In honor of Black History Month, we take a moment to recognize just a few of the Black-owned travel businesses. These businesses are located throughout the world and range from travel blogs and publications to tour companies to travel agencies to photographers. We also include travel accessories and luggage along with Black-owned foodie picks. So, if you are looking for black travel and foodie businesses to patronize, this is a great place to start. Here is our list.
Travel Blogs and Publications:
Griots Republic: This startup online magazine is making a storm, featuring dynamic travel pieces, arts and entertainment profile pieces, foodie insights, and more. New issues come out monthly.
Outdoorsy Diva: An adventure blog featuring Lauren, the resident diva. Follow Lauren as she kayaks, hikes, and eats her way through her misadventures. And being a mom of a teenager, she offers great insights as to family adventures.
The Sophisticated Life: Nadeen travels, eats, and drinks wine, and she is sophisticated while she does it. The Sophisticated Life has excellent country and city guides for the traveler and foodie recommendations spanning the globe.
The Travel Guru: With flight benefits to help her make her way around the globe, Roni, The Travel Guru, is getting out and exploring the roads less traveled and offering tips along the way. Not to mention, her expert packing tips are the stuff of genius!
BarisTourista: (SHAMELESS PLUG): Over at BarrisTourista, we focus on travel, foodie recommendations, upscale experiences, and photography, all while delving into the local experience. And every week, I offer tips and tricks to help you travel, including how to save those coins.
HollyDayz Travel: Holly offers travelers assistance by reviewing hotels, apps, and more. And Holly is a vlogger (video blogger) as well, so you can check out many locations first hand!
I Luv 2 Globetrot: When this is the name of your blog, you better be going places. And Nicole definitely is, exploring amazing spots in the Middle East and more. Her reviews in high-end destinations, such as the Seychelles, are not to be missed.
Passenger 156: Kirstin Fuller, aka The Travelin’ Diva, offers great reviews (including car reviews) and tips on her blog. She even has recommendations on how to use household products in your travels.
What’s Good Ashleigh?: Ashleigh is just tryingto find out what’s good. And tell you about it. She offers foodie recommendations and wants to show you that you don’t have to travel far and break the bank in order to have a good time.
AfroLatino Travel: This tour company focuses on the intersection between Latino influences and the African diaspora. They have tours in Panama, Colombia, Cuba, Trinidad, and other countries with high Afro-Latino influences.
Karambole Tours Martinique: This tour company focuses on various areas and sites throughout Martinique. Started by Christelle in November, this tour company has numerous tours to allow visitors to explore the island. And Christelle is bilingual (English and French) so there are options for everyone.
Taste of TCI Food Tours: If you are a foodie, and you are visiting Turks & Caicos Islands, this tour is for you. Hitting all of the local foodie spots, you will have excellent fish and seafood all around Providenciales, not to mention a to-go box and rum tasting.
African Journeys: African Journeys is dedicated to creating soulful travel and learning experiences and exposing those who go on its tours to the African diaspora around the world. This tour company’s website is about to launch but they have an active Facebook page so you can check out the company.
Carafrique: Trini Carnival, here you come! Carafique helps your plan your Trinidad Carnival tours to offer a distinct Caribbean experience. They also help with those amazing costumes that make the experience come alive.
Spanning the Globe Tours: Spanning the Globe focuses on crafting your experience so you get the most out of your vacation. They strive to give you the opportunity to see, taste, touch and feel through authentic local experiences all around the Globe.
Gastronome Media: Atlanta-based photographer Keena Moffett caters to the foodies. Specializing in food photography, she shoots for magazines, cookbooks, websites, menus and more, along with creating dynamic prints.
JAXONPHOTOGROUP: Owned by Jack Manning III this photography business operates out of Atlanta, Georgia. JAXONPHOTOGROUP was established in 1997 in Hampton, Virginia. This company attempts to meet clients varying needs, to the highest standards.
Q. Bleu Photography: This New Orleans based photography company serves clients around the world. Quinn Gordon comes from a family of photographers and believes in documenting those fleeting moments in life.
