Do you have questions about our tours from Portland and Seattle? Here are the tour questions travelers frequently ask:
Don’t see your question? Send us a note or give us a call
What should I wear/bring?
Generally speaking, the Northwest has a mild climate but the temperatures and conditions can change quickly – especially if you are near the coast or in the mountains.
Please wear closed-toe comfortable walking shoes, hiking shoes, or light boots. A light wind/waterproof jacket is always good to have. We also recommend non-cotton outer layers (please avoid denim) on all outdoor tours. Extra layers or a second pair of socks can be safely stored in our vehicles if you decide you do not need them.
A hat and sunglasses are great. Beyond clothing, your cell phone or camera and any necessary medications are pretty much it! We’re happy to take care of everything else!
Do you pick travelers up at their hotels
We offer complimentary pick-up and drop-off wherever you’re staying in downtown Seattle – hotels, Airbnbs, vacation rentals, a friend’s apartment, etc. Our operations team will connect with you 24 hours prior to your trip to confirm time and location.
What’s included in my tour
Complimentary pick-up and drop-off at your downtown accommodations (hotel, AirBNB, rental, etc.).
A local, TripAdvisor ‘Hall of Fame’ naturalist guide. We guarantee you’ll love your trip leader!
No additional charges during your day. We cover everything you’ll need during our tours (meals, drinks, entrance fees, permits, ferry charges, wine tasting fees, fuel, etc.).
Comfortable transportation in brand new Ford Transit vans or Mercedes Sprinter vans. Most of our vehicles are built for 15 people – we only open ten seats per trip to leave plenty of space.
Plenty of readily available snacks, water, La Croix sparkling water, and more throughout the day.
We provide any gear needed (like snowshoes for Mt. Rainier in the winter).
Additional warm clothing is available upon request.
The following inclusions depend heavily on the tour. Please see further tour details.
We’ll bring a light breakfast generally including French-pressed local coffee, tea, bakery, fruit.
A gorgeous local lunch. Our offerings change frequently/seasonally – but often includes chicken, green salads, grain or pasta salads, dessert. Let us know if you have dietary restrictions – we can accommodate most needs if we’re aware of them prior to 24 hours of your tour start.
Local wine with lunch.
How strenuous will my tour be?
We have built our trips to appeal to all abilities and interest levels, and the level of activity can be considered easy to moderate. Our tours have a maximum of ten guests, which allows your guide to tailor the activity level to your group. In most of our places – we’re permitted to hike/walk so we’re keen to do so. You can find out more about activities by browsing our tour offerings or by giving us a call!
If you are interested in slowing down (or speeding up) significantly – we can certainly arrange a private itinerary specifically for you.
How many travelers are on a typical tour?
Great question! In summer – average group size is 6 – 10 travelers. In the winter – average group size is 4 – 6 travelers.
Is my trip guaranteed to go?
In very rare (once or twice a year) instances, the weather (dangerous wind, downed trees, ice, etc) may prevent us from running a tour. If this occurs, we will work with you to reschedule for another day, another tour, or completely refund your trip.
What if it’s raining?
So you’ve heard it rains in the Northwest? Our guides craft the best itinerary for the day to accommodate the weather. We run our tours rain or shine because the Pacific Northwest is stunning regardless of what the weather may bring. Frequently, wet weather only lasts an hour or so before things start to improve again!
Did you know that Houston, Chicago, and even New York City get more rain than our two home cities?
Do your tours run even if I’m the only person to book?
Definitely! We love exploring as much as you do! Some of our favorite field days occur with micro groups (1 or 2 travelers).
Typically, we offer guests the ability to change dates if any of our other days work. We always offer as we find some travelers feel safer in a group of a few other travelers. There’s no pressure to change – just an opportunity to travel the way you’d like!
What type of food is available on my tour?
Half-Day – on morning tours, we provide morning pastries with tea or local coffee and seasonal fruit, juices, and water. On afternoon tours we provide afternoon snacks and refreshments (such as granola bars, cookies, sparkling water, tea, water, etc.).
Full-Day – along the way, we’ll serve morning pastries with tea or coffee. At lunchtime, we provide a full gourmet picnic with local wine. Expect a protein like grilled chicken (or tofu) served with side dishes including green salads, grain, pasta, or potato salad, and dessert! You’ll have unlimited access to snacks and refreshments throughout the day.
*Please advise us if you have any food restrictions, allergies or requests. We can accommodate a wide variety of needs when given enough notice.
Do you offer private tours?
Absolutely! We offer private tours for just about any group size. For a very large group, where lots of vans and guides (or a bus rental) are required, contact us and we can assist with planning!
We offer plenty of single-day, multi-day, and custom private trips!
What type of vehicle will we be in to get there?
This depends on the tour you are on and the group size you are in. On most of our tours it’ll be a comfortable Mercedes-Benz van that can accommodate 10 guests or a new Ford Transit 15-passenger van for extra room. Our vans have ample leg room, large windows, and a very smooth ride. We believe in having the right tool for the job so we may contract for a more appropriately-sized vehicle, perhaps a luxury SUV, if your group needs it. We’ll make sure you’re comfortable!
Can I cancel or change my booking?
We like to work for travelers – never against. Changes depend a bit on your specific situation and how far in advance you are able to make them. Please review our Terms & Conditions for specific details. If you have any questions, give us a call!
Should I tip my guide?
We get asked this a lot – so we’re writing down our response.
Tipping cash is a complicated cultural phenomenon that is very different from place to place, traveler to traveler, and experience to experience. We’re travelers too, we understand! What’s more, the act of tipping has a complicated history. We believe tipping is up to you.
The semi-straightforward answer is that many travelers tip our educators if they’ve lead a beautiful trip. In the United States, $10 to 10% of your ticket price is a commonly used guideline. Our guides can accept tips and they are greatly appreciated. Pretty much everyone on our team, in the field or in the office, has guided extensively and we know tips do make it more feasible to guide professionally in expensive cities like Seattle & Portland.
Ultimately, we want you to have the best experience possible with our team. In the end – that’s what matters to us. If you’re not comfortable with the idea of tipping, we’d encourage you to utilize another option: feedback. Our guides and tours succeed and improve on the back of social feedback. Log into your favorite platform (TripAdvisor, Yelp, Google, Facebook, Expedia, and so on) and share a quick review of your experience. If you have any constructive criticism for us – we love talking to travelers. We’d be thrilled to give you a call to discuss honing our trips!!!