Did you know that the first tour that Arthur Tauck, Sr. led back in 1925 consisted of six passengers and traveled through New England? Perhaps you knew that in 1978, Arthur Tauck, Jr. pioneered summer heli-hiking in Canada’s mountain ranges of the Cariboos, Bugaboos, Bobbie Burns and Adamants? You definitely knew that 2003 saw the debut of Tauck Bridges, and 2011, the introduction of Ken Burns American Journeys. Celebrating its 90th anniversary this year, it’s no surprise that Tauck has numerous milestones tucked under its belt, but it’s not just about gaining a milestone every few years. Tauck has truly been innovative in its approach to guided travel. It’s known how to think outside the box and has thus kept itself relevant, providing, as Jennifer Tombaugh, Tauck’s president, says, “enriching, inspiring travel experiences” along the way.
“We’ve continually evolved our product line,” says Tombaugh, “not only adding new destinations over the years, but also refining our existing itineraries on an ongoing basis. We’ve also introduced entire new categories of travel, from river cruises and special events, to trips designed just for families and itineraries for active, boomer-age travelers. In recent years we’ve also entered into some amazing partnerships that have allowed us to add content that our guests can’t get on their own, or with any other tour operator. In particular, we’ve partnered with Ken Burns to enhance many of our domestic itineraries, and we’ve worked with the nature documentary filmmakers at BBC Earth to engage our guests more deeply on our safaris and other journeys that explore the wonders of the natural world.”
New for 2015 are a bevy of goodies that you’ll want to pounce on. There’s an expansion to the Earth Journeys lineup, which are co-crafted, as Tombaugh mentions, with BBC Earth. This year will see 14 Earth Journeys in Africa, Antarctica, Latin America and North America, including everything from an exploration of the annual polar bear migration in northern Manitoba, Canada to an expeditionary cruise in the Galapagos designed exclusively for families. Tauck’s Europe product, too, is getting more robust, with an all-new, 8-day Puglia experience that will take only 24 guests per departure and is the operator’s first-ever tour of the region.
There are also, as Tombaugh notes, “our first-ever trips to Myanmar and the Arabian Peninsula. We have three new once-in-a-lifetime Tauck events on tap for this year in Rio de Janeiro, New York City, and Vienna; we’re launching two new European river cruises plus new small-ship ocean cruises in Japan, Australia and Alaska; and we’re expanding our popular Cuba trip from eight days to 13.”
Regarding Cuba, Tombaugh says that Tauck is “seeing a tremendous amount of interest in Cuba following the White House’s recent announcements about normalizing relations there. All of the media attention has certainly raised its visibility.”
This anniversary year also brings back—for 2015 only—the heli-exploring adventures (six departures in July and August) that the company originally launched in the 1970s. “We’re very excited that this year will see the return of heli-exploring, the helicopter-assisted alpine trips we pioneered in the Canadian Rockies.
Heli-exploring really opened up the wonders of the Canadian Rockies to the average citizen, and we’ve hosted guests ages 8 to 80. Heli-exploring is also a great example of the kind of innovation that Tauck has brought to guided travel since our launch in 1925, so it’s wonderful to have it back in our portfolio for our 90th anniversary year.”
For more on Tauck’s celebration, don’t miss Tauck Celebrates 90th Anniversary.
Tauck: (800) 788-7885; tauck.com or tauck.com/Agent/agentservices.aspx