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Experiential Journeys

We are going to Mexico!
February 18 - 25, 2024

During our time in the Yucatan, we will participate in tours and activities that empower local and Indigenous communities by sharing their initiatives and sustainability efforts throughout the region. Everywhere we visit will be an opportunity to exchange ideas around anti-oppression and the development of host communities, and travelers.


During the week-long trip, participants will visit community-led tourism initiatives that showcase the rich traditions, culture, local and Indigenous history, as well as the essential biodiversity of the region. Some itinerary highlights include:

  • Embarking on a guided boat tour of Isla Columpios, home to a rich mangrove system 

  • Visiting the Maya community of Ek Balam, with the opportunity to visit archeological sites, cenotes, or activities like bike rides, hammock manufacturing, tortilla-making workshops

  • Admiring crocodiles, flamingos and other fauna in their undisturbed habitat at the Rio Lagartos Biosphere Reserve, followed by a stroll through Las Coloradas, a site renowned for its stunning pink-hued salt flats, crystalline pink lakes, and picturesque landscapes

  • Visiting Yokdzonot Cenote, a local women's cooperative that manages this thriving ecotourism park, where you can enjoy a Yucatecan cuisine cooking class and a refreshing swim in crystal clear waters

  • And more!

What is an Experiential Journey?

The RISE Experiential Journey is an opportunity for our students to use what they learned in the Flagship program into practice in the real world. Experiential Journeys are curated with RISE’s commitment to sustainability and anti-oppression in mind. Participants will be ethical and mindful visitors, and will learn about how the tourism industry in each community strives to improve.

Who is it for?

The RISE Experiential Journey is for graduates of the Flagship program. Priority will be given to students who complete capstone projects. Eligible participants can bring a

family member or friend.

Where do we go?

Locations are selected based on how well its tourism offerings align with the RISE Flagship Program.

How often do they run and for how long?

Most Experiential Journeys will be between 10-14 days.

We run our Experiential Journeys once a year.

Examples of activities

  • Sustainable community development and empowerment projects such as:

    • Indigenous-led tourism activities

    • Ethical interaction with animals and wildlife

    • Sustainable conservation projects

  • Sightseeing historic and culturally important sites

  • Adventure and cultural activities such as:

    • Cooking classes

    • Weaving workshops

    • Hiking and boating

Our commitment to sustainability and anti-oppression

  • Small group travel makes it easier to reduce environmental impact and support local restaurants, hotels, and other vendors

  • We strive to achieve carbon neutrality in all of our travel and activities

  • We aim to cut out the middleman by working directly with local and indigenous guides and service providers to ensure that money goes directly to the local economy

  • We only partner with value-aligned organizations and businesses

  • We tie the purpose of each activity back to our educational program

  • All Experiential Journey participants will take a place-based course before departure to provide context for the trip and to ensure a more enriching experience

  • We come together as a group for daily reflection to consider sustainability and anti-oppression in the local community

  • We are committed to measuring and being transparent about the social and environmental impact of all of our Experiential Journeys

Travel Scholarships

A limited amount of need-based travel scholarships will be available to eligible participants.

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