Stretching your mind, your skills or your body are all integral parts of many travelers' vacations. EdVentures - educational vacations and learning trips- let you combine your favorite activities, experience new cultures and learn new skills, while having fun.
Sipping wine in Tuscany, photographing animals in Africa under a professional photographer's guidance, or joining an archaeological dig in the Southwest are a few examples. Tour operators from International Expeditions to National Geographic Expeditions to Classical Pursuits, and others offer trips that include a bit of education or learning without pain.
This site lists many learning holidays and volunteer vacations opportunities. Choices range from a trip that combines horseback riding and wine tasting, to a trip that combines learning Spanish and volunteering.
Toronto-based Classical Pursuits offers trips book lovers will enjoy. The Classical Arthur, for example, includes exploring Cornwall, where King Arthur, Guinevere, and Sir Lancelot may -- or may not -- have existed. Jewish Montreal is wrapped around literature by mid-century Jewish authors. Before each trip travelers are given a list of books to read that focus on the locale they are going to explore.
At the Crow Canyon Archaeological Center you can work alongside professional archaeologists seeking to learn more about the Ancestral Puebloans (at one time called the Anasazi) and how they lived in the cliff-side dwelling and rugged canyons in southwestern Colorado. There are programs designed for novices, for alumni of previous programs and for families.
If you want to explore the Amazon, take photographs of the annual animal migration in Kenya or take the kids with you to the Galapagos, check out International Expeditions trips. These trips are led by naturalists or historians who help travelers learn more about the countries being visited and the experiences being enjoyed.
Shaw Guides is a gateway to more than 6,000 learning and education vacations, and creative career programs around the globe.
VolunTourism – combining traditional travel with volunteer work – is a special way of learning about other cultures. It's a way to feel connected with other communities above and beyond seeing tourist sites, and a way to learn what we all have in common, according to one voluntourist.
If diving among sharks sounds interesting, sign up for the annual shark-themed week chock-full of adrenalin-packed activities during the Micronesian Shark Foundation (MSF) annual shark week at the Fish n Fins dive shop. The 2014 Shark Week is expected to run March 14-21. It's run by the Micronesian Shark Foundation, a Palauan-based, non-profit foundation whose goal is to research and monitor the many sharks of Palau and scientific shark data collection.
Every February to April, hundreds of grey reef sharks migrate to the waters of Palau to mate. Days are spent diving among the sharks and collecting data. Evenings, there are shark-themed seminars and other activities. For details, please contact: email@example.com or firstname.lastname@example.org.
The annual Carson Valley's Eagles and Agriculture Event in February attracts bird lovers and photographers. The multi-day event in Nevada, Feb. 21-23, 2014, includes tours when bird-watchers can observe and photograph bald eagles and other birds of prey from vantage points not available to the general public.
Other activities include a two-day photography workshop and a guided raft/canoe trip to observe eagles, hawks and falcons from the river. For application forms to attend various activities and events visit the website or call 800-727-7677.
You can learn to combine advanced street driving skills with techniques refined through years on the racetrack, at the Bondurant School of High Performance Driving. You'll learn in cars such as the Corvette Grand Sport and Z06, or a Tahoe Law Enforcement SUV.
About.com's Gujde to Los Angeles, Kayte Deioma, has links to schools in her area where you can take introductory lessons to fly helicopters and planes. You can even sample flying a light attack fighter in air-to-air combat missions.