The ways in which travellers are seeing the world and wanting to experience different destinations is ever changing. Now, travellers are looking to uncover and experience in-depth culture, food or landscapes while engaging with the local communities they are visiting. According to a recent study conducted by Trafalgar, 49 per cent of respondents claimed travel is becoming a one-size-fits-all experience and nearly 40 per cent said they felt they didn’t see any “real culture” on their last trip.
This year marks the 10-year celebration of Trafalgar’s ‘Be My Guest,’ a program designed to offer guests a true local dining experience. The leader in guided vacations introduced this unique offer back in 2009. Delighting all the senses, ‘Be My Guest’ was born from the knowledge that at the heart of a unique travel experience is people and human connection. From exploring local farms and homesteads, orchards or vineyards to elegant estates, these authentic experiences are as varied as the destinations Trafalgar visits.
Also, with the majority of these dining experiences located in small communities, guests have the opportunity to discover the true heart of a destination in places that might otherwise be overlooked. Many of these local hosts operate multi-generational properties and 81 per cent of which are family run.
‘Be My Guest’ experiences are centred around local experiences that embody experiential and immersive travel. Travellers get the chance to sit down and have a real conversation with hosts over a delicious home cooked meal, learning about their life and livelihood through a local lens that truly adds the personal touch. They get to explore their properties and taste their produce, from wine to olive oil and cocoa beans to fresh fruit and vegetables picked that morning.
With 103 one-of-a-kind ‘Be My Guest’ experiences across all seven conti- nents, travellers will be spoiled by choice, including past travellers’ favourite experiences:
Travellers return to 17 -century France and join the de Montferrier family on their farm near the famous Château de Villandry for an exclusive ‘Be My Guest’ three-course Tourangelle dinner, accompanied by local wines on Trafalgar’s 13-day Best of France and 10-day Highlights of France and Barcelona itineraries.
Guests spend an evening with a local family in Jaipur, where you will learn about Indian customs, culture and Rajasthani cuisine during an exclusive ‘Be My Guest’ dinner experience featuring local flavours on Trafalgar’s 8-day India’s Golden Triangle with Varanasi and 14-day Treasures of India trips.
On Trafalgar’s 10-day Best of Ireland and 8-day Castles and Manors adven- tures, travellers will enjoy an exclusive ‘Be My Guest’ afternoon tea and tales of the Pirate Queen combined with Banoffee and Bailey’s flavours in the Old Kitchens of a stately 16th-century home near the charming town of Westport.
Guests will enjoy an exclusive ‘Be My Guest’ experience with their travel companions, much like joining one’s family for dinner in the courtyard of a traditional Riad, just as a local Moroccan family would. They will also enjoy local performances while savouring local dishes on Trafalgar’s 10-day Best of Morocco adventure.