Experience spectacular opera performances with prime seating at the iconic Metropolitan Opera House accompanied by an opera expert

Starting at: $3,395 * Price includes special offer Ask Us A Question or Call 855-330-1542
 The Metropolitan Opera House at Lincoln Center, showcasing the murals by Chagall  The dazzling lights of Manhattan's skyline  Elegant lobby of the Metropolitan Opera.  Credit: Ken Howard/Metropolitan Opera  Inside the Metropolitan Opera House. Credit: Jonathan Tichler/Metropolitan Opera

Springtime at the Metropolitan Opera

5 days from $3,395

Experience spectacular opera performances with prime seating at the iconic Metropolitan Opera House accompanied by an opera expert

or Call 855-330-1542

Tour Details

TOUR BROCHURE

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WHAT OUR TRAVELERS SAY

The experience of wonderful opera, good lectures and discussions after the operas, good food, and New York City to entertain oneself. What could be better? 

- Previous Journeys Traveler

Part of the pleasure of the opera tours is meeting other opera lovers from around the country.

- Judith W.

JOURNEYS DISPATCHES

See All Journeys Dispatches ››

Accommodations

* Click on hotel name to visit hotel web-site.

Empire Hotel

New York, United States

Located on West 63rd Street, the Empire Hotel is nestled between Central Park and Lincoln Center. Guest rooms are decorated in rich earth tones and feature all the modern amenities including a 32" flat-screen TV, full in-room mini bar, Frette linens, and over-sized towels. Additional amenities of the hotel include a spectacular rooftop terrace, restaurants and lobby bar, complimentary wireless high speed Internet, and a complimentary fitness center.

Number of nights: 4

Activity Level

Activity Level  1

Expectations: Tour stays in just one hotel across the street from The Metropolitan Opera House. Walks between 1-3 city blocks to the opera house and group dinner locations. Some standing and walking for extended periods of time during visits to the opera house for performances and touring. Walking is required on busy city streets with stairways that may not have handrails. Also, elevators may not always be available. There is no group transportation provided on this tour but taxis are readily available at an additional expense.  

Appropriate for: Travelers in good health with overall good mobility, and who are comfortable participating in at least three hours of activity per day and are comfortable walking on busy city streets both in a group and independently.

Testimonials

WHAT OUR TRAVELERS SAY

The experience of wonderful opera, good lectures and discussions after the operas, good food, and New York City to entertain oneself. What could be better? 

- Previous Journeys Traveler

Part of the pleasure of the opera tours is meeting other opera lovers from around the country.

