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Feature Holiday

USA: Rhythms of the Deep South

Nashville, Memphis, and New Orleans...

Walking Trails of Tenerife

Volcanic landscapes and winter sun...

Winter Adventures in Finland

Huskies, ice fishing & cross country skiing...

Holiday Types

  • Activity Breaks
  • City Breaks
  • Discovery Tours

The prices shown below include return flights from a specified UK airport. If you are travelling from outside of the UK, please click the button below.

The prices shown below are for non-UK travellers and do not include return flights and transfers. If you are travelling from within the UK, please click the button below.

Camino de Santiago

Spectacular pilgrim trail.

The traditional painted scallop shells of the Camino attached to pilgrims walking sticks.

June 3 - June 10, 2024 | 8 days

Standard Blind Price: £1849

Discounted Sighted Price: £1299

Standard Blind Price: £1699

Discounted Sighted Price: £1199

The Wonders of the Lake District

Trains, boats & bards.

Mountain peaks reflected in the water.

July 22 - July 26, 2024 | 5 days

Standard Blind Price: £899

Discounted Sighted Price: £749

Northumberland’s Coast, Lindisfarne & the Farne Islands

Discover england’s northernmost county.

A lovely still morning with the colourful boats reflected in the harbour at Seahouses.

August 5 - August 9, 2024 | 5 days

Standard Blind Price: £799

Discounted Sighted Price: £649

Austria’s Seefeld Plateau

Mountains, lakes, and railways.

Idyllic alpine scenery, snowy mountains mirroring in a small lake.

August 13 - August 20, 2024 | 8 days

Standard Blind Price: £2249

Discounted Sighted Price: £1749

Standard Blind Price: £1999

Discounted Sighted Price: £1499

York, the Dales & Brontë Country

Literary heroines & historic sights.

Panoramic view of the ruins of Fountains Abbey with green lawns and blue sky.

September 2 - September 6, 2024 | 5 days

Standard Blind Price: £849

Discounted Sighted Price: £699

Welcome to Eswatini

Africa's wildlife wonderland.

Lion and lioness laying next to each other on a rock.

September 2 - September 13, 2024 | 12 days

Standard Blind Price: £3799

Discounted Sighted Price: £2899

Standard Blind Price: £3199

Discounted Sighted Price: £2299

India: The Ultimate Golden Triangle

New delhi, agra, jaipur and beyond.

Indian women carrying water from stepwell near Jaipur.

September 17 - September 30, 2024 | 14 days

Standard Blind Price: £2999

Standard Blind Price: £2499

Discounted Sighted Price: £1799

Nashville, Memphis, and New Orleans

Aerial view of Downtown Nashville on a bright sunny day, with tall skyline buildings in the background. In the foreground are two architectural bridges over the Cumberland River.

October 6 - October 17, 2024 | 12 days

Standard Blind Price: £4799

Discounted Sighted Price: £2999

Standard Blind Price: £4099

Black Forest Rail Discovery

Germany’s fairytale region.

A beautiful valley with rolling green hills in autumn colours.

October 6 - October 13, 2024 | 8 days

Standard Blind Price: £2699

Discounted Sighted Price: £1999

Beautiful Brecon of South Wales

Castles, canal boats and collieries.

A stunning sunset beams over the landscape of a grass covered mountain range.

October 28 - November 1, 2024 | 5 days

Standard Blind Price: £745

Discounted Sighted Price: £545

Laos & Cambodia

Charms of southeast asia.

Stone gate and statues of Angkor Thom in Cambodia.

November 1 - November 13, 2024 | 13 days

Standard Blind Price: £3499

Discounted Sighted Price: £2699

Standard Blind Price: £2799

Bruges City Break

A taste of belgium.

Scenic city view of Brugge canal Spiegelrei with beautiful medieval houses and reflections.

November 7 - November 11, 2024 | 5 days

Standard Blind Price: £999

Discounted Sighted Price: £599

Volcanic landscapes and winter sun

The pointed volcanic cone of Mt Teide with low lying cloud and forested hillside in the foreground

December 7 - December 14, 2024 | 8 days

Standard Blind Price: £1899

Discounted Sighted Price: £1349

Standard Blind Price: £1749

Huskies, ice fishing & cross country skiing

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January 5 - January 12, 2025 | 8 days

Standard Blind Price: £2599

Discounted Sighted Price: £1849

Cuba: Rhythms and Revolution

Havana, santa clara and the caribbean sunshine.

Vintage classic american car with colourful buildings in the background in Havana.

January 15 - January 26, 2025 | 12 days

Standard Blind Price: £3699

Discounted Sighted Price: £2799

Standard Blind Price: £3299

Discounted Sighted Price: £2399

Pura Vida in Costa Rica

Rainforests, wildlife & adventure.

Two toucans perched on a branch. Black with yellow breast and green, blue and red beaks

November 29 - December 12, 2025 | 14 days

Standard Blind Price: £5295

Discounted Sighted Price: £3495

Standard Blind Price: £4645

Discounted Sighted Price: £2845

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Traveleyes: Helping Blind and Sighted Travelers See the World

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Sarah Schlichter

Deputy Executive Editor Sarah Schlichter's idea of a perfect trip includes spotting exotic animals, hiking through pristine landscapes, exploring new neighborhoods on foot, and soaking up as much art as she can. She often attempts to recreate recipes from her international travels after she gets home (which has twice resulted in accidental kitchen fires—no humans or animals were harmed).

Sarah joined the SmarterTravel team in 2017 after more than a decade at the helm of IndependentTraveler.com. Sarah's practical travel advice has been featured in dozens of news outlets including the New York Times, the Chicago Tribune, USA Today, Budget Travel, and Peter Greenberg Worldwide Radio. Follow her on Twitter @TravelEditor .

The Handy Item I Always Pack: "A journal. Even years later, reading my notes from a trip can bring back incredibly vivid memories."

Ultimate Bucket List Experience: "Road tripping and hiking through the rugged mountains of Patagonia."

Travel Motto: "'To awaken quite alone in a strange town is one of the pleasantest sensations in the world.'—Freya Stark"

Aisle, Window, or Middle Seat: "Aisle. I get restless on long flights and like to be able to move around without disturbing anyone else."

Email Sarah at [email protected] .

Travel Smarter! Sign up for our free newsletter.

What does travel look like without sightseeing? Fortunately for blind or visually impaired travelers, there’s a tour company out there to help them — and sighted travelers — find out.

Traveleyes , founded in 2004 by a blind man who loves to travel, offers small-group trips to a wide array of destinations around the world, including Australia, Morocco, Italy, Bulgaria and Peru. What makes the company special is that the trips pair blind travelers with sighted companions who serve as guides, describing the scenes in front of them and assisting them with navigation through restaurants and shops. In exchange, sighted travelers save up to 50 percent off the cost of the trip and get the satisfaction of helping their new friends discover the world.

To make the experience as rich as possible for everyone, itineraries emphasize multisensory activities such as learning the tango in Argentina , riding a camel in Morocco and tasting wine in Rome . This isn’t just for the benefit of blind travelers. On the Traveleyes website, the company notes that this is a benefit for sighted travelers as well: “Seeing is only part of the experience. As a sighted traveller, you’ll be guided on how to explore the world through all of your other senses. You’ll be surprised at how much you’ve been missing out on.”

No experience is necessary for sighted travelers — the company provides pre-trip information as well as training on the first day to help you learn how to guide. Blind and sighted travelers will be partnered with different companions each day throughout the trip so everyone can get to know each other.

Rates for sighted travelers start at just $283 per person, while rates for blind travelers start at $552 per person. Rates do not include flights or transfers unless you’re traveling from the U.K.

Would you try a trip with Traveleyes?

We hand-pick everything we recommend and select items through testing and reviews. Some products are sent to us free of charge with no incentive to offer a favorable review. We offer our unbiased opinions and do not accept compensation to review products. All items are in stock and prices are accurate at the time of publication. If you buy something through our links, we may earn a commission.

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Mind’s Eye Travel

Enriching the lives of people who are visually impaired or blind.

Group of Mind's Eye travellers in front of an archway built of antlers in Jackson Hole Wyoming

Sue Bramhall launched Mind’s Eye Travel in 2008 in order to address a challenge she was facing herself: Her RP (retinitis pigmentosa) had advanced to the point where she could no longer travel independently and comfortably. Her love of travel prompted her to create a service for visually impaired people like herself. The service includes experienced sighted guides who accompany each tour as needed.

Please call 207-542-4438 to check trip availability.

Our Upcoming Trips

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Eye Candy Adventures

Welcome to Eye Candy Adventures! My name is Tonya and I am a certified Travel Specialist here to help you explore the world, discover unique locations, and create one of a kind memorable experiences.

Connect with Eye Candy Adventures

Explore the world through eye candy adventures eyes, cultural experiences.

Explore exotic places around the globe and beyond

Sea & River Cruises

A perfect way to explore multiple destinations

All Inclusive Resorts

A relaxing vacation without much exploring

Take Yourself on a Journey Around the Globe on Epic Self or Guided Tours booked by your Travel Specialist

Africa  12 destinations / 47 tours

  

Africa is a continent of dazzling contrasts. Here you can relax on paradisiacal beaches of white sand and turquoise blue waters or feel the hustle and bustle of its dynamic cities. You can delve into its multitude of cultures and encounter the most authentic ethnic groups and tribes on the planet or enjoy nature in its purest state on a l uxury safari. 

Americas 14 Destinations/47 Tours

America is, above all, about the landscape. from Argentina to Chile. There are colossal waterfalls, such as the Niagara and Iguazu falls. And when your eyes have been satisfied with landscapes, you have yet to begin with the thousand-year-old constructions of the Incas and the Mayans in Peru, in Mexico, and in Guatemala. The sky is simply bigger in America.

Asia 20 Destination/54 Tours

Asia is a continent so large and diverse it is impossible to describe its overall characteristics has some of the richest history imaginable. Travelers have been increasingly drawn to embarking on tours to Asia thanks to the diversity and ease of travel between countries on the epic landmass, making vacations to Asia a perfect choice for intrepid explorers.

