Media and Awards | Press Mentions | GeoEx

Media & Awards


We’re very proud of the recognition that we receive from AFAR, Condé Nast Traveler, Travel + Leisure, National Geographic, Outside magazine, and others. Below are some of our most recent accolades.

For press inquiries, please email [email protected].

Holiday Gift Guide 2023: The Best Luxury Gifts For Polar, November 29, 2023

Among the luxury gifts highlighted, recommended is GeoEx’s South Pole and Emperor Penguins trip as it is a “highly intense and immersive experience for polar explorers.”

Geographic Expeditions Launches Women-Only Trip to Namibia Elite Traveler, November 23, 2023

Described as an “unforgettable tour,” Namibia’s Wild Wonders, a women-only trip by GeoEx, is breaking barriers and providing and unique opportunities for connecting with local women in Namibia.

Geographic Expeditions Launches First Women-Only Trip to Namibia Luxury Travel Advisor, November 17, 2023

Luxury Travel Advisor highlights GeoEx’s exclusive women-only trip to Namibia, accentuating not only the celebration of the country’s breathtaking landscapes and wildlife but also its remarkable strides in empowering women and girls.

The 50 Best Places to Work in 2023 Outside Best Places to Work, November 16, 2023

GeoEx has been recognized in Outside magazine’s prestigious Best Places to Work list for 13 consecutive years, once again earning the company a coveted spot among the top employers.  

5 Amazing New Travel Adventures For 2024, November 10, 2023

Forbes’ feature on 2024 adventures shines a spotlight on GeoEx’s latest expedition, “Namibia’s Wild Wonders,” unveiling the exclusive and extraordinary experiences that define this remarkable journey.

This Female-focused Trip Through Namibia Will Take You on a Flight Over the Skeleton Coast and Rhino Tracking With Local Travel + Leisure, November 1, 2023

GeoEx takes a pioneering step in adventure travel, as featured in Travel + Leisure’s latest article. “Our launch of this female-focused journey underscores our commitment to recognizing and celebrating the unique interests and perspectives of women travelers. It’s about creating a dedicated space for them to explore, connect, and break down cultural barriers,” as quoted in the article by GeoEx’s own Head of Product Development, Jenny Velasco.

The 2024 Travel Destinations Experts Predict Everyone Will Flock To The Zoe Report, October 30, 2023

Discover the allure of Shikoku, Japan with GeoEx, as highlighted in The Zoe Report’s 2024 travel destinations article.

5 Reason’s To Visit Bhutan, One Of Travel’s Hottest, September 18, 2023

Acclaimed by Forbes as “one of the top luxury tour operators for Bhutan,” GeoEx crafts personalized journeys that immerse you in the vibrant culture, spiritual traditions, and breathtaking Himalayan scenery of this remote mountain paradise.

You Won’t Believe Where Expedition Cruises Are Going Now, September 9, 2023

Senior Contributor Christopher Elliott highlights GeoEx’s expedition cruise offerings to the Svalbard archipelago, Peruvian Amazon, Laos, New Guinea and more, along with GeoEx Glenn Ringer’s takeaways on what type of travelers should consider these cruises

Geographic Expeditions Launches Trips to Southern, March 19, 2023

“If you’re a traveler who’s been just about everywhere, there’s a remarkable new opportunity to explore a country that few have visited,” writes Everett Potter as he highlights GeoEx’s new small group trip to Southern Iraq. GeoEx Middle East expert Sara Barbieri shares with Everett her experience during her anticipatory exploration of the trip.

An art adventure in Upper Mustang—the forbidden land of Tibetan cultureFinancial Times, December 26, 2022

Acclaimed freelance writer and photographer Sophy Roberts describes a group trip with GeoEx to Upper Mustang in Nepal. The piece includes some great mentions of GeoEx and our 40-year history in the Himalaya, Vassi, and the important restoration and cultural preservation work that AHF (and GeoEx) supports in the region.

The 50 Best Places to Work in 2022Outside, November 2022

For the 12th year in a row, GeoEx has landed a spot on Outside magazine’s Best Places to Work list.

The Top 15 Tour OperatorsTravel + Leisure, July 12, 2022

“The right tour operator makes all the difference in creating a trip of a lifetime versus one that simply checks off a list of sights,” writes Travel + Leisure in their latest round-up of the world’s top tour operators. GeoEx was honored to be ranked #4 on this year’s World’s Best list, based on feedback from T+L readers.

Now Is the Time to Book Holiday TravelAFAR, Oct. 19, 2021

For those looking to travel during the upcoming holidays, AFAR’s Michelle Baran gives a round up of holiday travel opportunities, including international travel ideas from GeoEx’s Kate Doty. Kate adds, “If you are open and have time, there are amazing adventures available.”

The Best Tour Operators in the World 2021: the Readers’ Choice AwardsCondé Nast Traveller, Oct. 6, 2021

On the heels of being named a Travel + Leisure World’s Best tour operator, GeoEx is ranked among the top tour operators in the world in the Condé Nast 2021 Readers’ Choice Awards. This year, more than 800,000 readers of Condé Nast Traveler US and Condé Nast Traveller UK weighed in on their favorite hotels, destinations, and more.

The Top 15 Tour OperatorsTravel + Leisure, Sept. 8, 2021

As part of their annual World’s Best Awards, Travel + Leisure named GeoEx to their list of Top 15 Tour Operators. Readers rated tour operators on their staff/guides, itineraries/destinations, activities, accommodations, food, and value, ranking Geographic Expeditions as one of the best.

Silver Linings; Basque Cities; English Villages – Travel with Rick Steves Radio Show, Sept. 4, 2021

In part two of an interview with Rick Steves on his nationally broadcast radio show, Wanderlust Editor in Chief Don George discusses the lessons described in his column “Ten Silver Lining Lessons from the Pandemic,” part of the e-book Don wrote for GeoEx earlier this year. (Segment begins at 1:38.)

