The next step on from experiential and transformational travel, new Bring it Back tours from Black Tomato set out to change your life – both personally and professionally.
Setting out to answer “life’s big questions” and “deepen your knowledge and understanding”, Bring it Back encompasses seven immersive trips to destinations that lead the way in key areas of life such as creativity, entrepreneurialism, family and community, sustainability and wellness. They are a great example of a rising trend that Globetrender has dubbed “upskilling escapes”.
Not only will travellers get to spend time in inspiring environments but gain access to business gurus, journalists, chefs, musicians, documentary filmmakers, designers and architects who will offer insight and guidance. Like all Black Tomato trips, itineraries are ultimately bespoke, but there is a guaranteed framework so you know what to expect (see below).
Black Tomato co-founder Tom Marchant says: “We view travel as a step towards self-actualisation – a powerful tool that can provide answers to questions, solve problems, and help us realise goals that so often feel out of reach.
“With Bring It Back, we wanted to delve deeper and explore how travel experiences can have a truly lasting effect long after they’ve returned. We’ve tapped passionate, authoritative experts and communities who share our belief in the value of travelling in this way.
“Their insightful, refreshing and at times alternative take on how to approach some of life’s fundamentals will guide people in their personal, creative and professional development.
“This isn’t a boardroom discussion or a Ted Talk – your teachers are found in and amongst the cultures and communities that you will inhabit. [You will] acquire knowledge and have your mind opened in ways that will have a lasting effect on your daily life and the people around you in your business or family.”
What are the Black Tomato ‘Bring it Back’ trips and how much do they cost?
Need addressed: work/life balance
Scandinavia is known for its commitment to work-life balance. Shedding light on the corporate and family culture that enables this balance, this experience will introduce guests to the strengths and challenges of the Danish working mindset, in a job market that is quickly globalising.
Taking inspiration from the Scandinavian working model provides answers for business leaders looking to create a company culture that is both highly efficient and family friendly – with Copenhagen demonstrating how the two go hand-in-hand.Highlights include:
- A day with a Danish journalist known for his promotion of work/life balance and parental leave, shadowing his daily routine from deadlines at the office to picking up his children from daycare and visiting the playground on the way home. See firsthand how the Danish attitude allows work and family to co-exist in a viable manner, making for a happier and more efficient workforce.
- Breakfast with a high-ranking executive at a leading global organisation. Learn how her work/home routine differs in Copenhagen compared to other cities where she has worked and lived. End the day with dinner at one of her favourite Copenhagen restaurants, learning more about how she fosters creativity, productivity and motivation at her organisation.
- A classic Danish lunch with the aforementioned people, taking the opportunity to discuss the pros and cons of Danish work culture and the elements that could be integrated into guests’ lives and businesses back home.
From £5,400 per person, based on two travelling and excluding international flights.
Need addressed: entrepreneurial inspiration
Iceland has attracted global attention for its rapid economic recovery following the financial crisis of 2008. This is partly thanks to exceptional entrepreneurship within Iceland’s tourism industry, where innovation and investment has lead to incredible growth.
Natural disasters have also provided an unlikely boost with events such as the eruption of Eyjafjallajokull volcano in 2010 turned into a success story for the country by putting the spotlight on its magnificent scenery, nature and positive attitudes of its hardy people.
As a result, Iceland has been able to benefit from a new wave of tourism, with a boom in unique experiences unavailable anywhere else in the world. For those seeking answers on where to begin or how to renew their focus in the business world, Iceland is a living lesson in entrepreneurship.Highlights include:
- Meetings with senior managers at the cutting-edge new hotel, the Retreat at Blue Lagoon, and hear how the businesses around the Blue Lagoon survived the economic crash to become great successes. Enjoy a privately guided tour of the property to see the world-class facilities, with a night’s stay to experience them.
- A tour with a descendant of Icelandic vikings who returned to Iceland in the wake of the financial crisis to start a Jeep tour company. He is a true example of Icelandic spirit with a drive to find solutions rather than problems.
