Luxury tours are like the genie in the bottle of organized trips: your wish is your command. If you’ve ever dreamed of jet-setting around the world while posting envy-inducing photos of beautiful five-star hotels on Instagram, a luxury tour takes you there and beyond. It’s not how much it costs. It's how rewarding the experience is.
Travelers choosing this kind of travel trust that tour operators will go the extra mile to tailor once-in-a-lifetime experiences to their requests, so they’re genuinely having access to a travel memory all their own.
They say the sky is the limit -- on a luxury tour, that could also be arranged.
With 12 world-famous wine regions and well-known high-end cuisine, France is a popular destination for luxury tours. Enjoying the summer like a celebrity in Saint-Tropez, renting out a chateau for the weekend, going wine tasting in Champagne, or shopping until you drop in Paris is a fairly conservative wish list -- but it's a start.
Luxury tours in South Africa take travelers to discover picture-perfect scenery, impressive wildlife in their natural habitat, and the up-and-coming African wine scene. The most common activities include exploring cosmopolitan Cape Town, seeing envy-inducing views while driving along the Garden Route and embarking on luxurious private safaris.
A small prince-ruled independent kingdom in Europe, Monaco is the ultimate luxury tourist destination. If you're struggling to decide where to start, luxury tours can include, and will most certainly not be limited to, visits to casinos, rides aboard luxury yachts, helicopter sightseeing, or experiences driving a luxury car.
Think about the best island destination for a luxury tour, and, most likely, pictures of Maldives come to mind. Diving in turquoise waters, strolling along deserted white sand beaches, and reveling in pure relaxation is what luxury tours promise (and deliver) on these tropical islands off the southern coast of India.
United Arab Emirates
In the United Arab Emirates, luxury is always taken a step further, and there’s an excellent chance that, here, all that glitters is in fact gold. Dubai and Abu Dhabi are the most popular destinations, with plenty of options for organized luxury tours to choose from.
When it comes to luxury tours, a top activity that comes to mind is getting pampered at the spa. In many tours, these spa treatments are linked to the overall theme of the destination you’re visiting or they’re a complementary activity included in your hotel package. However, there are also luxury tours dedicated exclusively to wellness and focus on an in-depth exploration of a particular country's culture around pampering.
Food & Wine Tours
Usually, food and wine tours end up overlapping. These activities can range from a simple wine tasting to testing your skills in identifying a grand cru. You'll wind up learning about local cuisine and which wine pairs better with a particular dish. On luxury tours, these classes usually take place in exclusive areas of a winery or the kitchen of a Michelin-starred restaurant with the company of the chef.
Sailing away on a yacht at sunset is the perfect combination of living a luxurious lifestyle and giving you that holiday feeling. For luxury tours in islands and coastal destinations, this is an unforgettable experience. You don’t even have to be an experienced sailor -- all you have to do is enjoy the moment.
For active travelers who don’t mind the cold weather in the winters, skiing is a popular offering by luxury tour providers. Ski tours often include classes for beginners or for those wanting to improve their skills, along with spa treatments and private massages.
Planning Your Trip
Before committing to a specific tour operator, here are some tips on what you need to know when planning a luxury tour.
What to Look for in a Luxury Tour
A luxury tour is tailored to exceed expectations. Besides being able to effortlessly put together an itinerary that caters to all the travelers’ needs, the ideal tour operator must have a proven track record of accessing the best hotels, transportation, and local activities. This can be assessed by simply reading previous client reviews.
Common Types of Luxury Tours
Luxury tours are all about that sense of exclusivity you can’t get elsewhere. The most common types are cultural-immersive tours, which can mix typical food and wine tasting activities with other special requests, spa and wellness retreats to recharge, and private safari tours in wildlife sanctuaries. Newly-weds often choose luxury tours on their honeymoon.
Typical Tour Cost
Considering that in most luxury tours the sky is the limit, finding an average price range for a luxury tour can be difficult. Most luxury tour operators prefer that potential clients tell them what they’re looking for first and then show them different price options based on their individual preferences.
For most luxury tour operators, an all-inclusive 7-day luxury tour in a ski resort in the French Alps, for example, starts at $2,000 per person. A 7-day honeymoon package in a private resort in the Maldives can start at $3,000 per person.
Other Tips for Luxury Tours
Look for all-inclusive luxury tours to benefit from exclusive deals. The price for the same package usually varies according to the season, not if more or fewer amenities are included. However, compare the same package in different seasons to make sure you’ll benefit from the same conditions.
For example, in some destinations, there might be certain offerings that aren't available in the off-season. If you choose a beach resort in the Bahamas during low season you'll still get that ocean view every day, but most of the activities will most likely be shut down due to unfavorable weather conditions.