Fandor Festival Podcast Ep.10: Editor & Travel Writer, Don George, Aug. 24, 2021

In this popular podcast (Fandor has 195,000 subscribers!), hosts Hooman Khalili and Chris Kelly interview Don George about his career as a travel writer. Don touches on the GeoEx trips he leads to Mexico and Japan, as well as the GeoEx e-book he penned at the beginning of 2021.

Pandemic Road Trip; Corona Wanderlust; American Surprises – Travel with Rick Steves Radio Show, July 3, 2021

On his nationally broadcast radio show, travel personality Rick Steves interviewed Don George about how he has nurtured his wanderlust during the pandemic. The interview focused on the columns Don wrote for the GeoEx e-book Wanderlust in the Time of Coronavirus: Dispatches from a Year of Traveling Close to Home. (Segment begins at 13:55).

10 Best Adventure Travel Companies, According to Our Readers – USA TODAY, June 2021

For the third year in a row, GeoEx was named one of the 10 best adventure travel companies by USA TODAY readers.

Our Guide to Last-Minute Summer 2021 Travel – AFAR, May 2021

AFAR’s Michelle Baran asked GeoEx travel planner extraordinaire Kate Doty for recommendations for last-minute travel this summer, and featured nine of her recommendations: Alaska; Costa Rica, Belize, Nicaragua, Guatemala, and Panama in Central America; and Kenya, Tanzania, and Rwanda in Africa.

Confessions of a Confirmed Traveler After a Year at Home – On Travel, May 2021

Travel journalists Paul Lasley and Elizabeth Harryman interviewed Don George for their daily radio show On Travel, which reaches 1 million listeners worldwide. In the 25-minute interview, Don discussed his new ebook, Wanderlust in the Time of Coronavirus, and travel during and after the pandemic.

Epic Trips That Give Back – AFAR, Apr. 2021

For this round-up of bucket list trips that also help the planet, AFAR singled out two GeoEx trips: Angola, Namibia, and Botswana by Helicopter and Shadowing Mongolia’s Snow Leopards.

Gauging the Prospects for International Travel – The New York Times, Apr. 2021

The New York Times reached out to GeoEx for our input on what international travel is looking like for summer 2021. What they found is that “roadblocks abound” but “still, there is reason for optimism.” GeoEx CEO Brady Binstadt adds that travelers are “spending more than before— they’re splurging on that nicer hotel suite or charter flight or special experience.”

2021 Top Travel Specialists – Condé Nast Traveler, Mar. 2021

For the ninth consecutive year, GeoEx’s Kate Doty was named a Top Travel Specialist by Condé Nast Traveler. The prestigious list recognizes Kate for her expertise in designing Over the Top Trips.

Wanderlust in the Time of Coronavirus – Eye on Travel, Mar. 20, 2021

GeoEx’s Don George was interviewed for 10 minutes on this weekly radio show hosted by CBS News Travel Editor Peter Greenberg. Don and Peter talked about his new ebook, Wanderlust in the Time of Coronavirus. They discussed lessons of the previous year, travels close to home, and adventures to come. (Segment begins at 1:29:10).

Don George – Wanderlust in the Time of Coronavirus – This Week in Travel, Mar. 12, 2021

Don George, GeoEx’s blog Editor in Chief, was a guest for the entire broadcast of this weekly travel podcast hosted by Gary Arndt and Jen Leo. The two hosts spoke with Don about his new ebook, Wanderlust in the Time of Coronavirus, including how the book came together and where Don’s wanderings took him last year. Don also talked about how GeoEx has been faring through the pandemic and the rising optimism for travel in the year to come.

Travel Close to Home (with Don George) – The Frommer’s Travel Show, Feb. 21, 2021

In her weekly podcast, Pauline Frommer talks with Don George about GeoEx’s new eBook: Wanderlust in the Time of Coronavirus. They discuss the origins of the book, strategies for keeping our wanderlust alive, and some of the highlights of Don’s close-to-home adventures in 2021.

Dreamy, Over-the-Top Trips for 2021 – AFAR, Jan. 2021

“With vaccines on the horizon, now is the time to dream big for next year,” writes AFAR’s Annie Fitzsimmons. In a round-up of trips that are luxurious, expensive, and support and sustain local communities in a big way, she spotlights GeoEx’s Unexplored Japan small group trip, which visits off-the-radar small towns and historic villages in western Honshu.

Seven Unsung Natural Wonders of the World – Artful Living, Winter 2021

GeoEx’s journey to the the Guelta d’Archeï oasis in Chad is spotlighted in this article on unsung natural wonders. Author Ashlea Halpern writes, “No tour operator handles this corner of the world better than GeoEx. Their expert-led itinerary will take you to the guelta, of course, but also pack in other Ennedi wonders like stone mazes, gravity-defying arches and the rock art of Terkei.” She also quotes GeoEx guide Brad Hansen on how to find the best view of the oasis.

7 (COVID-Era) Dream Trips, Planned by Experts – AFAR, Oct. 2020

In a round-up of dream trips that are possible in the time of COVID, Annie Fitzsimmons speaks with members of AFAR’s team of travel advisors, including Kate Doty. She highlights Kate twice, recommending GeoEx’s Boundless Baja itinerary as well as Rwanda and Kenya private safaris that Kate has designed.

The New Escapism: Isolationist Travel – New York Times, June 2020

In a wide-ranging report on how, as travelers seek safety amid social distancing, the travel industry in adapting, the New York Times’ Elaine Glusac writes, “For some companies that are looking ahead to international travel getting its footing back, the crisis offers an itinerary reset. Geographic Expeditions plans on altering its walking tours to avoid crowded destinations in places like Japan. ‘It’s a challenge,’ said Don George, who will guide three of the company’s trips to Japan, including Kyoto, next spring, ‘but it’s also exciting to think about off-the-beaten-path places that we can visit that will illuminate the spirit and soul of Kyoto.’”

