Rustic Pathways

Rustic Pathways

About

Travel and volunteer abroad with Rustic Pathways to one of many exotic locations.

We take students on unique, rewarding, and safe programs to some of the world's friendliest and fascinating countries. Immerse yourself in a new culture, work on purposeful community service projects, and expand your worldview with Rustic Pathways.

Whether you are looking for summer volunteer and travel programs, or gap year programs, Rustic Pathways is a great place to start!

Founded
1983
Headquarters

15345 Chardon-Windsor Rd
Huntsburg, OH 44046
United States

Early Enrollment - Save 20%!

Enroll in any of our 100+ spring break or summer programs by Oct. 14 and you'll save 20%.

Reviews

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Emmy
10/10

My experience with Rustic Pathways has created some of the most fond and influential memories of my life. Over the course of two weeks in Australia, I was introduced to different cultures, foods, people, music, etc. I broadened my horizons by going skydiving over Uluru, planting trees in the Daintree rainforest, and visiting the Sydney Opera house, just to name a few. The memories I made and people I met on this trip will be with me forever and have shaped me into the person I am today. I 100% recommend Rustic and you would be silly not to sign up!

How can this program be improved?
This trip was perfect in every way I believe. If they were to adjust anything it could be to spread out the volunteering more evenly as opposed to having two of the four volunteering projects during the last leg of the trip.
Yes, I recommend this program
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Brandon
10/10

This summer was the best summer of my life and I owe it all to Rustic Pathways. If I could give a higher rating than 10, I would.

First of all, I never would have considered going to Morocco, had I not traveled with Rustic Pathways in the past. After doing two prior trips, I realized I wanted to go somewhere that was unlike any place I would ever go. Morocco hit that on the nose.

From the first day at the quaint guesthouse in Sbiti, I knew I was in for an incredible journey. Doing service there opened up my eyes to a whole new world. It brought me the greatest amount of joy to see the smiles on the village kids' faces as we helped build them a new part of their school. From the casual high five to an elaborate handshake that they taught me, I will never forget them.

Next, we embarked on our journey to the Sahara, stopping at Ait-Ben-Haddou, the filming site of Gladiator. Though the journey took two days it was far beyond worth it. The Sahara is the coolest place I have ever been to! We were all jovial as we sat atop camels and admired the massive sand dunes all around us. We tried our hand at sandboarding, (which I was pretty good at) and stayed up talking and staring at the stars for hours. I cannot stress enough how amazing this place was and the whole time there I was just in awe.

From the Sahara, we made our way to Marrakech, but not without stopping in Dades and at Terres D'Amanar. The drive through Dades Gorge was breathtaking and I had an amazing time on the zip lines and ropes course at Terres D'Amanar. When we got to the Red City, I was immediately impressed by the bustling Jemaa El Fna Square. From the hundreds of vendors to the snake charmers it was such an exciting place to walk around. Our time in Marrakech was spent shopping in the medina, eating great food, and viewing the historical sites.

We finished the trip in the European feeling town of Essaouira. Here we had two super fun surfing lessons on a perfect beginner beach. We spent our final night buying gifts for each other for "Secret Tzatziki" and then ended with a super posh restaurant with great food and live music, the perfect ending.

The leaders were so knowledgeable and fun, yet safety was their number one priority.

Once again, this trip was the best trip of my life. The entire group became so close so quickly and we still talk every day, 3 months later. This program is an absolute must if you want lasting memories and friendships.

How can this program be improved?
While we went to so many places, I would have loved for this program to be a little longer and go to Chefchaouen and Tangier.
Yes, I recommend this program
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Ruthie
10/10

I went on my first rustic trip this summer. It was the best two weeks of my life. I met so many amazing people and was able to explore and see awesome parts of Costa Rica. I also completed Service on my trip. It would be impossible to get better program leaders. They were very approachable, fun, and just overall amazing. Even from the first day everyone was so kind and sweet. On my trip I’ve met some of them the most amazing people and I know that I will remember my rustic trip for the rest of my life. I could tell the service we did really did make a difference and I had so much fun doing it. I would recommend for anyone to go on a rustic trip! It is so much fun and an amazing experience!

