Break down the cultural barriers of traditional tourism with our range of all-female adventures.
We believe travel is for everyone. But in some countries, there are things mixed-gender groups just can’t do. What if, as a female traveller in Iran, you could head down to the beauty salon with your female leader and get your hair done? The hijab comes off and there’s a real chance to connect. Or you might prefer to learn how to make traditional Huzai food with a local cook in Pakistan, a country where in parts women are still rarely seen outside the house. This limited-edition series of expeditions is all about breaking down barriers, fostering discussion and creating immersive local experiences for women that are ordinarily off limits on our regular group departures.
Got a different destination in mind? If you're looking to get a group together to explore experiences that aren’t open to regular, mixed-gender tour groups, then our Tailor-Made team is here to help. Whether it's with your friends, family or social club, we can customise almost every aspect of your perfect adventure.
Our groups are small enough to feel like you’re exploring a destination independently but big enough to create a good social vibe. Our average group size is about 10 women, which we've found is a great number to let you connect with the locals you meet, without feeling like you’re just a face in a crowd.
The best women to show you the heart of a destination are the ones that live there, which is why we work exclusively with local leaders. On Women's Expeditions, your female leader is not only just a travel expert, but she's also your teacher, travel guru and enthusiastic purveyor of grassroots experiences.
What is travel but a search for something that can’t be Googled? We love the highlights, but the real magic for us happens well away from a beaten path. It’s the visit to a women's-only beauty salon or a homecooked feast shared in a Turkish woman's home. These are real life experiences you won’t find in a search engine.
As a solo female travelling the world, it's important that you feel safe and comfortable. When you travel with Intrepid, you can rest assured that your safety is our biggest priority – and having the security of a built-in group of new friends and expert local leader means you can relax and enjoy yourself.
Got an urge to see the world, but no one to do it with? We provide a ready-made, all-female group and an expert female local leader to help you make the most of your adventure. Plus, you can choose to share a room with a new friend or have your own for a small extra cost.
We strive to use travel as a force for good. That’s why we choose to give back to the communities we visit, carbon offset all our trips and take our social and environmental responsibilities seriously. We’ve been officially certified as the world’s largest travel B Corp, which means when you choose Intrepid Travel, you can rest assured you’re travelling to improve the planet.
Step inside a hidden world which has become an oasis for many Iranian women. Off limits to men, the beauty salon is a place for women to shed their traditional headdress and kick back with their fellow females in a lively atmosphere. You may just find that your perception of Iranian women was way off compass.
On this Turkey expedition you'll head underground in Cappadocia and enjoy a traditional meal in a cave home with well-known local woman. Nuray Abla is changing the face of women in tourism in Turkey, and her famous Anatolian dishes have provided her with enough income to send her daughter to university.
On this Jordan expedition, meet the Bedouin women of Wadi Rum, who are usually reluctant to meet with visitors. Learn the ancient art of Henna, and join a local female shepherd to learn about her day-to-day life. Try your hand at goat milking for a fascinating insight into a very different way of life, one that has remained unchanged for centuries.
Spend time with the local women working on empowerment projects throughout Pakistan's remote alpine areas. Visit a carpet-weaving centre run by the local women in Gulmit, embrace a rare opportunity to be pampered at a home salon and experience the communities and landscapes associated with the hallowed Karakoram and Hindu Kush mountains.
Diversity and inclusion has always been at the forefront of everything we do. Here at Intrepid Travel, we know our strength comes through our differences and the freedom everyone has to be themselves – locals, leaders and travellers alike.
Around 65% of Intrepid travellers are female, and around 60% of our staff around the world are women, but in 2017 only 22% of our leaders were female. This is something we have been working to change.
We set a goal to double the number of female leaders globally by 2020. While this may not be a difficult target in many countries, in traditional societies such as India and Morocco recruiting women is a much greater challenge. When we first set our goal in 2017 we only had 150 female leaders around the world, but by June 2019 we were excited to hit our target. We now have more than 300 female tour leaders working for us, which is almost 30% of all leaders. We want to keep getting better when it comes to diversity so with this target achieved we’re now working on our next initiative.
There’s still a long way to go, but we’re continuing to promote women’s financial independence and fostering greater understanding by offering trips such as our Women’s Expeditions.
Cultural and religious factors mean that local interaction in some countries can be challenging and complex for mixed gender groups. While we endeavour to offer interaction with locals and real life experiences wherever possible, in some cases like the male-operated desert camps we stay at in Jordan, it’s not socially acceptable for men to be alone with our female travellers, so the opportunities for interaction are limited. By the same token, most opportunities our group tours have to spend time with local women is in the presence of men in a controlled environment. We see these trips as an exciting opportunity for female travellers go behind closed doors and learn about customs, food, challenges and the lives of other women across the globe.
These are certainly off-track trips, but what sets them apart is cultural, not geographical. In traditionally conservative countries or places where women are not viewed as equal, certain traditions and customs can make genuine cultural interaction difficult. Travelling in an all-female group means women can connect more directly with each other, and travellers can learn more about Middle Eastern women and their day-to-day lives. What these trips are not about is replicating run-of-the-mill itineraries for women-only ‘girls clubs’ which fuel gender stereotypes and exclusivity.
We chose these destinations because there are a lot of cultural and religious factors that make these countries more complex and therefore the benefit of local interaction is greater. It’s also about the laws in these parts and what is and isn’t acceptable. We’re hoping we can expand our range of female-only trips to even more destinations in the future.
We would love to open up these real-life experiences to all of our travellers, but in order to operate in a socially responsible and culturally sensitive manner this is simply not possible – at least not yet. So rather than excluding everyone from this opportunity, we’ve created a range of special departures for our female travellers.
Private departures of our female-only trips are definitely possible. Feel free to get in touch with firstname.lastname@example.org and let us know what you’re after, and we’ll to our best to accommodate your needs.
Everyone should feel comfortable when they travel with Intrepid and we know that many of our travellers are part of the LGBTQI community. It’s important for our travellers to be aware of the local laws and customs in the destinations we visit as some countries have laws that discriminate against LGBTQI people. We recommend you visit Equaldex and/or Smartraveller before you choose your trip for up-to-date advice and information about LGBTQI-related laws. If you have any specific concerns or questions about some of the activities on these trips please contact our bookings team for more information.
If you are a solo traveller booking on a twin share basis you will be paired with another traveller of the same gender as per your passport information. If you have concerns with this arrangement please let us know at the time of booking.