Europe 23 Destinations/75 tours

Europe is where Western Civilization was born, shaped by civilizations as glorious as the Ancient Greeks and the Roman Empire. The Renaissance, Age of Discovery and the Industrial Revolution all began on the European continent, making a tour of Europe infinitely fascinating as you trace the heritage of these world-shaping movements, and marvel at diverse landscapes

Oceania   Coming Soon

Oceania offers us a country which is largely uninhabited, such as Australia or New Zealand. Discover islands so far away, that you wonder at the tranquility and seclusion. Australia is the land of Aboriginal culture, a space which contrasts the vibrant cosmopolitan life first crossed by the forefathers.and inhabited by animals impossible to find outside of the country

Viator Click image to book your tour

10% Discount use ARCHERAUG10

2500 Destinations and 300, 000+ experiences, you are guaranteed to make memories around the world.

Stay flexible on your trip with free cancellation 24 hours prior to tour.

Book with Reserve now and pay later Flexibility. 

Set Sail to Eye Candy Destinations around the World

Virgin Voyages   Adults Only (18+)

Virgin ships are floating sanctuaries you may never want to leave, but if you choose to, these cruise destinations are great excuses.

Voyages o the Caribbean, Europe, South Pacific, Trans Atlantic and more

Brilliant inclusions on every adults-only voyage. Perks that put your Sailors at the helm of VIP treatment. Never dimming their glow with unexplained charges. 

Princess Cruises Budget/family 

Princess Cruises aren't just a chance to connect with your favorite people and the world. It’s one of the best vacation values cruises around. With over 330 sailing destinations, Explore multiple destinations yet only unpacking once. 

Princess Cruises bring regional experiences, like cuisine and Multicourse meals to remember. Broadway-style shows, comedy acts and band

AmaWaterways Luxury/Intimate

AmaWaterways is a means of Luxury transportation from destination to destination. Traveling between grand capitals and charming villages alike, without the need for multiple hotels or forms of transportation. From Europe to Asia to Africa to South America, AmaWaterways carefully curates our river cruise itineraries, ensuring a variety of unforgettable and enriching expe

Experience and Discover the Unseen Corners of the World and relax at some of the best exclusive All Inclusive Resorts Booked by your Travel Specialist

Meet eye candy adventures travel specialist.

My name is Tonya Lundblad and I am a wife, mother of 5 amazing kids, and grandmother to 10 beautiful grandchildren.  I am passionate about traveling the world and I fell in love with travel over 25 years ago on my first vacation to the Dominican Republic. I was so enthralled in the rich culture of the Dominican people  and it opened my eyes to a whole new experience. That trip left me wanting to see more and more of the world,  learning about, and experience other cultures. I have years of travel experience, from beaches to mountains, and Asia to Mexico to the Caribbean. I also have a love of motorcycles and have  travelled from  the East Coast to the West Coast of the United States on two wheels with my Indian Chieftain "She Warrior."  I enjoy riding the National parks, popular destinations, off the beaten path locations,  and the best roads America has to offer.  I consider myself a budget traveler, I have taught myself to travel on a budget as  I was not financially capable when I fell in love with travelling. I've learned ways to maximize travel rewards and amazing travel deals to make my travel dreams come true.  I truly believe everyone needs to experience other cultures and have amazing experiences traveling, so whether you're a seasoned traveler or a first-time explorer, I am  here to help you plan your next one of a kind memorable experience,  and to give you the best recommendations and advice that I am able to offer.

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Cottage Grove, Minnesota, United States

651-239-4829 [email protected]

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Eagle-Eye Tours

Global operator

Service level

Travelers age

Trip prices

$4,250 — 7,895

Tour languages

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  • Group Tours
  • Small Ship & Expedition Cruises
  • Custom Itineraries
  • North America
  • Central America & Caribbean
  • South America
  • Rivers & Seas
  • Australia & Pacific
  • Antarctica & the Arctic

How well do you know the world?

Eagle-eye tours reviews & ratings.

Christopher Ian Doris

Guides excellent.

Guides excellent. This was a great experience in a different environment for me.

Laura McLarnon

Excellent Tour. 59 Lifers!

So many new birds! The locations are stunning. Being from Nova Scotia, the Western region is a place that needed exploring. Eagle Eye tours offers an affordable w...

Leisurely tour of SE Arizona

This was a leisurely tour of southeastern Arizona. We stayed in a few hotels, two nights at a time. The birds were amazing, the food was good and the weather was pl...

The tour 101% lived up to…

The tour 101% lived up to promises/expectations.

The guides were super at finding and…

The guides were super at finding and identifying the birds. The locations were beautiful and the other people on the trip were wonderful to be with. The shore bird...

See all Eagle-Eye Tours reviews

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About the company.

Our tours are diverse! We span the globe offering tours that range from being very focused on birds to those of a more general nature that also include lots of local cultural interests. All our guides are not only expert birders but also are appreciative of all nature. Many of our tours spend considerable time looking closely at mammals, plants or butterflies. It is not necessary for you to be an experienced birder; all you need is enthusiasm and our guides will be happy to help you along!

A typical day with Eagle-Eye Tours

Our land tours typically start early, after breakfast at our hotel, to be out when birding is best. Sometimes we are out before breakfast for a quick search for a target bird or mammal. We head out by foot, car or boat to a choice area, maybe forest or maybe a wetland, taking in the sights and sounds of the morning. We move along as a small group, making every effort to ensure that the everyone gets to see the beautiful tanager, or majestic grizzly bear through the spotting scope. We might stop for that important cup of locally grown coffee before heading further down the road to where we saw that great bird building a nest last year. Lunches are most often in the field, usually at a very good birding spot, with a cold drink or a cup of coffee. We have a chance to share stories and reflect on the morning adventure. After lunch we carry on in an area, maybe returning to the hotel in mid-afternoon for a rest, then a shorter excursion to explore another area. Over our evening meal, we meet as a group to record and discuss what we saw and review the plans for the coming day. Some evenings we may head back out for a night tour to experience the nocturnal world of owls, potoos, frogs and much more.

Expedition Cruises

Our expedition cruises are an intimate and wonderful way to learn about and experience remote parts of the world.  These small ships have the ability to land virtually anywhere using zodiacs, providing excellent opportunities for exploration.  Staff onboard typically cover birds and other wildlife, geology, history, local culture, photography, archaeology, and more.  We usually have one or two shore landings per day that may visit a wildlife highlight, a local community, a historical site, or just an interesting looking area that we think deserves some exploration.  Add in a couple of lectures, fine dining, and some live music in the evening and you have a full day on an unforgettable voyage of discovery.  Voyage with us to these seldom visited and remarkable places!

About our featured birds and mammals

These are the great and often very unique species that we will be looking for. We cannot guarantee that we will see them, only that there is a good chance of seeing them. Beyond these exciting species, we are always on the look out for other surprises-you just never know what we may see!

Tour group size

We believe that small groups are essential for a high quality and enjoyable experience. Unless otherwise noted, our land tour groups have a single leader with 4 to 8 people and two leaders with 9 to 12 people.

About our accommodation and transportation

Typically, our land tours stay in modern, comfortable hotels, but this varies somewhat depending on the tour. On most tours, we stay in beautiful lodges in the forest with trails out the back door. These amazing settings are often a highlight of the tour. In other cases, in order to get to the best locations for birding or wildlife viewing, we may be far away from a modern hotel and the ‘best room in town’ may be more basic. In a few cases, we even stay in tents for the full wilderness experience! For each tour, we have identified the level of accommodation in the tour summary and on the detailed itinerary. If you have any questions about accommodation on a tour, please feel free to ask and we can give you more specifics.

When traveling between birding locations, typically we travel in comfortable vans or buses, often with local drivers who are familiar with the roads and destinations. Usually, there is only one vehicle, as the sizes of our groups are typically small, but occasionally there will be two vehicles that keep in contact with each other by radio. In some tours, we use airplane flights to cover large distances and in a few cases we travel by boat, often with fantastic scenery and wildlife watching along the way!

About our prices

We will make every effort to charge the prices quoted in our catalog or detailed itineraries, but fluctuations in major currencies may force us to change tour prices at any time before departure. Current prices are listed on our website and reflect payment by cash/cheque. Prices for payment by credit card are higher, please contact us for these prices. Nearly all fees are quoted in US and Canadian dollars and can be paid in either currency. Contact us for payment in other currencies.  Single rooms, as available, will be provided upon request for an additional fee. For participants traveling alone but wishing to share a room, Eagle-Eye Tours will arrange for a roommate, if possible. If a roommate is not available, the single supplement will be charged.  

Eagle-Eye Tours Trips & Specials

The Netherlands & Belgium: Birds, Art and Architecture

The Netherlands & Belgium: Birds, Art and Architecture

Peru: Abra Patricia & the Marvelous Spatuletail

Peru: Abra Patricia & the Marvelous Spatuletail

Bhutan

England Birds & Gardens: Southwest

Eastern Australia

Eastern Australia

Group discounts are available for groups of 4 or more booking together on most of our land tours. The group size and applicable discount are: 4 or 5 people, 5% discount; 6 or 7 people, 7% discount; 8 or 9 people, 9% discount; and 10 or more people, 10% discount. These group discounts cannot be used in conjunction with any other Eagle-Eye Tours promotion.

Want a tailor-made trip instead?

Your trip, your way, planned by an expert:.

  • You choose budget, destinations, activities, transport & lodging type
  • Expert designs the itinerary for you, and once approved, takes care of logistics

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Your Next Adventure Awaits.

Formerly known as Fun Times Bus Tours Founded in 2018, now Sublime Tours we strive to provide affordable, safe, and fun travel! We are proud to be the only 5-star travel company in the Kentucky, Ohio and West Virginia area!

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Choose Your Tour Destination

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The Best Bus Tours from Kentucky, Ohio and West Virginia

We provide affordable bus tours from the Tri-State area of Kentucky, Ohio and West Virginia to some of our nation's best destinations including New York City, Washinton DC, Chicago, Nashville, Niagra Falls, and more! All of our trips are taken on luxury motor coaches, including comfortable reclining seats, DVD player, 4G LTE WI-FI, power outlets, and on board restroom.