LJR Films: LJR Films specializes in event cinematography, aspiring to give your wedding a beautiful cinematic look. Leesan Rowe founded the Brooklyn-based studio, which prides itself on the primary values of authenticity, artistry, relationships, and adventure.
Trip Planning and Travel Agencies
Nomad*ness Travel Tribe: The originators in Black travel groups, Nomad*ness is an online community of 11,000+. 2016 is the last year they will offer international trips, as they transition into worldwide international events in 2017 that will be open to the public, provided you can how the necessary one passport stamp for entry
Up in the Air Life Travel: This upscale travel company hosts international trips, lifestyle events, and local meetups, all while maintaining a huge Facebook community. This year they have trips planned for Croatia, Cuba, Egypt, the Vigin Islands, and Thailand, to name a few.
Vakae’ Xtreme Group Travel: With a passion for travel, Nicole has over 20 years of experience planning specialized and detailed itineraries for a elite clientele. In addition to being a certified travel agent, Nicole also coaches and works with up-and-coming travel agents, helping new entrepreneurs find clarity and their brilliance through travel through her online community Nicole Talks Travel (Revamped website coming soon!)
My Wander Year: This new startup gives people the opportunity to take a year to travel the world on their wander year. A community of 30-50 people who will travel the globe for a year, while gaining life experiences. Acceptance is on an application basis, and is open to those who are single, married, and travelers with families.
Here 2 There Travel: Adrienne and Robert Lee have owned Here 2 There Travel for over 10 years, assisting travelers with all sorts of travel. This family-owned business helps take the guesswork out of travel by creating itineraries that suit the needs of their clients.
Ladies & Luggage Luxury Travel Group: This Black-woman owned travel agency focuses “Experiencial” travel, including leisure, corporate, group, incentive, and meeting travel. They offer monthly experience-based packages, including upcoming trips for the Cincinnati Jazz Festival and a group trip to Dubai at the end of the year.
Cruise Planners: Jackie Williams is a full service travel agent that focuses on group travel and custom experiences. She offers travelers tips for great deals and experiences. And, of course, she can help you plan your cruise!
The Charleston Crunch Co.: This confections company creates handmade confections using Lowcountry ingredients and recipes that owner Erica Alcox used in her classroom to help students who had learning disabilities with math, reading comprehension and other skills they need to be successful in adulthood. Erica says that celebrities like Vanessa Williams love her Lowcountry Pretzels.
Yellow Tomato Catering: This California-based catering company was recently written up in LA Travel Magazine. It is an award-winning catering business that handles events, small parties, birthdays, and special occasions. They also run a lunch delivery route locally and offers home meal delivery service to clients.
Karyn’s Raw Vegan Gourmet Restaurant: Karyn Calabrese is a holistic health counselor who healed herself over 30 years ago of allergies, ailments, and fatigue through raw foods, juicing and detoxification. Now, her wellness business in Chicago includes a raw foods restaurant, a holistic wellness center, and a cooked vegan restaurant.
Sweet Love Affair: Sweet Love Affair is a mobile bakery specializing in cocktail, traditional, cookie, and fruit-inspired cupcakes and other desserts. Owner Caloria Osborne makes all of her desserts by hand and to order, and is making deliveries in the Atlanta area.
Airis the Chef Cooks: Airis is a chef (private and caterer) that has worked with the likes of Gordon Ramsey and more. Airis has her own line of spice blends, and offers cooking classes in New York City, where she inspires people to travel the world and experience amazing food.
Procreate Coffee NYC: Not just another coffee shop in NYC. Procreate is an independent coffee shop that trains small business owners and other coffee lovers who are interested in how to make great coffee.
Blythewood Seafood Emporium and Barbeque Haven: This restaurant is available for dining in or take-out in Blythewood, South Carolina. They offer fresh seafood, the finest cuts of meat, and other ingredients will be used to create delectable meals & desserts.