- Judith W.
Reading List
Grand Opera: The Story of the Met
By: Charles Affron, Mirella Jona Affron
The Metropolitan has stood among the grandest of opera companies since its birth in 1883. Tracing the offstage/onstage workings of this famed New York institution, Charles Affron and Mirella Jona Affron tell how the Met became and remains a powerful actor on the global cultural scene. In this first new history of the company in thirty years, each of the chronologically sequenced chapters surveys a composer or a slice of the repertoire and brings to life dominant personalities and memorable performances of the time. From the opening night Faust to the recent controversial production of Wagner’s “Ring,” Grand Opera is a remarkable account of management and audience response to the push and pull of tradition and reinvention. Spanning the decades between the Gilded Age and the age of new media, this story of the Met concludes by tipping its hat to the hugely successful “Live in HD” simulcasts and other twenty-first-century innovations. Grand Opera’s appeal extends far beyond the large circle of opera enthusiasts. Drawing on unpublished documents from the Metropolitan Opera Archives, reviews, recordings, and much more, this richly detailed book looks at the Met in the broad context of national and international issues and events.
The Opera Lover’s Companion
By: Charles Osborne
Every opera lover enjoys a performance more when accompanied by a knowledgeable friend. In this indispensable guide, well-known opera critic Charles Osborne provides exactly that. Osborne fills in the details on 175 of the world’s most frequently performed operas, including facts about the composer and the music, a plot outline, accounts of famous performers, and much more."This book is exactly what the title claims: an opera lover's companion. Reading it is like going to the opera with a knowledgeable friend who tells you enough to make you want to see the piece but not so much you're drowned in superfluous detail."—Richard Fawkes, Opera Now"What this invaluable book contains is the ideal rundown on 175 operas from Auber's Fra Diavolo to Zimmerman's Die Soldaten, in each case putting the work in context within the composer's development, with a list of characters, a short synopsis and pointers towards the most imortant arias, duets and ensembles, all in a personal congenial tone, like unto an operatically wise and loving uncle."—Denby Richards, Musical Opinion“An erudite, instructive and unpretentious guide.”—Michael Kennedy, The Sunday Telegraph"It’s hard to imagine any other book on the subject more informative and helpful to the average enthusiast. . . . This book is one you’ll cherish."—Books in Canada
Verdi: The Man Revealed
By: John Suchet
Giuseppe Verdi remains Italy’s greatest operatic composer and a man of apparent contradictions―vividly brought to life through a nuanced examination of his life and monumental music.Giuseppe Verdi remains the greatest operatic composer that Italy, the home of opera, has ever produced. Yet throughout his lifetime he claimed to detest composing and repeatedly rejected it. He was a landowner, a farmer, a politician and symbol of Italian independence; but his music tells a different story.An obsessive perfectionist, Verdi drove collaborators to despair but his works lauded from the start as dazzling feats of composition and characterization. From Rigoletto to Otello, La Traviatato to Aida, Verdi’s canon encompassed the full range of human emotion. His private life was no less complex: he suffered great loss, and went out of his way to antagonize supporters and his own family. An outspoken advocate of Italian independence and a sharp critic of the church, he was often at odds with nineteenth-century society.In Verdi: The Man Revealed, John Suchet attempts to get under the skin of perhaps the most private composer who ever lived. Unraveling his protestations, his deliberate embellishments and disavowals, Suchet reveals the true character of this great artist―and the art for which he will be forever known. Illustrated throughout
Richard Wagner: A Life in Music
By: Martin Geck
Best known for the challenging four-opera cycle The Ring of the Nibelung, Richard Wagner (1813–83) was a conductor, librettist, theater director, and essayist, in addition to being the composer of some of the most enduring operatic works in history, such as The Flying Dutchman, Tannhäuser, and Tristan and Isolde. Though his influence on the development of European music is indisputable, Wagner was also quite outspoken on the politics and culture of his time. His ideas traveled beyond musical circles into philosophy, literature, theater staging, and the visual arts. To befit such a dynamic figure, acclaimed biographer Martin Geck offers here a Wagner biography unlike any other, one that strikes a unique balance between the technical musical aspects of Wagner’s compositions and his overarching understanding of aesthetics.Wagner has always inspired passionate admirers as well as numerous detractors, with the result that he has achieved a mythical stature nearly equal to that of the Valkyries and Viking heroes he popularized. There are few, if any, scholars today who know more about Wagner and his legacy than Geck, who builds upon his extensive research and considerable knowledge as one of the editors of the Complete Works to offer a distinctive appraisal of the composer and the operas. Using a wide range of sources, from contemporary scholars to the composer’s own words, Geck explores key ideas in Wagner’s life and works, while always keeping the music in the foreground. Geck discusses not only all the major operas, but also several unfinished operas and even the composer’s early attempts at quasi-Shakespearean drama.Richard Wagner: A Life in Music is a landmark study of one of music’s most important figures, offering something new to opera enthusiasts, Wagnerians, and anti-Wagnerians alike.
A History of Opera
By: Carolyn Abbate, Roger Parker
“The best single volume ever written on the subject, such is its range, authority, and readability.”―Times Literary Supplement Why has opera transfixed and fascinated audiences for centuries? Carolyn Abbate and Roger Parker answer this question in their “effervescent, witty” (Die Welt, Germany) retelling of the history of opera, examining its development, the musical and dramatic means by which it communicates, and its role in society. Now with an expanded examination of opera as an institution in the twenty-first century, this “lucid and sweeping” (Boston Globe) narrative explores the tensions that have sustained opera over four hundred years: between words and music, character and singer, inattention and absorption. Abbate and Parker argue that, though the genre’s most popular and enduring works were almost all written in a distant European past, opera continues to change the viewer― physically, emotionally, intellectually―with its enduring power. 24 pages of illustrations
Rigoletto Opera in Four Acts : Vocal Score
By: Ruth Martin, G. Verdi
(Vocal Score). Italian/English. Translated by Martin.
Aida: Vocal Score
By: Walter Ducloux
(Vocal Score). Italian/English. Translated by Ducloux.
Falstaff: Vocal Score (G. Schirmer Opera Score Editions)
By: W Ducloux
(Vocal Score). Italian/English. Translated by Ducloux.
Das Rheingold: G. Schirmer Opera Score, Ed. 1563 (Complete Vocal Score)
By: Brand: G. Schirmer, Inc.