The Travel Gurus You Should Use to Plan Your Next Trip – Town & Country, June 2020

As part of Town & Country’s biennial Best New Hotels round-up, GeoEx’s Kate Doty was featured as an expert travel planner in the following areas: Turkey, UK, Costa Rica, Kenya, Namibia, Rwanda, Zimbabwe, Cambodia, China, Indonesia, and Myanmar.

Wealthy Travelers Are Starting to Book Year-End Vacations –, May 2020

As the world re-opens to travel, Bloomberg seeks GeoEx’s opinion on which sectors will be the first to rebound: “’Luxury, high-end travel is going to be what comes back first,’ says Kate Doty, managing director of premier access for adventure specialist GeoEx.”

2020 Top Travel Specialists – Condé Nast Traveler, Mar. 2020

Once again Condé Nast Traveler has included our destination expert, Kate Doty, in their yearly curation of Top Travel Specialists. Kate Doty is recognized for her expertise in designing Private Jet Trips; we’re honored and proud to have her as part of the GeoEx Team! 

Sophy Roberts travels to four coastal West African countries, meeting vibrant artists, musicians, and designers emerging throughout the region. GeoEx’s destination expert, Starla Estrada, explains that this side of the continent is all about culture. “There is a heavy narrative, of course, because of the history of slavery, but the younger generation is trying to move on from that past.”

6 Places to Visit Despite Negative Headlines – AFAR, Jan. 2020

“Beyond the headlines…it’s important to remember that these are all fascinating places where real, diverse, warm and welcoming people exist.” AFAR outlines 6 must-see destinations where the headlines don’t tell the whole story—and GeoEx’s Democratic Republic of Congo trip makes the list.

Destination Deliberate – Capital Group Quarterly Insights, Winter 2020

It’s always tempting to cram as much as you can into a vacation, but how much can you really absorb when every moment is packed to the gills? GeoEx travel specialist Jessica Silber knows the importance of slowing down to get the most out of your experience.

What treasures might be lost in Iran if the worst happens? – Los Angeles Times, Jan. 2020

Iran is home to two dozen UNESCO World Heritage sites. Turning back the years, writer Christopher Reynolds reflects on his 1998 journey to Iran—arranged by GeoEx—and ponders the potential cultural loss if these sites were to be targeted. GeoEx’s Jean-Paul Tennant chimes in, remarking of his more recent experience in the country: “They were among the most friendly, welcoming people that I’ve experienced anywhere…They’d tell us, ‘The people of Iran are different from the government of Iran.'”

Travel to Iran Has Always Been My Dream—That Hasn’t Changed – Town & Country, Jan. 2020

In 1993, GeoEx became the first company to tour American travelers throughout post-revolutionary Iran. CEO Jean-Paul Tennant explains the main reason we continue to do so today: the warmth of the Iranian people.

What You Should Know About Travel in Iran—and the Rest of the Middle East—Right Now – AFAR, Jan. 2020

With uncertainty in the Middle East, travel experts weigh in on the advisability of journeying to Iran. GeoEx’s Jessica Silber explains how GeoEx hasn’t formally canceled any trips and is consulting with our private security firm and checking with our colleagues on the ground.

The Not Hot List: 10 Best Under-the-Radar Trips for 2020 – Forbes, Jan. 2020

Forbes reveals the best unknown travel destinations in 2020—and taps GeoEx experts Kristina Tuohey and Tina Liadis for their recommendations: Eritrea, Saudi Arabia, Tunisia, and Algeria.

Another Total Solar Eclipse Is Coming in 2020—Here’s How to See It – AFAR, Dec. 2019

AFAR rounds up the best trips to view South America’s total solar eclipse in December 2020. GeoEx’s Solar Eclipse Argentina and Patagonia Icons is first on the list.

The 10 Coolest Places To Go In 2020 – Forbes, Dec. 2019

Forbes’ annual roundup of the 10 coolest places to go features four GeoEx favorites. Staff experts Wen Minkoff, Don George, and Jennine Cohen share their top recommendations for 2020, including the Arctic, Brazil, Japan, and Mexico.

Epic Trips: Borneo – AFAR Instagram, Oct. 2019

AFAR Associate Editor @goneofftrack traveled to the world’s 3rd largest island, Borneo, with Geographic Expeditions as part of their ‘7 Epic Trips on 7 Continents’ series. What she found were lots of monkeys, expansive caves, enchanting waterfalls, and a new definition of adventure.

A Trip to Borneo Challenged My Fantasy of Adventure Travel – AFAR, Oct. 2019

“My travel companions and I came nose to bulbous nose with placid proboscis monkeys and found a delicate emerald-green pit viper curled around a branch… Here, I thought. There’s adventure here.” Writer Maggie Fuller describes her GeoEx small-group journey through the jungles of Borneo.

Saudi Arabia Will Start Issuing Tourist Visas for the First Time Ever – AFAR, Sept. 2019

Saudi Arabia announced recently that it will begin issuing e-visas to tourists from 49 countries. Geographic Expeditions is one of the first companies to offer trips to this once-reclusive kingdom.

Interview with Jean-Paul Tennant, CEO of Geographic Expeditions – The San Francisco Fall Show Blog, Sept. 2019

Now in its 38th year, the San Francisco Fall Show is the leading international art, antiques and design fair on the West Coast. They interviewed Geographic Expeditions’ CEO, Jean-Paul Tennant, on the topic of wanderlust—the theme of this year’s show, and a favorite of any travel aficionado!

Travel + Leisure’s Top Travel Advisors (2019-2020) – Travel + Leisure, 2019

GeoEx is thrilled to have our own Starla Estrada featured in Travel + Leisure’s A-List, an annual collection of the world’s top travel advisors. With more than three decades of adventuring and 10 years of designing trips to Africa, India, and other parts of the globe, Starla is passionate about unearthing surprises you won’t find in guidebooks.

10 Things I Wish I’d Known Before Traveling to Borneo – AFAR, Aug. 2019

Borneo encompasses parts of three different countries, hundreds of cultures, and one of the most biodiverse environments on the planet. Maggie Fuller shares travel tips picked up on her GeoEx trip.