- A stay at Hotel Rangá where you will meet the owner, learning how he left the corporate world behind to set up this hotel, one of the most successful in Iceland since the 2008 crash.
- A private guided tour of the Lava Centre, a high-tech educational exhibition depicting volcanic activity, earthquakes and the creation of Iceland over millions of years. Founded by an Icelandic businessman who came up with the idea after he found himself stranded in New York due to the eruption of Eyjafjallajökull volcano.
- A journey into the magma chamber of the dormant Thrihnukagigur volcano, a feat unavailable anywhere else and made possible by Bjorn Olafsson, who guests will have the opportunity to enjoy breakfast with, in a private setting.
From £7,200 per person, based on two travelling and excluding international flights.
Need addressed: a healthier, more sustainable lifestyle
Globally renowned for its cuisine, much of Peru’s culinary success can be attributed to making the most of its natural resources. Drawing from its varied geography, time-honoured traditions and local customs, the country has become a pioneer of sustainable, flavourful and nutritionally complete foods.
On this experience in Peru, guests will take a deeper look at what we put into our bodies to reorient the idea of “healthy” eating and consider the importance of local sourcing.Highlights include:
- Joining a local chef on a visit to the Villa María del Triunfo fish market and learning about the abundant biodiversity of Peruvian waters and how best to protect this resource for the future. On return from the market, guests will enjoy a seafood cooking class, while discussing Peruvian cuisine and the influence other cultures have had on its flavours and ingredients.
- Spending a few days on Peru’s northern beaches to further understand how the cultures of coastal Peru rely on the ocean. Stay at Kichic, whose sustainable kitchen serves vegetarian and seafood dishes with ingredients from their organic garden and local sustainable farms.
- In Cusco, get to know local communities as you visit organic farms and learn about food products that have been used since before Incan times to sustain the population. A standout moment being meeting Manuel Choqque, aka “the Potato Whisperer”, a fourth-generation potato farmer who specialises in ancient agriculture.
- A visit to Virgilio Martinez’s Mater Iniciativa and new restaurant, MIL. Enjoy a unique seven-course degustation menu with infusion pairings, distilled beverages and delicious nectars.
- A traditional Peruvian Pachamanca and Huatia dining experiences, styles of cooking dating back to the Inca Empire, and accompanied by an Andean ceremony giving thanks to Pachamama, or Mother Earth.
From £9,900 per person, based on two travelling and excluding international flights.
Need addressed: translating passion into a career
Shut off from the world for several decades following the Revolution, Cuba has burst back onto the world stage with infectious creative energy. Cuban culture is all about passion, music, dance – and how to harness it to enhance economic value.
On this tailor-made experience, guests will be able to discover or reignite their creative intuition, in turn inspiring confidence and passion within the arts with the ultimate goal of using this passion to inform their work life and/or business ventures.Highlights include:
- Time with musician Brenda Navarette on her terrace and a lesson on the bata, a traditional Afro-Cuban percussion instrument.
- Late-night performances at Fabrica del Arte, a meeting place for avant-garde artists. Here, guests will enjoy VIP access to the music, dance, film and art shows taking place.
- A visit to Escuela Internacional de Cine y Televisión (EICTV) and Instituto Cubano del Arte e Industria Cinematograficos (ICAIC) to view the restored documentary films of the late visionary Afro-Cuban filmmaker Sarah Gomez. Meet young Cuban documentary filmmakers and tour the school, founded by a leading group of Latin American writers and filmmakers, including Gabriel García Márquez.
- A visit to Acosta Danza, a contemporary dance and classical ballet school founded in 2016 by Carlos Acosta, who rose from difficult circumstances to become an internationally-acclaimed dancer.
- A sit-down with Mogoteart Owner Luis Deulofeu to learn about Cuba’s budding entrepreneurial sector over a coffee or cocktail.
From £4,150 per person, based on two travelling and excluding international flights.
