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Rustic's Top Picks for 2021 Student Programs
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Rustic's Top Picks for 2021 Student Programs

I know it’s been rough for us world travelers as we slowly have to let go of our planned trips. I was due to be in Bali in 6 days, celebrating my birthday and my brother’s wedding. I held onto the possibility that somehow I’d still make it there until I got the email a week ago that the flight was officially canceled. I slowly made my way through all my related bookings and took travel certificate after travel certificate, and I cried. Then I realized the world isn’t over, we are all just on pause. Why keep crying and why not start planning? Why not give myself something to look forward to?

Upcoming travel is always what gets me through, and if you’re part of the Rustic family chances are it’s what keeps you going too. With that said, I dug into Rustic’s 2021 programs and put together my favorites to help you start your future travel plans.

For the Thrill Seeker

Pacific Adrenaline
An epic and challenging adventure through beautiful Fiji and New Zealand.

White water rafting, high ropes course, ziplining and more! This trip is filled with action every day. It is also great because it’s customizable. For the student looking for even more adrenaline, you can add on bungee jumping or skydiving. Despite all the activities, the program still finds plenty of time to explore the history, culture, and landscapes of these two beautiful places. Seriously, I am not sure that one rock is left unturned on this epic adventure and I wouldn’t be surprised if participants return home and never stop talking about it!

For the One After My Own Heart

La Niña Andina: Women’s Empowerment in Peru
An exploration of access to education and opportunities for women.

Ok, so you don’t know me. However, if you did you would know that if 16-year-old me could go on any Rustic Pathways journey, this would be it. Not only does this program immerse students in traditional Peruvian culture and take them to Machu Picchu, but it exposes them to the critical issues of women in these communities. Melinda Gates once said, “When we invest in women and girls, we are investing in the people who invest in everyone else.” We strive for inclusion in opportunity and bringing light to issues we face as a global community. This program does exactly that while allowing the students to experience first hand the global efforts to make change. It’s truly life-changing and highly recommended.

For the Photographer

Advanced Photography Workshop
Instruction from a photojournalist in Morocco’s Sahara desert and Atlas Mountains.

This program has made my list because it’s in Morocco and I think there’s a photographer in all of us. Blame Instagram. This trip takes you across the wonders of Morocco’s ancient cities, beautiful mountains, and the endless Sahara. For someone who loves being behind a lens, this is the trip for you!

For the Price

Intro to Community Service in Costa Rica
Exciting service and thrilling adventure at the Volcano and Rainforest Service Base.

I love this program for so many reasons. Costa Rica is such a magical place! It’s also the perfect destination for the teen wanting to go abroad, but not be too far from home. This program offers 22 service hours, Spanish language immersion, and adventure in one of Rustic Pathways’ most popular countries. Plus it’s super affordable. Do you think they’ll let a 33-year-old tag along? Asking for a friend.

For the One Who Can’t Decide

Wonders and Riches of Southeast Asia
The best attractions across four incredible countries.

I don’t know about you, but as a traveler I want to go everywhere! I spend countless hours debating between destinations only to find myself distressed over the fact that I can’t just teleport. This 18-day adventure takes you to Thailand, Laos, Cambodia, and Vietnam. So, now you don’t have to choose between the streets of Hanoi or the wonders of Angkor Wat. You get them both and then some!

Of course, these are just a few programs offered by Rustic Pathways in 2021. Click here to explore the full lists of trips and begin putting a little bit of joyful anticipation back into your wandering soul! We can’t wait to travel with you all again!

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