In Bhutan, Wellness Awaits—Even If You’re Bad at Yoga – AFAR, July 2019

“Can a skeptical, asana-averse blind man find inner peace?” Ryan Knighton describes his journey through the dark to find wellness in Bhutan—and lists GeoEx among the travel experts who can get you there.

Traveling With a Group? Here’s How to Plan and Stay Friends – New York Times, July 2019

Group trips are opportunities to explore the world with people you love. They also have the potential to be planning messes. GeoEx’s Kate Doty gives advice on how to travel seamlessly as a group.

10Best Readers’ Choice Award Names Best Adventure Travel Company – USA TODAY 10Best, May 2019

Geographic Expeditions (GeoEx) is proud to be named one of the world’s top adventure travel companies in USA TODAY’s 10Best Readers’ Choice awards. To begin this competition, USA TODAY asked a panel of experts to choose the 20 best adventure travel finalists from among hundreds of companies worldwide. Then the publication invited travelers around the globe to vote online to determine the best travel companies of all. At the end of the four-week voting period, GeoEx had bested numerous larger companies to place at number four in the world.

How to Know If Your Loved Ones Are Safe During a Crisis (Even When Facebook Is Down) – AFAR, Apr. 2019

Our travelers’ safety is our top priority, making crisis and communication management a key part of our services. Long-time master of crafting out-of-the-ordinary journeys, GeoEx’s Kate Doty offers practical advice to make sure you can get updates to/from traveling family members.

The World’s Best Travel Specialists of 2019 – Condé Nast Traveler, Apr. 2019

Once again Condé Nast Traveler has included a couple of our destination experts in their yearly curation of Top Travel Specialists: Kate Doty (for Private Jet Trips) and Brent Olson (for Bhutan). They both excel in their expertise; we’re honored and proud to have them as part of the GeoEx Team! 

Adventure Travel Specialists Take Customers Beyond the Beach – Skift, Mar. 2019

In recent years, adventure travel has shifted to include travel that combines nature, culture, and activities. GeoEx’s Story Kirshman comments how we’re seeing our travelers interested and curious about the world, wanting to interact with various cultures, and choosing edgier destinations.

Travel Will Change for the Better this Year—Here’s How – National Geographic, Jan. 2019

National Geographic polled more than a dozen leading industry professionals, including GeoEx’s Kate Doty, to ask them what travel will look like in 2019.

Where to Go in 2019 – Bloomberg, 2019

Among this list of 21 “hot-right-now” destinations is Bhutan, now with more luxury options and a newly expanded airport. GeoEx’s Brent Olson is listed as the one to call for more details, but any of GeoEx’s Bhutan experts are happy to share more about the country and travel options to explore its Himalayan wonders.

Congratulations to our destination expert Jennine Cohen for being featured as a Forbes‘ Changemaker. This Forbes series highlights extraordinary people in the travel, wellness, and food industries who pursue and redefine new ways to combine passion and purpose. Jennine is noted for her dedication to developing transformative travel experiences.

The 10 Coolest Places to Go in 2019 – Forbes, 2018

Of Forbes‘ most exciting destinations for the new year, 9 out of 10 are places GeoEx knows well and loves sending travelers to, and 3 are tied to specific GeoEx adventures: our new Eastern Bhutan journey, our private Mongolia custom trip, and our group trip to Pakistan’s Hunza Valley.

2018 Top Travel Specialists We Trust – Condé Nast Traveler, 2018

Once again Condé Nast Traveler has included some of our destination gurus in their yearly curation of Top Travel Specialists: Kate Doty (Over-the-Top Trips) and Brent Olson (Bhutan). 

The 50 Best Places to Work in 2018 – Outside, 2018

For the eighth year in a row, GeoEx’s anonymous staff surveys have landed the company on Outside magazine’s Best Places to Work list.

The World’s Fastest Growing Tourist Destinations Aren’t Where You Think – AFAR, 2018

“Overall, tourist arrivals across the world are up 7 percent in 2017—the highest amount since last decade’s economic crisis—but the countries at the top of this list tell a particularly interesting story,” writes Lyndsey Matthews. She goes on to mention a number of GeoEx destinations (including Egypt and Israel) and two specific GeoEx journeys, Invitation to Nepal and Mystical West Africa.

7 Truly Epic Trips for Deeply Adventurous Travelers – AFAR, 2018

“When was the last time you met someone who just got back from a vacation in Pakistan? Claim bragging rights by taking a 20-day Geographic Expeditions adventure that opens the door to corners of Pakistan and China that are difficult for most travelers to reach,” suggests this AFAR article about epic adventures.

Egypt’s Exquisite Temples That Had to be Moved – BBC Travel, 2018

Recently back from Egypt, GeoEx travel expert, Kim Keating, gives great insight to the vast, wondrous world of the Great Temple at Abu Simbel and how in the 1960s, a team of international engineers relocated the site – piece by piece!

Cape Town Is in a Massive Drought—Here’s Why You Should Still Visit – AFAR, 2018

When an area is affected by a disaster, there’s often an inclination to stay away. However, visiting will do more good than harm by supporting the destination through local spending. Our travel expert, Starla Estrada, who handles our programming in South Africa, along with the rest of her team, called each client individually to discuss the issue in detail: “Tourism dollars will be needed now more than ever to support water conservation initiatives and the local communities, especially the townships.”

The 10 Coolest Cities Around the World to Visit in 2018 – Forbes, 2018

Proud to have three GeoEx travel experts quoted for their insider knowledge on cities that were recently mere jumping-off points for safaris or beach vacations—or best ignored altogether—coming into their own. Tina Liadis praises Yogyakarta (Indonesia), Don George boasts about Nagasaki (Japan), and Jennine Cohen recognizes Medellin (Colombia).

