Start-up operator Arcadia vows to be ‘antithesis of mass tourism’

A new small-group expedition tour operator promises guests their trip will “feel like they’re joining the making of a documentary”. 

Arcadia Expeditions has been founded by David Mannix, Intrepid Travel’s former regional general manager for Europe, the Middle East and North Africa, with documentary maker David Adams. 

The Australian operator will take guests to lesser-visited destinations and claims Arcadia offers “a new style of expedition travel completely different to what other travel businesses are offering”.

Its “immersive storytelling” concept aims to provide guests with “lifelong learning” from their tours through first-hand experiences and “intellectual exchanges”.

It has launched with seven tours covering destinations including Sudan, Turkmenistan & Uzbekistan, Ethiopia & Kenya and Vietnam. 

Managing director Mannix said: “Unlike other travel companies, who choose a destination first and then create the itinerary, we instead start and lead with the story.”

He added: “The guiding principle in the creation of the itineraries was to have clients feel that when they are travelling with Arcadia, it’s like they are joining the making of a documentary, without the film crew. Arcadia is the antithesis of mass tourism.”

Arcadia pays agents 10% commission. Its first tour, to Vietnam, is due to depart in December, with others to follow in 2021. There is no fee to switch between tours and final payments are due 60 days before departure.

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