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Fetish priest. Tortilla cook. Blacksmith. Street artist. 

Ethiopia. Nicaragua. Colombia. Ghana. 

Which will you meet, and where? 

TravelLocal, the ‘buy-local’ expert in tailor-made holidays, empowers travellers to create their own bespoke itineraries by connecting them with carefully-selected local experts in over 40 destinations around the world.

These local experts are directly connected to individuals in their respective countries – people with a huge variety of occupations. TravelLocal gives travellers the chance not only to meet these people, but also to gain an insight into (and learn) their trades, thereby really engaging in a different culture, rather than merely observing from afar.

TravelLocal
Here are four ‘Meet the Locals’ sample itineraries:

Ethiopia – meet a blacksmith, a baker and a brewer, from £1,950 pp
A trekking trip where you engage with remote village communities and become familiar with their cultural activities, including injera baking (East African sourdough-risen flatbread), beer-making, blacksmithing and hairdressing. From shopping in Africa’s largest open-air market in Addis Ababa and visiting the famous churches of Lalibela, to hiking through the Simien Mountains and staying in a traditional hut, this itinerary offers a real insight into communities and their customs.

Cost: From £1,950 pp, including ten nights’ B&B (with three nights’ camping and two nights in a traditional community hut), most lunches and dinners, two internal flights and numerous trekking trips and guided tours.*

Colombia – meet a street artist, a wool spinner and an agri-tourism granny, from £2,490
Led by a local bilingual graffiti artist, head into Bogotá’s hidden alleys to see the city’s incredible and straight-talking street murals. In Villa de Leyva, visit the underground Salt Cathedral and learn traditional wool-spinning techniques from local craftsmen. During the trip you’ll also head out into the beautiful countryside to meet a gregarious grandmother who’ll share her farming philosophy with you.

Cost: From £2,490 pp, including 14 nights’ B&B and two internal flights.*

TravelLocal

Ghana – meet a basket weaver, a fisherman and a fetish priest, from £1,140 pp
Immersion into village life – via rice, cacao, coffee and banana plantations, and rivers – is what this trip’s all about. You can learn to create colourful bead jewellery and a batik cloth (a typical Ghanaian method of cloth-making using dye and stamps); how to weave a basket, to fish, to farm and to cook. Alternatively, visit a fetish priest, a local figure who communicates between the living and the dead.

Cost: From £1,140 pp, including 11 nights’ B&B and guided tours.*

Nicaragua – meet a sawdust carpet layer, a tortilla cook and a marimba player, from £1,480 pp
Lifting the lid on the country’s spectacular scenery and fascinating culture, this trip is extremely diverse. Take a bike tour in Granada, dine with local families, make religious murals using multi-coloured sawdust, peer into an active volcano, assist in the creative process of tortilla-making, and learn to play a new instrument: the marimba.

Cost: From £1,480 pp, including 11 nights’ B&B and guided tours.*

TravelLocal

* All of the trips are based on two sharing. TravelLocal trips include transfers, excursions and the services of a local guide. Travel to the destination is not included, giving more flexibility and allowing customers to book their flights via points schemes if preferred.
For more information, call TravelLocal on +44 (0)117 325 7898 or visit www.travellocal.com.

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When I first started out travel writing, twenty years ago, I was writing a weekly round-up for The Independent. The first PR agency I ever tapped into for their clients' holiday ideas was Travel PR; they were always full of great suggestions for the column and responded quickly. Over the years, I've worked with them on many occasions and their close association with AITO has always paid dividends. Nothing has changed; some of the best story ideas I get herald from them, and their response time remains very speedy. They are a pleasure to work with.

Mark Stratton, Freelance Travel Writer

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Travel PR, established 27 years ago, is a leading specialist PR and communications agency specialising in the travel, hotel and lifestyle markets. Want to create a PR strategy for your brand?