7 Tour Operators Specializing in LGBT Travel

7 Tour Operators Specializing in LGBT Travel

These LGBT-friendly tour operators around the world are ready to customize your next trip according to your needs.

For any LGBT groups planning trips, you’ll want a tour operator that is able to send you to your ideal destination and help you build relationships with fellow travelers from all over the globe. The tour operators listed below specialize in lesbian, bisexual, gay and transgender (LGBT) travel and will work with you and your group to assemble vacations to the best LGBT-friendly locations. Whether you’re looking to travel within the United States or go international, they’ll have all the information you need on where to stay, whom to meet and how to stay safe. Consult these experts to create your own exciting adventures and connect with people who will be in your preferred area.

Olivia Travel

Women boating on the world's waterways. Courtesy of Olivia Travel.

Women boating on the world’s waterways. Courtesy of Olivia Travel.

Leading lesbian tour operator, Olivia Travel, began as a record label in 1973 before transforming into an international tour outlet in 1990. Today the company, a 2010 nominee of the TripOut Gay Travel Awards, is held in high esteem for uniting women around the world through group travel and entertainment.

Olivia Travel goes all out to deliver world-class travel experiences to women, from chartering cruise ships to booking out hotels for weekends full of female empowerment. Cruising with Olivia Travels takes groups all over, including Iceland, New Zealand, Alaska, the Mediterranean and the Caribbean. Vacation getaways take visitors to Mexico, the Bahamas and the Galapagos Islands, plus many more destinations throughout the year. Groups may also request to explore an African safari or cruise to Antarctica.

Programs offered through Olivia Travel vary depending on the types of women traveling. Some programs are specifically for lesbian women of color or for single women. In the past, the company has even invited celebrities and entertainers, from actress Whoopi Goldberg to financial advisor Suze Orman, to come aboard for the fun. Groups may book online, visit the San Francisco office or call Olivia’s travel consultants. (olivia.com)

Zoom Vacations

Based in Chicago, this prestigious travel planner won the 2016 Travvy Award’s gold prize for Best Escorted Tour Operator in the LGBT category and the 2010 TripOut Gay Travel Awards, among many other accolades.

Zoom Vacations goes above and beyond to create lasting memories for gay travelers in two ways. First, Zoom offers pre-scheduled tours around the world, all of which are listed on its website. These vacations range from historic architecture tours of Israel, to exploring volcanoes in Rwanda, to wandering through picturesque Moroccan gardens.

Apart from these scheduled tours, Zoom can also help groups plan private trips to gay-friendly destinations of their choice. Personalized packages include weeklong stays at high end hotels, transportation arrangements, dining suggestions and activities to partake in for the duration of your stay. Pricing is available online or upon request. (zoomvacations.com)

Toto Tours

Safari at Mount Merapi Volcano, Indonesia. Courtesy of Toto Tours.

Safari at Mount Merapi Volcano, Indonesia. Courtesy of Toto Tours.

Also based in Chicago, Toto Tours captured the award for Best LGBT Tour Operator at the 2017 Gay Travel Awards. Since 1990, this tour company has strived to honor its name (which is Latin for “all-inclusive”) by delivering a plethora of travel opportunities to LGBT groups.

All tours are international adventures that harness vibrant cultures and live entertainment. Through Toto Tours, gay and lesbian groups may spend Christmas in the French Canadian provinces or 11 days celebrating the Day of the Dead in Mexico. Tours offered outside the holiday season include 16 days in the villages of India,18 days in Madagascar forests and much more.

Toto Tours additionally plans private trips for groups. Tours already listed are either docent-led or unaccompanied. Further details and pricing can be found online. (tototours.com)

Out Adventures

Elephant Sanctuary in Chiang Mai, Thailand. Courtesy of Out Adventures.

Canadian tour operator Out Adventures takes LGBT groups with a variety of interests all over the globe. If you’re looking for some relaxation, travel agents will help your group arrange leisurely yacht trips around the Adriatic. Those searching for a more active adventure can experience hiking through the Scottish Highlands. You can also check out East Africa’s magnificent Victoria Falls or Slovenia’s vast wine selection.

Groups are invited to book tours using the detailed guides, calendars and reviews that Out Adventures posts on its website. Agents are available to help you find the best time of year to book your trip and to organize more private itineraries from their featured vacations. (outadventures.com)

Detours Gay Travel

November 2013 group on the mighty Toro River in Costa Rica. Courtesy of Detours Gay Travel.

November 2013 group on the mighty Toro River in Costa Rica. Courtesy of Detours Gay Travel.

Detours Gay Travel is the joint effort of two travel-loving cousins and their tour guides to help gay vacationers plan 8-12-day trips to prime LGBT destinations. Groups can connect with fellow travelers while trekking through Jordan’s deserts and floating around in the Dead Sea. Other choices involve lounging on the Greek islands’ white sand beaches and reveling in Spanish culture – think tapas, bullfighting and dancing all night long!

Whatever you’re looking for, Detours can help book your group on a pre-scheduled trip or customize one based on your interests. Aside from booking your activities, Detours can help arrange transportation and address any travel medical insurance concerns. (detourstravel.com)

Pride Peru

Immerse yourself in Peru’s endless beauty when you book through Pride Peru, the South American country’s very own LGBTQ-focused tour operator. When you book through this expert tour operator, you’ll unlock dozens of adventures in the land famous for Machu Picchu’s brilliant heights and ancient Incan caves in Cusco. In the past, Pride Peru also delivers unique experiences in the form of themed packages to travelers. You can, for example, book an art and culture-themed tour comprising regally designed churches and tasty Peruvian cuisines. Visitors also embark on nature excursions through salt mines and small villages or gaze up at stars from Cusco’s very own planetarium.

These travel consultants specialize in all things fun and adventurous, so come to them with some target attractions or common interests in mind. You can even start building your itinerary online. (prideperutravel.com)

Purple Dragon

Over the course of two decades, Asian tour company the Purple Dragon has garnered high praise for connecting travelers within the gay travel market. This tour operator’s highly professional agents focus on creating travel itineraries across 10 locations in Asia and providing accommodations such as English-speaking docents, access to major tourist spots and luxurious relaxation treatments. Many visitors book trips that include hiking in the Himalayas or Bhutan, dipping into Sri Lanka’s tranquil waters and cooking up noodle dishes in Thailand.

For groups, Purple Dragon’s agents recommend establishing a budget and a common interest (such as golfing, shopping or diving) to ensure maximum fun for everyone. (purpledrag.com)

Editor

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Leisure Group Travel is the premier publication in the group travel industry.

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