(Vocal Score). German/English. Translated by Jameson.
Music (Dk Smithsonian)
By: DK
Music: The Definitive Visual History is a comprehensive guide to the history of music, from opera to electronica, and is now available in paperback.Produced in association with the Smithsonian and including images from The National Music Museum in South Dakota, Music: The Definitive Visual History takes readers through the progression of music since its prehistoric beginnings, discussing not just Western classical music but music from all around the world.Telling the story of musical developments era by era, and linking musical theory, technology, and human genius into the narrative, Music: The Definitive Visual History profiles the lives of groundbreaking musicians from Mozart to Elvis, takes an in-depth look at the history and function of various instruments, and includes listening suggestions for each music style.Go on an epic musical journey and learn to appreciate music in a new way with Music: The Definitive Visual History.
DK Eyewitness Travel Guide New York City
By: DK Travel
From unearthing archaeological treasures at the Metropolitan Museum of Art to biking through Central Park to strolling the streets of the artsy Soho and East and West Village neighborhoods, experience all that New York City has to offer. Plus, check out the best of the boroughs with suggested highlights for Brooklyn, Queens, Staten Island, the Bronx, and Upper Manhattan.Included with the book is a download of the free DK Audio Walks container app, available from the Apple Store and Google Play. Use it to scan the book's barcode and then download your five free audio walking tours for New York.Discover DK Eyewitness Travel Guide: New York City.   • Hotel and restaurant listings and recommendations.    • Detailed itineraries and "don't-miss" destination highlights at a glance.    • Illustrated cutaway 3-D drawings of important sights.    • Floor plans and guided visitor information for major museums.    • Free, color pull-out map (print edition) marked with sights, a selected site and street index, public transit map, practical information on getting around, and a distance chart for measuring walking distances.    • Guided walking tours, local drink and dining specialties to try, things to do, and places to eat, drink, and shop by area.    • Area maps marked with sights and restaurants.    • Detailed city maps include street finder index for easy navigation.    • Insights into history and culture to help you understand the stories behind the sights.    • Suggested day-trips and itineraries to explore beyond the city. With hundreds of full-color photographs, hand-drawn illustrations, and custom maps that illuminate every page, DK Eyewitness Travel Guide: New York City truly shows you what others only tell you.Recommended: For a pocket guidebook to New York City, check out DK Eyewitness Travel Guide: Top 10 New York City, which is packed with dozens of top 10 lists, ensuring you make the most of your time and experience the best of everything.Series Overview: For more than two decades, DK Eyewitness Travel Guides have helped travelers experience the world through the history, art, architecture, and culture of their destinations. Expert travel writers and researchers provide independent editorial advice, recommendations, and reviews. With guidebooks to hundreds of places around the globe available in print and digital formats, DK Eyewitness Travel Guides show travelers how they can discover more.
The World's Greatest Cities: The History of New York City
By: Charles River Editors
*Includes pictures of important people, places, and events in New York City's history. *Chronicles the history of New York City from the Native Americans to now. *Profiles the different people, places, and attractions of the Big Apple. *Looks at how New Yorkers have historically lived, worked, and played over the centuries. *Highlights some of the city's hidden gems and their stories, like Cleopatra's Needle. “I would give the greatest sunset in the world for one sight of New York's skyline. The shapes and the thought that made them. The sky over New York and the will of man made visible... Let them come to New York, stand on the shore of the Hudson, look and kneel. When I see the city from my window - no, I don't feel how small I am - but I feel that if a war came to threaten this, I would like to throw myself into space, over the city, and protect these buildings with my body.” – Ayn Rand, The Fountainhead Of all the great cities in the world, few personify their country like New York City. As America’s largest city and best known immigration gateway into the country, NYC represents the beauty, diversity and sheer strength of the United States, a global financial center that has enticed people chasing the “American Dream” for centuries. America’s prototypical metropolis was once a serene landscape in which Native American tribes farmed and fished, but when European settlers arrived its location on the Eastern seaboard sparked a rapid transformation. Given its history of rapid change, it is ironic that the city’s inhabitants often complain about the city’s changing and yearn for things to stay the same. The website EV Grieve, whose name plays on the idea that the East Village “grieves” for the history and character the neighborhood loses every day to market forces and gentrification, regularly features a photo of some site, usually of little interest: an abandoned store, a small bodega, a vacant lot. The caption says, simply, that this is what the site looked like on a given day. The editors of the website are determined to document everything and anything for future generations. That is hardly a modern phenomenon. New Yorkers have always grieved over the city’s continuous upheavals and ever-increasing size and complexity. By the 1820s, Wall Street had lost whatever charm it might have had; former residents complained that two-story houses had given way to intimidating five-story office buildings. The New York Commercial Advertiser noted in 1825 that “Greenwich is no longer a country village,” but rather an up-and-coming neighborhood. Today, it’s hard to find a history of New York City that doesn’t refer to Henry James’s famous 1908 story The Jolly Corner, in which a man returns to New York after decades abroad only to be horrified by an unfamiliar hellscape of commercial growth. He finds his once-jolly childhood home nearly buried “among the dreadful multiplied numberings which seemed to him to reduce the whole place to some vast ledger-page, overgrown, fantastic, of ruled and criss-crossed lines and figures.” The once-beloved city has transformed itself into “the mere gross generalisation of wealth and force and success.” That childhood home—an 1830s townhouse—in fact belonged to the James family on Washington Square in Greenwich Village. It was destroyed to make way for New York University, which is today embroiled in yet another real estate saga as it plans to expand once again. The World’s Greatest Cities: The History of New York City chronicles the history of America’s largest city while also offering vignettes about the people, places, and culture of the Big Apple that will interest inhabitants and tourists alike. Along with pictures of important people and places, you will learn about New York City like you never have before, in no time at all.
Travel Insurance

