Wildland Adventures National Geographic Adventure's Best Do-it-All Adventure Travel Company

Awards and Accolades

Our Captivating Cuba Coast to Coast was recognized by AFAR Magazine as a finalist in their 2018 Travelers’ Choice Awards for BEST CULTURAL TRIP. This groundbreaking trip is our most in-depth people-to-people Cuba adventure traversing the island from the seaside malecón of Old Havana to the more traditional South-East shores of Gibara, Cuba’s best-kept secret. 

This year we're proud announce that Outside Magazine has included us in their Best of Travel series as one of the world's top travel outfitters.  "With just 15 people on staff—12 if you don’t count the company’s three dogs—Wildland Adventures is proof that authenticity is best served small. The Seattle-based company offers 150 trips on six continents, but many of them began as (and still are) efforts to improve local economies, like tracking tigers in India, hiking the Andes, and watching lions in Kenya." 

For the fifth time, National Geographic Traveler has named one of our trips among its “50 Tours of a Lifetime!” Our Bedouin Trek to Petra claimed its place on the list, and this is indeed a well-deserved honor. Our trekking guide extraordinaire, Yamaan Safady, offers Wildland Adventurers a unique and privileged exploration of his ancient country and its history. This is an exhilarating journey through a spectacular landscape rarely seen by outsiders capped by entry to the fabled Nabatean city of Petra via the breathtaking Monastery.

Fodors logoWildland Adventures was ranked by Fodor's as one of the World's Best Tour Specialists. Wildland was specifically lauded as an "eco-outfit that ventures off beaten path without sacrificing style. . . The "active luxury" outfit's 130 itineraries span 28 countries, stressing conservation and touting true-blue, authentic touches: for instance, indigenous-only guides take you on less-traveled routes of fragile natural and cultural environments."

Travel and Leisure The Wilder Side of Costa Rica

"The Wilder Side of Costa Rica," Travel + Leisure, November 2011: “...'There’s magic in the Osa.' It’s a sentiment I hear often, and one shared by Seattle native Kurt Kutay. Kutay runs Wildland Adventures, and he’s been leading tours down to the Osa Peninsula for 25 years. 'There are very few places like it,' he says. 'We’re way off the grid, in the middle of the rain forest, and I’m sipping a nice cold beer.' Kutay’s in the Osa now to do a little surfing and take stock of the changes. 'It’s still very pristine here, the way it was when we first came' . . . The veteran adventure outfitter leads multiple trips to Costa Rica, some tailored to families and honeymooners.”

Wildland Adventures was ranked #1 Best “Do-it-All” Outfitter on Earth in the February 2009 issue of National Geographic Adventure magazine’s ratings of the Best Adventure Travel Companies on Earth. "A founding member of the International Ecotourism Society, Wildland Adventures president Kurt Kutay literally helped define the term "ecotourism" in 1991. Today Wildland employs local guides—many of whom have advanced degrees in archaeology, ecology, history, and other subjects—and donates to grassroots nature and cultural heritage groups in the 28 countries it visits."

National Geographic Traveler Tours of a Lifetime

Four Wildland Adventures have been selected by National Geographic Traveler magazine as a “Tour of a Lifetime”

2011: Our Tigers and Travels in India adventure is an in-depth north India tour dedicated to the search for the elusive tiger and discovery of ancient civilizations out of which arose the contemporary cultural and spiritual fabric of modern India.
2009: Voyaging Among the Dodecanse of Turkey and Greece, a 12 day exploration by sea and by land, participants spend their days hiking, swimming, sailing, exploring Greek and Turkish villages, discovering ancient ruins, sampling delectable Turkish and Greek cuisine and sipping excellent wine, ouzo and raki.
2007: The Maasailand Safari, a community-based safari that is an extraordinary opportunity to combine wildlife safaris in Amboseli and the Maasai Mara, with a profound cross-cultural experience.
2006: Undiscovered Belize Adventure features rainforest hikes, birding, caving and snorkeling on the barrier reef plus visits to the ancient Maya site of Lubaantun and a indigenous family-run fair-trade cacao plantation.

National Geographic Adventure Best  New TripsThe November 2009 issue of National Geographic Adventure magazine named Wildland Adventures' Undiscovered Caribbean Costa Rica Adventure one of the "25 Best New Trips" in the world."You can hike through rain forest, rappel down an 80-foot waterfall, and help re-introduce a tropical hardwood forest to the area by planting native trees on a rundown 19th-century banana plantation. Caribbean culture runs deep here, and you'll get a taste of it - literally - during cooking classes in the beach town of Puerto Viejo"


Seattle Magazine Seattle Metropolitan Magazine, September 2008: “For those who want to give something back to those cultures, the Kutays have established the Travelers Conservation Trust, which supports sustainability initiatives and community development projects in the areas they visit. Anne [Kutay, Wildland VP] considers it especially important to sensitize children to what she calls “our global habitat”—the differences between Third World levels of consumption and our own.”