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Bus Tour Services We Provide

Red eye tours.

Our Red Eye bus tours from Kentucky, Ohio and West Virginia run into the night. You'll want to bring items that make the ride comfortable for optimal sleeping or at least resting.

Church Tours

Let us provide a tour for your youth group or congregation in Kentucky, Ohio and West Virginia to one of many popular religous destinations.

School Tours

We offer a wide arrangement of trips for all ages. Let us take make the students education alot more memorable.

Multi Day Tours

Looking to get out of town for a few days? Our multi day tours are the way to go. We offer multi day trips to popular destinations such as Disney World, New York City, Chicago etc..

Upcoming Bus Trips

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Angel Repayment

Nyc christmas red eye (dec 15th – 17th).

December 15, 2023 - December 17, 2023

NYC Christmas Red Eye (Dec 1st – 3rd)

December 1, 2023 - December 3, 2023

Salem, MA (October)

October 20, 2023 - October 22, 2023

New Orleans Red Eye (August)

August 11, 2023 - August 13, 2023

NYC Summer Red Eye (July)

July 21, 2023 - July 23, 2023

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Book A Bus Tour With Us Today!

Need Help? Give us a call Today! We have avaliable represenatives ready to assist for our bus trips from Kentucky, Ohio and West Virginia to any of our destinstion within the 50 United States.

Shop for Merch and Memorabilia

Purchase apparel and accessories to remember your favorite bus trips with Sublime Tours

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Key West Florida Est. 1828 T-Shirt

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Fort Lauderdale Est. 1911 T-Shirt

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Miami Florida Est. 1896 T-Shirt

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What Our Clients Say About Our Bus Trips & Tours

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This was our first trip with Sublime Tours. We absolutely loved it. It was a long drive to Salem but Kayla made it enjoyable. She was awesome. We will definitely be booking another trip in the future

Facebook Review

This was our first time riding with Sublime Tours! It was absolutely amazing! Kayla was our bus leader and she was absolutely amazing and hilarious! It was also our first time to Salem and it was absolutely everything I had hoped for! We got to experience everything! I will definitely be going again!

First time going on a bus tour and I was kinda worried, but this was better than I expected!! Movie, charging portals and cup holders on the bus! Hostess Kayla did great and loved her personality! Niagara Falls was on my bucket list and loved it there. Can’t wait to go on another one! Thank you for making this affordable!!

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Offering The Cleanest, Safest, Most Kid Friendly Bus Tours from Kentucky, Ohio and West Virginia

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DOWNLOAD OUR APP

The Sublime Tours USA Mobile App is available for iOS on the Apple App Store! You can manage your upcoming trips, reserve seats for new trips and even track the current trip you are on all in one place. Don't miss out - download the app now and begin booking trips right from your phone.

travel eyes tours

Experience the Adventure of a Lifetime: Take a Bus Tour

Have you ever found yourself yearning for an adventure? Do you have a thirst for new experiences and a desire to explore new places? If so, then a bus tour may be just the thing for you! Bus tours are an exciting and affordable way to travel, offering a comfortable ride and the opportunity to […]

Explore Fabulous Destinations with a Bus Trip

Explore Fabulous Destinations with a Bus Trip

Do you ever feel like you need to escape the hustle and bustle of your daily life but don’t have the time or budget for an extravagant vacation? Luckily, you don’t have to travel far to have a sublime experience. Traveling is a great way to relieve stress, experience new cultures, and create memories that […]

Escape the Everyday with Our Bus Tours

Escape the Everyday with Our Bus Tours

Life can be monotonous, and it can take a toll on one’s well-being. Breaking free from the routine and exploring new places is a great way to refresh the mind and rejuvenate the spirit. Bus tours are a great way to escape every day and experience new sights, sounds, and cultures. We believe in providing […]

Frequently Asked Questions

Get answers to common questions about Sublime Tours - bus trips and bus tours

Have you ever wondered what it would be like to go on a bus tour? Maybe you have a loved one who loves to travel and you would like to surprise them with the adventure of a bus tour. Instead of packing a suitcase, buying a plane ticket and renting a car, you can hop on a bus and ride it to your destination. A bus tour is a unique and fun way to go on a weekend getaway, a day trip or vacation. 

Bus tours are affordable, easy and convenient. A Sublime Bus Tours is available for all ages and people from all walks of life love adventuring with us. Some bus tours provide meals during the excursion and some book hotels for you at your destination. Read the details of each event so you know what to expect and plan for your upcoming bus tour event. 

Bus tours are an option for people who don’t want to drive long distances themselves or those who don’t like flying. It’s also the best way to see America’s beautiful landscapes and historical landmarks. Bus tours are fun, exciting and educational. You will learn about the history and culture of an area in the United States or regionally in Ohio, Kentucky, or West Virginia. 

We always here there’s safety in numbers, so you’ll be traveling with other people and may even get to know them. Bus tours are also a great way to meet new people and learn some things about the people on your bus tour. People tend to be relaxed and friendly on bus tours. As a result, you might make some lifelong friends.

Need a vacation? Make reservations with our 5-star, affordable, family-friendly bus tours offering excellence in everything we do. Sublime Bus Tours provides affordable vacation opportunities, day trips, multi-day getaways, and red-eye trips. Additionally Sublime Bus Tours provides group transportation, educational field trips, and charter services.

Unlike a bus tour, a bus trip is simply a round-trip on a bus. As a result, most bus trips cost much less than a plane ticket or an automobile rental, and they are much more environmentally friendly.

Bus trips are perfect for trips within a city, regional area or nearby city or state. The amount of time and money you need to spend on a bus trip depends on the bus trip event and destination. Some bus trips last for less than an hour, and others last for a days or a few days. We offer bus trips to various locations and exciting destinations. 

Whether you want a bus trip in Kentucky with one of our planned vacation adventures or you want to take your youth group to Ark Encounter, we’re here to make it happen for you. Adventure awaits with a bus trip in Ohio to go to Ohio’s Amish Country with one of Sublime Bus Tours planned excursions or utilize our charter services for a corporate team building event. A bus trip in West Virginia allows you the opportunity to see the splendor each season offers with beautiful scenery and fun destination points.

A bus tour in Kentucky is an affordable vacation that you can do alone, with a favorite person, with your family, or a group of people. Each bus tour in Ohio provides an opportunity to learn something new or do something different as we see various destinations throughout the nearby Buckeye state. Our bus tour in West Virginia allows us the chance to show you the best of West Virginia, as we discover more exciting places to visit for people of all ages. 

Make plans now to go on a bus trip and share an unforgettable experience with Sublime Bus Tours. We offer the best in affordable vacations and fun travel opportunities. Sublime Bus Tours is confident you’ll be happy with our service, and that you’ll come back and tell your friends.

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About Our Birding & Wildlife Tours

Our tours are diverse.

We span the globe offering tours that range from being very focused on birds to those of a more general nature that also include lots of local cultural interests. All our guides are not only expert birders but also are appreciative of all nature. Many of our tours spend considerable time looking closely at mammals, plants or butterflies. It is not necessary for you to be an experienced birder; all you need is enthusiasm and our guides will be happy to help you along!

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A TYPICAL DAY WITH ...

A typical day with eagle-eye tours.

Our land tours typically start early, after breakfast at our hotel, to be out when birding is best. Sometimes we are out before breakfast for a quick search for a target bird or mammal. We head out by foot, car or boat to a choice area, maybe forest or maybe a wetland, taking in the sights and sounds of the morning. We move along as a small group, making every effort to ensure that the everyone gets to see the beautiful tanager, or majestic grizzly bear through the spotting scope. We might stop for that important cup of locally grown coffee before heading further down the road to where we saw that great bird building a nest last year.

Lunches are most often in the field, usually at a very good birding spot, with a cold drink or a cup of coffee. We have a chance to share stories and reflect on the morning adventure. After lunch we carry on in an area, maybe returning to the hotel in mid-afternoon for a rest, then a shorter excursion to explore another area. Over our evening meal, we meet as a group to record and discuss what we saw and review the plans for the coming day. Some evenings we may head back out for a night tour to experience the nocturnal world of owls, potoos, frogs and much more.

birding in Costa Rica

FEATURED BIRDS & WILDLIFE

Featured birds & wildlife.

These are the great and often very unique species that we will be looking for. We cannot guarantee that we will see them, only that there is a good chance of seeing them. Beyond these exciting species, we are always on the look out for other surprises-you just never know what we may see!

beautiful hummingbird

TOUR GROUP SIZE

We believe that small groups are essential for a high quality and enjoyable experience. Unless otherwise noted, our land tour groups have a single leader with 4 to 8 people and two leaders with 9 to 12 people.

Birding guide with group in Costa Rica

ACCOMMODATION & ...

Accommodation & transportation.

Typically, our land tours stay in modern, comfortable hotels, but this varies somewhat depending on the tour. On most tours, we stay in beautiful lodges in the forest with trails out the back door. These amazing settings are often a highlight of the tour. In other cases, in order to get to the best locations for birding or wildlife viewing, we may be far away from a modern hotel and the ‘best room in town’ may be more basic. In a few cases, we even stay in tents for the full wilderness experience! For each tour, we have identified the level of accommodation in the tour summary and on the detailed itinerary. If you have any questions about accommodation on a tour, please feel free to ask and we can give you more specifics.

When traveling between birding locations, typically we travel in comfortable vans or buses, often with local drivers who are familiar with the roads and destinations. Usually, there is only one vehicle, as the sizes of our groups are typically small, but occasionally there will be two vehicles that keep in contact with each other by radio. In some tours, we use airplane flights to cover large distances and in a few cases we travel by boat, often with fantastic scenery and wildlife watching along the way!

Guided Birding Tour in Costa Rica

WHAT IS INCLUDED IN THE ...

What is included in the price.

The tour price includes all lodging, ground transportation, in-country air transportation, guide services, park and special entrance fees, ferry costs, boat charter fees and baggage handling for those requiring assistance. Outside Canada and the USA, the tour price includes all meals. Tours in Canada and the USA include breakfasts and lunches, but do not usually include the cost of evening meals. This allows participants maximum flexibility to choose the foods and portion size from familiar menus. Tour fees do not include any alcoholic beverages, transportation to or from the tour departure or conclusion points, passport and visa fees, airport taxes, phone calls, laundry, or other items of a personal nature.