The World’s Most Romantic Adventures – National Geographic Adventure, 2018

Let the charm of its cobbled streets and red-tiled roofs allure you to Barichara, Colombia. This romantic adventure continues nearby with rafting the rapids of the Chicamocha River and hiking to the bottom of the Chicamocha Canyon, one of the deepest gorges in the world.

9 Secluded Destinations You Can Have All to Yourself – SmarterTravel, 2018

After the chaos of the holidays, many travelers look for destinations that offer peace and quiet through seclusion. GeoEx recommended Bhutan is the perfect place as few tourists ever make it to the Land of the Thunder Dragon: “France gets more visitors every 90 minutes than Bhutan does in a year!”

Travel That Changes You – Forbes, 2018

Looking back on the year, journalist Ann Abel writes about her top peak experiences of 2017. Traveling to Bhutan with GeoEx was especially memorable, with the meditative hikes through the countryside and mountains, seeing the colorful prayer flags flapping in the wind, and hiking up to the legendary Tiger’s Nest Monastery. 

The 15 Coolest Places to Go in 2018 – Forbes, 2017

We’re thrilled to have two exciting trips featured: Central Tibet with beloved trek leader, Vassi Koutsaftis, where you will see Yangpachen Valley and experience the Cham festival at Tsurphu Monastery, and Chad with legendary safari guide Brad Hansen and Royal Geographic Society member Kingsley Holgate, a globally respected expert on remote African tribes!

An Artistic Tour of South Africa – AFAR, 2017

As a member of the AFAR Travel Advisory Council, Kate Doty, along with help from colleague and art buff, Starla Estrada, put together an art-lovers dream trip: curator-led gallery visits, insightful walking tours, and viewings of private collections inside featured luxurious hotels. The newly opened, cutting-edge Zeitz Museum of Contemporary Art Africa, is also a highlight on this itinerary featuring South Africa’s dynamic art scene.

2017 Top Travel Specialists We Trust – Condé Nast Traveler, 2017

Once again Condé Nast Traveler has included some of our destination gurus in their yearly curation of Top Travel Specialists: Kate Doty (Over-the-Top Trips) and Brent Olson (Bhutan). 

The 100 Best Places to Work in 2017 – Outside, 2017

We’re proud that our anonymous staff surveys have landed us on Outside magazine’s Best Places to Work list for the past seven years. “Our [research and development] consists of sending our people out into the field,” says CEO Jean-Paul Tennant. “It’s probably not shocking at all that they love that.”

9 Destinations Where You Can Make a Difference this Holiday Season – AFAR, 2017

When a destination is hit hard by a disaster, tourism can the most impactful way to help the community. AFAR asked its Travel Advisory Council for the best places to book for this year’s holiday season. Kate Doty, GeoEx’s Managing Director of Premier Access, recommends Mexico City: “Mexico City is rebuilding after the 7.1 earthquake on September 19, and locals are eager to show visitors around. The tourism dollars will also help them with efforts to restore the city.”

15 Incredible Places to Visit Before They Disappear – Town & Country, 2017

Our destination experts contributed a few gems to this list of incredible places that are on the verge of change, like Indonesia and Antarctica. Go now to see and experience these areas before they change, or even worse, disappear.

9 Ultimate Hiking Trips Around the World – Forbes, 2017

We’re thrilled to have our Trek into Central Bhutan trip featured in this encouraging list of hikes. “GeoEx—one of the first US tour operators to offer trips to the kingdom and still a specialist in the destination—takes clients deeper into the untouched wilderness and culture of the country’s central mountains.”

12 of South America’s Most Epic Hikes – Travel + Leisure, 2017

We’re honored to be a part of this fantastic round-up of epic South American hikes. “On a trek with GeoEx, discover Argentina’s most breathtaking Inca Trail that weaves through small mountain outposts and local communities, delivering you past rivers and jungles from Tilarca to Salta, an area where the elusive puma and jaguar roam free.”

How to Navigate the Biggest Market in Marrakech Like a Pro – AFAR, 2017

Starla Estrada, GeoEx’s Managing Director for Africa, Turkey, and the Middle East, shares her best tips for bartering like a pro at the open-air market in Marrakech. Her eight recommendations will enable you to maneuver the biggest markets with ease.

Don George Talks About The Land And The Work He Loves –, 2017

Acclaimed travel writer and beloved GeoEx Japan trip leader, Don George, enthusiastically talks about the most recent trip he lead for us to the island of Shikoku. If you’re feeling inspired, you can join Don George on our Japan: Tip-to-Toe epic journey this fall. 

Trump’s Cuba Travel Policy Leaves Heads Scratching – Forbes, 2017

As the specifics of the new Cuba policy regulations are worked out, we continue to look ahead over the long term. GeoEx Cuba specialist Jennine Cohen says, “As we have successfully operated trips on and off since 2000, we have adhered to [the US government’s] changing policies and enforcement over time and will continue to do so.”

What Does Trump’s Latest Policy Mean for Travel to Cuba? – AFAR, 2017

GeoEx Cuba expert Jennine Cohen weighs-in on what the latest administration’s policy changes mean for the future of travel to Cuba.

GeoEx: Visit the World’s Most Astonishing Places – Reward Expert, 2017

An enlightening article about the GeoEx history and inspiration behind why we do what we do, what our current offerings are, and the top five destination suggestions for this year’s summer vacation.

11 Unique Safari Experiences Around The World – AFAR, 2017

When Africa is hard to reach, unique safari experiences can be found in other destinations, like finding orangutans in the jungles of Borneo, tracking the ever-alluring Bengal tiger in India, and spotting grizzlies, moose, and caribou in the wilds of Alaska. This great roundup of non-Africa safaris features three of GeoEx’s wildlife adventures.

Traveling Off The Beaten Path With Jennine Cohen – The Janis Best Show, 2017

Listen to GeoEx’s Jennine Cohen talk about all things travel: including how she got into the industry, what she does to stay healthy while traveling in remote places, and more.

