Patitucci Photo/Courtesy of DuVine Cycling + Adventure Co. DuVine Cycling + Adventure Co. bike tour of Mallorca
When it comes to an itinerary, Travel + Leisure readers want more than a string of photo opportunities — and the right tour operator makes all the difference in creating a trip of a lifetime versus one that simply checks off a list of sights. This year, our readers were especially drawn to companies that utilize local expertise and experience to thoughtfully design trips that will entertain as well as inspire.
Every year for our World’s Best Awards survey, T+L asks readers to weigh in on travel experiences around the globe — to share their opinions on the top hotels, resorts, cities, islands, cruise ships, spas, airlines, and more. Readers rated tour operators and safari outfitters based on their staff and guides, itineraries and destinations, activities, accommodations, food, and overall value.
The top picks were noted for their deep knowledge of destinations and guides who “go the extra mile.” One reader who has been traveling for more than five decades said a trip with Classic Journeys (No. 2) was the “very best” they had experienced. Others noted attention to pandemic safety details, while one who went to Norway was charmed by a “wonderful surprise dinner in Bergen out on the water that was fantastic.”
Tour operators that seamlessly navigated the logistics of a trip also came out on top. Quasar Expeditions (No. 9) was noted “for really planning out every detail” so that “all you have to do is show up and have a great time.” Meanwhile, of TCS World Travel (No. 10), a guest said: “You never lift a finger and just spend your time actually exploring the destination.” They even added that they “learned so