For the convenience of our travelers, Smithsonian Journeys includes an on-tour Provided Insurance Plan through Travel Guard with the price of your tour. This travel insurance plan includes On-tour medical evacuation insurance (up to $100,000), emergency medical expense coverage (up to $25,000), dental expense coverage (up to $500), travel medical assistance and worldwide travel assistance (U.S. Residents only, not including U.S. Territories). Travel must be more than 100 miles from the Insured’s primary residence.

In addition, you may want to consider purchasing travel insurance to protect your investment from unforeseen events, such as missed flight connections, lost luggage, and cancelled plans. There are many plans you can consider. For your convenience, you may visit www.TravelGuard.com/SmithsonianJourneys or call Travel Guard at 1.800.208.6142 to learn more.

Terms and conditions

Mission

Smithsonian Journeys engage travelers in the mission of the Smithsonian – “the increase and diffusion of knowledge.” Like the Institution, our tours enrich our guests’ lives and satisfy their curiosity about the world. Your participation benefits the work of Smithsonian’s 19 museums, National Zoo, and nine research centers, helping to preserve our national treasures and shape the future through science, research, and exhibitions.

What Is Included in the Tour Cost

  • Expertise of a Smithsonian Journeys expert, tour director and local guides throughout the tour
  • All gratuities for the expert, tour director, on-tour guides and drivers
  • On-tour emergency evacuation insurance (up to $100,000), medical expense coverage (up to $25,000), dental expense coverage (up to $500), travel medical assistance and worldwide travel assistance. (U.S. Residents only)
  • Pre-tour information, including a reading list
  • Transfers and luggage handling abroad for all travelers whose arrival(s)/departure(s) coincide with the scheduled group transfer(s)
  • All on-tour transportation, unless otherwise noted
  • All accommodations for the duration of the tour
  • Meals, as noted in the itinerary (B-breakfast; L-lunch; D-dinner; R-reception)
  • All sightseeing and visits as noted in each itinerary

