• Our home town of Stowe, Vermont The Home Team

Get to Know Our Staff at Boundless Journeys

Here at Boundless Journeys, our expert home team combines a love for travel with an insider’s knowledge of off-the-beaten-path adventures. Our staff has traveled extensively around the globe, scouting trails and waterways, finding the hidden gems of each destination, and our greatest joy is crafting outstanding travel experiences for you. If there is somewhere you want to go, chances are we’ve been there!

When you call Boundless Journeys, you will reach a real person, not a machine. Our tour managers have a passion for adventure travel, and when not exploring new destinations, they love helping you choose the perfect trip and planning your next adventure.

From your first call, we take care of every detail of your vacation, whether it’s assisting with pre- or post-trip extensions and obtaining visas, to providing specific information about your trip. Simply choose a Boundless Journeys tour, and let us help you do the rest. Our travel experts look forward to providing you with an unforgettable journey!

Meet the Boundless Journeys Team:

Matt Holmes

Founder and President

“We have traveled with Boundless Journeys twice and are heading off on our third adventure with them later this year. As extensive travelers, we can honestly say that Boundless Journeys is the best company we have ever worked with. Both their US based staff and their in-country guides are superb! Attention to detail, special moments, flexibility are all trademarks. Their trips have the perfect blend of free time and guided time – mixing the best of both worlds. Our time with them in Bhutan was the most phenomenal experience of my life and when we took our family to Turkey our teenage daughters had the time of their lives. We highly recommend them – we won’t travel with anyone other than Matt and his great team!!
Pam R., Prospect Bay, Nova Scotia

In a world that seems to change more quickly with each passing year, it is important to step outside our usual routine, to slow down, and to take time to remember what connects us all. We invite you to join us as we trek the paths of yak herders in Bhutan, paddle amid the sun-dappled islands of Palau, and discover the forgotten villages of Slovenia on foot. Our expert home team combines a love for travel with an insider’s knowledge of off-the-beaten-path experiences and a passion to share the best of the world with you.

"Working with Karen was an absolute delight. There was never a point nor issue that did not receive prompt and professional answers. Having traveled the world with many different tour companies, I have never had the ease of experience that I did with Boundless Journeys. Thank you, Karen, you made the trip planning fantastic!”

– D. Munro, Peru: The Sacred Valley & Machu Picchu

Karen Cleary

Destination Manager

“I voted that BOUNDLESS JOURNEYS is the BEST. I also said that that Karen Cleary is magnificent. I would use Karen to plan any trip I would take, anywhere in the world. Karen is the epitome of an exceptional travel agent: competent, friendly, helpful, empathetic, customer service oriented, diligent and pleasant. She is a keeper!”
Nancy C., Tucson, Arizona

Areas of expertise: Africa (Botswana, South Africa, Namibia, Zambia, Zimbabwe, Rwanda, Tanzania, Kenya, Zanzibar).

Latest journey: I recently returned from Rwanda, exploring vibrant Kigali, the hidden gem of Akagera National park, and of course, trekking to see the gorillas. All I can say is wow! Sharing the forest with these incredible creatures was exhilarating. Rwanda has much to offer the adventurous traveler!

Favorite places: Wherever I am at the moment; but if I had to pick a few standouts they’d be PeruSwitzerland, Tanzania, and Botswana. I could go back to the wild places of Africa 1,000 times and never tire of the grandeur.

Favorite travel quote: “If you want to go fast, go alone. If you want to go far, go together.” – African Proverb

Best travel experience: I’ve been so lucky to be able to see places many people only dream of. But it’s not the famous places that I remember so much as the little experiences along the way. Waiting for the ferry to leave Great Blasket Island off the coast of Ireland, I decided to take advantage of the time. I found a secluded stretch of beach and went for a swim in the Atlantic just as it was starting to rain.

Nobody ever talks about the colors of the north Atlantic, but it’s the most beautiful, translucent aquamarine color. There have been other memorable times, and some that are certainly more impressive to talk about, but that day has stuck with me…the perfect water, the solitude, and that totally alive feeling.

Where next: We’ve recently created a fantastic new safari, closer to home – I’d love to take my family to explore Baja’s Sierras and undeveloped Espiritu Santo Island in the Sea of Cortez. Whale sharks, swimming with playful sea lions, blue-footed boobies! Sign me up!

"I would like to express my gratitude to Deborah for her kind and practical help. It was very much appreciated, and she is a great credit to your company. Thank you."
– Rob K., Costa Rica tour

Deborah Tobey

Destination Manager

“Deborah Tobey was wonderful. Her enthusiasm, attentiveness and advice all made the planning process the smoothest ever. Her enthusiasm for Iceland was contagious and I appreciated very much her call the week of our departure to see if I had any last minute questions. Even before the trip began, I felt very well taken care of!”
Margaret M., New York, NY

Areas of expertise: Europe (Iceland, Croatia, Finland, PortugalItaly, Norway) and Costa Rica.

Latest journey: I was recently in Norway and can honestly say, it was some of the most gorgeous and dramatic scenery I’ve ever seen in my life.

Favorite places: Rome, Italy—a museum with no walls or ceiling…and that gelato!

Favorite travel quote: “Everybody needs beauty as well as bread, places to play in and pray in, where nature may heal and give strength to body and soul.” – John Muir

Best travel experience: Sicily! Perhaps because it is an island, or perhaps because Sicilians consider themselves impregnable to outsiders, Sicily is an experience unlike any other I have had in Italy. From flamboyant cathedrals, to immense Greek temples, to ancient lava flows, and sweet pastries, the past is present in the smallest details.

