A holiday with Renaissance Tours

korea pexels tranmautritam 380707

Renaissance Tours are Australia’s leading provider of special interest and cultural excursions, you know the kind; they build trips around ancient things. And this year, they’re delighted to announce a winter and spring tours program, offering unprecedented access to some of the world’s most inaccessible and cherished destinations. With a focus on unique encounters and expert insights, travellers will have the opportunity to explore vibrant cultures, stunning landscapes, and historic sites across both domestic and international tours.

Among the highlights is the “Lands of the Saltwater People” tour led by the esteemed Bundjalung curator, artist, and activist Djon Mundine OAM. This August, participants will be immersed in the rich art and culture of Australia’s Top End, enjoying exclusive access to events such as the Darwin Aboriginal Art Fair and the Yirrkala in northeast Arnhem Land.

For those intrigued by ancient civilizations and landscapes, September brings “A Road Less Travelled” with archaeologist Iain Shearer. This expansive 19-day adventure through Armenia, Georgia, and Azerbaijan will uncover the region’s breathtaking scenery, historic religious art, and groundbreaking archaeological sites.

Adventurers can also look forward to exploring Oman’s scenic beauty and historical depth on “The Frankincense Route” tour this November, led by renowned scholar Dr. Alex McKay. From Muscat’s vibrant capital to the serene desert of Wahiba Sands and beyond, this 15-day tour promises an unforgettable blend of art, architecture, and heritage.

Additional exciting opportunities include traversing the ancient and sacred landscapes of Mungo and Mutawintji National Parks, experiencing the tranquil gardens of Japan from Hokkaido to northern Honshu, and uncovering South Korea’s rich tapestry of history, culture, and natural beauty.

Each Renaissance Tours experience is designed to provide unparalleled access to extraordinary places, guided by experts passionate about their fields. This winter and spring, join us on journeys that promise not only to broaden your horizons but to leave lasting impressions and unparalleled insights into the wonders of our world.

Highlights of the 2024 international and domestic tour program include: 

With Djon Mundine OAM | 08 – 15 August 2024 (8 days) 

Discover the history, art and culture of Australia’s Top End in the company of curator and activist of contemporary Aboriginal Art Djon Mundine OAM. Highlights include: 

  • Attend a special VIP opening ceremony and preview of the Darwin Aboriginal Art Fair
  • Gain special, after-hours access to the Telstra National Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Art Awards exhibition in Darwin
  • Marvel at the world-renowned art of the Yolngu people at Yirrkala in north-east Arnhem Land
  • Benefit from engaging private talks from your tour leader, Djon Mundine OAM

With Iain Shearer | 06 – 24 September (19 days) 

Explore the natural and cultural riches of Armenia, Georgia and Azerbaijan to discover a complex mix of religion, art and architecture. Highlights include: 

  • Witness dynamic landscapes ranging from rugged mountains and snow-capped peaks to lush valleys, lakes and semi-arid deserts
  • Enjoy the treasures of Caucasian archaeology, and unearth a wealth of art, history and culture in the region’s museums and galleries
  • Discover twelfth-century frescoes in an impressive monastic cave complex, explore the remains of a mediaeval castle and visit sites of ancient petroglyphs
  • Wander through Persian palaces and mosques at the western edge of the Silk Road
  • Visit the region where grapes were first fermented into wine 8,000 years ago

With Elizabeth Swane | 23 September – 07 October 2024 (15 days) 

Delight in autumn’s colourful panorama of traditional Japanese gardens and contemporary designs through a unique tour of Hokkaido and northern Honshu. Highlights include: 

  • Explore private gardens, sculpture gardens and botanical gardens along the ‘Hokkaido Garden Path’
  • Visit Dan Pearson’s Tokachi Millennium Forest and Isamu Noguchi’s Moerenuma Park in Sapporo
  • Relax at a hot-springs resort in Daisetsuzan National Park, surrounded by mountains, waterfalls and gorges
  • Stay at Matsushima Bay, ranked as one of the ‘three most scenic sites of Japan’
  • See Tokyo’s most prized garden-scapes, including the renowned Rikugi-en Garden

With Alex McKay | 09 – 15 October 2024 (7 days)

Discover ancient landscapes, archaeological treasures and sacred Indigenous sites at the Mungo and Mutawintji National Parks and delve into the intriguing colonial history of this remote corner of NSW. Highlights include: 

  • Feast your eyes on breathtaking ancient landscapes and significant Aboriginal sacred sites
  • Learn about Indigenous culture and heritage at the Mungo and Mutawintji National Parks
  • Admire archaeological treasures and the lunar landscapes over the Walls of China at sunset
  • Explore the rural towns of Broken Hill and Silverton, rich in colonial and mining history

With Genevieve Jacobs | 20 – 30 October 2024 (11 days) 

Join gardens and arts specialist Genevieve Jacobs to discover the hidden treasures of South Korea, from ancient temples and imperial palaces to tranquil gardens and bustling street markets. Highlights include: 

  • Discover the culture and history of Seoul and Busan, South Korea’s largest cities
  • Explore Changdeokgung Palace, one of the five grand palaces built by the kings of the Joseon dynasty
  • Visit Gyeongju’s various UNESCO world-heritage sites
  • Wander through the Garden of Morning Calm, Korea’s largest private garden, and the Soswaewon Garden, a traditional Korean garden from the middle Joseon Dynasty

With Alex McKay | 15 – 29 November 2024 (15 days) 

Be immersed in the extraordinary kaleidoscope of Oman and discover the unique art, architecture and crafts while uncovering the fascinating history of its sultanic dynasties. Highlights include: 

  • Discover the unique art, architecture and crafts of Oman influenced by the country’s rich Islamic heritage
  • Travel across seemingly endless desert landscapes and enjoy stops at refreshing oases
  • Be awe-struck by the views from atop Jebel Shams, the highest point in eastern Arabia
  • Explore ancient archaeological sites, from the oldest settlement of Oman, the Sumhuram Old City to the ruins of the necropolis of Al Ayn
  • Uncover living Omani culture in villages nestled atop the mountains and along the edges of the desert