“Know what is and is not expected of you as a traveler in a foreign country. For example, in Turkey, women must cover their shoulders, legs and head before entering a mosque; in Nepal it is customary to offer money when visiting a monastery. Do some research when you head out on cultural excursions, find out what the locals do and follow suit—this will keep you (and your party) from feeling self-conscious or left out.”
—Tom Hale is founder & CEO of Backroads, an active travel company he founded in 1979 that leads travelers on hiking, cycling and multi-sport tours around the world. He also says that if you’re concerned about being in the know, Backroads trip leaders will always help guide you in appropriate customs and expectations.