True Nature Travels Blog

True Nature Education knows that safety comes first, and as we start planning a return to travel, the safety and well-being of our participants, leaders, and partners is our highest priority. We understand that international travel carries heightened cautions at this time, and as such, we are working diligently with our partners to ensure proper safety guidelines, implement flexible booking policies, and offer additional insurance options. With the ever-changing landscape of travel and COVID-19, we will keep this page updated with our latest information.

Thank you for being a part of the True Nature family. We look forward to traveling with you.


SAFETY PROTOCOL

As we start to look towards the future, True Nature Education is continuing to assess the viability of programs on a destination by destination basis. If your upcoming trip plans are affected, you will be contacted no later than 30-45 days prior to your program start date to discuss your options.

We are working diligently with all of our centers to establish clear and proper protocols in response to COVID-19.

  • Tracking international measures taken by health authorities in the country
  • Securing detailed information from our centers on preventative measures being implemented in response to COVID-19
  • Establishing guidelines for pre-retreat communication to ensure all participants feel informed and supported before travel
  • Updating medical emergency plans of action to include COVID-19
  • Communicating with on-the-ground partners for real-time updates regarding the realities and conditions within the local community
  • Determining current entry requirements for each country, including mandatory medical insurance, COVID-19 testing, tracking, etc.

For more information on actions being taken by the center for your specific program, please visit the “Things to Know” tab on your program web page or contact us at info@truenatureeducation.com.


Benefits of getting outdoors

SIGN UP WITH NO RISK

In response to COVID-19, True Nature is offering a temporary exception to our cancellation policy. When you sign up for any 2021 or 2022 program, your deposit is fully transferable. There is no cancellation fee if you transfer to another trip or put your deposit ($350) on hold for a future trip until the final payment date.*

We want to make sure everyone feels safe to travel and we are here to help and support you throughout this journey.

*This offer is valid for any new registrations prior to 108 days before the trip date.


PEACE OF MIND

We understand that there are a lot of unknowns with COVID-19 right now. As such, we have established a new partnership with a travel insurance provider, Trawick International. Their Safe Travels First Class and Safe Travels Single Trip plans provide the following benefits for COVID:

  • Sickness or Death of a traveler, traveling companion or non-traveling family member
  • Quarantine
  • Termination/Layoff
  • Available only on the Safe Travels First Class: Cancel for Any Reason add-on

Trawick International insurance is treating Coronavirus as any other sickness for all illness-related losses. Customers are eligible to claim for medical expenses incurred during their trip, along with trip interruption benefits.

Cancel for Any Reason is the most popular and hard to find benefit in the market today! This benefit is available on their Safe Travels First Class. Cancel for any reason will reimburse up to 75% of the non-refundable trip cost and is available within 10 days of the paid deposit.


SINGLE UPGRADES

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Don’t feel comfortable rooming with someone? When availability permits, we are offering participants the option to upgrade accommodation from shared to single occupancy. Please reach out to us if you would like to explore this option.


SUPPORT OUR GLOBAL ORGANIZATIONS AND COMMUNITIES

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True Nature Travels Blog

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Travel is such an amazing opportunity to grow our minds, expand our views, and develop our sense of community.

Now, what if you traveled with purpose? A chance to expand skillsets for the real world, network with fellow student leaders, and form a long-lasting relationship.
You have probably considered and perhaps have even Traveled aboard for educational reasons. However, committing yourself to a full semester can be a little scary and not to mention a little pricey.

Consider a week-long program with True Nature Education where you will reap the benefits and go on an adventure of a lifetime!

 

Top Universities, published a fantastic article of the top 25 reasons to travel abroad. So in case you needed a little convincing, we thought we should share!

1. It’ll look good on your CV

If you can explore a new country at the same time as picking up the international skills to gain a decent graduate job, then that’s pretty good going.

2. Brush up on your language skills

Remember the foreign language skills you picked up in school? No, me neither. Refresh them by studying abroad; you might be surprised at how much you remember.

3. Meet a diverse range of people

Your exposure to many different types of people will not only help you to develop your people skills, but it will also give you a firmer knowledge of others, both friend and foe.NSLS travel

4. Make lifelong friends

You may not love every single person you meet, but chances are that you’ll meet at least one lifelong friend (if you’re good at keeping in touch, that is).