What Is Not Included in the Tour Cost

  • Passport and all visa fees and photos; immunization(s); and any other travel documentation fees as required
  • Optional travel insurance, including cancellation/delay/lost baggage insurance
  • Personal items, unless otherwise stated, such as wine, liquors, a-la-carte orders
  • Expenses incurred by our tour operator in making any individual travel arrangements in conjunction with the tour
  • Airline baggage and other airline fees and associated taxes, unless noted in Tour description
  • Communication Charges (e.g.: phone, internet, etc.)
  • Other items noted as optional or not specifically mentioned as included

Registration

To submit a reservation request, please use our secure online system at SmithsonianJourneys.org or contact a Cultural Travel Specialist, at 1-855-330-1542 Mon-Fri 9 am - 7 pm; Sat 9 am – 4 pm (Eastern Time). Submitting an online request does not guarantee space on a tour.  You will be notified by a Reservation Specialist of your status once your request has been received and processed.  
 

To complete your reservation, the following information is required.
In accordance with the Transportation Security Administration’s (TSA) Secure Flight program, for all international tours, passport information is required, including the following:   Full name as it appears on your passport, Date of birth, and Gender (for further information, please visit www.tsa.gov).

Payments

A deposit of $500 per person is required to reserve a space on a tour.  All payments may be made by credit card or check to the tour operator.  Deposits are applied to final payment of the tour price.

Final payment is due 95 days prior to departure, unless otherwise noted.  Balance is due upon invoicing.  If full payment is not received by the final payment due date, your place cannot be guaranteed on the tour.

Late Registration

Any registration received within 95 days of departure is considered “on-request” and is subject to specific confirmation. Some tours are more restrictive. Payment in full must be made immediately by credit card, or by check sent by overnight mail to the tour operator, before confirmation is possible.

Once confirmed, cancellation penalties apply as set forth below. If confirmation is not possible, all payments made will be refunded in full. Late registration confirmation procedures apply to any traveler who is transferred from the wait list to the tour within the designated late registration period for that tour.

For additional information, please contact a Cultural Travel Specialist, at 1-855-330-1542 Mon-Fri 9 am - 7 pm; Sat 9 am – 4 pm (Eastern Time), at SJReservations@si.edu or SmithsonianJourneys.org.

A Note about Costs

All prices are based on two persons sharing a room/cabin. All prices are quoted in U.S. dollars. Tour costs are based upon current airfares, tariffs, currency values, and on the basis of a presumptive minimum number of travelers. While we will do everything possible to maintain the listed prices, they are subject to change.   Due to fluctuations in oil prices, a fuel surcharge may be added to your tour fee (e.g. internal flights, cruises, etc.).  Details and costs will be advised prior to departure.

Wait List

If the tour of your choice is fully subscribed, you may choose to be placed on a waitlist by contacting a Reservation Specialist at 1-855-330-1542 Mon-Fri 9 am - 7 pm; Sat 9 am – 4 pm (Eastern Time), or SJReservations@si.edu. Individuals on the wait list will be contacted if space becomes available and can inquire about tour status by contacting a Reservation Specialist. If you choose to withdraw from a wait list, please notify us.

Cancellation and Refund Policy

Following enrollment, a traveler’s withdrawal from the tour for any reason, including, but not limited to, illness, injury, family engagements, work-related issues, or geopolitical concerns, etc., will be deemed a cancellation. Please understand that there will be no exceptions to our cancellation policy.

Per person cancellation fees are based on date of written notice to Smithsonian Journeys. Tour operator will refund on the following basis:

  • Cancellations within 7 days of booking:  Full Refund (unless it is within final payment date, 95 days before departure)
  • Cancellations after 7 days of booking:  Full Deposit Retained
  • Cancellations made within final payment date, 95 days before departure:  No Refund
  • Cancellation by Smithsonian Journeys:  Full Refund or Credit

Air Service

For tour packages that include round-trip international airfare, rates are based on economy class from designated departure cities as shown. Airfares from other cities are available upon request. Airline upgrades at additional cost may be available on request for the international portion of your flight. Since international and domestic air schedules are subject to change at any time, we recommend that if you choose to make your own airline reservations, you do not purchase nonrefundable tickets or those with high penalties for changes. Neither Smithsonian Journeys nor the tour operator has any liability for any loss resulting from tour cancellations or changes in international gateways, travel dates, or airline schedule changes. If an air schedule requires an overnight stay in a gateway city, the cost of the overnight will be at your expense. For tour packages that include round-trip international airfare, we will be happy to help with arrangements. Please note that seat assignment on your international flight is usually done at airport check-in. The tour operator is unable to guarantee any seat assignments.

