What we're about

Welcome to the Chicago Adventure Travel Club!

Simply put, this group is for people who want to make friends and travel the world.

The group tries to Meetup locally in the Chicago area to bring adventurous people together to talk about where we’ve been and where we dream of going… fun, casual, free face to face get-togethers with members from our community to visit local restaurants, grab a social drink together in one of the local bars or maybe even take a hike or a walk at a local park. But ultimately, our commonality is that we love travel but would prefer not to do it alone. Before starting this Meetup group, I traveled solo because all my friends were married or didn’t have the time or interest in adventurous travel. I wanted to share my experience and love of travel with others who could relate, both reminiscing about old adventures and dreaming/learning about new destinations. But I also wanted to find others to join me on these amazing adventures, to explore with new friends the local cultures around the world, and to bring the beauty of these amazing cultures back to our community. I was a member of Meetup for other non-travel interests I had, so I figured Meetup was the perfect place to find other like-minded people. So, I became an Organizer and started my own group with a fellow traveler and adventurer who was in the same boat as me.

That’s the goal now and that was the goal when it all started over 10 years ago with a simple dream and our first meetup event... 2 organizers and 1 member gathering in a bar to talk about and share our love of travel. With time and years of dedication to our Meetup group and events, both free casual local get-togethers and ultimately our adventures to exciting places around the world (still to this day being almost exclusively solo Meetup members looking to meet and share their experience with others), partnerships with other Meetup groups and Organizers who also embrace the idea of sharing this world with other like-minded people, the creation of GECtravel (a website we created entirely as the direct result of our success with Meetup to simply help us coordinate our Meetup member’s trip reservations), our original Meetup vision has grown beyond our wildest dreams. Little did we know at the time that we weren’t the only Meetup members with dreams to meet other travel-loving people locally, but who were also looking for other members from all around to share the experience of exploring exciting destinations around the world. Years later, we are thousands and thousands of Meetup members strong! No longer do we have to do it alone... Meetup has made it possible for us to Make Friends and Travel the World!

So, come join us and live the adventurous life you’ve always dreamed of.

Upcoming events (5)

JAPAN: Kyoto & Tokyo via the Bullet Train (Optional Mt. Fuji Post-Trip Hike)

JAPAN: Kyoto & Tokyo via the Bullet Train (with Optional Mt. Fuji Hike) August 31 - September 6, 2020 (Aug 31 - Sept 8 with optional Mt Fuji Hike) CLICK HERE (http://www.gectravel.com/details.php?record=1257) to book your spot. Pricing and Booking: STARTING PRICE: $2,299 (airfare additional) -------------------------------------------- Join your fellow Meetup members from all over on an exciting group tour to Japan (with an optional post-trip hike of Mt Fuji)! On this much-anticipated trip, you’ll explore historic and modern Japan with a group of fun, like-minded people. Explore beautiful Kyoto, travel to Tokyo via Japan’s ultra-highspeed bullet train, and visit cosmopolitan Tokyo. We’ll even end this trip with an optional 3 day/2 night post-trip extension to hike the legendary Mt. Fuji (1 night on the mountain & 1 night in our Tokyo hotel). This group trip is a fantastic way to see the beauty of Japan (and experience an adventurous hike if you want) with a group of fun, like-minded adventurers. CLICK HERE (http://www.gectravel.com/details.php?record=1257) to book your spot. ----------------------------------------------------------------- Pricing and Booking: STARTING PRICE: $2,299 (airfare additional) CLICK HERE (http://www.gectravel.com/details.php?record=1257) to book your spot. NOTE: a meetup RSVP does NOT reserve your space. For prices, details and to book your space on this tour, please CLICK HERE (http://www.gectravel.com/details.php?record=1257). ----------------------------------------------------------------- PLEASE NOTE: These small group trips are open for anyone to join. You can sign up as a solo traveler (roommate matching is free - or you can get your own room) OR join with a partner, friends or other family members. All are welcome! ----------------------------------------------------------------- GET THE SCOOP! Want to see what other Meetup members are saying? Then check out the GEC Testimonial Page (http://www.gectravel.com/testimonials.php). ----------------------------------------------------------------- Included in this awesome adventure: * 3-4 star hotels * Day tour of Tokyo * Tokyo Bay Cruise * Walking tour of Kyoto * Evening walking tour of Gion Kyoto * High-speed bullet train Tokyo to Kyoto * Guided tours as mentioned in itinerary with expert English speaking local guides * GEC English speaking Trip Leader * Excellent mid-range hotels * Breakfast daily * Entrance fees to all sites as indicated in the itinerary * All transfers and tours as indicated in modern air-conditioned vehicles OPTIONAL 3d/2n Mt. Fuji post-trip Hike Extension (included if option is purchased): * Guided overnight hike to summit of Mt Fuji * 1-night mountain hut and 1-night at hotel in Tokyo * Transportation via bus between Tokyo and Mt Fuji * English speaking local guide * Breakfast daily. Dinner on Mt Fuji. * Entrance fees CLICK HERE (http://www.gectravel.com/details.php?record=1257) to book your spot. Places Visited: Japan Group Tour, Tokyo, Kyoto, optional Mt Fuji group hike. ---------------------------------------------------------------- GEC (http://www.gectravel.com/) is a group of fun-loving Meetup travelers looking for other like-minded people to travel the world with. The travel club started over 10 years ago with just a handful of Meetup members and has grown into one of the largest travel groups in the country. Check out the GEC’s Testimonial Page (http://www.gectravel.com/testimonials.php) to see what other Meetup members are saying about these trips. Of course, if you have any questions you can always contact me or one of the other organizers through meetup message. Make Friends. Travel the World.

