If you haven’t already heard, HC has just partnered with Contiki, an awesome travel company for people from ages 18-35. Contiki offers over 200 guided tours in over 40 countries!
Contiki gives you the opportunity to book an adventure that is led by fun, English speaking and knowledgeable tour guides but also gives you a chance to customize your own journey and explore destinations on your own too.
If you’re worried about cost, just pick Contiki’s camping option and stay in their own Contiki villages with on-road cooks and cozy tents! While fancy hotels are appealing to many of us, including me, camping through Europe sounds like it would be an experience just as amazing as any expensive hotel (why waste money when you’ll be out exploring all day anyway?)
What I found even more comforting about booking a Contiki trip (which I plan to do in the near future) was that the company has been around since 1962. About 40 years of executing incredible guided journeys tells me they must be doing something right!
HC co-founder Windsor and two HC employees, Taylor and Brittany, just went on a 14-day Contiki Mediterranean Highlights tour through Spain, Italy and France. HC co-founders Stephanie and Annie and HC employee Chelsea took a 10 day tour to London, Paris and Amsterdam. Check out pictures and read about their adventures here to get a better idea of what Contiki can offer us collegiettes!
While you might think the best part of booking a Contiki getaway is the low costs and infinite travel options, the endless memories you’ll make really top the list! Although I can’t personally vouch for how awesome a Contiki tour would be (check out the new HC travel section for that), I can promise that you will have an ABSOLUTELY AMAZING TIME almost anywhere you travel to, especially the Italian coastline. College is the perfect time to travel and learn about new cultures while not seizing to soak in all the fun along the way!
While studying abroad in Florence this summer I got the chance to visit Cinque Terre and a number of other great destinations that I’m sure Contiki can hook you up with. I can honestly say it was the best experience of my life, but what I loved more than studying and living in Florence was traveling on the weekends; I wish I had every day there to go on wonderful adventures!
If you don’t want to commit to studying in another country or it’s not in your budget you need to take advantage of Contiki! You can even book tours up to 27 days long! That’s 27 days of traveling completely uninterrupted by the classes, studying and exams you’d encounter studying abroad. Hmm sounds like a better deal to me.
Anyway, I feel obligated to tell you how beautiful Cinque Terre is and share some of the gorgeous views I got during my tiring but awesome Cliffside hike and beach day at the lovely Monterosso (the crystal blue water isn’t the only eye candy you’ll see while soaking up the Italian sun).
If you’re not feeling anything with sun, sand and handsome Italian men (if so, we may not be the best travel buddies) Contiki even has Australian ski and snowboarding packages! I’m not much of a skier but that at least sounds A LOT cooler to me that hitting the slopes of Vermont or Upstate New York.
Before you get worried you won’t be able to find anyone as adventurous as yourself to accompany you on one of these adventures, don’t worry… more than half of Contiki’s travelers go alone! You’ll be surrounded by other young people just as eager to see the world as you are, and you’ll come home with some new friendships!
Now I know you’re probably about to grab your credit card and rush to Contiki’s list of 2012 tours, but you may want to slow down. HC is holding a "Have Contiki, Will Travel" contest. One lucky collegiette will get to go on the tour of her choice for free! Enter here and answer an easy question every day until the end of February. You’re even allowed to reenter every day and get a better shot at winning! DON’T miss out on this!