It’s a durian connoisseur adventure through the back roads and natural places of each country we visit. The goal is to help you see and understand a place and a culture through gorging on your favorite fruit, the almighty Durian.
Because of where we travel, we may not see any other tourists for the duration of our whole trip. We’ll never be on big tour buses and we don’t stay in large hotels that shuttle big groups in and out. You’ll never have to knock elbows with a Chinese tour group trying to get your share of the durian buffet (you’ll lose, I promise).
Instead, we like face-to-face encounters with local people who can teach you about their durian, their farms, the natural flora and fauna, their cuisine, and their lives.
We like spending almost the whole day outdoors exploring nature and building up enough appetite that we can taste all the delectable fruits, veggies, herbs, and different cuisines of each region we visit, while saving enough room for all-you-can-smash durian. There’s so much to taste, we end up eating a lot!
As your tour organizer, I carefully watch the fruiting seasons and arrange the itinerary to hit the best-of-the-best durian and fruit experience every day of the tour, while we travel across the entire country exploring and learning. This means that no two tours are ever the same — with the fluctuations of the weather and the durian season, each and every tour visits a different farm or a different location. Many people like to come back year after year to experience a different season’s trip.
Durian lovers of all ages and nationalities have joined our trips, and we love how we can always bond as a group no matter our background over delicious durian. No matter where you come from or how old you are, if you love durian you are welcome (however, if you have difficulty walking up hills or over uneven terrain please do contact us in advance so that we can discuss your individual needs).
We like to stay out in rural areas, typically at small, family-owned, local eco-boutiques and large bungalows with a cozy vibe. Think upscale-rustic, with Western-style toilets, hot water showers, and simple but comfortable furnishings. Not all rooms are air-conditioned, however up and out of the city heat-sinks the evenings cool down, the wind is fresh, and we rarely need it. On the rare occasions we do stay in a city or down in lie-lowing beach areas, all rooms have air-conditioning.
Generally our hotels have superb views and clean air, but may not be easily accessible from towns and places that you can walk to on your own. We stay directly on durian farms or nearby whenever possible.
Accommodations are typically twin-sharing, meaning you will be partnered with a same-sex tour member as your roomie unless you bring a buddy of your own to share the room.
Private room supplements are available for an additional fee. Contact [email protected] for more room options.
We’re foodies. We love food. And we believe one of the best way to experience culture is with our taste buds, so get prepared for a lot of munching!
Meals are almost always family-style and catered. We really enjoy exploring local regional cuisines, so as we move from region to region we enjoy cooking classes, learning about local herbs and spices, cooking with durian, and trying as many new kinds of plant-foods as possible. Meals are rich in colorful vegetables and usually very healthy.
Since we’re durian and fruit-hunters looking for exotic flora, we of course eat a lot of fruits. Fruits are served every morning for breakfast a well as throughout the day at the various farms we visit. Most (but not all) meals are vegetarian or vegan, to allow us to focus more on tasting the plant-world. This tour is unique in how well it caters to people following all kinds of diets (except Keto, fruits has too many carbs), including vegetarian, vegan, raw vegan, fruitarian, or anyone who likes to eat healthy, authentic, local cuisine.
Breakfasts are served at the hotel before we convene and head out for the day. Lunch is usually packed and carried along to the farm for a picnic. Dinner is at the hotel in the evening after our durian-day is finished. But if you want more durian after dinner, that’s okay too.
All of our trips have a maximum of 8 people — the ideal size for being able to taste a lot of durians at one sitting but not have to fight over getting enough of your favorite.
Small groups make it easier for me to interact with you and teach you the foundations of being a durian connoisseur. These tours aren’t just a durian-swilling adventure; it’s also meant to be educational. By the end of the trip, you should be able to recognize different durians by sight and know the difference in taste between different varieties at different stages of maturity.
It’s also easier for you to interact with our local hosts and really get to know the farmers, park guides, and chefs we meet along the way, as well as bond with each other. Many people keep in touch after the tour is over.
These tours are meant to be personal, intimate explorations of a beautiful country, a beautiful people, and a beautiful fruit.
Yes, it’s nice to get away from it all. But then you want to share about it on Instagram, right?
Let’s face it: it’s nice to have Wifi. Most, but not all, of our hotels provide free Wifi of varying speeds and quality.
We aslo do our best to provide a mobile hot spot wherever we are — for music streaming on long car rides, humble-bragging to our loved ones at our gorgeous hotel, uploading IG Stories from the durian table — you name it, the internet is a magical magical thing and I am in no way trying to take you away from it if you want it.
However, sometimes we do leave it all behind and head into places without Wifi or cellular connection. We will always warn you before entering an area with no connection.
It’s not even fair to compare the Durian Tours, because they cost the same or less as other small-group adventure tours offered by bigger companies like Acanela, Intrepid, or G-Adventures but offer you a super-duper niche, customized experience with like-minded durian-loving friends and all-you-can-eat durian!
The durian tours are designed to give you the perfect durian experience — a smooth, enjoyable, educational, and tasty vacation. In a group tour, you can travel way out into the back country and rural areas without the worries that come with heading into areas not yet accustomed to tourists — the language barriers, finding hotels not yet on Google maps, searching for vegan or vegetarian food, or even actually finding the durian you seek after a long, hot and dusty bus ride.
Of course you can travel by yourself for cheaper, and we totally support that too! You’ll find lots of free travel advice all over this website, like Google map collections of farms, tons of blog posts detailing where to go and where to stay. I also give Travel Consultations, organize people’s self-drive itineraries, or can set up a day-trip or two for you with a local guide I trust. Check out our Custom Durian Tour options to find something that better fits your budget or needs.