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Travel For The Curious: 23 New Science Inspired Trips for 2024

Travel For The Curious: 23 New Science Inspired Trips for 2024
23 November 2023 Samantha Anderson
  • Geological tours, rewilding trips, and following the footsteps of science heroes are top trends for 2024

  • New Scientist Discovery Tours has increased capacity for geology trips fivefold, nature tours 314%, and science hero-related tours twofold year-on-year

New Scientist Discovery Tours, the UK’s leading provider of science-inspired tours, has announced its top three scientific travel trend predictions for 2024, alongside a range of 23 new tours for 2024 to keep up with demand.

New Scientist Discovery Tours has found that geology tours, rewilding trips, and following in the footsteps on scientific heroes are expected to be the most popular ways to travel for curious-minded explorers in 2024.

To meet demand, the tour provider has created 23 new packages for 2024, all accompanied by a leading expert, guide, academic, or custodian in their-respective field, from rewilding in Portugal’s Côa Valley and retracing the steps of Alfred Nobel’s Stockholm, to discovering the science of deep time in the valleys of the Brecon Beacons.

Kevin Currie, Director of New Scientist Discovery Tours, says, “Since the start of 2022, we have had to increase tour capacity in order to meet the rising demand for our science-inspired tours, expeditions, weekenders, and cruises.

“Between 2022 to 2023, we increased the capacity of our geology-focused tours almost five-times over, while our nature-focused tours increased 450% and science hero-related tours doubled.”

Read on to discover more about each trending theme for 2024, and a full list of the new tours…

Science Heroes

One of the largest barriers that curious-minded travellers face when booking a trip is the perception that they must be highly educated or well-versed in the subject matter to enjoy a tour. However, New Scientist Discovery Tours found in 2023 that travellers who knew near to nothing about the topic gained just as much (if not more!) from the experience, for example, with tours following in the footsteps of well-known scientists, such as Charles Darwin’s Galapagos travels or Leonardo da Vinci’s Italy, providing an accessible doorway to educational travel through already familiar names.

Travellers with an interest in getting under the skin of a destination or seeing it through a new lens found that following the footsteps of a recognisable name helped put themselves in the shoes of the time period, follow a clear narrative or timeline to contextualise the destination, and added a layer of human intrigue to the subject matter, without the topic seeming intimidating or too dense.

In 2024, tours themed around Shackleton’s Antarctica, Freud’s Vienna, Nobel’s Stockholm, Alexander von Humboldt’s Ecuador, and Bohr’s Copenhagen have been announced.

Wild About Rewilding

Rewilding and conservation headlines have hit the UK over the past 5-10 years, with water voles successfully reintroduced to the Lake District in 2023, beavers formally reintroduced to Devon in 2020 after a trial period, and white storks reintroduced to Sussex in 2016. Internationally, in the summer of 2023 the barren island of Redonda in the Caribbean hit headlines after having been transformed into a lush wildlife sanctuary.

To cater to the increasing number of curious travellers keen to give back to mother nature while on their travels and following the success of the inaugural Devon Rewilding trip in 2023 (which will run again in 2024), New Scientist Discovery Tours is adding three new rewilding and conservation trips: Rewilding in Portugal’s Côa Valley, Rewilding in Italy’s Central Apennines, and Carnivore Conservation Insight in Zambia.

Geology Rocks

What do the Brecon Beacons, Mt Etna, and Halong Bay all have in common? While each landscape is impressive to any visitor, they are brought to life with an understanding of the geology that forms them. Eight of the 23 new tours in 2024 (35%) will be geology focused, as New Scientist Discovery Tours predicts a spike in popularity due to the capacity on geology focused tours for deeper storytelling.

While New Scientist Discovery Tours has a topic expert on every trip, the tour provider found that these experts added the most value on geological tours. Though towering mountains, green valleys, glaciers and volcanoes are awe inspiring simply to look at, with an expert geologist to interpret the landscape, guests can understand the story of the environment and enjoy the surroundings through a new lens.

