5 Family-friendly Getaways to Zika-free Destinations

Vancouver, BC | Posted: September 29th, 2016

While school may have just started, there’s no time like the present to start planning the next family holiday. The Zika virus may have put a temporary damper on travel to some destinations around the world, but there are still some great, family-friendly, zika-free places to visit.

Here is a round-up of 5 travel programs where you and the family can still experience fun and adventure without the added health concerns:

Photo Credit: Intrepid Travel

Photo Credit: Intrepid Travel

Borneo Family Adventure, Malaysia – Trek Union and Intrepid Travel – Here is a family-friendly action-packed adventure through the rich, green jungles of Borneo. Visit colourful villages, rushing rivers and take in the breathtaking mountain views. Intrepid family travellers will have the chance to meet local indigenous people, relax in the hot springs and observe orangutans at Sepilok Sanctuary. Immerse your family in the culture and discover all of the adventures Borneo has to offer on this 11-day tour. The package starts at $1815 USD per person. www.trekunion.com

Photo Credit: Natural Habitat Adventures

Photo Credit: Natural Habitat Adventures

Polar Bear Adventure, Manitoba, Canada – SEEtheWILD and Natural Habitat Adventures – Embark on a family adventure in search of Polar Bears in the snowy tundra of Churchill, Manitoba. Expert guides and unique Polar Rovers give visitors a chance to get up close with the magnificent bears. View the bears comfortably and safely from the inside of the vehicle or standing on the viewing deck. In addition, meet the First Nations community of Churchill for some storytelling and for an opportunity to learn more about the land and wildlife of the area. The 6 or 7-day package starts at $5895 USD per person. www.SEEtheWILD.org

Photo Credit: Bluecology

Photo Credit: Bluecology

Saving Turtles in Hawaii – GoVoluntouring and Bluecology – Green sea turtles are found in the nearshore waters of the Hawai’ian Islands. Predominantly nesting in the remote northwestern Hawaiian Islands, green turtles can be found off Maui’s shallow waters, and basking in large numbers on specific beaches on the island’s popular north shore. In collaboration with local partner groups, travellers support NGO-directed initiatives offering a mix of natural history excursions with several days volunteering to help field biologists with wildlife monitoring and assist community leaders with a variety of field tasks. There will also be time for coral reef snorkelling in Maui’s clear waters, for bird watching, and for exploring historical towns such as Lahaina and Pa’ia. The 6-day package starts at $1000 USD per person.  www.GoVoluntouring.com

Photo Credit: Mountain Travel Sobek

Photo Credit: Mountain Travel Sobek

Japan on Foot, Trek Union and Mountain Travel Sobek – This enchanting journey through the Japanese countryside combines stunning hikes with timeless tradition. Beginning in the old imperial city of Kyoto and ending in modern Tokyo, the itinerary follows the Nakasendo, a network of ancient trade routes once used by shogun, samurai, and merchants to travel from Kyoto to the provincial towns of the Kiso Valley. Traveling by way of temples, shrines, and hamlets, take in ethereal landscapes of cherry blossoms, lush gardens, and misty forests. You’ll enjoy generous Japanese hospitality in a shukubo (temple lodging) and family-run inns, the serenity of soaking in volcanic hot springs, and the contrasts between old and new in this magical land. The 11-day program is priced starting at $5595 USD per person. www.trekunion.com

Photo Credit: Reefs to Rockies

Photo Credit: Reefs to Rockies

Iceland, The Land of Fire and Ice – Reefs to Rockies – Often referred to as the “Land of Fire and Ice”, Iceland’s landscape is characterized by waterfalls, geysers, glaciers, volcanoes, beaches, thermal hot springs, and otherworldly steaming lava fields.  In addition to stunning landscapes, Iceland is a birder’s paradise. Its remote location at the junction of two oceans allows for a unique mix of migratory and vagrant species. Families are invited to join in on this 10-day unforgettable birding and natural history tour to Iceland. The package starts at $4515 USD per person. https://www.reefstorockies.com

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