Backstreet’s Back: Get crafty across Asia with Backstreet Academy

Get crafty with Backstreet Academy

Vicky Garnett is a product executive in our Bristol office, where she spends her time making sure all the trips and experiences we offer are tip-top. Of course, she also regularly heads back out to our destination countries for research! Here, she introduces one of our most exciting new partners: Backstreet Academy.

At InsideVietnam Tours we are always looking for new partners to help us offer the best, most innovative, and fairest experiences across all our destination countries. Most recently, we’ve teamed up with Backstreet Academy – a social enterprise that was founded in Kathmandu, Nepal.

The company was founded by three friends who met while working on poverty alleviation projects at Singapore Management University. Seeing how effective their efforts were amongst the entrepreneurs of Nepal, the team decided to build on this model and expand their project to other countries. Today they operate in 10 countries and over 50 cities, ensuring a consistent income for artisans and their communities – all while providing travellers with authentic and enriching experiences.


Try your hand at Batik with Backstreet AcademyHow does it work?

Called “the Airbnb of unusual travel experiences” by Forbes, Backstreet Academy works by providing a platform for entrepreneurs to advertise their skills, putting them in direct contact with potential customers. Whereas an artisan working alone would have to go through a bigger company to tap into the tourist market, (often sacrificing their autonomy into the bargain), Backstreet Academy offers these entrepreneurs the training, marketing oomph and support to ensure their businesses take off.

The result is unforgettable cultural experiences at your fingertips, where you can be certain that the lion’s share of the profit is going straight to the local community. Win-win!

Have a go at making bamboo paper art

Have a go at making bamboo paper artWhat can Backstreet Academy offer?

What can’t they offer? By teaming up with local NGOs and local art associations, Backstreet Academy have found hosts throughout Southeast Asia – specialising in all kinds of exciting skills. Brew wine, learn to cook, carve masks, oil paint, learn batik, make bamboo paper art, shoot bows and arrows – whatever craft or skill you’d like to try, you can bet Backstreet Academy have got just the thing on their books.

This people-based attitude to travel – the antithesis of traditional ‘sightseeing’ and list-checking – is exactly the kind of experience we want to provide for our customers. Southeast Asia is packed with iconic and impressive sights, but without having made a connection with any of the locals, how much do you really come away with? Backstreet Academy are the perfect way to get beneath the skin of Vietnam, Cambodia and Laos, and come away with memories you’ll never forget.

Take a lesson in traditional weaving

Take a lesson in traditional weaving

If you’re the crafty type and would like to get acquainted with a new skill on your next holiday, all you need to do is get in touch with one of our travel consultants and we’ll begin putting together your dream trip today. Click here to get started.

Photography: Backstreet Academy

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