Sometimes there will be additional activities that are not included in the tour price. These will be clearly identified in the tour details.

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BEST-SELLING BIRDING & ...

Best-selling birding & wildlife tours.

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Yury Gagarin Cosmonauts Training Centre (Zvezdny Gorodok - Star Town) (7 hours)

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The Yuri A. Gagarin State Scientific Research-and-Testing Cosmonaut Training Center is a Russian training facility responsible for training cosmonauts for their space missions. It is in Star City of Moscow Oblast, a name which may refer to the facility itself or to its grounds. (Read more about Yury Gagarin Cosmonauts training center )

The secret Star City was built to train Soviet cosmonauts, including Yuri Gagarin, the 1st man in space. Many other famous Russian cosmonauts trained here with Gagarin: German Titov, Valentina Tereshkova, the first female cosmonaut, and Alexei Leonov, the first cosmonaut to exit the spaceship into space . The best facilities were built for them: the world’s largest centrifuge and hydro laboratory. Many cosmonauts from other countries (USA, Japan, Germany and many others) also have trained here together with Soviet Russian cosmonauts. On this Star (Space) City Tour you will see:

  • Models of Soyuz Soviet spacecraft 
  • World's largest centrifuge with an 18-meter radius 
  • Hydro laboratory, with the model of the International Space Station in water, which allows to simulate the weightlessness and many more

Important info

Ask a travel expert.

  • Professional English-speaking guide assistance. Other languages upon request (additional charge may apply)
  • Roundtrip transportation to and from your central hotel (Comfortable car/minivan with A/C)
  • Fully private tour to ensure a personalized experience
  • Entrance fee to Yuri Gagarin Cosmonaut Training Centre (territory)
  • Entrance fee to Yuri Gagarin Cosmonaut Training Centre Museum
  • All taxes, fees and handling charges
  • Food  / Drinks
  • Personal expenses
  • Gratuities to guide/driver (optional)

The tour price already includes all the taxes & fees, you will not see any of them later during the checkout.

Adult pricing applies to all travelers

IMPORTANT! To book the tours please provide us with the copy of your passport (scan of page with photo) and the following information (for all the travellers):

1. Surname / Names (as in passport) 2. Passport number 3. Passport expiry date 4. Date of birth 5. Place of birth (country, city, state) 6. Place of current residence (country, city, state) 7. Citizenship 8. Place of work 9. Position held 

This information is required to get access to the Yuri Gagarin Cosmonaut Training Centre, as per their security policy.

If it took Gagarin 1 year to get prepared, now it takes 7 years to become a cosmonaut, and 50 days to pass  security  check for foreign visitors.

Due to the security policy of the Centre, the guided tours are to be arranged in 50 days before the tour date. Last-minute arrangements are not available. 

Departure: from your Moscow hotel

Return: to your Moscow hotel (or any other place in Moscow that you choose)

Sights included in program

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SPECIAL OFFER US$ 366 Now 5% off

Thanks ! We will reply you in less than 24 hours (usually within 1-2 hours) .

Our flexible payment options allow you to pay 20% of a deposit first and the remaining 80% in 14 days prior to your tour date - payment can be done both online or over the phone. This gives you the peace of mind knowing your spaces are booked on the tours and that you do not miss out on making the most of your time in Russia.

Also you get 5% discount and get the best, top-rated and most experienced and knowledgeable hand-picked tour guide appointed on a priority basis. In our experience, exceptional travel experiences are almost always delivered by exceptional people. With that in mind, we utilize a comprehensive approach to select and employ the best tour guides only. Multilingual and well travelled, each possesses deep insight into the diverse attractions and cultural patterns throughout the region. With us guides undergo a rigorous selection process, achieving outstanding knowledge of local culture and language. Rest assured that the best tour guides only will be working on the tours to give you excellent opportunity to explore the best of the sights during both short and long-term stay in Russia.

Once you complete your reservation, we will send you a booking confirmation email. As the day of the tour approaches, our logistics team will provide you with all relevant information for your tour.

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Here It Comes: Another Hot Summer in Europe

Extreme heat and other weather challenges are in the forecast this summer, and travel advisers, tourists and local officials are getting prepared.

Outside an ancient Roman structure -- the Colosseum in Rome -- a young woman in light summer clothing pours a bottle of water on a man's neck.

By Ceylan Yeğinsu

Europe, the world’s fastest-warming continent, is headed for another scorching summer, meteorologists warn. And travelers, once again, are heading to the hot spots.

Last year, large parts of southern Europe experienced prolonged periods of extreme heat with temperatures reaching 118 degrees and lasting up to two weeks or more. The sweltering conditions upended vacations throughout the summer season as visitors collapsed from heat exhaustion at crowded tourist sites, and wildfires led to evacuations in Greece, Italy and Spain.

“Our computer models are in good agreement that it’s going to be another unusually hot summer, especially during late July through August,” said Todd Crawford, vice president of meteorology at Atmospheric G2 , a weather and climate intelligence firm based in Manchester, N.H. The company expects the magnitude of the heat to be similar to 2022, the hottest summer ever recorded in Europe, with the most anomalous heat projected in the south, in popular countries for travelers like Greece, Croatia and Italy.

Since 1991, Europe has been warming at twice the global average, and 23 of the 30 most severe heat waves in Europe since 1950 have occurred since 2000, with five in the last three years, according to the World Meteorological Organization. The European Union's Copernicus Climate Change Service said several factors contribute to the continent’s vulnerability, including the proportion of European land in the Arctic — the fastest-warming region on earth — and changes in atmospheric circulation.

Yet despite the forecast and increasing trend of excessive summer heat, demand is still high for destinations where temperatures reached 100 degrees or higher in recent summers. Overall, U.S. demand for travel to Europe has increased since last year, according to the travel site Hopper . Rome, Paris and Athens are among the most searched cities out of billions of annual searches for summer vacations on Kayak and Expedia.

“The destinations are being booked again, and what really characterizes people is how quickly they forget and push back negative experiences,” said Stefan Gössling, a professor who researches tourism and climate change at Linnaeus University in Sweden. “People who were caught in life-threatening situations like the wildfires may reconsider where they travel, but for the broader population, we are not yet seeing a big change in decision-making because of the heat.”

Green spaces and heat officers: Cities adapt

As the summer approaches, popular destinations that were hit hard last year are working on protocols to make residents and tourists safe and more comfortable. In 2021, Athens became the first European city to appoint a chief heat officer to oversee those efforts. One of the first steps was to categorize heat waves by severity, like hurricanes, as an early warning system for the potential impact on human health. It is also naming heat waves to emphasize their potential risks.

“Heat is a silent killer and projections for the coming years show that it will only get worse, so we are redesigning our city and making changes to adapt,” said Elissavet Bargianni, the chief heat officer for Athens. Beyond raising awareness, the city plans to implement additional measures, which include increasing the number of green spaces and creating cool public areas.

For visitors planning to visit Athens this summer, Ms. Bargianni advises using the Extrema Global app that calculates the coolest route for getting from point A to point B according to the current temperature and density of the trees. The city already has several air-conditioned cooling centers that are free.

During last July’s heat wave, the Acropolis was forced to close between midday and the early evening to protect visitors after some of them collapsed from the heat. The ministry of culture could make the same decision this year, Ms. Bargianni said, if the heat is severe.

Heat and tours: Travel advisers get creative

Travel advisers are also factoring heat into flexible itineraries. In cities like Rome, Barcelona, Paris and Athens, they are scheduling sightseeing in the cooler morning and evening hours, and arranging air-conditioned transportation.

“We tend to do activities and tours in the morning, then stop for lunch, and in the mid- to late afternoon you either go back to the hotel to sit by the pool or go to the beach,” said Gary Portuesi, a co-managing partner at Authentic Explorations, a New York-based travel company that specializes in Europe.

If clients insist on taking midday tours, the company will work with local partners to make the experience as comfortable as possible. “If there is a six-hour tour, for example, they will cut it down to four and take them to an air-conditioned gelateria for a break,” Mr. Portuesi said.

It is not only the heat that travel advisers have had to grapple with, but also other unpredictable weather events. Last summer, while some parts of the continent were hot and dry, others were cold and wet. “There was a period during the summer peak when it was hotter in the Dolomites than it was in Sicily,” said Jennifer Schwartz, the Italy-based partner of Authentic Explorations. “The most important aspect of our job is to set expectations about the variables and guide people instead of saying it’s too hot, don’t come.”

Heat insurance?

To help travelers book with more confidence, Sensible Weather, a Los Angeles-based start-up that provides a weather guarantee for vacations and outdoor experiences, has recently added high heat protection to its coverage. When booking through a Sensible partner, travelers will be able to add daily protection and if the temperature exceeds a threshold — usually set between 90 and 100 degrees — they can claim reimbursement. Currently, the insurance is only available in the United States, but, the company said, will gradually be rolled out in Europe and elsewhere.

“The goal of the company is to cover everything that can ruin a trip, and usually it’s rain, but temperature is number two,” said Nick Cavanaugh, the company’s founder who was developing the product while caught in a heat wave in Barcelona last year.

Customers do not need to cancel their trip in order to be reimbursed. Those on package tours are reimbursed for the average daily rate of their entire trip for each day that surpassed the heat threshold. “Our customers can still go on their vacations, but if it’s too hot for some hours of the day and unpleasant to go outside, you can hang out in the air-conditioning and we will reimburse you,” Mr. Cavanaugh said.

Heading to cooler climes

Some travelers who were caught in Europe’s heat waves last summer are seeking cooler destinations this summer in places like Norway, Slovenia, Switzerland, Sweden and Finland. Flight searches for Tromsø, Norway, for example, have increased by 85 percent over 2023, according to Kayak.

Joanna Walker, a 43-year-old recruiter from Boston, was caught in a blistering heat wave with her family in Italy last July and vowed never to return during the summer. She said she had been advised to travel during the shoulder season, but couldn’t because her children were in school.

