Why travel on a small group tour?

5 reasons why travelling in small groups is such a big deal

At Travel The Unknown we specialise in small group tours with a maximum of 12 people per group to make your off-the-beaten-track holiday more exclusive and memorable. Read on to find out why our tours work so well in small groups, and why we are one of the few adventure travel companies capping our maximum at 12 travellers.

1. Meet like-minded people


Whether you’re travelling solo or with a friend, you will find that small group tours can be more sociable than larger tours, given the experiences you share together. During free time you can choose to explore on your own or join in with others from your group. If you are travelling for the walks in Bhutan or the culture in Oman, you are guaranteed to be with like-minded people who are looking for the same off-the-beaten-track adventure as you. It has been known for people to even make friends for life on our tours!

2. More connection with
the guide


It is easier to make a genuine, personal connection with the guide as they become part of your group. Conversation flows easier and you might hear interesting anecdotes about, for example, the oldest person to have lived in Azerbaijan that you may not have heard about otherwise. Depending on the flexibility of the itinerary, the guide can adapt the tour to suit yours and the rest of the group’s needs. If you collectively want to stay longer in a place or leave sooner, it’s easier to accommodate slight changes in a small group tour rather than a large one, and so there is less time just waiting around.

3. Access more remote areas


The wonderful thing with off-the-beaten-track travel is getting away from the big tourist hot-spots and accessing the most remote areas. Our tours are about discovering the lesser-known places that are often hard to get to. Some roads can be too small and winding for a large coach, but smaller travel groups can be more adventurous with travel options, for example bikes, camels, or even the local pousse-pousse (type of rickshaw) in Madagascar. Inaccessible places often mean less crowds as well and more time to explore as there aren’t hordes of tourists trying to see the same thing.

4. Responsible tourism


Mass tourism can sometimes negatively impact places; demand is growing and a lot of destinations are struggling to cope with large groups. However, with small group tours, you lessen both the cultural and environmental impact you have on a place. When visiting a small tribe, for example, a large group could be overwhelming for them, and you might not fully experience the authenticity of it. However, in a small group tour, you are able to form a closer bond with the people you meet and benefit them at the same time. You have to wonder how clean the cleanest village in Asia (Mawlynnong village in Meghalaya) will be after a large group’s visit. Getting around as a small group is also much easier as you can take public transport, which gives back to the local economy and is better for the environment.

5. See things the way
locals do


When you travel in a small group you are able to slip into local life more unnoticed than those of a large group. You are able to experience more authenticity in towns and villages and see things the way locals do by visiting small restaurants or even homestays, such as in Jordan. There is more of a chance to connect with locals and see a genuineness that is not usually put on for mass tourism.

Check out 12 of our best selling small group tours below!

Best of the Caucasus

Georgia, Armenia, Azerbaijan
Culture | Silk Road

Charms & contradictions of Azerbaijan, Georgia & Armenia

£2,845 pp This is the per person group tour price, based on 2 sharing. The price is subject to change with exchange rate and flight cost fluctuations.
15 days
2021: 08 May, 02 October
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Archaeology of Eastern Turkey

Turkey
Culture | Archaeology | Silk Road

Discover the incredible history of Eastern Turkey

£3,195 pp This is the per person group tour price, based on 2 sharing. The price is subject to change with exchange rate and flight cost fluctuations.
12 days
2021: 14 April, 08 September
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Assam & Nagaland Hornbill Festival

India
Culture | Festivals | Tribal

Wildlife, tribes & rural life in Assam, Nagaland and Manipur

£2,795 pp This is the per person group tour price, based on 2 sharing. The price is subject to change with exchange rate and flight cost fluctuations.
15 days
2021: 22 November
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Essential Lebanon

Lebanon
Culture | Silk Road

Discover Phoenician history, sublime ruins & fine wine

£1,245 pp This is the per person group tour price, based on 2 sharing. The price is subject to change with exchange rate and flight cost fluctuations.
6 days
2021: 09 May, 30 May, 03 October
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Uzbekistan Odyssey

Uzbekistan
Culture | Silk Road

Ancient cities, spell-binding architecture & traditional craftsmanship

£2,495 pp This is the per person group tour price, based on 2 sharing. The price is subject to change with exchange rate and flight cost fluctuations.
14 days
2021: 14 April, 08 September
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Astronomy of Chile: the Solar Eclipse

Chile
One Off | Space and Astronomy

Scenery, stars and the solar eclipse: a special tour of Chile

£5,495 pp This is the per person group tour price, based on 2 sharing. The price is subject to change with exchange rate and flight cost fluctuations.
15 days
2020: 02 December
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Festivals of Ethiopia

Ethiopia
Culture | Festivals

Experience Ethiopia's Genna and Timkat Festivals

£3,795 pp This is the per person group tour price, based on 2 sharing. The price is subject to change with exchange rate and flight cost fluctuations.
16 days
2021: 06 January, 06 January
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Living Bridges of Meghalaya

India
Culture | Activity

Waterfalls, hills and living bridges in North East India

£1,195 pp This is the per person group tour price, based on 2 sharing. The price is subject to change with exchange rate and flight cost fluctuations.
7 days
2021: 10 March, 16 November
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Five Stan Odyssey (along the Silk Road)

Turkmenistan, Uzbekistan, Kyrgyzstan, Tajikistan, Kazakhstan
Culture | Silk Road

Get under the skin of all five 'Stans'

£5,925 pp This is the per person group tour price, based on 2 sharing. The price is subject to change with exchange rate and flight cost fluctuations.
30 days
2021: 20 April, 27 August
2022: 29 August
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Oman Odyssey

Oman
Culture | Silk Road

Vibrant souqs, ancient ruins and whimsical wadis

£3,495 pp This is the per person group tour price, based on 2 sharing. The price is subject to change with exchange rate and flight cost fluctuations.
13 days
2021: 31 January, 14 March, 14 November
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Land of the Bedouins

Jordan
Culture | Silk Road

Welcome to Jordan, the gateway to the Middle East

£1,725 pp This is the per person group tour price, based on 2 sharing. The price is subject to change with exchange rate and flight cost fluctuations.
11 days
2021: 09 April, 05 October
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Silk Road through China

China
Silk Road | Culture

Trace ancient paths of merchants, scholars & smugglers

£4,085 pp This is the per person group tour price, based on 2 sharing. The price is subject to change with exchange rate and flight cost fluctuations.
16 days
2021: 06 April, 31 August
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