When planning our tours that include international round-trip airfare, the tour operator contracts with those airlines that they feel provide the level of service, routings, and value necessary for your entire trip. While another airline may offer a more direct connection, it may be at a price unavailable at the lower group rates that enable us to offer you the best possible travel value. Please note that frequent flyer mileage credits are issued at the discretion of the airline(s) and may not be available for the flights on your tour. If you prefer to make your own airline reservations, “land only” pricing is available on most of our tours.

Individual Arrivals and Group Transfers
A designated group flight is not included on most tours. However, transportation from the arrival airport to the ship/hotel is included in your tour cost if you arrive in time to meet the scheduled group transfer. Your first tour bulletin will thoroughly explain the details of the options available for your individual flights.

Air Tickets Purchased Independently of the Tour
We urge you to check airline cancellation penalties before purchasing airline tickets since international departure times and flights can change. Tours also can be canceled due to low enrollments. Neither Smithsonian Institution nor the tour operator accepts liability for cancellation penalties related to domestic or international airline tickets purchased independently in conjunction with a tour.

Travel Insurance

For the convenience of our travelers, Smithsonian Journeys includes an on-tour Provided Insurance Plan, through Travel Guard, with the price of your tour. On-tour emergency evacuation insurance (up to $100,000), medical expense coverage (up to $25,000), dental expense coverage (up to $500), travel medical assistance and worldwide travel assistance (U.S. Residents only). It also includes up to $25,000 medical and up to $500 dental expense coverage, and 24-hour worldwide travel and medical assistance. Please click here to view complete coverage details.

Please visit www.TravelGuard.com/SmithsonianJourneys or call Travel Guard at 1-800-208-6142 to learn about additional (optional) coverage.

Travel Documents

For all international departures, a passport valid for at least six months after the completion of your tour, and with at least six blank visa pages, is required for U.S. citizens on all tours in this catalog. If your tour requires a visa or other entry documents, we will send you the appropriate information after you make a reservation. You are responsible for obtaining these documents. If you are not a U.S. citizen, please contact your embassy or consulate to ensure you obtain the proper documentation.

Physical and Medical Considerations

Please note that these tours require that participants be in good physical condition. You must be capable, without assistance, of walking a minimum of two miles over uneven terrain and of climbing stairs that may not have handrails. Participants should have sufficient stamina to keep pace with an active group of travelers on long days of touring. If you have any questions about your ability to participate in a tour, please call us at 855-330-1542. Some tours have additional notes regarding physical and medical considerations, which may be discussed with the Cultural Travel Specialist at 855-330-1542.

Itinerary or Program Modifications

Smithsonian strives to improve tour itineraries and their features. If improvements can be made, or unforeseen circumstances beyond our control make changes necessary, we reserve the right to vary itineraries and to substitute hotels. Every effort will be made to carry out the program as planned but alterations may still occur after the final itinerary is sent. Please note that weather conditions may force changes to the advertised sailing schedule on cruise programs. The ship’s captain has the authority to change the ship’s schedule.

Accommodations

Smithsonian chooses hotels based on a combination of their location, service, atmosphere, and price. On adventure tours and programs in out-of-the-way places, best-available hotels are used. In most cases, hotels have elevators and meeting rooms for Smithsonian lectures. Program prices are based on two persons sharing a room with a bath.

Singles and Roommates
Hotel rooms are always reserved for single travelers; however the number of single rooms available on a tour may be limited. Therefore we recommend that you register early. Please note that a single supplement will apply for a single room. If you are traveling alone and wish to share a room, we will do our best to find someone of the same gender and smoking preference to share with you. If you are matched with a non-smoking roommate, it is mutually agreed that you cannot smoke in your hotel room. When a roommate cannot be found, the single supplement will be charged. 

Children

All tours, except family programs, are designed for adults. Some may be suitable for older children. Regardless of age, children must pay full price unless otherwise noted, and a parent or guardian must accompany those under 18.

Special Travel Arrangements

Participants may wish to extend their stay in the group hotel. Please note that the tour operator can assist you in making post-tour arrangements only. We regret that we are unable to help with pre-tour arrangements.

