Take me back to the beautiful San Juan Islands, off the coast of Washington State. During my first summer working for Backroads, I led a trip there for a lovely family. An endlessly interesting grandfather invited his two adult children to bring their families along for a Private Trip in the Pacific Northwest. It was a wonderful week of outdoor exploration, shared meals, wildlife spotting--and most importantly, undistracted family bonding. This trip was special for this family because all the time and energy normally required to research, plan and coordinate a group trip was completely taken care of by Backroads. This left family members free to try new things, challenge themselves, relax and focus on each other. The adults in the family weren't busy finding directions to the next hotel or throwing together sandwiches while trying to round up the kids. Instead, they were sipping coffee, perusing a wildlife book with the youngsters or oohing and ahhing at the view from the trail.
That week was one of the most satisfying I've had as a leader because I was able to help a family truly connect with each other, which can be such a difficult thing for families to do in today's distraction-filled world. When those distractions are removed, it becomes easy to focus on the moment, on the world and the people around you. I remember seeing a father and son watch an orca breach within a few hundred feet of our boat; the excitement in their eyes when they looked at each other afterward was priceless. It was rewarding to know that my colleagues and I, by handling all the logistics and behind-the-scenes tasks, had facilitated a family moment that they will likely remember forever. Private Trips are especially fun because the group can prioritize activities that are most important to them, which allows us to make it a truly original adventure. Prefer to get a later start in the morning? No problem. Want to spend more time on the trail than on the bike? We can make that happen. Would you like to get picked up at the train station rather than at the airport? See you there!
Backroads Private Trips are also a great way for old friends or colleagues to spend quality time together. Whether you choose to camp with your kids in Yellowstone, hike with your best friends through the Swiss Alps or celebrate a milestone birthday in a bucket-list location like Peru's Machu Picchu, there's no better way to bond than to get outside and share adventures together. A Private Trip with Backroads will always be an unbelievable experience. Time flies by so quickly--families grow up and old friends can so easily fall out of touch. That's why I feel lucky each time I'm a part of these wonderful Private Trips, helping guests make lifelong memories with the people they cherish the most. What could be more priceless than that?