As J.W. Goethe wrote in Journey to Italy, “To have seen Italy without having seen Sicily is to have not seen Italy at all, for Sicily is the clue to everything.”

Where next: Looking forward to developing a new trip for Boundless Journeys! Greece is at the top of my list, but let me know if you have suggestions.

“We are all still talking about our wonderful time on the Tour du Mont Blanc, and are all wondering how the next trip will compare! We are thrilled to have found and connected with Boundless Journeys and look forward to seeking your help in choosing the next adventure.”
- Sharon W., Tour du Mont Blanc

Michelle Cournoyer

Destination Manager

Areas of expertise: The Alps, The DolomitesScotland, Slovenia, Argentina

Latest journey: I was thrilled to hike in the Dolomites to scout our new trip. That region has been on my list for many years. The amazing scenery, incredible food, warm hospitality of the Tyrolean people, and hiking opportunities definitely exceeded my expectations.

Favorite places: I’m a bit biased as a Francophile and mountain lover, so the French Alps—anywhere amidst them. More specifically? Standing atop the Domes de Miages with Mont Blanc seemingly a stone’s throw away, surrounded by 360 degrees of incredible mountain beauty—glaciers below, blue sky above, granite peaks, snow underfoot, silence and stillness, save a slight whisk of wind.

The café in Contamines Montjoie (where we enjoyed pizza oozing with Roblechon cheese and potatoes with a glass of French wine afterwards) was quite a nice place, too!

Favorite travel quote: “A ship in harbor is safe, but that is not what ships are built for.” – John A. Shedd

Best travel experience: My visit with a very inspiring woman in Brittany, France years ago. Her 85-year-old friend taught me how to make galettes of buckwheat flour and water (not be confused with crepes made with milk and white flour!). She gracefully demonstrated the use of the ladle, rake, and long skinny spatula and made a perfect product each time. Mine? They looked more like a Rorschach test—or maybe that was due to her homemade cider she kept serving me.

We then proceeded to a traditional Fez Noz dance, which started at about 10:00 p.m. With what seemed to be with everyone’s kids, parents, and grandparents from town, we danced in circles linked by pinkies around two musicians sitting in back-to-back chairs, playing what resembled oboes as loud as bagpipes. We left at 1:00 a.m., long before the dance was over!

Where next: I’m off to hike in the Mont Blanc region this summer with my family. It’ll be my daughter’s first international trip, and we are both super excited! 

“Thanks for all of your help. I have never worked with a more professional and competent agent for any trip in my life. You are the gold standard. I appreciate everything you’ve done for us.”

-Dianne M., Peru Custom Tour

Kristen Bernarsky

Destination Manager

“My Boundless Journeys trip exceeded my expectations in every way and I feel like a richer person for having experienced it. Thank you again for another life changing experience!”
Samantha G., East Greenbush, NY

Areas of expertise: Japan, Bhutan, Nepal, VietnamPalau

Latest journey: I traveled to Eastern Bhutan to develop our 2020 Special Departure. Having already explore the central and western regions, it was fascinating to experience an area of Bhutan that few other travelers get to.

Best Travel Experience: Palau. Honestly, I didn’t know where Palau was before working at Boundless Journeys! I was fortunate enough to join one of our tours and was blown away by the colorful coral and abundance of marine life seen while snorkeling. Kayaking in the clearest of turqoise water amongst Palau’s beautiful Rock Islands truly felt like paradise, and I often think back to my time in Palau while I’m scraping snow off my car during Vermont’s cold winters! .

Favorite travel quote: “We travel not to escape life, but for life not to escape us.” Anonymous

Best souvenir: My dog, Modi.

Where next: My next personal adventure will likely be to Poland for a heritage trip with my family. It’s been a long time coming!

"Boundless Journeys provided us with a fantastic trip. We have gone on a few other adventure trips and can honestly say that Boundless Journeys is far superior to any of the other companies we've traveled with."
-Susan R., France, Italy, & Switzerland: Tour du Mont Blanc

Emily Trostel

Destination Manager

Areas of expertise: Peru, New ZealandSpain, England, Alpe Adria

Latest journey: I scouted our itinerary for England. It was amazing!

Best travel experience: Taking the train from Berlin to Tarifa, Spain, and then ferrying to Morocco (which in reverse was an underwhelming 2-hour flight). Traveling overland extended the sense of place and felt like a true journey across cultures and landscapes. I chatted with a man at a Tangier café. He was reading three different newspapers in three different languages and shared stories about growing up in a poor fishing village before making his way to university. He told me about his attempts to swim across the Strait of Gibraltar, how he hoped for a better life in Europe. He knew where all the guards patrolled the docks and the best spots to hide at sunset. The rawness of his reality humbled me, and after we parted ways, I couldn’t help wonder every night if he was out there, swimming.

Favorite places: What can I say, I’m in love with the world in all its wildness and wonder! But Ghana and Mali hold a special place in my heart. I’d love to return to West Africa—there is much more to explore and learn about the region’s cultural and political history. And the food, music, art, and landscapes are incredible!

Favorite travel quote:Adventure is a path. Real adventure—self-determined, self-motivated, often risky—forces you to have firsthand encounters with the world. The world the way it is, not the way you imagine it. Your body will collide with the earth and you will bear witness. In this way you will be compelled to grapple with the limitless kindness and bottomless cruelty of humankind—and perhaps realize that you yourself are capable of both. This will change you. Nothing will ever again be black-and-white.” – Mark Jenkins

Where next: Spain! I was on our Camino de Santiago tour not too long ago, and it reminded me of how much I love Spain. My wife and I are headed over to explore a little-known northern region. Once you are bitten by the travel bug you can’t get enough.


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