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Supplier: M16553

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InfoHub supplier since May 2007!
Base of operations: USA -- Number of InfoHub client requests accepted: 73
M16553 are specialty trips - small groups of friendly folks with common interests in traditional festivals and celebrations, ethnic textiles and indigneous costume, archaeology, art and architecture. Every trip is planned around an exciting festival, a world-class historical monument, or an indigenous art form-or a combination thereof.

To add to our knowledge and broaden the experiences, renowned experts and excellent English-speaking translators and guides accompany BTSA groups. Everywhere, fellow travelers will go for fascinating encounters that are not available to the ordinary tourist. You will see knitters and weavers work their magic with yarn, meet artists as they carve golden wax float figures, visit costume embroidery workshops, or watch maskmakers solder and paint their wild new creations.

M16553 was started nine years ago by Cynthia LeCount as a result of her positive experiences leading groups on a dozen research trips to South America and Southeast Asia for the University of California. In the 1980s, before her association with UC, Cynthia traveled extensively by herself in Peru and Bolivia doing research for her book on Andean folk knitting. Then she continued to travel while documenting Bolivian Carnival costumes for her Master's thesis in the UC Davis Art History Department. Often during this time, friends and acquaintances begged to accompany her on her travels.
Questions and Answers
Small groups of friendly people with similar interests, exploring the world of indigenous textiles, festivals, arts and crafts and music.

1. How long has the business been operating and how did it start?

We have been taking people to our favorite destinations for the past 14 years. Cynthia was the director of a University of California research expedition program similar to Earthwatch. When the University discontinued the program, she began her own textile and festival tours.

2. What is your company's mission?

To show travelers with us the positive side of other cultures, how most people all over the world hold dear the same values of family, human warmth, trust, self-respect, self sufficiency, honesty, and so forth. Also to show the talents and creativity of artisans where we travel.

3. What does your company specialize in?

Traveling with groups of people who feel like they are with friends, going "behind-the -scenes" to meet musicians, knitters, weavers, dyers, designers, etc. Many of our customers are repeat travelers with us.

4. Who is the founder or owner of the company and briefly describe his/her past activities?

Cynthia and Barou Samake are owners and founders of Behind the Scenes. Cynthia taught in the Environmental Design program at the University of CA, Davis, and Barou is a native Malian, living in California and speaking Bambara, French and English.

5. What is your most popular travel package and why?

The trips to Mali are probably our most popular because of Barou's many connections with the people in that exotic culture.

6. What is the best compliment you received from a client?

In praising a trip to Peru, Sammy Vilks said "Travel with Cynthia is my dream come true!"

Vacation Packages offered by supplier M16553
Picture Name Highlight Activity Price Destination

Textiles and Archeology of Peru Textiles and Archeology of Peru

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Meet weavers, knitters, spinners! Visit charming Cuzco and mystical Machu Picchu, fabulous north coast pyramids of Sipan with this two weeks long tour.

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Tour Package
Textile Arts
Archeology/History
USD 3395 Peru

Carpets, Cuisine and Culture of Turkey Carpets, Cuisine and Culture of Turkey

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Discover Turkey's highlights in the east: Colossal heads of Nemrut, Van Lake. Plus Istanbul, Ephesus, Blue Mosque, Grand Bazaar, Capadoccia, Turkish cuisine class!

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Tour Package
Textile Arts
Cultural Journey
USD 3495 Turkey

Easter in the Andes: Peru Easter in the Andes: Peru

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See highland textile villages, ancient coastal archeological sites, magical Machu Picchu, meet knitters and weavers!

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Tour Package
Textile Arts
Cultural Journey
USD 3495 Peru

Art, Music and Culture of Mali Art, Music and Culture of Mali

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See weavers and textile artists, Dogon Country, Djenne mud mosque, exotic Timbuktu, UNESCO World Heritage sites, traditional music, local markets and much more!

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Tour Package
Crafts Tours
Festival Tours
USD 4795 Mali

Textiles and Temples of Laos and Cambodia Textiles and Temples of Laos and Cambodia

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Great trip to Laos and Cambodia! You will visit 3 UNESCO World Heritage Sites, Angkor Wat, Khmer temples, markets and experience a whole different local culture.

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Tour Package
Textile Arts
Cultural Journey
USD 3595 Laos
Cambodia
Thailand

Textiles and Taj Mahal Tour Textiles and Taj Mahal Tour

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The best of Indian textiles and culture! From the Taj and Kutchi areas in the north to backwater lagoons of Kerala, this fabulous tour will give you an exciting taste of India!

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Tour Package
Textile Arts
Cultural Journey
USD 5795 India
Reviews and Comments
Rating By Subject Added

 1  Denise Carey Wonderful Mali 2011-07-08
I have enjoyed a unique experience with BTSA who have a genuine connection to the country. So much to see and do from the ancient city of Djenne with its mud ... view more brick mosque, the Niger River bustling ports, Dogon country, stunning textile patterns in clothing worn by men and women, bustling markets, to Timbuktu and beyond, recommend to anyone who has a desire to experience another culture with caring guides.