PERU: Group Trek to Machu Picchu (with Optional Amazon Rainforest)

Machu Picchu Trek (with optional Amazon extension) CLICK HERE (http://www.gectravel.com/details.php?record=1162) to book your spot. Join members from all over on this incredible Group Trek to Machu Picchu in Peru! 2020 DEPARTURE DATES: -- September 5-12, 2020... optional Amazon Sept 12-14 A classic 'must do' for any adventure traveler, join a group of fun, like-minded people on a 8-day group trek to Machu Picchu. On this fully supported and fully guided group trek, we'll travel along the less crowded and touristy, but more beautiful Salkantay Trail (rated as "One of The 25 Best Treks in the World" by National Geographic Traveler Magazine) through the Andes Mountains on ancient Incan trails to Machu Picchu, one the 7 Wonders of the World. Camp 1 night next to an active glacier, view snow-capped mountains up close, soak in natural hot springs along the trek, and take a scenic train ride that follows a river through dramatic mountain valleys. It's an adventure that just can't be missed! After the trek, why not join the group on an optional 3d/2n visit to the Amazon Rainforest! NOTE: On this trek, we'll have a full support staff, including cooks, local guide, and porters (with horses) to carry all our gear and setup our camps. You just need to walk and enjoy! ----------------------------------------------------------------- GET THE SCOOP! Want to see what other Meetup members are saying? Then check out the GEC Testimonial Page (http://www.gectravel.com/testimonials.php). ----------------------------------------------------------------- Pricing and Booking: BASE PRICE: $1,899 (airfare additional) CLICK HERE (http://www.gectravel.com/details.php?record=1162) to book your spot. NOTE: a meetup RSVP does NOT reserve your space. For prices, details and to book your space on this tour, please CLICK HERE (http://www.gectravel.com/details.php?record=1162) to book your spot on the trip. ----------------------------------------------------------------- Included in the awesome adventure: * Expert English speaking local guide * 8 days: 3n camping & 4n excellent hotels * Hot Springs visit during trek (subject to schedule & being open – entrance fee extra) * Guided tour of Machu Picchu * Entrance fees to Machu Picchu * Fully supported 4 day trek to Machu Picchu, including: -- Porters and cooks -- All meals on trek & breakfast in hotels -- Filtered or boiled water during trek -- Horses/mules during trek to carry gear -- All camping gear, including tents & inflatable mattress (except sleeping bag - can rent) -- Dinning tent, cooking tent, bathroom tents ----------------------------------------------------------------- Need help booking your airfare? Just email me or give me a call at[masked] Click Here For Complete Details and Booking (http://www.gectravel.com/details.php?record=1162) >Places Visited: Group Trek to Machu Picchu, Peru, Cusco, Aguas Calientes, optional Amazon Rainforest ---------------------------------------------------------------- The GEC (http://www.gectravel.com/) is a group of fun-loving Meetup travelers looking for other like-minded people to travel the world with. The travel club started over 10 years ago with just a handful of meetup members and has grown into one of the largest travel groups in the country. Check out the GEC’s Testimonial Page (http://www.gectravel.com/testimonials.php) to see what other Meetup members are saying about these trips. Of course, if you have any questions you can always contact me or one of the other organizers through meetup message or via phone at (617)[masked] Make Friends. Travel the World.

PERU: Non-Trek Group Trip to Machu Picchu (with Optional Amazon Rainforest)

