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A Seattle Family, Tanzanian Orphans, and a Van A story of how miracles can happen When the Whitaker family approached me about an opportunity to give back during her Serengeti Family Safari I was happy to help. What transpired turned into one of the best fairy tale charity stories I’ve had the privilege of being a part of during my career. A real organic outpouring of community spirit inspired by one family’s generosity and desire to directly improve the lives of others.  When a family or group of travelers is interested in making a charitable donation in Tanzania, we often set up a visit to a rural school district. However, the Whitaker family was traveling over the Christmas holiday time period when many of the schools are closed and the children are at home. Through a local colleague we found Elias Japhet and the Pambazuko Orphanage, which he and his wife have been running in the small agricultural town of...
Top 5 Reasons to Head to Costa Rica With my Padre My Dad and I are traveling to Costa Rica next week for a much needed vacation. I thought it would be a neat idea for each of us to write down the top 5 reasons we want to visit Costa Rica and compare them. A little about us first:  for starters, I'm in my 20's and my Dad is in his 60's. We've both been very fortunate to travel extensively, but his list is much more extensive than mine. Needless to say, finding a destination neither of us has been to was a challenge in itself. Luckily we have similar interests and both enjoy outdoor activities like hiking, rafting, snorkeling, etc...  We decided on Costa Rica in a very technical fashion... we both wrote down a list of our top 5 places we wanted to visit next and Costa Rica was the match!  Now for the reasons we want to go to Costa...
Trekking the Inca Trail with My Brother - Reflections on Family Travel On Sunday I head south to Peru for two weeks to explore the Tambopata Rainforest and trek the Inca Trail. It's a special trip for me because for the first time, I'm able to share what I am lucky to do for a living with a family member; my 'little' brother, Eric, is trading his Sloan Kettering research scrubs and NYC subway commute for ancient Inca footpaths through the Andes and bushwhacking in the southern Peruvian Amazon. Amazingly, though we've both hopped around the world quite a bit and were even somewhere in Europe at the same time, we've never actually traveled together outside of the United States. Growing up Eric and I spent hours outside pretending to explore dense, fearsome jungle (the woods at the end of the street) or imagining we were on safari in Africa, flailing about in the backyard as we acted out the wildebeest stampede...

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Our Family Trip to Turkey Our family trip to Turkey was the first group departure we have taken, and it turned out to be one of the best trips. The reason it was so great was because of the excellent itinerary that Wildland put together. The knowledgeable and flexible leader we had, and the inter dynamics of our small group of 4 families. Turkey turned out to be the perfect combination of sights, and experiences, learning and fun. Sleeping within site of the Blue Mosque in Istanbul and hearing the muezzins wake up call to prayer was just the beginning of a cultural immersion in a fascinating country that is the cross roads of many civilizations. Our kids studies were reinforced every day, as we saw with our own eyes the remains of the Greek/Roman/Ottoman/and more rule. Our leader had a graduate degree in anthropology, and better yet, she was a mother of a teen,...

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"Oh, the zipline WAS intense.  I probably would have bailed had my son not been there.  We are a fiercely competitive family and I NEVER would have heard the end of it! We were thrilled by the hikes and zip line but my husband would have passed out (which is why we left him at home)!" concluded Jennifer Hines upon their return from a mother-son Wildland Adventure to Peru. Joe gets unclipped from the zip line on this mother-son Peru Family Adventure.  Their July trip to Machu Picchu was a family adventure to mark their son's high school graduation and to spend some precious time together on our Peru Family Adventure before their next transitions in life; Joe is headed for college in September and mom and dad are going to be empty nesters. Joseph climbs up the via ferrata fixed climb up the side of the Urubamba Valley. It's wonderful...
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