    • DangerousBiz says:

      Thanks, Daisy! There will be plenty of adventure to be had, I’m sure, and I can’t wait to write about it all!

  18. Christina says:

    Great stuff! A big adventure for sure. Look forward to you coming over!
    Christina recently posted..#WhyYVR update: celebrating touchdown of Virgin Atlantic’s first flight to Vancouver

  19. Sounds like an amazing summer. Congrats on all the collaborations. I can relate to being so busy with your studies, so a tour can really relieve the pressure to read “all there is to read” about a place, and you can simply enjoy the ride. Have fun :)
    Ayelet – All Colores recently posted..On My Bucket List: A Dream Birthday Trip to the North Pole

    • DangerousBiz says:

      I think it definitely will be an amazing summer. And I think the fact that I arranged all of these myself (as opposed to just having stuff thrown at me) makes it even sweeter.

  20. EurotripTips says:

    Grayline are fantastic to work with. You’ll have fun on whichever tour your choose! I will be working with Busabout in Ireland this June and I really can’t wait!
    EurotripTips recently posted..Yup. Definitely a City Girl.

  21. Bethany says:

    Wow- Sounds like you have a super exciting summer lined up!!! We work with Roomorama and they are fantastic! I’m sure you will have a great time at the apartments. :)
    Bethany recently posted..Discovering the World with Pinterest – Our Newest Addiction (Part 1 of 2)

    • DangerousBiz says:

      Yes, this summer is going to rock! I used Roomorama in Iceland back in March, and it was awesome!

  22. Ayngelina says:

    Ooh you are going to be busy! I don’t think guided tours are the devil at all, sometimes it’s nice to have someone else do all the planning.
    Ayngelina recently posted..Disconnecting in Hana

    • DangerousBiz says:

      Totally agreed, Ayngelina. The good thing with most of these tours (and especially the Intrepid one) is that there’s plenty of free time once you get to the stops… but you don’t have to worry about arranging transport and accommodation on your own. I can’t WAIT to have someone else doing that for me! Haha.

  23. Vi says:

    will you have time to update your blog? :)
    Vi recently posted..Whale watching in Sydney. Best time, places and tour prices

  24. Rebecca says:

    I agree, tours are not the devil (anymore). Companies have gotten a lot smarter in the past few years and it’s all about finding the right fit. Good on you, for mixing it up and using lots of different ones! I always try to do that when I travel.
    Rebecca recently posted..Random Weekend: Book: Vroom with A View

    • DangerousBiz says:

      I love that you talked about “finding the right fit.” That’s so important! Hopefully I find the right fit with all of these companies!

  25. Jeremy says:

    Wicked! You are going to have a BLAST! Have fun!!
    Jeremy recently posted..Waiheke Island is Beachy, Where the Wine Flows and the Hills Roll

  26. Edna says:

    Wow, that’s a hell of an itinerary! Nice work getting all that lined up. Look forward to hearing about it all — especially the Olympics part!
    Edna recently posted..Paris is for lovers.

  27. Joya says:

    Just started reading your blog and it’s great, especially your San Francisco posts. I’m a native and I’m glad you had a great time here. Your summer itinerary looks great. I’m also in grad school and work full-time and am also looking into taking a Contiki tour for the time I have off from work as it is easier for me to plan this way right now. Can’t wait to read about your tours!
    Joya recently posted..My First Minutes in London

  28. Amanda, good for you! ALl these partnerships are way awesome! As I’ve been following your Eastern Europe posts, I see how much fun you’re having with these partners/sponsors! I’m right there along with you on tours. Sometimes I like them for when I don’t have time to plan, and sometimes I can’t stand them. They definitely have their perks – great for meeting people when traveling solo, and some of the guides are so awesome with the best recommendations! Bike Tours are especially my favorite! Enjoy the rest of your European Summer travels!
    Antoinette B. | love.antoinette recently posted..Spread Love it’s the Brooklyn Way

  29. [...] doing this part of my journey with two of my partners, Busabout and the Slovenia Tourist Board, and can’t wait to experience this part of Europe. [...]

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