“We couldn’t even cool off in the pool because there was no shade and the water was hot,” Ms. Walker recalled. “We wanted to see the sights in Florence and have long lunches in the piazzas, but instead we were stuck in our overpriced villas under the air-conditioning.”

This year her family has booked a tour of Norway’s fjords in July, where temperatures linger in the high 60s. “It’s going to be a different vibe to Italy for sure, lots of nature and not as much history, but at least it will be cool enough to experience something.”

Follow New York Times Travel on Instagram and sign up for our weekly Travel Dispatch newsletter to get expert tips on traveling smarter and inspiration for your next vacation. Dreaming up a future getaway or just armchair traveling? Check out our 52 Places to Go in 2024 .

Ceylan Yeginsu is a travel reporter for The Times who frequently writes about the cruise industry and Europe, where she is based. More about Ceylan Yeğinsu

Explore Our Weather Coverage

Extreme Weather Maps: Track the possibility of extreme weather in the places that are important to you .

Heat Safety: Heat waves are becoming increasingly common across the world. Here is how to keep yourself and your loved ones cool, hydrated and healthy .

Tornado Alerts: A tornado warning demands instant action. Here’s what to do if one comes your wa y.

Flash Flooding: Fast rising water can be deadly. Here’s what to do if you’re caught off guard , and how to prepare for a future flooding event.

Evacuating Pets: When disaster strikes, household pets’ lives are among the most vulnerable. You can avoid the worst by planning ahead .

Climate Change: What’s causing global warming? How can we fix it? Our F.A.Q. tackles your climate questions big and small .

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Out of the Centre

Savvino-storozhevsky monastery and museum.

Savvino-Storozhevsky Monastery and Museum

Zvenigorod's most famous sight is the Savvino-Storozhevsky Monastery, which was founded in 1398 by the monk Savva from the Troitse-Sergieva Lavra, at the invitation and with the support of Prince Yury Dmitrievich of Zvenigorod. Savva was later canonised as St Sabbas (Savva) of Storozhev. The monastery late flourished under the reign of Tsar Alexis, who chose the monastery as his family church and often went on pilgrimage there and made lots of donations to it. Most of the monastery’s buildings date from this time. The monastery is heavily fortified with thick walls and six towers, the most impressive of which is the Krasny Tower which also serves as the eastern entrance. The monastery was closed in 1918 and only reopened in 1995. In 1998 Patriarch Alexius II took part in a service to return the relics of St Sabbas to the monastery. Today the monastery has the status of a stauropegic monastery, which is second in status to a lavra. In addition to being a working monastery, it also holds the Zvenigorod Historical, Architectural and Art Museum.

Belfry and Neighbouring Churches

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Located near the main entrance is the monastery's belfry which is perhaps the calling card of the monastery due to its uniqueness. It was built in the 1650s and the St Sergius of Radonezh’s Church was opened on the middle tier in the mid-17th century, although it was originally dedicated to the Trinity. The belfry's 35-tonne Great Bladgovestny Bell fell in 1941 and was only restored and returned in 2003. Attached to the belfry is a large refectory and the Transfiguration Church, both of which were built on the orders of Tsar Alexis in the 1650s.  

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To the left of the belfry is another, smaller, refectory which is attached to the Trinity Gate-Church, which was also constructed in the 1650s on the orders of Tsar Alexis who made it his own family church. The church is elaborately decorated with colourful trims and underneath the archway is a beautiful 19th century fresco.

Nativity of Virgin Mary Cathedral

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The Nativity of Virgin Mary Cathedral is the oldest building in the monastery and among the oldest buildings in the Moscow Region. It was built between 1404 and 1405 during the lifetime of St Sabbas and using the funds of Prince Yury of Zvenigorod. The white-stone cathedral is a standard four-pillar design with a single golden dome. After the death of St Sabbas he was interred in the cathedral and a new altar dedicated to him was added.

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Under the reign of Tsar Alexis the cathedral was decorated with frescoes by Stepan Ryazanets, some of which remain today. Tsar Alexis also presented the cathedral with a five-tier iconostasis, the top row of icons have been preserved.

Tsaritsa's Chambers

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The Nativity of Virgin Mary Cathedral is located between the Tsaritsa's Chambers of the left and the Palace of Tsar Alexis on the right. The Tsaritsa's Chambers were built in the mid-17th century for the wife of Tsar Alexey - Tsaritsa Maria Ilinichna Miloskavskaya. The design of the building is influenced by the ancient Russian architectural style. Is prettier than the Tsar's chambers opposite, being red in colour with elaborately decorated window frames and entrance.

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At present the Tsaritsa's Chambers houses the Zvenigorod Historical, Architectural and Art Museum. Among its displays is an accurate recreation of the interior of a noble lady's chambers including furniture, decorations and a decorated tiled oven, and an exhibition on the history of Zvenigorod and the monastery.

Palace of Tsar Alexis

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The Palace of Tsar Alexis was built in the 1650s and is now one of the best surviving examples of non-religious architecture of that era. It was built especially for Tsar Alexis who often visited the monastery on religious pilgrimages. Its most striking feature is its pretty row of nine chimney spouts which resemble towers.

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Avoid These Tourist Traps In London And Visit These Destinations Instead

O ne of the world's greatest cities, London is packed with tourist attractions so impressive that you'll want to add them all to your itinerary. From the Tower of London to Buckingham Palace to the Churchill War Rooms, the list of unmissable landmarks seems endless. Don't worry, though -- it's possible to visit most of them in just a two-day trip . When you're on a tight schedule, it's important to avoid time- and money-wasting tourist traps in favor of visiting sites that are worthy of your attention. 

Whether it's an overrated and overpriced wax museum, a kitschy dungeon experience, or a super crowded viewpoint, there are many places to avoid visiting in the U.K.'s heady capital. The confusing part? Some of them top multiple lists of must-see attractions. That's where we come in. 

As someone who lived in this captivating English city for six years, I have first-hand knowledge of the biggest tourist traps to avoid when traveling to London. Plus, I can offer more impressive (and often less costly) destinations to visit instead. Don't want to take my word for it? No problem. I combined my first-hand knowledge with reviews and suggestions from other locals to create this list.

Read more: 50 Underrated Tourist Destinations Around The World

Skip Hop-On Hop-Off Bus Tours And Ride A London Bus

While hop-on hop-off bus tours can be a convenient way to explore a big city, they often come with a hefty price tag. If the tour is based in London, you can expect to pay over $50 per adult for a one-day pass. Instead, board a London bus, which will cost less than $7 for a day of travel. Bus fare for one ride is about $2 and the daily cap is under $7. To pay for their ride, visitors must use a contactless card or an Oyster Card, the visitor's version of which can be purchased online and mailed to your home before you leave.

Double-decker London buses offer spectacular city views, with many routes passing right by London's landmark attractions. One of our faves is the historic Routemaster Bus 15, which we suggest boarding at the Tower of London. Hop on at Great Tower Street (Stop TT) and ride west to Charing Cross Station. Be sure to sit up top for the best views along this heritage route -– you can't miss St. Paul's Cathedral and Trafalgar Square. 

Bus 24 is another great option for sightseers. Hop on at Victoria Station and ride it to Camden High Street. Along the way, you'll pass Westminster Abbey, the Horse Guard's Parade, Trafalgar Square, and Downing Street. Grab a bite at Camden Market when you disembark or stay on until you reach Hampstead Heath where you can catch unbeatable views of the city.

Skip Madame Tussauds And Visit Buckingham Palace

It may tout itself as a top London attraction, but Madame Tussauds would be more honest if they said they were the top rip-off site. Booking in advance will save some money -- the standard online rate for an adult begins at just over $47 versus the walk-up price, which begins at almost $60. But that's still a lot of quid to dish out for wandering around an overcrowded and noisy space filled with okay-ish wax replicas of A- and B-list celebs. Yes, it's fun to take photos with the royal family and fool friends into thinking you met them IRL, but is it worth it? We don't think so.

Instead, we suggest visiting Buckingham Palace for a potential King Charles III sighting. Realistically, you probably won't spy a royal outside the palace, but at least you'll see a historic monument up close. Celebrities more your thing? Book a reservation at one of the city's most popular restaurants. Chiltern Firehouse has hosted acting greats Jennifer Lawrence and Bradley Cooper as well as soccer superstar David Beckham. 34 Mayfair is another good bet for great food and celeb spotting. Imelda Staunton and royal family members have all eaten here.

Skip Changing Of The Guard And Visit The Queen's Gallery

While you should add Buckingham Palace to your list of must-see London tourist attractions, you may want to avoid a visit during the Changing of the Guard. This formal ceremony marks the change between the old guard (on-duty soldiers) and new guard (soldiers taking over duty) for the royal palaces. Marching with a band from Wellington Barracks to the Palace, the new guard will arrive at the palace at about 10:45 a.m. A well-known event, this is a big tourist draw, which means you can expect hefty crowds queuing up an hour or more in advance, as well as pickpockets who arrive to take advantage of the chaotic atmosphere. This tourist trap, which takes place every Monday, Wednesday, Friday, and Sunday, is one you'll be happy to miss. Sadly, watching this famed ceremony these days feels more like witnessing an overhyped marching band than it does an esteemed historic ritual.

Instead, ditch the crowds and glimpse art from the Royal Collection in the Queen's Gallery or visit the Royal Mews , where you can see the royal stables and the 260-year-old Gold State Coach used at King Charles III's Coronation. The Mews are open Thursday through Monday from early March to early November. Neighboring St. James Park is another interesting place to visit. One of London's famed Royal Parks, it is bordered by three palaces and boasts a fabulous view of Buckingham Palace in particular.

Skip Platform 9 ¾ At King's Cross Station And Visit Warner Brothers Studio Tour London

If you're traveling with a Harry Potter-obsessed kid, you may want to visit Platform 9 ¾ at King's Cross Station. But if you're alone, or with other adults who couldn't care less, we advise you to skip this overrated tourist trap. If you're already planning to be in King's Cross Station and have time to scope out this attraction, that's one thing; but if you're traveling there with the sole purpose of visiting this site, think twice. 