Photography
Participants on tour may be photographed for the educational and promotional purposes of the Smithsonian Institution. Photographs may be printed in publications and posted on websites to promote Smithsonian Journeys. Travelers who prefer that their image not be used must advise the tour manager at the beginning of the tour.

Smoking Policy
For the comfort of all participants, we ask that there be no smoking during all group activities, including excursions and meals. On certain cruises, there is no smoking aboard the ship. Your pre-tour bulletins will provide further information.

Preparing for Your Journey

Prior to departure, you will receive Tour Bulletins containing both general and tour specific information to help you prepare for your travel experience. These bulletins will include:

  • Passport and visa instructions
  • Flight information
  • Weather, clothing, and packing suggestions
  • A suggested reading list
  • General information about the countries you will visit, e.g. the food, customs, medical precautions, and currency.
  • Information about your Smithsonian Journeys Expert and tour staff
  • Baggage tag(s) and name badge(s)
  • Final itinerary
  • Participant list  

RESPONSIBILITY STATEMENT AND LIABILITY DISCLAIMER

Read Carefully: Responsibility Statement and Liability Disclaimer
Smithsonian Journeys are managed by professional tour operators hired as independent contractors. The use of tour operators allows the Smithsonian to offer its members a wide array of educational travel opportunities. The tour operator acts only as an agent for the respective suppliers by making arrangements for transportation, accommodations, and other services. Neither the Smithsonian Institution nor the tour operator shall be held liable for personal injury, death, property damage or accident, delay or irregularity arising out of any act or omission of these suppliers. The Smithsonian Institution and the tour operator reserve the right, without penalty, to make changes in the published itinerary whenever, in their judgment, conditions warrant, or if they deem it necessary for the comfort, convenience, or safety of tour participants.

The Smithsonian Institution and the tour operator also reserve the right, without penalty, to withdraw the tour announced, to decline to accept any person as a participant in a tour, or to require any participant to withdraw from the tour at any time, when such action is determined by tour staff to be in the best interests of the health, safety or general welfare of the tour group or the individual participant, subject only to the requirement that the recoverable portion of the total amount paid that corresponds to the cost of unused services and accommodations be refunded, if any. If your tour does not include airfare, your Tour Bulletins will provide information about when participants are recommended to purchase airline tickets. The Smithsonian Institution and the tour operator accept no liability for the purchase of non-refundable airline tickets to/from the tour departure city if a tour is canceled or otherwise modified subsequent to the participant’s purchase of those tickets. Baggage and personal effects are at all times the sole responsibility of the participant.

Dates, schedules, program details, and costs, although provided in good faith based on information available at the time of publication of the brochure or catalog, are subject to change and revision.

AS A CONDITION OF ACCEPTANCE OF ANY APPLICATION, EACH APPLICANT MUST AGREE TO THE STATEMENT SET FORTH BELOW:

The undersigned has read carefully the Responsibility Statement and Liability Disclaimer set forth above, the schedule of activities for this tour, as well as the terms and conditions of application and participation as set forth in the tour brochure(s), and recognizes and accepts any risk associated with the tour and the conditions, including the refund policy, set forth in the tour brochure(s). The undersigned further acknowledges that there are many risks and uncertainties inherent in any travel tour, including but not limited to the hazards of various modes of transportation, forces of nature, acts or omissions of foreign governments, terrorism, war or insurrection, theft, illness, and damage to person or property due to the negligent acts or omissions of tour staff or others. In consideration of, and as part payment for, the right to participate in the tour, the undersigned, on behalf of himself, his dependents, heirs, executors, administrators and assigns, agrees to release the Smithsonian Institution, its Regents, officers, employees, representatives or agents, the United States, and the tour operator and its officers, employees and agents, from liability for personal injury, death, property damage or loss suffered by any person in connection with this tour, even if caused by the negligence (but not the reckless, willful, or fraudulent conduct) of tour staff or other related persons or entities. In addition, by registering for this tour, the applicant certifies that he or she is mentally and physically capable of full participation in this tour.

By registering for a Smithsonian Journey, the participant agrees to the Responsibility Statement and Liability Disclaimer and the Terms and Conditions herein.