Sabrosa Foods Inc.: Founded in 2006, Sabrosa Foods Inc. is a minority-owned Virginia-based corporation. One division, the Asorbas Brand Manufacturing Division produces and provides healthy all-natural foods through flavorful alternative gourmet condiments and is mainly known for the production of Asorbas Salsa, a bell peppered base salsa that is made using all natural products from local farmers.
Southern Culture Artisan Foods: Southern Culture creates non-GMO verified breakfast foods and mixes. More than 3,000 stores nationwide carry Southern Culture Artisan Foods.
Cameo Macaron: Cameo Macaron is a food truck owned by Kinesha Goldson. They are Boston’s first French Macaron retailer and food truck, and they seek to bring a bit of France to Boston foodies.
Lucille’s Restaurant: Born from the inspiration of the Texas culinary legend Lucille Bishop Smith who was famous for her world-renowned chili biscuits and BBQ. Her grandson Chef Chris Williams seeks to offer the restaurant’s Houston patrons twists on southern classics like shrimp & grits, oxtails, and pork & beans as well as hand-crafted cocktails and exclusive wine-list.
The World is Your Oyster: The mission of The World is Your Oyster is to broaden the horizons of inner city youth through travel, culture, service, and experiences. Now in its third year, the organization is gearing up for a trip to Martha’s Vineyard and expects to start international trips next year.
CALE Now!: CALE Now! is a nonprofit that has three areas of focus at its weekly summer sessions with kids ages 11 to 14. Those areas are: Cultural Exchange, Personal & Leadership Development, and Social Responsibility. Throughout the summer, the organization travels and volunteers with various organizations, including traveling to Ireland last summer. Applications for this year’s class are now live at calenow.org/apply.
Beyond Bmore: This nonprofit’s name is just as it sounds. It seeks to get people, especially kids, to explore the world beyond Baltimore. Founder Brian Oliver recognized that while it is often a result of financial struggles, people from his hometown not exploring also stems from just simply never having the opportunity to be exposed to and learn about other places besides home, even somewhere as close as D.C. Last month, Beyond Bmore took a group of 20 young people to visit the MLK Memorial as well as the other local monuments and an NBA game.
American Cowboy Museum: Located in Houston, Texas, the American Cowboy Museum is a nonprofit organization has been educating people about the contributions of African Americans, Latinos, Native Americans, and women to the development of the culture of the American West.
Soul of America: Soul Of America pioneered online travel information from an African-American perspective. There is an emphasis on taking a historical look at the creative African-Americans who invented or played a huge role developing things like gospel, blues, soul, and jazz music, along with soul food, creole food, and BBQ.
National Brotherhood of Skiers: This organization is an umbrella group of more than 75 ski clubs across the country. They host events and ski summits, with the next one coming up in a week or so in Lake Tahoe.
National Association of Black Scuba Divers: This adventurous group arranges dive trips and is a clearinghouse for dive-related information and education. NABSD has a dive summit scheduled for November 2016 in Aruba.
Travel Accessories and Luggage
Gia Rodriguez Collection: This line of luxury luggage is handcrafted from the finest leather and consists of totes, weekenders, and backpacks made for the traveler. The pieces are streamlined and exquisite, made with great workmanship. And use code GR20OFF code to get 20% off all items in the travel collection!
BarrisTourista Travel Store: (ONE LAST SHAMELESS PLUG) BarrisTourista Travel Store has created a collection of six designs of passport holders, luggage tags, and tote bags made with the traveler in mind. The products are streamlined, sleek, and created to allow both the casual flier and the avid jetsetter to travel fashionably.
Talley & Twine Watch Company: This watch company makes beautiful watches but also has a neat little travel accessory: a seven-slot travel watch roll that can also be used for other jewelry. It rolls up and has 100% velvet lining to prevent scratching.
Jembere Eyewear: Jembere means “my sunset” in Ethopian, the influence behind this eyewear line that juxtaposes Ethopian culture and big city life in NYC. Jembere creates dope sunnies that will accentuate your travel and everyday look.
Casauri: Just featured in numerous magazines, this line of accessories including laptop cases and travel accessories have funky, colorful designs. Techies love their stylish laptop cases.