Set between platforms 9 and 10 (obvs) this point of interest includes nothing but a brick wall denoted with a sign. Stuck into the wall is part of a trolley loaded with fake suitcases and an empty owl cage. Those hoping for a quick photo and to score some Potter swag will be pleased;  the Harry Potter Shop at Platform 9 ¾ is open daily, even on bank holidays, and it sells everything from wands to clothes to makeup. 

For those who'd rather have an unforgettable and truly magical Harry Potter experience, though, head to Warner Brothers Studio Tour London -- The Making of Harry Potter in nearby Leavesden. Instead of merely looking at a wall, visitors can board the Hogwarts Express, "fly" on a broomstick, walk through the Great Hall, and explore the Forbidden Forest. Step foot in Diagon Alley, try a Butterbeer, or check out some of the film's famous props and costumes. You won't be sorry you visited.

Skip London Dungeon And Visit The Tower Of London

No matter how much the kids beg you to visit the London Dungeon, stay strong and just say "no." This kitschy tourist trap is a waste of your hard-earned money (tickets start at over $37 for adults) and it's so hokey you'll roll your eyes more times than you can count on both hands. This pitiful attraction is peppered with costume-clad actors who like to scream and cackle and its two rides (the Drop Dead: Drop Ride and the Tyrant Boat Ride) will make you wish you were at Walt Disney World; even "It's a Small World" would be more enjoyable. An escape room has also been added to increase the venue's income stream –- it costs $153 for a private game for six people.

Want a historic experience with a side of chills? Head to the Tower of London instead. There, you can tour the Torture at the Tower Exhibition, where you can get up close and personal with the stretching machine (a.k.a. the rack) and other ancient torture devices in the Lower Wakefield Tower. The Bloody Tower is another point of interest you won't want to miss. The most infamous prison on the grounds, this is where you'll learn about the alleged murder of two young princes -– Edward V and his little brother Richard –- by their uncle, Richard III.

Skip The London Bridge Experience And Visit Churchill War Rooms

Looking for a good spooking? Do yourself a favor and skip The London Bridge Experience. A tourist trap designed to bring the city's macabre history to life with the help of actors with a penchant for jump scares, you can expect to meet zombie-like versions of ghastly heavyweights Jack the Ripper and William Wallace during your visit. Tickets cost about $37 for the experience, which takes anywhere between 35 and 50 minutes. That means you could be spending more than $1 a minute. Entry fees also include a trip to the London Tombs, deemed the U.K.'s "best scare attraction," according to their site . Zombified dentists, doctors, and creepy clowns await visitors in the lower vaults of this venue, ready to pounce and scream in your face.

Instead, we suggest visiting the Churchill War Rooms. Also located underground, this fascinating historic facility is part of the Imperial War Museums. Located in the basement of Whitehall, this once-secret complex was used by former Prime Minister Winston Churchill, top government ministers, and military planners to conduct meetings and develop plans during the country's war effort during World War II. Known as the Cabinet War Rooms, this clandestine spot was used daily during the war, until August 16, 1945. Or experience that stomach drop feeling by walking the glass floors at Tower Bridge. Set nearly 138 feet above the Thames, the views are both terrifying and impressive. Tickets cost under $16 per adult. 

Skip The Sherlock Holmes Museum And Visit The Sherlock Holmes Pub

We don't recommend visiting the Sherlock Holmes Museum unless you have a detective-obsessed kid who doesn't realize that the famed character is fictional. Set inside a Georgian townhouse at 221B Baker Street in Marylebone, this four-story museum has been open since 1990. Inside lie antique furnishings mentioned in the books and pretty creepy-looking mannequins. Tickets cost over $21 which isn't exorbitant, especially for London, but considering you won't be there long (the museum's quite small), this seems a bit of a waste.

Instead, head to The Sherlock Holmes  in St James. Self-described as a "Victorian-themed public house," this watering hole features a recreated version of the famed fictional detective's apartment upstairs. The entire pub is dotted with references to Sir Arthur Conan Doyle's beloved books, making it easy to feel as if you're within the pages. Plus, there's a beer garden –- the museum certainly doesn't have one of those.

Skip The SEA Life London Aquarium And Visit The London Zoo

You'll find everything you'd expect to see at the SEA Life London Aquarium. From penguins to sharks to turtles, they're all there. And as far as aquariums go, this is a pretty good one. But when you're in one of the world's greatest cities that lies on the banks of a river, not an ocean, there are plenty of better things to see. Standard tickets to the Sea Life London Aquarium cost $24 online or $51 at the door. Again, that's pretty on par for London attractions, however, it's a steep price to pay for a tourist trap. 

Instead, visit London Zoo in Regent's Park. The oldest scientific zoo in the world, this family-friendly attraction was opened in 1828 for fellows of the Zoological Society of London. In 1847, the public was invited to visit. Today, the zoo is home to 14,0000 animals including a giant, 425-pound silverback gorilla, Sumatran tigers, and Linne's two-toed sloths. While tickets aren't cheap (an adult will cost about $40 to visit on a weekday), it's easy to spend a whole day here. Or, if you aren't willing to part with that much cash, visit the smaller, and lesser-known, Battersea Park Children's Zoo . Adult tickets are more reasonably priced, at $16. There are over 100 animals at this little zoo, including wallabies, meerkats, otters, and lemurs, and plenty of opportunities to interact with animals like coatis, donkeys, and goats.

Skip The Shard And Visit Level 10 At The Tate Modern

There's no denying that The Shard is impressive. In fact, it's one of the most spectacular buildings in the world . The viewing platform was opened by the queen on February 1, 2013, with the main restaurants (Aqua, Oblix, and Hutong) following suit that summer. Set across the Thames from another bucket-list-worthy London building, the Gherkin, this engineering masterpiece towers 1,016 feet above the city and boasts 11,000 glass panels. 

Dubbed a "vertical city," there's plenty to do inside, like spend serious coin on a meal with a view, or zip up one of the 44 elevators to the viewing platform. That 360-degree view will cost you, though -- about $36, or more if you add a glass of champagne. And if you visit on a day that's rainy or misty (honestly, London is often both of those things), you're basically paying for a ride in a lift.

Instead, head to Level 10 at Tate Modern, where you can enjoy a drink or snack (including sandwiches and salads) while ogling the impressive view of the Thames, St. Paul's Cathedral, the BT Tower, and Blackfriar's Bridge. You won't have to pay a thing unless you choose to grab a bite or a warm cuppa. The Skygarden at 20 Fenchurch Street is another must-visit for a free skyline vista. The highest public garden in London, this leafy space is as stunning as its views are remarkable.

Skip The London Eye And Visit Hamstead Heath

We are well aware that some of you will disagree with this addition to our list of tourist traps to avoid when traveling to London, but hear us out. Yes, the London Eye is iconic. Yes, it offers fantastic views of the city. And yes, it's deemed a top London attraction you won't want to miss . That said, visiting this popular landmark can cause more headaches than enjoyment. First created as a temporary point of interest, this 443-foot-tall, "cantilevered observation wheel" is the largest of its kind in the world, according to its website . And if you catch a ride on one of its 32 pods on a sunny day, you can see up to 25 miles in all directions. The problem is that thousands of others have the same idea, which means you could stand in line for more than two hours on a particularly busy day. Standard tickets start at over $32 online or more than $57 for a walk-up.

Instead, visit Hampstead Heath for a unique city view you probably never knew existed. Parliament Hill stands over 321 feet tall, making it one of the highest natural points in the city. If the weather is ideal, you can see to the Gherkin, St. Paul's Cathedral, and the Houses of Parliament. Speaking of the Gherkin, it's another great spot to enjoy unparalleled views. Grab a drink and snack at Iris Bar at Searcys at the Gherkin , then relax with a side order of stunning vistas.

Skip Harrods And Visit Peter Jones And Liberty

Harrods is to London as the Colosseum is to Rome -– a historic icon that's become synonymous with the city. The world's most famous luxury department store, this Knightsbridge institution is impossible to miss -– it's eight floors tall and an entire block long, not to mention over one million square feet in size. Inside, you'll find 20 restaurants, a beauty salon, a bank, and 300 separate departments selling over 5,000 brands. You'll also see price tags so high you might suffer sticker shock. Due to its notoriety, Harrods is often packed with tourists, making it difficult to enjoy the plush interior.

If you're hoping to shop during your London holiday, there are plenty of excellent places to visit instead. Sloane Square is home to the Peter Jones & Partners department store. Owned by John Lewis, this vast shop is filled with enough enticing merchandise that you'll find it tough to leave empty-handed. Grab a bite at The Top Floor Restaurant (on the 6 th floor) for captivating views of Chelsea and beyond.

Liberty is another recognizable landmark located on Regent Street. A heritage-listed building; this stunning Tudor-style store is as beautiful outside as it is indoors. Built between 1922 and 1924, it is worth a visit, if only to admire the impressive architectural features (the price tags here are also quite shocking).

Our Ranking Methodology

Having lived in London for six years with two young children, I visited pretty much every tourist attraction the city has. From renowned points of interest like the Tower of London to remarkable museums, I've seen the top sightseeing destinations multiple times, including many kitschy tourist traps I wish I'd skipped. To create this list, I used my experiences at these attractions to determine which locales are tourist traps that should be avoided and I included alternatives that are more than worthy of your time and money. I also consulted reviews from other locals and travelers, as well as their tips, to ensure the list is solid.

Read the original article on Explore .

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Where to watch movies for free in Moscow this summer

People watching a movie in a Pioner 24-hour open-air cinema in Gorky Park.

People watching a movie in a Pioner 24-hour open-air cinema in Gorky Park.

Temporary cinemas will be popping up across Moscow very soon, starting from July 16. All of the spots are brilliant examples of either constructivist or avant-garde architecture, so expect striking settings. A selection of classic Soviet films will be aired using cinematic equipment from the last century. All the screenings are free although online registration is required beforehand, while there will also be guided tours of the spaces, organized by the “Moscow through the Engineer's Eyes” company.