In 2024, trips have been added to England’s Jurassic Coast, Vietnam’s cave systems, volcanology tours of Mt Etna and the Aeolian islands, geology tours to discover deep time in the Brecon Beacons, volcanic tours of the Canary Islands, and volcanology and glacial valleys in New Zealand.

These additions join a host of unique repeat tours and sell-out adventures to explore the Galapagos with Jo Ruxton MBE, and private solar eclipse viewings in the USA with ex-President of the British Astronomical Association, John Mason.

Please see below for taster of the new tours for 2024, with a full list of all 23 new tours at the bottom.

Discover Portugal’s Greater Côa valley to learn how natural processes and complete food chains help regenerate a landscape.

Price £2,895, departing 29 April 2024 for 6 days

  • Talks and insights from rewilding conservationist Fernando Romão, as well as other members of the Rewilding Portugal team.
  • Discover the flora and fauna of Portugal’s Côa valley and explore one of Portugal’s most picturesque cities on a walking tour of Porto’s old town.
  • Accommodation and daily breakfasts as well as four lunches and five dinners are provided and all internal transport and gratuities

A beautiful yet relatively unknown part of northern Portugal, located close to the Spanish border between the Douro river and Malcata mountain ranges, the Côa valley is rich in biodiversity and has a broad range of habitat types as well as endemic species.

Visitors will explore the region accompanied by Fernando Romão from the Rewilding Portugal team, who will introduce the group to the area’s rewilding projects. Rewilding Portugal is a non-profit organisation whose mission is to promote nature conservation through rewilding measures. Its aim is for the Greater Côa valley to be a wilder place, with fully functioning ecosystems and abundant wildlife, where natural processes and complete food chains play key roles in the regeneration of the landscape.

Celebrate science through space and time in Stockholm, Swedish inventor and industrialist Alfred Nobel’s birthplace.

Price from £2,544pp departing 21 September 2024 for six days

  • Talks and walking seminars from New Scientist’s Richard Webb, local guides, and private guided tours including the Nobel Museum, City Hall, Vasa Museum, and SciLife molecular biosciences labs
  • Accommodation on bed and breakfast basis staying in the four-star First Reisen Hotel, which overlooks the harbour on the edge of the atmospheric island of Gamla Stan, with some evening meals included as indicated
  • Full touring itinerary (including coaches, boats and ferries) and entry to all sites and attractions
    Embark on a 6-day journey of discovery in Stockholm, birthplace to iconic scientific figures such as Alfred Nobel, Carl Linnaeus, and Jons Jacob Berzelius. Highlights include a private guided tour of the Nobel Museum, catching a boat to Vinterviken bay for dinner in Alfred Nobel’s old dynamite factory and blasting tunnels, a visit to the hall of Sweden’s first nuclear reactor, attending a crayfish party on the fortress island of Vaxholm, and exploring the Sweden Solar System, the world’s largest model of a planetary system.

Join a gentle walking tour of the Brecon Beacons to learn the science of deep time.

Price tbc, departing August 2024 for four days

• Gain an understanding of deep time and the geological timelines of the Earth
• Trip includes national show caves tour, accompanied by geology expert, outdoor palaeontology seminar, Corn Du mountain experience led by New Scientist’s Richard Webb, guided telescope session, and morning yoga class
• Full touring itinerary (including three nights’ accommodation, breakfasts, lunches and dinners, transfers and entrance fees)
Join New Scientist on a gentle walking weekend in the Brecon Beacons, learning about the formation and geology of our earth from a range of accompanying experts, as well as how humans are impacting its future.

Based in South Wales, guests will stargaze back through time, journey deep underground in caves, climb mountains, and hunt fossils with palaeontologists. This tour was designed to help guests understand the timeline involved in the formation and geology of our earth, including how humans are impacting the story.