Need addressed: better family relationships
For travellers looking to disconnect from digital distraction, get back to basics and revive their appreciation for interpersonal relationships, Mongolia provides the answer. Guests will be immersed in the nomadic communities of Bayangobi, where family takes centre stage and carefully cultivated dynastic living ensures a strong bond between generations.
Guests will have the opportunity to learn what it means to be self-sufficient by participating in local culture, craft and day-to-day tasks such as herding, milking and cheese-making.
While spending time with local families and learning about the dynamics which come into play with nomadic inter-generational living, guests will be encouraged to re-evaluate their relationships, enabling them to return to their day-to-day lives with a renewed sense of the importance of family and the people who surround us in our communities.Highlights include:
- Time with local nomadic families to explore the pros and cons of living with an extended family in close quarters.
- A stay with Otgon and his family, traditional nomads from whom you can learn about the traditional culture and a way of life unchanged, in many ways, for centuries. Activities include cooking, milking, herding, cheese making, collecting fuel and felt making.
- A stay with another nomadic family, Bold and his family, who train racehorses. Learn about racing in Mongolia, before mounting up for a ride in the stunning surrounding larch-forested mountains and valleys, following the routes through the steppe used by the nomadic herders.
- A visit to the famous spiritual site of Aglag Buteel monastery, the home of Purevbat Lama, one of the most influential figures in modern Mongolian Buddhism.
From £5,500 per person, based on two travelling and excluding international flights.
Need addressed: creative spark
Morocco has long been a source of inspiration for Westerners who have perhaps exhausted their creative options elsewhere. Revered for its impact on the design world and recognised as a point of confluence between ancient and modern cultures, Morocco possesses the ability to fuel creativity unlike anywhere else.
Whether guests are seeking design inspiration or looking to bring creative flair to business, they will be accompanied by a creative host throughout, from Marrakech down through the desert and on to Fez.
Each guest’s experience will be tailored to their precise interests, both to maximise exposure to creative ideas and ensure the relevancy of each activity, giving them knowledge that they can bring home with them and apply to their business and daily life.
- Evening cocktails with designer Yahya, learning about his background and international work, followed by dinner at Barometre with the founders from the Emerging Business Factory (EBF) and Marrakech Creative Cluster. EBF is Marrakech’s first private incubator, home to start-ups of varying profiles and dedicated primarily to tech and media innovation.
- A visit to EBF and meetings with the AMBS Architects’s design director, Reda Zakaria, who is currently working on several major projects in Morocco. Take a guided tour of Marrakech design district Sidi Ghanem, meet and talk to industrial designers and artisans, attend creative workshops and learn how to craft using materials such as iron, brass, ceramic or textile with medina artisans.
- An overnight stay at Terres des Etoiles in the Agafay Desert; guests will meet the owner over dinner and discuss the challenges of creating a sustainable and design-conscious space in the desert.
From £4,800 per person based on two travelling and excluding international flights.
Need addressed: wellness
At a time when we are all just trying to juggle life’s commitments, our commitment to our own wellness is often overlooked. For guests in search of a permanently healthier outlook on life, Ibiza offers a unique combination of spiritual, physical and psychological immersion to help guests commit to a renewed relationship with their wellbeing.
Rather than suffering through the latest fad cleanse or downloading a rarely-used meditation app, this tailormade experience aims to give guests the tools to reset their health in a holistic way, making changes to last a lifetime.
- Private daily yoga and meditation sessions with a leading practitioner, tailored specifically to guests’ needs, helping to establish skills for lasting daily practice. Lessons will take place in various locations to take advantage of the breathtaking natural scenery of Ibiza.
- A dietary health reset with a private macrobiotic chef, nutritional workshops and a macrobiotic cooking masterclass to learn about the holistic benefits of a plant-based diet.
- Private cooking lesson with a Michelin-starred chef.
From £6,100 per person, based on two travelling and excluding international flights.
Black Tomato is a UK and US-based award-winning, luxury, bespoke travel company that delivers imaginative and cutting-edge travel experiences around the world.