Registration will be open soon at mos-kino.ru

Bread factory

Bread factory 9  / Bezik (CC BY-SA)

Following the success of former factories transformed into art spaces (VinZavod, Arma, Trekhgornaya manufacture), Khlebzavod (“bread factory”) No 9 is one newly opened joint that is attracting creative types from all over the city. The movie Time! Forward! will be screened in the building’s boiler room on July 16. It follows workers from the Magnitogorsk Iron and Steel Works, one of the largest steel companies in Russia, and is based on a novel by Soviet writer Valentin Kataev.

What’s more, Khlebzavod is a monument to constructivist architecture. Where better to watch such a film?

Novodmitrovskaya St. 1

Roof of the Narkomfin Building

Narkomfin Building / Kirill Zykov/Moskva Agency

The Narkomfin Building was originally designed to house high ranking employees at the Commissariat of Finance. It was built by architects Moisei Ginsburg and Ignaty Milinis. Also a fine example of constructivism, it’s currently in a state of disrepair, locked down, and fairly difficult to get into - which is like a red flag to a bull for more adventurous types.

However, on July 30 the place will be opened up and people will be welcomed onto the roof to watch the film Faith and Truth.

Novinsky Blvrd . 25b1

Khrushchyovka courtyard

Cheremushki district / Alexander Scherbak/TASS

A courtyard located in the 9th experimental block of the Novye Cheremushki district will turn into an outdoor cinema this summer. Cheremushki is the first district where Soviet leader Nikita Khrushchyov decided to build the iconic Khrushchyovka apartment blocks in the 1950s. As a result, thousands of Russians were given their own pads after decades living huddled together in communal apartments known as kommunalka .

Cheremushki is the adapted film-version of Dmitry Shostakovich’s operetta and will be shown here on Aug. 6. The organizers of the multiple screenings - the Moskino cinema chain - say they will revive the Soviet tradition of neighbors meeting in courtyards for a good old tongue wag. There will also be a guided tour of the block.

Address to be confirmed at mos-kino.ru

Pioneers Palace

Pioneers Palace / Legion Media

If you want a slice of the postwar Soviet avant-garde style, head to the Pioneers Palace at Vorobyevy Gory. Pioneers Palaces were youth centers for sport, creativity, and hobbies for Young Pioneers (a communist organization for children) during the Soviet Union. There were dance classes, martial arts, drawing, and many other activities.

To Love a Man , a movie about two young architects building a new town in Siberia, will be shown here on Aug. 22. There will also be a lecture about building experiments in the 20th century.

Kosygina St. 17b2

A secret place

A secret place / Press photo

The last cinema venue remains a secret. On Aug. 27 there will be a screening, but at the moment no one knows where. Information will appear on mos-kino.ru but those who attend all four screenings above will be able to guess the last location.

A talk about architecture and Soviet history also will be hosted here.

Read more: Relics of Constructivist Architecture in post-Soviet countries

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Rich Chinese millennials are creating new status symbols. Here are 11 ways they are redefining luxury.

  • Chinese millennials are redefining luxury status symbols by refocusing on quiet luxury and personal style.
  • Solo travel, pre-loved luxury fashion, and fine dining are also gaining popularity.
  • As this cohort approaches big life milestones, here's how their approach to luxury differs from their parents.

Insider Today

Millennials , aged between their late 20s and early 40s, are approaching the age for major life milestones: they've gained some ground in their careers, some are thinking about settling down with a family, and others have enough disposable income to splash on designer goods.

For the wealthiest among them, luxury status symbols can be a way to showcase your success to others. Rich millennials in the US have been known to splash out on their pets, new laundry rooms, and expensive coffee machines.

And over in China, rich millennials have their own ideas of what counts as a luxury status symbol. They've followed suit in embracing quiet luxury — expensive goods that aren't clocked by the untrained eye — and some are opting to have fewer kids to focus on their careers and are traveling solo.

Here are 11 luxury status symbols for Chinese millennials:

1. They've moved past allegiance with specific brands

Garish Gucci prints and flashy Louis Vuitton logos are no longer a top priority for luxury customers looking to display their style as a status symbol. These millennials are less loyal to specific brands than their parent's generation.

They "seek products and experiences that not only reflect their personal style and aspirations but also resonate with their cultural identity and values," Daniel Langer, a Pepperdine University luxury professor and CEO of the luxury strategy firm Équité, told Business Insider.

Customers want more personal items that reflect their values over a generic symbol of spending power.

It's more about an "inward feeling rather than an outward projection," said Amrita Banta, managing director of luxury insights firm Agility Research & Strategy.

2. Less loud luxury, more quiet luxury

Those who buy from designer brands are doing so more subtly. "Laoqianfeng" — a concept similar to the Western old-money aesthetic — has become a favorite of rich millennials in China. It refers to looking put together in an effortless way.

"This younger cohort is inclined to convey their elevated societal standing in understated ways," Elisa Harca, CEO of consultancy firm Red Ant Asia, told Business Insider.

Harca points to brands like The Row , which exemplify this style. The brand, founded by former child stars Mary-Kate and Ashley Olsen, prioritizes an anti-trendiness, focusing instead on simplicity, style, and comfort.

Even though the clothes may look understated, the key is in the details. Wealthy customers still want a high standard of customer service through talking one-on-one to sales assistance or being in contact with brands over WeChat to hear about exclusive products, Harca said.

Expect to see these rich millennials mixing luxury casual wear like T-shirts and sneakers with traditional luxury brands, Banta told BI.

3. Group travel is out, solo travel is in

Travel has also changed for today's rich millennials compared to their parents.

When their parts were growing up, China's world tourism was still in its infancy, which meant that organized tour groups were the travel option of choice for those with money. They were attracted to the safety and accessibility of traveling in a big group, said Harca.

But now younger Chinese people, especially those already well-traveled or have studied abroad, are opting for solo travel or traveling with small groups of friends.

Adventurous and immersive experiences to one-of-a-kind destinations are top of the travel list for this cohort — think glamping safaris and trips to Antarctica or Iceland , Banta told BI.

4. Pre-Loved Luxury Fashion

Pre-loved luxury fashion has taken off in the West as a more sustainable way to shop for designer brands. And many rich millennials in China are following suit.

For one, it's more sustainable . Reflecting your values in your purchases is becoming more important for customers, and as such, the environmental impact of the textile industry is a great concern for those buying clothes, said Olivia Plotnick, founder of Wai Social, a Shanghai-based social media agency.

So, luxury consumers are turning to secondhand clothes using platforms like Vestiaire Collective, The RealReal, and Mercari.

For some Chinese people, secondhand clothing items are associated with superstitions of bad luck and negative energy. But these beliefs hold less weight for younger generations, Harca told BI.

An added bonus of vintage and secondhand clothes is that they can be more individual than clothes found on the rack. Finding unique pre-loved clothes is a way to express individuality through fashion choices, Harca said. These items can have a more personal story behind them.

5. Buying products that come with an experience

Social media and the internet have made it easier to identify highly coveted items, so for luxury consumers, these brands are becoming too conspicuous.

Related stories

Instead, they're looking for ways to make these things more individual.

An exec at drinks conglomerate Diageo told BI about how the company is trying to appeal to this type of consumer as its Asian whisky market grows. It's doing so by investing in reopening distilleries like Port Ellen off the coast of Scotland to offer premium whisky tours .

"It's not enough to just say this is 45-year-old Port Ellen cask. They want to say they journeyed to Scotland, tested all these different whiskies, and to tell you about the experiences they had," said Ewan Andrew, Diageo president of global supply chain & procurement.

There are two main reasons customers are drawn to these experiential goods, according to Langer.

First, some people are attracted to brands that make them feel like part of an exclusive club and find their egos satisfied by VIP experiences. Another group finds more satisfaction in the authenticity and individuality of these experiences over overt displays of wealth.

6. Fine dining in Michelin-starred and Black Pearl-rated restaurants

Another emerging hobby among this affluent group is enjoying the burgeoning fine dining industry.

The Michelin Guide , which entered China in 2016, attracted some criticism for being too Western-centric, according to the South China Morning Post . That's where the Black Pearl guide comes in: it was set up in 2018 by Meituan , a Chinese food delivery giant, to appeal to Chinese consumers from a Chinese perspective.

But both guides are still popular with luxury consumers, according to Banta. These customers like to tick off highly rated restaurants in their own city and wherever they travel.

7. Choosing not to have kids

There's also been a cultural shift in societal attitudes toward marriage and parenthood, changing how wealthy millennials approach life milestones.

Some see having kids as a bad investment . Instead, this generation is more inclined to prioritize personal freedom, career development , and individual pursuits over starting a family, according to Harca.

8. Those who want kids are keen to maintain a level of luxury after giving birth

Luxury postnatal retreats have become popular with wealthy millennials, and some can cost over 200,000 yuan ($28,000) a month, Banta told BI.

Some new mothers in China have been flocking to these luxury post-natal retreats in Singapore, Bloomberg reported . The centers offer around-the-clock care for new parents including lactation consultants, nannies, and chefs.

The custom of staying inside your home for a month to recuperate after childbirth has been documented as early as 960 in China.

Modern iterations of these retreats are taking the concept to new, luxurious heights.

Some of these retreats in Singapore, like Clover Suites, offer month-long trips for new mothers, which include aesthetics clinics, herbal baths, and in-house physiotherapy centers. At Clover Suites, new mothers can expect restaurant-style meals and can enjoy some rest while nurses or nannies take care of their children.

And when they come back home, they're sure to spend on expensive luxury cots too, Banta added.

9. Splashing out on luxury home decor

Chinese millennials are investing their money in luxury home décor to elevate their living spaces and enhance their quality of life, Plotnick told BI.

She added that brands like Tom Dixon and Muuto are popular choices for furniture, lighting, and home accessories in China.

"They are designing every room with painstaking detail," according to Banta.

10. Splurging on wellness

Luxury wellness and self-care products, such as skincare, beauty , and wellness supplements , are all gaining popularity among health-conscious Chinese millennials, Potnick told BI.

Potnick pointed to one popular brand, mesoestetic , which offers aesthetic treatments like peels and facial needling.

The pandemic spurred the wellness trend, particularly for Gen Z and millennials.

Post COVID, people became more interested in wellness supplements to aid diet and improve health, Gabriella Tegen, cofounder and CEO of e-commerce subscription platform Smartrr, previously told BI . And getting regular aesthetic treatments has become a top priority for affluent millennials, Banta told BI.

