For the past two decades, Premier Tours specialized exclusively in travels to Africa. In 2017, the company expanded into South America destinations.
JULIAN HARRISON – AT THE HELM:
South African-born Julian Harrison is the President and driving force behind Premier Tours, a leading company specializing in African tours and African safaris. If you are looking for a memorable safari in Africa, look no further as Harrison is highly regarded as an Africa expert.
He started his career in tourism with the South African Tourism Board and among other responsibilities, accompanied foreign journalists and television crews on assignment through wildlife areas to cover conservation related issues. In addition, he co-presented a weekly radio talk show on tourism and conservation and served as an honorary game ranger with the Natal Parks Board.
After transferring to the United States he specialized in the promotion and development of eco-tourism, and as a result has guest lectured at venues such as the Smithsonian Institution and George Washington University. He served on the environmental committee of the American Society of Travel Agents and on the North American Advisory Board for South African Tourism.
He is also a founding member of the United Nations Environment Program’s Initiative on Sustainable Tourism Development. Trips planned and arranged by him include legendary actor Paul Newman, Jack Hanna’s Animal World which has been shown on the Discovery Channel and for prestigious publications such as the Frommer’s Guide to South Africa, New York Newsday and Conde’ Nast Traveler Magazine.In the August 2001-2013 issues of Conde Nast Traveler Magazine, he was recognized as one of the top travel specialists” in North America. In addition, he was recognized in Travel & Leisure magazines “A-list” of travel specialists from 2005-2015. Harrison is the co-author of a book entitled “African Safari” published by Fodor’s Travel Guides.
ALLIE E. ALMARIO – Vice President for Galapagos and South America
With nearly 30 years of adventure travel tourism under her belt, Allie has spent a lifetime cultivating her passion for wildlife, eco-tourism, and the protection of indigenous cultures and photography. She’s traveled to all 7 continents and more than 70 countries, many of them a dozen times or more. After a start with the Philadelphia Zoo handling its Zoofari program to international destinations, Allie has honed her experience in the travel industry working for some of the most acclaimed travel companies in America.
She’s served as the Executive Director for the International Galapagos Tour Operators Association, building best-practice eco-tourism procedures between wildlife conservation groups and over 50 travel companies. She’s written and edited chapters for the best-selling guidebook,The Galapagos Islands: The Essential Handbook for Exploring, Enjoying and Understanding Darwin’s Enchanted Islands, and acted as the location scout and logistics coordinator for the 2013 acclaimed film documentary, “The Galapagos Affair: Satan Came to Eden.” She has spoken at many travel trade shows on sustainable travel and was part of Conservation International’s hand-picked team of experts who served as eco-tourism consultants in Madagascar.
Allie has been the Travel + Leisure’s top travel advisor for Ecuador and Peru, Conde Nast World Specialist for the Galapagos and on Wendy Perrin’s WOW List as the Trusted Travel Expert for the Galapagos and Ecuador for the past several years.
THE PREMIER TOURS TEAM:
The staff at Premier Tours, some of whom have been with the company for over ten years, are all very knowledgeable about South America, Southern & East Africa, and have traveled to the continent numerous times in the past, and will continue to do so in the future. They have arranged everything from basic camping safaris to high profile celebrity trips. Unique touches to itineraries include safaris with wedding ceremonies on elephants and in Masai Villages, working with wildlife conservationists, and film documentaries. In addition, some have led tour groups as trip leaders and naturalist guides to many international destinations.
Individual experience ranges from over 30 years in the travel industry, to participation in research projects in various African countries including Botswana, Kenya, Madagascar, Rwanda, Zaire (Congo) and Zimbabwe, as well as working with an array of African mammal, bird and reptile species while conducting behavioral and enrichment programs at the Philadelphia Zoological Society. Allie Almario also served as executive director of the International Galapagos Tour Operators Association and has edited guidebooks and consulted on eco-tourism practices for Conservation International.