5. Discover new and exciting foods

6. Study and learn differently

Often those studying abroad will experience a completely new way of teaching. This can be daunting, but it will also open your mind to new ways of learning.

7. Gain independence

It’s not easy being independent – to paraphrase Destiny’s Child – but it’s also a heck of a lot better than living with your parents as a 20-something.

8. Learn self-reliance

Moving abroad is the ultimate test in self-reliance. When (or if) you move back, you’ll likely rely on others less and you’ll take more responsibility for yourself.

9. You’ll gain a greater knowledge of different cultures

Cultural sensitivity isn’t just a quality which politicians may be accused of lacking; it’s also something you can develop while studying abroad!

10. See your own culture through a new lens

It’s easy to accept your own culture as absolute, but living in another country can help inform your point of view on your home culture, allowing you to develop your own views rather than simply accepting those defined by where happen to come from.

11. Learn more about yourself

Throwing yourself into a completely new environment will help you to figure out what you’re good at, as well as what you’re not so good at. These are things that can then be built on during your study abroad experience.

12. Become an adult

Speed up the transition from teenager to adult by leaping into the unknown. You’ll have to fend for yourself, buy your own meals and wash your own clothes, but it’ll all be worth it.

13. Gain life experience

One of the ultimate reasons to study abroad is to gain life experience. You’ll learn how to organize your life and condense it into one suitcase, handle unforeseen situations, be independent and self-sufficient.

14. Be spontaneous and adventurous

When you’re hundreds of thousands of miles away from home, spontaneity and adventurousness are your best friends. Open your mind up to new experiences and sights and the fun will come your way.

15. You learn to appreciate the smaller things more

Studying abroad usually means you have even fewer possessions than the average student, and being that much further from home can really make you miss those familiar comforts you’d taken for granted. Welcome to a new-found appreciation of everything from your parents’ cooking to having more than two pairs of shoes to choose from.

16. Gain a global mind-set

Whether it’s in work, study or play, you’ll be able to use your new global mind-set to back up arguments, inform your beliefs and steer your future.

17. It’s an unforgettable experience

Even if your friends back home get bored of hearing about it (warning: they will), your study abroad experience will stay with you long after it’s over.

18. You’ll appreciate your home and family more

Any memories of parental arguments or sibling rivalry will pale in comparison to your memories of how amazing they are. (Likewise, they’ll have time to forget about all your less attractive attributes too…) When you get back these relationships will look so much stronger!

19. Use your spare time to explore

In between lectures and lab sessions, studying abroad should leave you with plenty of time to explore. Whether you’re one for visiting iconic landmarks, trying new foods or bartering at local markets, there’s always bound to be a better way of spending your time than scrolling through Facebook!

20. Increase your international job prospects

While you can always go home at the end of your time as an international student, many choose to stay put and apply for a working visa. Even if you return home or decide to seek work elsewhere, the international experience provided by studying abroad is likely to be looked on favorably by employers.

21. Because “variety is the spice of life”

It might be something your dad says when opting for a different flavor of crisps at the supermarket, but it’s true; change, variety and new experiences are what make life worth living. Mix it up a bit: study abroad!

Whether you choose to do a week-long excursion or a semester-long immersement, go explore!

 

Society Members Save $450 off until 2/29!

Check out our 2020 Programs

 

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Join us in Guatemala!

 

Guatemala is often known as the hidden gem of Central America. Steeped in its rich Mayan culture and dramatic landscape, the country has grown vastly in popularity over the past decade. True Nature offers a location on Lake Atitlán in Guatemala. This large endorheic lake (one that does not flow to the sea) is the deepest lake in Central America with a maximum depth of 1,120 feet (340 meters). There are 12 villages around the lake, and each village has its own distinctive culture. The lake’s breathtaking landscape features three volcanoes and at an altitude of 5,000 feet in the Guatemalan highlands, the climate has been referred to as the “land of eternal spring.” Come experience the Mayan magic of Guatemala!

 

Some activities include:NSLS Travel

  • Ziplining
  • Waterfall Expedition
  • Rainforest Hike
  • Cooking class
  • Kayaking
  • Visits to local museums and churches
  • Mayan or Cacao Ceremony

You will also have the opportunity to engage in leadership-building activities and guided exercises to help support personal growth during your True Nature Education Global Program.