How can this program be improved?
Nothing it was perfect!
Yes, I recommend this program
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Linn
10/10

My trip with rustic pathways to the ricefields base was absolutely incredible. It was an adventure of a lifetime and a trip that will forever stay with me. The base house was such a luxury place to stay, with good showers/bathrooms, beds and even air conditioning! The people who work at the base house were so incredibly kind and I grew very connected with much of the Thai staff who came on many of our adventures together. The service programs were oh so fun but also rewarding. We did lots of manual labor, which was a big workout and many of the service programs revolved around kids! My personal favorites were teaching kids how to swim at the basehouse and teaching them English during a class at their school. These kids were so bright and lively and brought lots of happiness to my heart. We had many hours of service but also many hours of fun! We really got to explore Udon Thani with a tour of the amazing city and we also did lots of fun activities such as going bowling, to the mall, waterpark and the night markets. The food was also so tasty here, probably some of the best I have had. They always provided us with delicious meals and tropical fruit, and I loved any meal time since I got to enjoy the food with my friends. One of my favorite parts of this trip was the people I met here. These teens from all over the globe and states were so kind hearted and adventurous and I grew so close to all of them. This program let us have free time and I felt like I really got to know all of my fellow group members. It was the hardest thing to say goodbye to them, but I know that we will all forever cherish our time together in the most incredible place. I cannot reccomend this program enough! Please come to the land of smiles with rustic pathways to experience this adventure of a lifetime for yourself! Here more about my experience on my personal blog: https://littlelinnbigworld.wordpress.com/2018/07/10/travels-to-thailand/

Yes, I recommend this program
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Naima
10/10

Travelling with Rustic Pathways was easily the best experience of my life. I felt the happiest I have ever been and I saw best version of myself come to life! I experienced first hand how much I gain from helping others and the importance of doing good in the world, wherever that may be.

Leading up to the trip of course I was nervous but that was nothing in comparison to the excitement I was feeling! I had spoken to many Rustic staff prior to leaving and their enthusiasm and passion they had made me feel just as excited!

On my trip I travelled through Myanmar, Thailand, Laos, Cambodia and Vietnam, all of which were incredible and eye opening in different ways! We learned about each countries history, values and beliefs, which allowed us to form a genuine appreciation for where we were. In Myanmar, we hiked through the beautiful Kalaw State and went to regions only a few thousand people have been! In Thailand we explored breathtaking beaches, became certified mahouts (elephant caretaker) and learned the principals of Buddhism. We zip lined through the jungles of Laos, and gave food to Monks during morning alms. I got to take a tuk-tuk through Angkor Wat and danced in the Mekong River with two little girls I met in a village during a service project. I was so lucky to see it all thanks to Rustic who made everything possible! From sleeping arrangements to transportation, we never had to worry about where we were going or how we were getting there, which ensured everything went smoothly.

Rustic Pathways finds the perfect balance between must see tourist attractions, and off the beaten path destinations not many people get to see. From the Grand Palace and busy tourist markets to remote temples and local food stands, you see it all thanks to the amazing staff! Local staff help you work through language barriers while providing insight and a different perspective that makes the trip truly incomparable! Additionally, your program leaders are expert and enthusiastic travellers and are extremely knowledgeable about the region you are in. From the history, to the food, to the appropriate clothing attire they got you covered! Trip leaders act as role models and offer unconditional support and always make you feel safe.

My favorite memory of the trip was when I was in Kampong Cham, Cambodia. We were staying in a local village painting a newly built school (done by previous Rustic groups!). It was during the Khmer New Year where people across the region celebrate with water fights that lasts three days!
One the second day of the celebration, a few friends and I were leaving the school to walk back to our host family's home when we saw a little girl wave for us to come over! We went to say hello and were greeted by 8 other kids from the village. They had set up a tub of water and handed us buckets and asked us to play with them! We ended up having a water fight for 45 minutes, all of which were spent laughing with our newfound friends! I especially remember when I put down my backpack that I had brought with me that day. I put in on the ground near the entrance to the yard when an elderly woman motioned for me to bring it to her so she could watch it for me and make sure it didn't get wet. I left that day feeling on top of the world. It felt so authentic and genuine and a memory that I will always hold close to my heart.

Something about these types of trips tend to bring out the best in people and you should know that Rustic friends are for life and the bonds you make will last forever! You will do things you never thought you would, but feel safe while doing it! And you will learn to find comfort in leaving your comfort zone! Within 2 months of my trip ending, my group had all already found a way to meet up with each other in Montreal, Canada! Regardless of where you choose to go, you will come home with a whole new perspective on life. You learn to look at life through a more positive lens and appreciate all that you have, and all you are capable of doing!

I cannot recommend Rustic Pathways enough! Happy travelling :)

Yes, I recommend this program

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