Safaris for the Soft-Hearted: In Search of Namibia’s Endangered Lions – Wall Street Journal, 2017

Unsuspecting luxury is found at camps in Namibia where Adam Graham goes in search of the elusive desert-adapted lion. With intentionally vague directions by Dr. Flip Stander, director of Desert Lion Conservation, given to his guide, Adam eventually finds himself “practically within petting distance” of three mystical beasts. Survival in the harsh desert becomes all too real.

Meet Kate Doty of the AFAR Travel Advisory Council – AFAR, 2017

GeoEx’s “logistical magician” Kate Doty is part of the AFAR Travel Advisory Council. Her connections, expertise, and passion for transformative travel have led her to arranging incredible once-in-a-lifetime experiences. A few highlights of the experiences she has organized over the years: a private audience with His Holiness the Dalai Lama, a personal meeting with Ai Wei Wei, a private New Year’s Eve dinner under the stars at the Giza pyramids, and sleeping on top of Mount Nyiragongo (the largest active lava lake in the world) in Virunga National Park in the DRC.

Adrenaline and Zen: Five Trips of a Lifetime – Forbes, 2017

A great roundup by journalist Ann Abel on finding luxury in unexpected places. While edgier than most, our Tribal Crossroads of India & Myanmar trip is featured for its welcomed surprise of luxury.

The Happiest Place on Earth: Why Bhutan Belongs on Your Travel List Now – Forbes, 2017

Sharing our deep connection to and love for Bhutan is a privilege we have had for the past three decades. Last month, reporter Ann Abel joined us as we once again delved into the rich history and beauty of The Land of the Thunder Dragon—quite possibly the happiest place on earth.

This Is How Anderson Cooper Traveled Through Myanmar – Jetset Times, 2017

Anderson Cooper co-hosted “Live With Kelly” and raved about his travels in Myanmar. As a self-proclaimed “worst vacationer,” he took a trip to Southeast Asia and loved every bit of what we deftly curated for him.

Live With Kelly – ABC, 2017

As co-host on “Live with Kelly,” Anderson Cooper fondly remembers his travels to Myanmar with GeoEx, possibly the longest vacation he’s ever taken, where he fed and washed elephants at a sanctuary and enjoyed his sassy guide.

Double Sighting – Druk Air’s Tashi Delek, 2017

Longtime GeoEx traveler, Karen Greenspan, writes about her auspicious day of sacred dances and festivals in Bhutan: “We humans are biologically wired to be moved to empathy by watching dance. How did the ancient Buddhist masters know?”

The Top 21 Trips to Take in 2017 – Robb Report, 2017

Irene Rawlings recommends venturing into the wilds and hidden corners of Japan on GeoEx’s Japan: Tip-to-Toe journey, “which explores the Kamikochi Valley, the Japanese Alps, and the 436-foot-tall Nachi Falls.”

Why “Transformative Travel” Will Be the Travel Trend of 2017 – Vogue, 2017

Michaela Trimble looks at the trend toward transformational travel: “travel motivated and defined by a shift in perspective, self-reflection and development, and a deeper communion with nature and culture.” GeoEx’s Jennine Cohen, one of the industry leaders she interviewed, explains that she sees this shift already happening at GeoEx.

Fill Your New Year with Beaches, Caves & Treehouses: 17 Destinations for 2017 – LA Times, 2017

Among the destinations “that look especially fetching right now,” travel writer Christopher Reynolds includes Cambodia, Peru, South Korea, Tanzania, and the stunning, little-explored caves Phong Nha-Ke Bang National Park in Vietnam—all places to which GeoEx is adept at taking travelers.

The Wild Philanthropists – Robb Report, 2017

Sophy Roberts explores a new trend in conservation-oriented philanthropy and “a new breed of specialists who help broker deals and, equally important, create the travel experiences to expose potential donors to off-the-radar opportunities.” She notes GeoEx (and Kate Doty) as an example.

From Snow Leopards in India to Greenland’s Glaciers: 9 Endangered Sites to Visit in 2017 – Vogue, 2016

Noting that “some of the world’s most impressive natural wonders are disappearing with every passing day,” Michaela Trimble lists nine ways for travelers to get involved with travel companies and destinations where conservation is a central focus. She includes GeoEx and highlights two of our journeys: one to meet gorillas of Virunga National Park in the Democratic Republic of Congo and another to visit Chile’s future Patagonia National Park, an enormous conservation effort undertaken by Conservación Patagónica.

The 10 Coolest Places to Go in 2017 – Forbes, 2016

Anne Abel asks high-end travel companies which destinations are on their expertise radar for 2017: “Antarctica is freshly compelling, says Urs Hoffman, GeoEx’s managing director for the polar regions, thanks to a new protected area in the Ross Sea, which will be the world’s largest protected marine area when it comes into force in late 2017.”

Travel that Changes You: 10 Best Adventures of 2016 – Forbes, 2016

Recalling a trip earlier this year, Anne Abel includes Cuba in her top ten indelible travel experiences of 2016. She writes “…GeoEx is savvy enough to build in ‘white space’—time for guests to enjoy their own cultural interests, be they art, Afro-Cuban jazz or baseball.” She also highlights a two-day cave trek in Vietnam, which imparted a feeling of “dumbstruck awe at this strangely majestic underworld and full-on wonder about what else might be hidden within this planet of ours. That, and feeling like a badass.” GeoEx recently announced a new Vietnam trip that includes such a two-day spelunking experience.

A Who’s Who of the Best Tour Operators Specializing in Japan – Departures, 2016

Our Japan secret weapon, acclaimed travel writer and GeoEx leader, Don George, takes travelers to the oft less frequented areas for the most authentic trip.

Insider: Finding the heart of Japan in Kyoto – San Francisco Chronicle, 2016

See what makes award-winning travel writer and GeoEx trip leader, Don George, fall in love with Kyoto again and again.