Explore the volcanology, geothermal valleys and astronomy of New Zealand’s North Island

Price £3,050pp departing 1 November 2024 for 8 days

• Briefings and walking seminars from science experts including an astronomer and a tour leader throughout
• Accommodation on bed and breakfast basis with some evening meals and lunch as indicated
• Full touring itinerary (including coaches, trains and boats) and entry to all sites and attractions

Exploring New Zealand’s North Island, this 8-day, flexible tour allows guests to immerse themselves in the otherworldly scenery with briefings and walking seminars from a science expert. Highlights include an evening witnessing star clusters and gas cloud nebulae with an astronomer in the Stardome Observatory and Planetarium, visiting Waitomo’s glow-worm studded underground cave system by boat, cruising around Lake Rotomahana to see the stunning pink and white terraces, and exploring the UNESCO World Heritage listed Tongariro Park including Mount Ruapehu, the largest active volcano in New Zealand.

Explore the mind of Sigmund Freud and the history of psychology in Vienna with psychoanalytic expert

Price £2,236pp departing 25 November 2024 for 5 days

• Talks, walking seminars, and lectures by Dany Nobus, Professor of Psychoanalytic Psychology at Brunel University London and former Chair and Fellow of the Freud Museum London
• Private guided tours, including the Jewish Museum, Sigmund Freud Museum, Narrenturm and the Josephinum Medical Museum
• Full touring itinerary (including accommodation and internal travel) and entry to all sites and attractions

Heading to Austria’s capital, guests will have the opportunity to unpick and understand the foundation of modern psychoanalysis on this 5-day tour, assisted throughout by the invaluable insights of the tour’s expert, a specialist in the field of psychoanalysis. Highlights include a private guided tour of the Sigmund Freud Museum, a guest talk on the Viennese schools at the Alfred Adler Center International, visiting the famous Café Landtmann (a meeting point for many of the great thinkers, artists, and politicians of Belle Époque Vienna), and a walking tour exploring Vienna’s Jewish history.

New Scientist Discovery Tours: New 2024 Tours

Space: The history and future of space exploration, USA

Science of the deep Antarctic: Shackleton’s expedition and the Weddell Sea

Total Solar Eclipse: San Antonio to San Marcos, USA

Rewilding in the Côa Valley, Portugal

Weekender: Science of the Jurassic Coast

The birth of modern medicine, Montpellier

Bohr’s Copenhagen: Physics past and future

The science of the waterways, UK

In the footsteps of Alexander von Humboldt, Ecuador

Vietnam: Caves, Conservation, Culture

Volcanoes: Mount Etna and the Aeolian Islands

Weekender: Science of deep time in the Brecon beacons

Nobel’s Stockholm: Celebrating science through space and time

Ecology expedition through the Amazon and Pantanal

Astronomy and volcanoes in the Canary Islands

Cruise in search of Madagascar’s magical wildlife

Rewilding in the Central Apennines, Italy

Churchill polar Bear expedition, Canada

Volcanology, geothermal valleys and astronomy: North Island, New Zealand

Glaciology and geology: South Island, New Zealand

Carnivore conservation insight, Zambia

Freud’s Vienna: Psychoanalysis and the Viennese schools

Behind the ropes – Archaeology at Mycenae, Greece


For further press information, please contact:
Tilly Everard | Chloe Hernandez | Hannah Carlisle | Emma Arthurs
T: +44 (0)203 440 8930
E: [email protected]

About New Scientist Discovery Tours:
New Scientist Discovery Tours offers science-inspired tours, expeditions and cruises, creating carefully curated itineraries to the world’s most fascinating destinations. Designed for curious minds, tours are tailored for guests with an appetite for expanding their knowledge while travelling.

As part of New Scientist, the world’s leading science and technology magazine, the tour provider has an expansive network of editors, science specialists, academics and authors, who lead its experiential and exploratory trips.

Launched in 2015, New Scientist Discovery Tours currently offers over 50 tours and experiences worldwide to a committed audience of travellers. New Scientist Discovery Tours help travellers discover science through the joy of travel with minimal environmental impact, in a way that doesn’t harm the environment, people, cultures or wildlife.

For more information on the itinerary and to book, visit or email [email protected] to speak to a New Scientist Discovery Tours agent.