What is Viator.com?
Viator is an easy way to layer education and fun into your travels by booking a guided excursion. This website can supplement gaps in your agenda that may arise from transportation constraints, help prolong your overall journey, or simply offset “dead time” you may have left for spontaneity.
When using Viator, filtering for preferences is particularly useful. For instance, after typing in your location of interest, you can refine your search for: food tours, winery tours, cooking classes, outdoor adventures, historical sites, price, duration (anywhere from an hour to a multi-day trip), customer ratings, etc. A list meeting your criteria then populates. The listed excursions always provide an overview, often listing specific stopping points (enter rogue opportunity to mimic suggestions by building your own itinerary and forgoing an official tour), include time commitment expected, departure and return point, inclusions and exclusions from the trip price, cancellation policies, and guest reviews.
This website is especially helpful if:
A) You do not want to hassle with logistics for a day
B) Wish to organically make friends through shared memories
C) You do not want to participate in a whirlwind full-fledged multi-day tour group just to see the few main sites of personal interest
D) You enjoy mapping your own itinerary for hitting noteworthy “hot spots” that travelers tend to appreciate without the obligation of booking a tour.
Personal Experiences with Viator
After perusing Viator.com over the years, I have booked at least six trips. The trips have been winery tours or full day trips to neighboring countries. Each tour has been nothing short of remarkable.
My first experience using Viator.com was for a day trip from Brussels to Luxembourg City and Bastogne. I wanted to get out of Belgium and explore another country before continuing up to Amsterdam, but, at the time, had struggled with logistics and cost effectiveness. This excursion allowed me to see the then ranked “richest country in the world” affordably. The other pitstop, aside from the capital, was Bastogne. This interested me because World War II’s Battle of the Bulge transpired there. It was fascinating to recount the history while overlooking the landscape. The day leant itself to articulating Luxembourg’s rise to wealth and scratched the surface on several wars over the centuries, peaking my interest further for a place I had heard little about previously.
Day Trips and Safe Tours
While visiting Bordeaux, I was privileged to go on two separate winery day trips through Viator.com. One such was to the Medoc and Margaux regions. The other was a half-day trip to the UNESCO Heritage city, Saint-Emilion. Winery tours in Bordeaux can be very expensive. These tours provided safe transportation and a thorough review of why and how Bordeaux gained notoriety for its blends at a reasonable price point. If you wish to learn more about Bordeaux and these tours from my point of view, please visit my blog post: Bordeaux, France.
While solo backpacking for two weeks through Croatia, I layered in a day trip to Montenegro from Dubrovnik, a day trip to Mostar from Dubrovnik, and one other organized day trip to Ljubjana and Lake Bled from Zagreb. I added two separate day trips from Dubrovnik towards the middle of my journey. I knew my energy levels would taper for following through with logistics.
Despite not wanting to make my own plans, I still yearned to learn more about the local area, so I booked tours that I could just show up for. The final tour was at the end of my two-week journey. I had heard great things about Slovenia and wanted to experience them for myself. However, I knew I wouldn’t have enough time to do any overnight stays. This led me to layer in Viator’s day trip to the capital and Lake Bled. If you are interested in more details about my Croatia journey and these thought-provoking and impactful day trips, please click the link here.
Overall, I highly recommend using Viator for ideas and excursion planning for your next adventure. It is hassle-free and all-encompassing of the necessary details for a successful adventure.