Some examples of service include:

  • Painting of local schools
  • Gardening at local schools
  • Lakefront or forest clean up
  • Village Community Building

Discover the unique culture, immerse yourself in the local community, and join our Guatemala adventure!

 

 

TRUE NATURE GUATEMALA SERVICE, ADVENTURE, AND LEADERSHIP PROGRAM

AUGUST 25 – AUGUST 1, 2020

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True Nature Travels Blog

First, I planned a trip to Colombia. Then, a dear friend set her wedding date in California. A few days later, my dad broke his hip in Texas. I live in Florida, so now, I have three big trips planned in the next 2½ months.

Here are three questions I plan to take with me in my hip pocket to help me use my energy wisely, make the best decisions I can, and travel with purpose this summer.

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What’s Meaningful Now?

Meaningful experiences can be elusive. It’s no wonder we want to travel on big adventures to far away places! Maybe we’ll get some meaningful luminosity into our veins that we can bring home to light our world.

All the meaning we experience in life, we create ourselves, out of our own minds. The world itself remains inherently neutral. That’s why “What’s meaningful now?” is such an important question!

My first meditation teacher, Sarah Powers, taught “What’s meaningful now?” as a way of staying with the heart and taking responsibility for ourselves.

The question calls up present moment guidance for making decisions and prevents us from sleepwalking through life. It taps us into creativity and frees us from ideas about what we should do or be. It helps us take advantage of opportunities and prevents regret.

This summer, ask, “What’s meaningful now?” and follow the thread.

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WHAT’S REALLY GOING ON?

Life can be dramatic, emotional, confusing.

“What’s really going on?” takes us below the surface with curiosity about what we’re not seeing. It asks us to stretch beyond our assumptions, into wider realizations about the world and deeper understandings of ourselves.

“What’s really going on?” teaches us to reflect things as they are. It illuminates causes and context, so everything stands in its true shape, free from the light our preferences may cast.

I regularly use “What’s really going on?” for insight into anger. It always uncovers a more vulnerable feeling underneath, like fear, hurt, fatigue, or embarrassment. Then, I can honor that feeling instead of being driven around by my anger.

If your travels take you into situations, places, or cultures that are new to you, this question will help you get out of your head, pay attention, and engage more deeply.

You will be tempted by this question to analyze or tell a story about what’s happening. Don’t try to figure anything out! Feel into your body, and make more subtle observations. Maintain kindness.

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HOW CAN I HELP?

If we’re not careful, a big vacation, a travel adventure, or an international retreat can end up being all about me, me, me! “How can I help?” provides an antidote to becoming self-absorbed and spurs us to connect with others.

When you’re traveling, “How can I help?” defers authority to local wisdom and makes you a good guest. Asked with humility, this question can pierce through awkward circumstances of inequality and shift you into listening and respect.

This question also makes us aware of our gifts and our agency. It points us to what we can do in this world of overwhelm.

“How can I help?” is an evolutionary question that leapfrogs ego’s desires and complaints to reconnect us with generosity and abundance. An attitude of “How can I help?” makes the world safer for everyone to explore, take risks, and grow.

Are you picturing yourself planting trees or feeding the homeless? Great! Also know that helping can look like taking a step back and giving space to others. It can look like patience. Or a smile.

Practice these questions. Put them in your pocket this summer, and take them with you… to the beach, as you step off the plane, while sipping your morning tea, to plan your next adventure.

Let the questions be touchstones – a way to take refuge in wisdom. Some days, they’ll reveal great insights. Other days, you’ll get silence in return. That’s ok! “I don’t know,” is always a valid response! Let yourself experience “don’t know” mind. Become better acquainted with uncertainty.

Notice how the ritual of being with these questions develops. Keep them with you until they’ve served their purpose, then let them go, and begin your next practice on life’s journey.

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ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Delana Thompson helps spiritually-inclined entrepreneurs express their hearts and expand their influence with authentic copywriting, project management,delana thompson and professional delivery of their online content. Her clients include teachers and practitioners of meditation, yoga, ayurveda, shamanic healing, astrology, and fine art. When she’s not writing marketing emails or designing landing pages, you’ll find Delana salsa dancing, practicing meditation, planning a trip, listening to a podcast, speaking Spanish, or missing all her faraway friends. Visit Delana on LinkedIn to learn more about her business.