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Meet the locals

Meet the locals recommendations

Community-based tourism, homestays, couchsurfing – it really is a small world out there

Top 10 Meet the locals experiences

  1. Visit a longhouse community, Borneo – most of Borneo’s tribes are now well-connected to the outside world, but a stay in their communal homes remains a fascinating eye-opener into hunter-gatherer lifestyles and the complex issues of the rainforest
  2. Stay with a family, India – the best way to experience the ‘real India’ is to stay with real people. There are hundreds of homestays across the subcontinent, from luxurious Kerala bungalows to simple huts in the Himalaya
  3. Take a free locals’ city tour – from Toronto to Melbourne, many cities now offer free ‘greeter’ tours run by enthusiastic locals.
  4. Travel with a good local guide – a knowledgeable and charismatic local guide can make a trip. The very best are recognised in the annual Wanderlust World Guide awards
  5. Discover Cuba’s casas particulares – communist Cuba’s homestays are beacons of free enterprise, and a wonderful way to get beyond the propaganda in this most fascinating of Caribbean islands
  6. WWOOF! – the long-running Willing Workers On Organic Farms (WWOOF) programme remains a classic way to experience rural life and enjoy free bed and board
  7. Walk from village to village, India & Ethiopia – award-winning walking routes in the north Indian foothills and Ethiopian highlands are regenerating local communities.
  8. Speak English for your supper, Spain – get free accommodation in return for acting as a full-time conversationalist for local English language students.
  9. Walk with the Samburu, north Kenya – safaris don’t get more authentic – walk with Samburu warrior guides through the spectacular Laikipia plateau
  10. Stay in an Amazon eco-lodge, Ecuador – learn to hunt by blowpipe and make rainforest medicine with the remote tribes of Ecuador’s rainforest

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