New York TimesThe New York Times, May 10, 2007: “Wildland Adventures, based in Seattle, is one of the top international outdoor-tour companies with operations in Peru. It offers excellent special-interest trekking and rainforest expedition programs, with customizing options. There are lodge-based programs, primarily in the jungle; trekking expeditions, such as the 9-day Cordillera Blanca trek; and special adventures focusing on photographing Peru. Wildland’s programs are well designed, guides are very professional, and the organization is focused on authentic travel experiences -- all reasons National Geographic Adventure named it one of “Best Outfitters on Earth” in 2007”


Seattle Times profile of Wildland Adventures founder Kurt KutayThe Seattle Times, May 19, 2006: “Wildland Adventures employs mostly local guides; steers travelers off the beaten track to get to know the people and environmental/cultural issues; and fosters the donation of money and goods to communities and conservation groups. . . Wildland Adventures and its travelers also have donated tens of thousands of dollars to conservation groups in the countries they visit through the nonprofit Travelers Conservation Trust which Kutay set up. And Kutay, who’s well known in ecotourism circles, is on the advisory board of the Seattle-based Adventure Travel Trade Association and has served on the board of The International Ecotourism Society, headquartered in Washington, D.C.”


CondeNast TravelerIn the September 2008 issue of Condé Nast Traveler, Tanzania safari and trekking guide Kambona Ole Tirra Mollel was profiled: "When a torn meniscus ended his Olympic marathon hopes, Mollel took up guiding in his native Tanzania, leading safaris and Mount Kilimanjaro ascents. . . walking safari cover mostly flat terrain . . . 'We walk with Maasai and share our culture' says Mollel, 'and you can observe the animals on their level'" 


National Geographic Best Adventure Travel CompaniesIn the November 2007 issue of National Geographic Adventure Wildland Adventures was rated 4th overall as a “Do-it-All” outfitter in their survey of the “Best Adventure Travel Companies on Earth.”



National Geographic Traveler Kurt Kutay Family Adventure Guru Family Adventure Guru - The May 2007 issue of National Geographic Adventure magazine features a friendly caricature of Wildland Adventures’ President, Kurt Kutay, as the industry expert answering questions about family adventure travel.



Conde Nast Green ListThe September 2005 issue of Condé Nast Traveler magazine announces Wildland Adventures as a finalist winner of the magazine’s annual “Green List” of top ecotourism companies that “...demonstrate how they preserve natural surroundings, contribute to local cultures, and provide a rich guest experience.”


Outside Magazine Africa Trip of the YearOutside Magazine selected Wildland Adventures’ Maasailand Safari as the winner of the “Best Africa Trip of the Year” in its “Outside 38 Best Trips of 2005,” issue. Described as a “safari-with-a-conscience”, the Maasailand Safari was distinguished from other African trips for its meaningful encounters with native Maasai and remarkable game viewing.


Time Magazine Vacations for a good cause“Vacations for a Good Cause,” Time Magazine, Monday, July 25, 2005 
“Travel philanthropy has been on the rise since the tsunami of 2004. For travelers looking to give back to the communities they visit, Wildland Adventures has developed a sort of cross-cultural exchange program with the nomadic Maasai in East Africa whereby the Africans receive direct benefits from tourism and guests are exposed to the tribe’s culture.”


Wall Street JournalThe Wall Street Journal: “Wildland Adventures…emphasizes ‘field experience’…that means, in part, the use of local guides to lead the company’s trips. For example, in Kenya, where Wildland Adventures has secured the permission of a Masai village for its travelers to camp on Masailand, the company doesn’t employ, say, an educated resident of Nairobi to conduct the tour. Rather, a Masai tribesman acts as a guide. The tribesman, in turn, takes visitors to his village where they can rest in a boma (a mud-and-thatch hut) and listen to Masai elders and children talk about their lives and culture.”

Lonely Planet PanamaLonely Planet, Panama: “Wildland Adventures is a company that does things the right way. Its friendly staff can arrange specialty trips, particularly birding, family travel, honeymoon adventures, trekking and student/teacher study trips. It offers many high-quality, personalized natural history trips featuring cushy accommodations for cushy people, hard-core adventures for hard-bodied rugged types, and lots of in-between. I’ve reviewed all the tours offered by Wildland Adventures, and not one is weak or hyped.”



Moon Handbook NicaraguaMoon Handbook, Nicaragua: “Wildland Adventures has a number of both family-oriented and experiential trip offerings, with many knowledgeable Nica guides.”