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Travel Tips

No Burning Man Tours From Us

Every year we are emailed and asked if we do Burning Man tours. Either that, or friends ask us whether we offer them or not. And it’s a legitimate question. Burning Man is a festival in the middle of the Nevada desert, half Mad Max and half party. And with the popularity of phones and social media in the last decade, more and more travelers know about it.

But what is it really? How do you get there? And this survival in the desert thing — what’s that all about? Well, read on, because Burning Man can be a great time; however, you will not find that experience offered by us.

Why We Don’t Offer Burning Man Tours

Burning Man is a festival that was created to get away from the system. By system, we mean the everyday world we live in: phones, email, air-conditioning, society’s rules, whether written or unwritten, and our general daily life.

Think about it. How do you carry yourself on a typical day? You wake up, brew some coffee, check your phone, scroll through the news, go to work, eat lunch, whatever the usual day is for you. Over the years, your daily grind becomes predictable, if not monotonous. The daily grind of society as a whole becomes monotonous. Burning Man, however, is anything but. It’s an adventure you must see to believe.

Can you imagine going to a place where the daily norms of society are rare? Not only the technology portion, but something as routine as showers, too, and instead a “new society” is formed, with a set of rules and guidelines provided by the creator, such as no currency. Add to that 70,000 people from around the world with a freedom of expression, and you have one helluva party in the Black Rock Desert.

Which Camp Are You In?

The center of the gathering is the Man (the one who burns in the end), sometimes large and sometimes small, depending on the yearly design of the festival. Around that are camps, or groups of friends, sometimes as large as 100 people, each one with a different theme or style, people who, over the years, have figured out how to add their own luxuries to the desert. One can be a DJ booth/ party spot, another providing free frozen bananas, a human car-wash to clean yourself, etc., etc.

The largest and most popular camps, populated by the ones who’ve been attending Burning Man since before you were born, are closer to the Man, with the newbies (if you are reading this, that’s probably you) usually camping in tents on the outskirts.

Can You Attend Burning Man Without a Camp?

Of course you can. Going with a camp is, naturally, easier because you can piggy-back off the advice of the experts and gear of the camp (which makes your experience much, much easier), but it’s not mandatory. You can go alone to Burning Man and have a great time.

Burning Man Bike

But Really, No Burning Man Tours?

We have the knowledge, gear, and connections to operate a Burning Man tour. We can do it. Really. But to us, the festival was created to escape commercialization. Instead, it began as a way to get away from those types of things. The selling, the making money, everything you see and do in normal society.

Now as a disclaimer, there are tour companies that do Burning Man, one of them the Green Tortoise, who are so legendary they were doing Burning Man before it was cool. We recommend you go with them. They are set up for it and are so old that they were almost one of the original creators. They are grandfathered in.

Not us, though. Any other tour company is an imposter. We can do Yosemite correctly, tour Coachella, and even wine country. But you will not see us do Burning Man. Like all places we visit, keeping the integrity of the place is most important to us, and commercialism and Burning Man do not go hand-in-hand.

Burning Man Party

Get Ready to Drop Some Cash

Like Coachella, at Burning Man you will be dropping some cash. You can choose to bum off of everyone at the festival. However, remember: you are going into the desert to survive for more than a week. Let us repeat: survival. Like our Yosemite Wilderness Hikes, but longer. You need supplies such as water, food, sunscreen, lotion, warm clothes, a bottle to pee in (no, we are not joking), baby wipes, and more. It can be downright dangerous if you come ill prepared.

Burning Man is Different

True, we do festival tours and want to help others travel in California easily. That is really the only reason we began. To recognize a problem and make it easier for others, like our Coast to Coachella Tour, which is offering to enhance the experience for solo travelers and what they are already doing. It’s a way to streamline their trip with someone who knows the ins and outs, provides gear, offers camaraderie for single travelers, etc. Like a friend who already lives here who helps.

However, Burning Man is different. Just how we like to follow the integrity of Yosemite and Coachella and not exploit them for personal gain (you’ll never see us advertising our gear or pass out stickers, etc. inside of Coachella), we need to allow the integrity of Burning Man. And that, to us, means not running a tour there. It’s also why we made our Dirty South Tour invite-only.

Burning Man Love

What More Is There to Say?

We can continue to speak about Burning Man, go into detail on best ways to attend, where to buy tickets, and tricks and tips, and so on, but many of the answers to your questions you can find on their website, and better yet, figure out when you just go.

Several guests per year, now friends, continually ask why we don’t do Burning Man tours. And we give the same response every year.

Why do we refuse to do the festival? Is there something better we are doing in the meantime? As a business, when a customer asks for something, especially on a repeat basis, you are supposed to change your business model for what the customer wants, right?


People book with a tour company for someone who knows best, ease of travel, and to go with an expert. And what’s best for Burning Man is for tour companies to stay out.