For most travelers, vacations fall into two neat definitions: a package bought from a vacation company who organises all the logistics for you, or independent travel, where you book nothing more than a place to sleep.
But there is a third way: a locally run vacation. Your guides will likely have grown up in the places they’re showing you around, they’ll take you to their favourite restaurants, drinking spots and live music venues, and you may even have the opportunity to spend a night in a homestay – or enjoy a home cooked meal.
We describe locally run vacations as any vacation run by a company based in that destination. They may be in Europe – or much further afield. They may be little guesthouses that also organise guided tours in the surrounding region – or larger companies that run epic overland adventures across multiple countries. They may be run by local people – or by British expats who have decided to head off in pursuit of sunnier climes and a more outdoorsy lifestyle. But all have a deep passion for the area they are based in, and by the end of your vacation, you’ll feel less like you’ve travelled to an exotic destination – and more like you’ve been to visit a welcoming friend.