From October through Feb. 2009, Academic Arrangements Abroad is offering travelers unique, art-inspired tour packages to China, Japan and India. Each of the New York-based company’s itineraries is custom-designed in collaboration with a museum, university or other cultural organization.
In China, the tour operator is offering an art-influenced package to see Beijing and Shanghai’s burgeoning artistic movements firsthand. There, guests will take part in special meetings with distinguished Chinese artists, curators and collectors; visit Ai Weiwei’s Caochangdi Village, an emerging artist community; tour the new Ullens Museum and Zendai Museum of Modern Art; and go to the Shanghai Biennale, a renowned international contemporary art exhibition. Dates of travel for this package are from Oct. 11 to 20 and accommodations include four-night stays each at the Raffles Hotel, Beijing and The Four Seasons Hotel, Shanghai. Rates start at $7,795.
In Japan, elaborate temples and shrines form the masterpiece of the Insider’s Japan: Contemporary & Traditional Culture package, which runs from Oct. 15 to 26. Here, travelers will make a private temple visit at Daitoku-ji, an exemplary example of Zen Buddhist design; have tea with a well-known contemporary ceramics artist; visit Tadao Ando’s Chichu Art Museum on Naoshima; and take a special tour of Horyjui Treasures at the Tokyo Art Museum. The trip begins with five nights in Kyoto, travels to Naoshima for two nights and concludes in Tokyo for three nights. Rates start at $8,995.
The Palaces, Princes & Peacocks: Rajasthan in Depth tour package takes clients throughout northern India where they will visit palaces, temples and fortresses with noted art historian Olivier Bernier from Feb. 1 to 18. Stops include Jaisalmer Fort, the colorful countryside of Rajasthan, two nights’ stay at the Umaid Bhawan Palace Hotel and a visit to the City Palace at Udaipur. Rates start at $13,950.