For intellectually curious high-school students who are ready for rugged travel, the Tibetan regions of the central Asian plateau offer profound learning adventures.

I’VE OFTEN WRITTEN about the importance of youth travel programs, both for the individual students who are exposed to a foreign culture and for the international community, which desperately needs to foster a generation of empowered global citizens.

However, just as not all youth travel organizations are created equal, not all destinations offer the same degree of experiential education. One place that does provide motivated students with truly transformational and deeply educational travel experiences is the Tibetan plateau.

Tibet is a life-changing destination for two reasons. One, it is home to a culture remarkably different from any in the West. Many would argue that traditional Tibetan culture holds many lessons for the West.

Second, Tibet is place wrapped up in illusion and propaganda. Facts about Tibet are hard to come by, and first-hand travel experiences are extremely valuable. Most foreigners who travel to Tibet are confined by draconian regulations and only see a handful of government approved sites. Some student travel programs, however, are able to go deeper into Tibetan culture and explore places few tourists would get to see.

Where There Be Dragons is offering a 6 week Tibet student travel program for 16 – 18 year old students this summer. Last year, the Dragons Tibet trip was rerouted to Ladakh (a culturally Tibetan area of India) because of political tensions, but the students were able to meet with the Dalai Lama. This year, everyone at Dragons has fingers crossed for the Tibet Autonomous Region to open.

Whether the Tibet program is in Ladakh or in Tibet proper, the Dragons program will be a deeply profound journey for the right students.

For more info. check out Where There Be Dragons.