Scan Magazine, Issue 132, January 2020

Page 30

Højskole Rejser (‘folk high school tours’) is not just about beautiful, unspoiled destinations, but also about being together and being present.

Taking the folk high school spirit on the road If you believe that travelling is about more than ticking sights off a list and trying to memorise dates, names and places, Højskole Rejser (‘folk high school tours’) might be your kind of travel company. Taking the Scandinavian folk high school experience out of the classroom and onto the road, the company brings its participants to the less explored parts of Europe and up and close with the people and culture of the areas. By Signe Hansen  |  Photos: Højskole rejser

After 16 years of experience as a folk high school educator and travel planner, Torben Egeris decided to put his vast network and knowledge to use in a new kind of venture – a travel company that takes the folk high school out of the classroom and onto the road. “Normally, with a travel folk high school, you spend the first four or five days at the school getting to know each other, singing, and learning about the region you’re visiting, and then the trip itself is more of a traditional group holiday. But that’s actually not the way it should be; it’s when we’re 30  |  Issue 132  |  January 2020

on the tour that we should be connecting, singing and learning about the region through the people who live there. A folk high school is not about the school; it’s about an ideology, a way of being together, and that’s what I wanted to take on the road, directly into the world.” Founded three years ago, Højskole  Rejser arranges around 12 yearly tours with a maximum of 16 participants on each. Most tours are guided by Egeris and a like-minded colleague, and, of course, the folk high school songbook, a

travel piano and a guitar are also sure to come along on the journey.

Away from the tourist zone Having arranged and guided tours in  Europe for almost two decades,  Egeris has a vast network of contacts and a broad knowledge of the areas he visits. He puts this to use not to achieve the most efficient travel itinerary, but to create authentic experiences with time for dialogue and physical, mental and cultural exploration. “Of course, we also visit attractions, but it’s very important to us that it’s an authentic experience; we stay away from the overcrowded tourist destinations. Instead, we for instance visit artists who no one else would find. We visit them in their homes, talk to them, and eat with them,” explains Egeris. For the same reason, when possible, Egeris organises his trips to beautiful,

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