I spent about two months just choosing which tour company to work with…sending emails, comparing itineraries, prices, flexibility, etc…and hands down Engaging Cultures came out on top. Daniel’s response to emails, his prices, his flexibility, and his recommendations were all far – far above the others that are ranked higher on TA. We were a family of 5 adults traveling over New Years – 3 nights, four days.
Early morning pick up from the airport was flawless. Met our fabulous driver, Yousef and we were off. Very nice modern van, comfortable pace that was flexible based on what we wanted to do. Though Yousef was not a tour guide, he did a great job explaining things as we drove and even took us to his favorite spot by Jaresh to buy Olive Oil. He had great recommendations for us to tour the old part of Amman and then drove us by the house where he was born.
Petra was amazing and awe inspiring, the Dead Sea was absolutely beautiful…and we really did float…New Years Eve in a Bedouin camp in Wadi Rum was like being on a movie set, Jaresh was incredible…the preservation there blows away what you see in Rome…but without the help from Yousef, Daniel and Engaging Cultures I cannot imaging enjoying it all as much as we did. HIGHLY RECOMMENDED!!
We recently completed a 10 day private tour around Jordan and Israel/Palestine with Engaging Cultures and we loved every minute of it! I travelled with my family and some family friends (11 of us in total). We decided to arrange a private mini bus tour as it was our first time to the Middle East.
I contacted Engaging Cultures a couple of months before departure and communication was great from the very beginning. Daniel replied to my emails very promptly and we worked together to create the best custom itinerary to fit our interests and budget. I had made enquiries with a few other tour agencies beforehand, but none of them gave me the confidence and level of service I experienced with Engaging Cultures (EC).
We started our tour in Amman and ended in Tel Aviv. Everything with our tour went smoothly from day one (we also got very lucky with the weather). A representative came to meet us at the airport for the visa waiver process and to take us to our hotel. Our guide in Jordan was was fantastic! You will be very lucky if you meet Zaid during your travels 🙂 He gave us a lot of information about the culture and people of Jordan.
One highlight of our tour was having lunch in the home of a local family in Orjan village. The home-cooked food was very tasty and it was such a unique experience interacting with a local family – something you wouldn’t necessarily be able to do if you were travelling by yourself. EC can also arrange an overnight homestay if you like, but we opted to go back to our hotel given our group size.
We eventually crossed the border into Israel/Palestine which unfortunately took much longer than expected. This didn’t affect our plans too much as we were able to adjust our tour program the next day. We definitely appreciated this flexibility. (Tip: Make sure you go to the toilet before crossing the border, as you won’t know how much time you will spend there!)
Our guide in Israel/Palestine was Ibrahim who is a Christian Palestinian and shared lots of interesting insights about the region.
During the tour, I was able to get in touch with Daniel from EC very quickly if I needed to talk to him about something. We experienced a mix-up with one of our hotels, but Daniel was able to sort it out quickly and to our satisfaction. It made it a lot easier for us to deal with one company to create a package that covered two countries.
What more can I say? This tour was such a great introduction to the Middle East and we will definitely be back one day. Thanks to Daniel and Engaging Cultures for helping us create such a memorable experience!
The Wadi Rum sunset bonfire, and roof top Jeep rides were absolutely amazing! The camel ride to walk up the back doorway to the monastery in Petra was fantastic! We saw Jesus’ baptism sight, Mount Nebo (sea of Galilee in the distance), and the Dead Sea all in one day. Our guide was the best. He connected us to the gifts we wanted to purchase and facilitated wonderful restaurant stops. He had an answer to our questions and went out of his way to meet the needs of the different group members. I cannot recommend this tour group or the sites we saw any higher.
Staying with a Jordanian host family during Eid Al Adha was an unforgettable experience. This was one of the highlights of our tour. Engaging Cultures have been absolutely amazing in putting together a personalised itinerary for us that suited our ideas and budget. They were super flexible and always available. I highly recommend Engaging cultures to anyone who considers travelling to Jordan.
The tour guides and staff of Engaging Cultures Tunisia were phenomenal. As an avid traveler having been to other parts of North Africa, Tunisia has been my favorite destination because of this tour we took through the south of Tunisia. The genuine hospitality and warmth of the Tunisian people is a travel experience that certainly should not be missed. My mom, friend and I took a three day two night tour through the south visiting an olive farm, eating delicious Tunisian tajine, walked in the canyon in Mides, Tamerza, walked through desert gorgeous oases, stayed near the cave dwellings in Matmata, visited Star Wars filming sites, the stunning Chott el Jerid and truly uncovered the gem that is the South of Tunisia. Thanks for an incredible experience that we will never forget!
This was an amazing trip. My experience with Engaging Cultures was incredible and I would highly recommend them. The trip was extensive and the background our guide offered of every place that we visited made the experience memorable. If I was to go back to Tunisia I would make them my first option!
We visited several sites in Tunisia, from the busy city of Tunis to the Sahara desert in the south. where we ate delicious lamb tageen in Gafsa, hiked around the Sahara, learning that water was the source of life there in the oasis. We saw the process of making olive oil and tasted the final product….so good! The salt lake is a must see that had a surreal appearance! My favorite experience was visiting a cave house where we were served a home cooked breakfast of shikshooka, organic honey, dried dates, figs stone baked bread and olive oil. Our tour guide, Mohammed was amazing with his knowledge and enthusiasm and care to always finding the best food, coffee and toilets!
The best part about this travel company is the people that run it. They take a great interest in what you want for your visit, and do their best to ensure your experience is one you will not forget. From spending time with locals, to having Mohammed as a bus driver, there was not a single part of the tour that was not filled with learning, engagement, laughter, and experiences that would surely not be forgotten. I would highly recommend this tour company for anyone who is wanting to spend time in Tunisia. We got a, “touristy,” feel of going to beaches, and El Jemm, but we also met new friends and locals which made it feel so much deeper than an average tour.