Machu Picchu Group Trip - NON-Trekking Version (with optional Amazon extension) CLICK HERE (http://www.gectravel.com/details.php?record=1191) to book your spot. Join Meetup members from all over on this incredible Group Trip to Machu Picchu in Peru! (Note: this is the NON-Trekking version – there is a September Trekking version as well!) 2020 DEPARTURE DATE: -- September 6-12, 2020 (optional Amazon Sept 12-14) A classic 'must do' for any adventure traveler, a group tour from Cusco through the Sacred Valley to Machu Picchu. Explore one of the 7 Wonders of the World, then journey back to Cusco via a scenic train. It's a relaxed and easy adventure that just can't be missed. ----------------------------------------------------------------- GET THE SCOOP! Want to see what other Meetup members are saying? Then check out the GEC Testimonial Page (http://www.gectravel.com/testimonials.php). ----------------------------------------------------------------- Pricing and Booking: BASE PRICE: $1,899 (airfare additional) CLICK HERE (http://www.gectravel.com/details.php?record=1191) to book your spot. NOTE: a meetup RSVP does NOT reserve your space. For prices, details and to book your space on this tour, please CLICK HERE (http://www.gectravel.com/details.php?record=1191) to book your spot on the trip. ----------------------------------------------------------------- Included in the awesome adventure: * Expert English speaking local guide * 3-4* hotels * Guided tour of Machu Picchu * Entrance fees to Machu Picchu * Guided tour of Sacred Valley * Transfers during the tour * Breakfast daily * Scenic train ride to/from Machu Picchu ----------------------------------------------------------------- Need help booking your airfare? Just email me or give me a call at[masked] Click Here For Complete Details and Booking (http://www.gectravel.com/details.php?record=1191) >Places Visited: Group Tour to Machu Picchu, Peru, Cusco, Sacsayhuaman Fortress, Aguas Calientes, Sacred Valley Ollantaytambo, Optional Amazon Rainforest Eco Lodge Adventure ---------------------------------------------------------------- The GEC (http://www.gectravel.com/) is a group of fun-loving Meetup travelers looking for other like-minded people to travel the world with. The travel club started over 10 years ago with just a handful of meetup members and has grown into one of the largest travel groups in the country. Check out the GEC’s Testimonial Page (http://www.gectravel.com/testimonials.php) to see what other Meetup members are saying about these trips. Of course, if you have any questions you can always contact me or one of the other organizers through meetup message or via phone at (617)[masked] Make Friends. Travel the World.

AFRICAN VOLUNTEER TOUR - with Optional African Safari

Serengeti National Park

AFRICAN VOLUNTEER TOUR - with Optional African Safari CLICK HERE (http://www.gectravel.com/details.php?record=1238) to book your spot. Departure date: -- September 9 -12, 2020 ---- (September 12 - Sept 19, 2020 for optional discounted safari) Join meetup members from all over and give back and donate your time by lending a helping hand where it's needed most on this African Volunteer Group Tour with Optional African Safari. Join us as we visit local schools and an orphanage. Help paint, perform minor repairs, or whatever help is needed at the time of our visit, and spend time with the students where you can deliver some much-needed school supplies. After these 4 days of volunteering, why not experience the plains of the Great African Animal Migration with an ultimate group safari to the world-famous parks of Tanzania, including the Serengeti and Ngorongoro Crater. CLICK HERE (http://www.gectravel.com/details.php?record=1238) to book your spot. ----------------------------------------------------------------- Pricing and Booking: STARTING PRICE: $649 (airfare, supplies and optional safari additional) CLICK HERE (http://www.gectravel.com/details.php?record=1238) to book your spot. NOTE: a meetup RSVP does NOT reserve your space. For prices, details and to book your space on this tour, please CLICK HERE (http://www.gectravel.com/details.php?record=1238) ----------------------------------------------------------------- GET THE SCOOP! Want to see what other meetup members are saying? Then check out the GEC Testimonial Page (http://www.gectravel.com/testimonials.php). ----------------------------------------------------------------- Included in the awesome adventure: * 4 day / 3 night volunteer program * Expert local guide/driver * 3 nights mid-range hotel * Local school visits * Integrated program days to help schools, orphanages, etc. with general repairs needed at the time of visit * Opportunity to spend time with local school children and to deliver any school supplies you wish to purchase and bring from home * Visit to local orphanage to delivery much-needed food * Visit to the local markets with your guide to purchase food for the orphanage -- Optional Group Safari (if purchased): * 8 day / 7 night Luxury African safari! * 7 nights luxury African hotels, lodges and luxury tent camp * Fully guided safari through some of Africa's greatest national parks, including the famous Serengeti and Ngorongoro Crater * Expert local safari guide and driver * Local cultural visits * Bush Tribe visit * Masai Mara Tribe village visit * Comfortable 4x4 Land Cruiser type vehicles with open viewing roof * All meals while on safari and breakfast in Arusha * National Park gate fees Need help booking your airfare? Just email me or give me a call at[masked] For Complete Details and to Book Your Space on the Trip, please CLICK HERE (http://www.gectravel.com/details.php?record=1238) >Places Visited: Group Volunteer Trip to Africa, Local Tanzanian School Visit, Orphanage Visit, Optional: Group Safari to Serengeti, Ngorongoro Crater, Tarangire National Park, Lake Eyasi, Bush Tribe Visit, Olduvai Gorge, Arusha ---------------------------------------------------------------- GEC (http://www.gectravel.com/) is a group of fun-loving Meetup travelers looking for other like-minded people to travel the world with. The travel club started over 10 years ago with just a handful of Meetup members and has grown into one of the largest travel groups in the country. Check out the GEC’s Testimonial Page (http://www.gectravel.com/testimonials.php) to see what other Meetup members are saying about these trips. Of course, if you have any questions you can always contact me or one of the other organizers through meetup message or via phone at (617)[masked] Make Friends. Travel the World.

Past events (220)

EGYPT: Group Luxury Expedition & Nile River Cruise

Pyramids of Giza

Photos (941)