Three GeoEx Travel Specialists Chosen – Condé Nast Traveler, 2016 

Condé Nast Traveler has selected three Top Travel Specialists from GeoEx: Brent Olson, Kate Doty, and Vassi Koutsaftis. GeoEx is one of only two companies to have three experts chosen. “We are proud and honored that three of our people are included in Condé Nast Traveler’s prestigious and highly competitive list. Our value at GeoEx stems from our employees’ deep knowledge, in-country connections, and orientation towards providing the highest levels of service to our guests. Kate, Vassi, and Brent are excellent examples!”

Navigating Patagonia – Departures, 2016

With the assistance of GeoEx destination experts Kate Doty, Jennine Cohen, and Becca Glatz, journalist Jessica Flint explored the wild region of Patagonia for 17 days for Departures magazine. She writes: “Figuring out Patagonia’s complex logistics requires the help of an outfitter…The company is an ideal choice for an out-there destination because of its risk-management program, with security and emergency assistance built into every trip.”

Tips on Selling Asia Travel From Top Tour Operators – Travel Age West, 2016

Kristina Tuohey, GeoEx Managing Director for Asia, gives tips on our top-selling destinations in the region.

These Private Adventure Tours Offer The Ultimate Luxury By Combining Exercise and Exclusivity – Forbes, 2016

Bill Springer includes “Trekking in the Shadow of Everest” to this round-up of once-in-a-lifetime adventures. We pride ourselves in designing custom treks where you can take in the Himalaya on a trek crafted according to your interests, time frame, and experience.

You Know You Want To Go To Cuba—Here’s How To Do It Right – Forbes, 2016

Back from Cuba, Ann Abel captures the essence of‬ this intriguing and evolving nation—and the insider experience you get while traveling with GeoEx. She writes: “Given the staggering growth in people-to-people trips, it’s safe to stay those locals are in high demand. GeoEx snapped up the cream of the crop.”

Commercial Flights to Resume to Cuba, Expect More Convenience and Lower Fares – Forbes, 2016

Jennine Cohen, a GeoEx Cuba expert, says, “Right now there is very limited availability on flights to Cuba. Once commercial airline routes are opened up, our travelers will have many more options along with more convenient flight times and better connections from key cities.”

Skip the Sweater: Give the Gift of an Experience They’ll Never Forget – Men’s Journal, 2015

A guided small-group trip to Cuba with GeoEx is the perfect “experience over objects” gift for anyone this holiday.

The 14 Coolest Places to Visit in 2016 – Forbes, 2015

With intel from our America’s expert, Jennine Cohen, three of our South America trips make the list: Flavors of Colombia, Untamed Patagonia, and Connecting to Cuba’s Living History.

What You Need to Know to Plan a Trip to Iran – AFAR, 2015

Destination expert Linda de la Torre chimes in on what you need to know before traveling to Iran.

African Adventures – Porter, 2015

Led by GeoEx, Sophy Roberts meets tenacious women across Africa, including the Democratic Republic of Congo, who are making a major difference in the continent and their passion to share it with the rest of the world.

Top Travel Specialists – Condé Nast Traveler, 2015

Condé Nast Traveler has once again included three of our destination gurus in their collection of Top Travel Specialists: Kate Doty (Private Jet Trips), Vassi Koutsaftis (Tibet), and Brent Olson (Bhutan).

Do Millennials Use Travel Agents and Tour Guides? – Condé Nast Traveler, 2015

Jennine Cohen, GeoEx Managing Director, has observed that most millennial clients only have one week to go on vacation and they’re interested in the insider access that a trip planner or tour guide can provide.

The 100 Best Places to Work in 2015 – Outside, 2015

We’re proud that our anonymous staff surveys have landed us on the Best Places to Work list for the past five years.

The Best Adventure & Travel Jobs – Outside, 2015

“Our [research and development] consists of sending our people out into the field,” CEO JP Tennant says. “It’s probably not shocking at all that they love that.”

Pakistan – Marin Magazine, 2015

Vassi Kout­saftis, one of GeoEx’s best cultural guides, shares his experiences while leading a small-group trip through Pakistan’s Hunza Valley.

Go Big in Brazil – AFAR, 2015

AFAR recommends “trading the office fluorescents for 10 days beneath Brazil’s brilliant skies with GeoEx, “whose Premier Access team offers the most exclusive private journeys.

Forces of Nature – Travel + Leisure, 2015

Sophy Roberts reports on pioneers in the Democratic Republic of Congo who, by inviting the world in, are helping to save one of the planet’s most extraordinary ecosystems.

Want More From Your Next Vacation? 15 Extreme Getaways for Global Adventurers – Los Angeles Times, 2015

GeoEx trips to Chile, the Democratic Republic of Congo, Myanmar, Japan, and Malaysia’s Borneo all make the list for extreme getaways.

How to Be a 21st-Century Explorer – How To Spend It, Financial Times, 2015

Sophy Roberts travels through the ever-challenging Democratic Republic of the Congo with expert planning by Kate Doty, GeoEx’s Managing Director for Premier Access.

Four Safaris in a Post-Ebola World – Departures, 2015

Kate Doty designs an extraordinary 10-night journey through the Tanzania side of the Mara-Serengeti.

A New Day Is Dawning in Cuba – Travel + Leisure, 2015

Gary Shteyngart and photographer Frederic Lagrange head to Cuba on a GeoEx Group Trip and experience a culture that is hanging in the balance.

Things To Know Before Traveling To Cuba – ABC 7 News, 2015

Jennine Cohen, GeoEx Managing Director for the Americas, and a GeoEx guest share the latest about Cuba travel.

US Eases Restrictions On Travel To Cuba – CBS 5 News, 2015

Jennine Cohen is interviewed at our offices in San Francisco about things to keep in mind when traveling in Cuba.

Travel to Cuba: What You Need to Know – Travel + Leisure, 2015

GeoEx Cuba expert Jennine Cohen offers insight into Cuba’s upcoming changes and challenges.