McKinsey 2024 wellness report showed that 85% of its survey participants from China had purchased more in the longevity and healthy-aging category in the past year than in prior years, with Gen Z and millennials leading the charge over older generations.

11. Brands that stand for something

This cohort of wealthy millennials in China is more concerned about shopping from sustainable brands .

Eco-friendly materials and sustainable production are an increasingly important consideration for luxury purchases, Plotnick said.

Independent luxury brands that offer more authentic products and those that draw on cultural heritage are also highly in demand, she said.

Watch: Why the retail industry has its eye on Gen Z

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Third Eye Blind's Stephan Jenkins Would Change 'One Thing' If He Had a Do-Over: 'I Would Name My Band Doja Cat' (Exclusive)

The frontman details his group's upcoming Summer Gods Tour, his take on hip-hop feuds and how streaming has made Third Eye Blind "bigger than we've ever been"

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Travis Shinn

  • Third Eye Blind will hit the road on the Summer Gods Tour starting next month
  • Frontman Stephan Jenkins talks to PEOPLE about "being in an exchange" with his audience
  • The musician says he and the band are "dedicated to the magic" of live music

Third Eye Blind has spent the last three decades touring the world, welcoming new listeners with each of the band's seven studio albums and retaining the attention of fans who've stuck around since its inception.

But if you ask frontman Stephan Jenkins , the group has never quite experienced the level of fanfare it's experiencing now — largely thanks to the accessibility of streaming, and truthfully, the kids who are finally giving Third Eye Blind a spin for the very first time,

"There's some stuff that the gods of the record industry are telling us is what is supposed to matter. But for the most part, everybody's just wandering around picking their own berries, and I think it's great. And for us, it's great because we're bigger than we've ever been," Jenkins, 59, tells PEOPLE.

"I have a bigger audience than I've ever had. I'm selling more tickets than I've ever sold. The thing that excites me is that without having to be participating, without having to go through the conduit of the industry asking permission, I am in an exchange with my audience through my own work," Jenkins adds. "I think that's every artists' dream."

To give new listeners — and of course, those who've been rocking with the band since its 1997 self-titled debut LP — something to look forward to this summer, Third Eye Blind will be embarking on its Summer Gods Tour with Yellowcard and ARIZONA from June through August.

Ahead of his latest string of shows, Jenkins detailed his ever-changing (and ever-growing) fanbase, his hope for better beats in certain hip-hop feuds, wishing he could've instead named his band " Doja Cat ," and how exactly he manages to break Third Eye Blind's discography down into one 95-minute set each night (spoiler, it's not easy).

John Medina/Getty

You wrote on Instagram that you needed a summer tour more than ever this year. Why is that?

I wasn't just saying that. That wasn't just a marketing catchphrase, although I'm down for a catchphrase. It comes from, I've never seen such a sense of polarity in our world. There is no basis for collectivity. One of the ingredients for collectivity has to be joy, I believe. Every time I do a tour, I ask myself, "Why? Why is this required? Why do you need this? What makes this essential to see this tour?" The reason for this tour is joy.

When you think back to moments of joy, do you have a favorite summer show that you've attended in your life?

I got to go to the first Lollapalooza and I was thinking, "Wow, this is a festival that's really for me." I remember going to one of the early Coachellas before it was more about pop, and fashion, and sleeping out on a grass, out on a tent. I really loved that.

I remember years later playing Lollapalooza and there was this guy who was in a wheelchair and he was way, way in the back. There must have been 70,000 people in our audience. I think that was actually the estimate. He was crowd-surfing in his wheelchair. He was being crowd-surfed forward and they got him all the way up to the barricade, and the guys at the barricade were going to put him down and send him forward. I said, "No, let him up. Let him up." He got put up on the stage, so he went all the way from all the way to the back, crowd-surfed in a wheelchair, so they passed a wheelchair all the way across the audience. In all the divisiveness in our society, this was our audience's collective retort. It moved me and it stayed with me.

You'll be returning to a few different venues on tour this summer. When you go back to a spot that you've played multiple times, do you feel a sense of connection to it?

Yes, but a lot of times you don't remember. You show up at the back, you wake up in the back of a venue and it's concrete. And you're just in your tour bus and you walk out in the morning light, scratching your butt in your boxer shorts, jonesing for some coffee. They all look the same. Then you see the front of it, you see the venue and sometimes they have this just incredible sense to them. Some of those places really do stick with you for sure.

One of my initial introductions to the band was 'Yes Man' with Jim Carrey. I believe your music has been featured in at least two Jim Carrey films. Do you have a personal favorite Third Eye Blind placement on a show or film?

I've never seen Third Eye Blind in a Jim Carrey film. I don't tend to... I've been told Justin Timberlake sang a thing. I missed that.

The thing I really was into was A Knight's Tale . We were asked to do a song, and I wrote this song called "Eye Conqueror" for the credits for A Knight's Tale . I thought it was such a good song. I was so stoked because I really am a fan of jousting. I really think things should be an Olympic sport. I want you to picture Uruguay against Latvia for the gold medal route and all the pageantry that goes along with this, as these guys joust each other in the Olympics. It would be your favorite equestrian event, Brenton. I think I've sold you on this already.

Have you given it a try yourself?

On bicycles? Yes. Also, they used to have a thing at Burning Man, it was Thunderdome, so it was a Mad Max tent where they used to do this. But Burning Man has turned into a tame business party. It's basically Mykonos for Google employees. So they don't have that anymore.

[For A Knight's Tale ], they didn't choose the song and I was super bummed because I wish they did. They ended up using AC/DC 's "Shook Me All Night Long." It's like, that's like cheating.

Harmony Gerber/Getty

I was digging through the Third Eye Blind Reddit and I spotted a post from a fan who was asking for song recommendations. Every response was different. How do you come up with a set these days?

It's a toughie. It's a toughie because this is a festival-like show, where I really want all three bands to have full sets and feel like it's their show. I want the Summer Gods Tour to be a traveling festival. That's my desire with it. And so, we have a little over 90... We have about 95 minutes to play. That's not that much time to put in our body of work.

What we do in the tour is treat ourselves like DJs and try to get cues with each other where we can work in different songs and challenging each other to weave in different quotes, different things. That's the way that we do it. And then I look holistically at the set and say, "How do we look at this from a different angle? How do we change things up? How do we take whatever it is we did before and not do that, and create different feelings, and different energies on this from other tours?" I'll find things that are in similar keys, similar tempos, and go, "Is there a way we could puzzle piece these together?"

You previously spoke about young fans discovering your music because of streaming services. Do you think your musical palette would've been any different if you had that available to you as a kid?

I don't know how it would be different, but it would definitely be different. For example, there's so much music that I like. I can't tell you who made it. Whereas for me, growing up, there were bands that were so core-identity to me and there's so many bands that I listen to where their names aren't as deep because it's just a song that comes up on my playlist. In some ways, that's a disservice because you don't go as deep on an artist, but in other ways it's great because it allows you to be exposed to so much more music than before. Both things are true.

And there's a lot to be said for the way things are now because... OK, so we're being told to like Drake , and Kendrick Lamar , their crappy beats with their silly feud. We're being told to like that, we have to like that. There's some stuff that the gods of the record industry are telling us that this is what is supposed to matter. But for the most part, everybody's just wandering around picking their own berries, and I think it's great.

I know you're a fan of Lauryn Hill, De La Soul. Are there any modern hip-hop artists that you find yourself gravitating toward?

Actually, there's a lot of Drake that I actually really like. There's a lot of Kendrick Lamar I really like. I just think that doing this is just, it's f---ing lame and the beats are lame. I like them both individually. I actually like them both individually. Anderson .Paak , his new stuff. I think it's really good. I love the way he plays drums. I like Kid Cudi .

I love that drill that comes out of South London. To me, that's the purest, most exciting stuff. Do you know Dave? It's so crisp. I love how sober it is. The rhythmic cadence of it is totally... That's inspiring to me. I've been so inspired by hip-hop that I wouldn't be... I just don't think that I would be an artist without it. There wouldn't be a song like "Slow Motion" without growing up with hip-hop.

I wish I could change... If I had life to do over again, I would name my band Doja Cat. It's the best name ever. I think she's really funny.

Eight years ago, you told a fan you hope artists have more control of their music. Do you think that's become more-so the case in the industry?

I'm not the person to ask because even back then, I think I said, "I'm not into music industry and I don't care about the music industry. I care about musicians." I never cared about the music industry. I don't care about the Grammys . The Grammys don't care about me. I've never gotten a Grammy. I'm never going to get a Grammy. Maybe I'll get a lifetime achievement award. I'll get some embarrassing thing like that, but I'm not part of that. I'm not part of that culture and I never was. I'm never part of any of those clubs.

What inspires you the most as a songwriter now?

Well, the last album, Our Bande Apart , came out of the pandemic. I told people at the time, it was really Taylor Swift . We were all sitting there in our houses locked up, and refreshing our phones,and out drinking too much wine and eating too much spaghetti and going, "I wonder what's going to happen." And then it's like, "Oh, yeah. Taylor Swift put out an album." And I'm like, "S---. That's some discipline right there. I think I'm going to go out to my little zendo and get out my notepad and my guitar and take stock of myself."

I don't listen to my own music, and that's actually maybe my favorite album. I love playing it because I'm very lucky that our bandmates, we all love each other. We're like puppies. We love playing together. Part of what makes our band jam the way that it does, we're not coining for space. We're all trying to make space for each other. We have this sense of we want to do this together. It's rare. The Clash had that. I can say I'm trying to compare myself to The Clash. Yeah, we're like The Clash .

Do you have a message for those who want to catch your show?

I'm dedicated to the magic of it. And by that I mean that our band is empathetic. We are a band because we are empathetic with each other. We have a sense of each other and aliveness. We're not a MacBook Pro band. We are making this up and we're doing it. We are doing it in an exchange with the audience and that's what aliveness is. It's like we're the perfume, and you are the body, and that is the scent. You get what I'm saying?

Summer Gods tour information and tickets are available here .

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