One Week Tour
June 20, 2015 10:23 AM   Subscribe

I'm planning to take a solo vacation the first week of August, and would like to go on an all-inclusive organized tour. I enjoy learning and trying new things and would really like the tour to be friendly/sociable. Cheaper is better (total budget: under $1000). I'm in good shape but am a city girl and not very into nature. I'll be leaving from Washington, DC. Where should I go? What should I do? What tours do you recommend?

A few destination possibilities that occurred to me are:

-- Texas (horseback riding? "Dude Ranch"?! Sounds fun and I could just drive down there myself, but I have no idea how to find a good tour there or even what a tour would consist of).

-- Canadian or US Pacific Northwest (it's GORGEOUS and the seafood sounds great, but this might be too expensive? Plus, the flights are pretty expensive and long just on their own).

-- Caribbean Cruise (the options are overwhelming and it might be too expensive or already booked up anyway. I also don't know how sociable or "exciting" a cruise might be, especially since I'll be on my own).

-- Puerto Rico (it seems like a really cool place, and I like that it's technically not an international trip, but my Spanish is really poor).

I've spent a lot of time in Europe and have driven across the US a few times, and I'd like to go someplace I haven't been. I'm planning to go down to NOLA and Alabama in the fall along with some friends, so I'd prefer not to go down South on this trip. I also lived in SoCal for a while and my vacations at that time were pretty much always in the Southwest or in Southern-Central California, so I'd prefer not to go to that region, either.

My best experiences have been with short (4-5 day) bus tours. One of my favorite trips was a bus tour I took in Scotland with Haggis Adventures about ten years ago. The tour guide was phenomenal, he knew and cared so much about Scottish history and Scotland in general. We also packed in a lot of sights over just a few days. And the group I was with was very social, which was fun (had meals together, etc). Another great tour was one I went on year or two ago, a Chinese (Mandarin language) bus tour that we booked by mistake. The guide again really cared about the area, we got to see a whole lot of places, and it was really fascinating. We were pretty hamstrung socially because we didn't speak Mandarin, though. On both those trips, we stayed in hostels/crummy hotels, which was fine. I really don't mind that sort of thing.

Anyway, what tours and destinations do you guys recommend? What have you had a good experience with?
posted by rue72 to Travel & Transportation (3 answers total) 10 users marked this as a favorite
My husband and I just got back from Puerto Rico; you don't really need to speak Spanish to go there. I don't have a specific all-inclusive tour recommendation, but I'm sure you can find one. I will say we really enjoyed the Flavors of San Juan food tour.

I'm not normally a cruise person, but I've always thought a Mississippi River cruise sounded kind of fun. I bet it would be pretty sociable.
posted by slenderloris at 11:05 AM on June 20, 2015

Best answer: You could get a week of Spanish lessons + homestay accommodation in Puerto Rico and probably squeeze in flights as well for under $1000.
posted by the agents of KAOS at 4:15 PM on June 20, 2015 [1 favorite]

We recently got back from a trip where we used tour guides from and were really satisfied with all of them. We found each of them to be really receptive to our needs during the tour and tailoring the experience to fit us.
posted by madonna of the unloved at 10:06 PM on June 20, 2015

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