The tourist influx to Cuba is about to begin – Fortune, 2015

GeoEx Cuba specialist Jennine Cohen says as more and more tourists arrive “it’s rooms rather than demand that’s limiting growth, a challenge that she expects will worsen in coming years as Cuba’s weighty regulations hold up private development.”

Myanmar’s Moment – Andrew Solomon, 2014

With arrangements deftly curated by GeoEx, Andrew Solomon explores a country on the brink of change.

The Editor’s Itinerary – Condé Nast Traveler, 2014

Our Arts & Isles of Indonesia journey has been selected by Condé Nast Traveler as an Editor’s Itinerary. Follow in the steps of this editor—a discerning traveler—to explore the cultural and natural beauty of Bali, the Raja Ampat Islands, and Central Java. 

Best Cultural Guide, Vassi Kout­saftis – Outside, 2014

Outside magazine named Vassi Kout­saftis best cultural guide, listing his turf as Asia, Africa, and the Middle East. Outside writes: “He’s been guiding GeoEx clients to remote and dangerous areas, like Afghanistan’s Wakhan Corridor, for the past 29 years…As one client said: ‘I’ll never travel with any other leader.'”

Tour of a Lifetime – National Geographic Traveler, 2014

We’re thrilled that our Mystical West Africa trip was selected as one of National Geographic Traveler‘s Tours of a Lifetime. According to executive editor Norie Quintos, these trips “go beyond destination to add meaning and context…They open the mind to new possibilities, new connections, new ways of thinking—all critically important given the world’s complex issues.”

Best Places to Work – Outside, 2014

We’re proud that our anonymous staff surveys have landed us on the Best Places to Work list consecutively for the past four years. “When you’re planning a trip to a remote, challenging destination, whom do you call? GeoEx…These travel pioneers are smitten with adventure—a lifestyle they encourage back home in the company’s California-based offices,” reports Outside magazine. 

2014 Travel Awards: Best Splurge – Outside, 2014

Outside magazine named Indonesia: Secrets of the Archipelago as the Best Splurge for 2014. On this trip, you’ll sail in tremendous comfort and style aboard a sublime yacht, get a rare look at some of the most beautiful and remote of the archipelago’s thousands of islands, and get a chance to meet their cheery and welcoming people.

8 Things We’re Going to Do as Soon as We’re Able to Go to Cuba – Yahoo, 2014

With President Obama’s recent announcement of easing sanctions in Cuba, the excitement is growing about the possibilities of travel to this once-forbidden Island Nation. While the future is still uncertain, GeoEx has–and will continue to–operate tours with our People-to-People license.

The 2014 Travel Vanguard: 22 Ways Travel is Changing – AFAR, 2014

Edward Norton has spent over 10 years working with the Maasai Wilderness Conservation Trust, an organization that works to protect the land and culture of the Maasai in Kenya, and he designed a trip around it just for GeoEx supporting this cause. Camp Ya Kanzi, an eco-lodge in the area, is a highlight for their dedication to the preservation of the Maasai.

Best Adventure Travel Destinations 2014 – Travel + Leisure, 2014

Patagonia was chosen as the Rising Star destination and for good reason. See for yourself as you walk beside the stunningly blue lakes of Torres del Paine and the Fitz Roys, hike the little-visited Aysen Glacier, and sail around Cape Horn to remote Tierra del Fuego. All-the-while staying at luxury estancias serving fabulous food and wine.

11 Ways to Haggle Like a Pro – Metro, 2014

Sudan – Marin Magazine, 2014

Vassi Kout­saftis recounts his (mis)adventures in Sudan while on a GeoEx scouting trip to this oft-overlooked destination full of surprises.

The Most Travel Experts – Condé Nast Traveler, 2013 

Vassi Kout­saftis gives his experienced, expert advice on being able to haggle like a pro in Morocco, Egypt, and beyond. His tips will inspire you to try it out the next you’re at a market or bazaar. You might find you actually enjoy it.

Condé Nast Traveler has selected more Top Travel Specialists from GeoEx than from any other adventure travel company: Brent Olson, Kate Doty, and Vassi Koutsaftis. “This acknowledgment underscores the depth and breadth of our travel-planning experts,” says our CEO, Jean-Paul Tennant. “We are honored and thrilled that Condé Nast has recognized our regional expertise as well as our extraordinary program of custom-designed travel planning. This affirms the success of our model: cultivating passionate and knowledgeable regional experts who work closely with travelers to craft journeys that fulfill their dreams.”

Best Travel Company – Outside, 2012

To choose the Best Travel Company, Outside asked a global network of correspondents to evaluate adventure travel companies based on “the quality of a company’s guides, the authenticity and diversity of its trips, its level of service, philanthropic credibility, safety record, and, most important, clients’ reviews and experiences.” The result? “Geographic Expeditions stood above the rest.”

Trip of a Lifetime – National Geographic Traveler, 2012

For Iran: Since GeoEx first dipped its toe in Iran 19 years ago, its tour business here has remained brisk despite the news stories coming out of Tehran. This has been the most popular Middle Eastern trip last year; it’s a carefully curated survey of the capital, Tehran; ancient Hamadan; the blue mosque and bazaar of Tabriz; the green gardens of Shiraz; and the elegant and ornate architecture of Esfahan.

Definitive Guide to Adventure Travel – Travel + Leisure, 2012

This trailblazer explores the remote corners of every continent using guides with extensive on-the-ground networks, such as San Francisco–based Vassi Koutsaftis, who has been leading trips into Burma, Tibet, and Nepal for 25 years. Newly added: a small selection of family trips. T+L Trip Pick: Shikoku and the Naoshima Islands of Japan. Take a soba-making class, trace the old Shingon Buddhist pilgrimage route, and sleep at a ryokan

Iran – Marin Magazine, 2012

While leading a small-group trip, Vassi Kout­saftis receives a warm, “hospitable welcome” everywhere he goes in Iran.

GeoEx eBook:
The Best of Wanderlust

An Anthology of Travel Stories
Edited by Don George