Far Fung Places

Far Fung Places, San Francisco: Hours, Address, Far Fung Places Reviews: 5/5

Far Fung Places
5
Monday
9:00 AM - 5:00 PM
Tuesday
9:00 AM - 5:00 PM
Wednesday
9:00 AM - 5:00 PM
Thursday
9:00 AM - 5:00 PM
Friday
9:00 AM - 5:00 PM
About
Far Fung Places is an ethno-cultural travel company that specializes in travel to 'other worlds' in search of in indigenous art, body adornment, intact cultural and religious traditions that have not been affected by westernization.. One of the first niche travel companies to enter Bhutan in the early 1990s, Far Fung Places values and supports the arts, which permeate every aspect of life. Treading sensitively into foreign lands has forged bonds of friendship that assure our return with open arms. It is our pleasure to share these personal joys with our clients.
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Tours and Tickets

The area
Address
Neighbourhood: North of Panhandle/NoPa
Popular mentions

5.0
64 reviews
Excellent
62
Very good
0
Average
2
Poor
0
Terrible
0

Kathy Desmond
Alexandria, VA4 contributions
Wonderful desert safari
May 2021
An unforgettable trip. FarFungPlaces selects fabulous sites in less visited places for small groups to view up close the unique wonders the trip focuses on. In Namibia, the focus was on animals' adaptation to the harsh, arid environment, and how they thrive. Another favorite characteristic of FarFung Places trips is the quality of the local guides. In this case, our guide Sean Braine was incredibly knowledgeable -- and able to share this knowledge with us in a fun and memorable way, eg drawing in the sand to illustrate his presentation on the evolution of the famous dunes we were visiting. Sean is a storehouse of knowledge gleaned by three generations of Namibian naturalists and ornithologists' exploration of their own environment. Moreover, Sean is an excellent photographer, who shared helpful tips about photos to take, even troubleshooting for those of us with features of our cameras. Finally, Kathleen Fung is attentive to every detail. She is a careful listener who ensures that all have a good as possible experience on her superb tours. One tip: bring a warm jacket, as recommended -- it gets cold on night drives.
Written July 25, 2021
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC.

Explore404670
1 contribution
Namibia with Far Fung Places
May 2021
We’ve taken several tríos with Far Fung Places, most recently to Namibia. These are not ordinary tours; they are definitely not budget but provide excellent value. Our accommodations and dining in Namibia were beyond our highest expectations. The groups are small, and the unique itineraries attract seasoned travelers who are sensitive to and appreciative of other cultures.
Our Namibia trip was extraordinary. We had a range of activities and experiences - from climbing red dunes at dawn, to a catamaran ride in Walvis Bay among cape fur seal and dolphins, to tracking desert-adapted elephants, to observing a parade of zebra, giraffe, springbok, impala, oryx, and wildebeest around waterholes in Etosha Pan.
Despite the pandemic, as always on Kathleen Fung’s journeys, we felt extremely safe. Kathleen is by nature safety and health conscious and constantly monitored the changing travel requirements. She is very sensitive to travelers’ health and dietary needs and provides different activity options to accommodate all clients.
Because of her expertise in textile weaving and other traditional crafts, Kathleen’s tours include authentic experiences with artists and craftspeople.
Kathleen models genuinely warm treatment of all the people we encounter and always impresses us with her ability to remember everyone’s name.
Because the company has a long history of accompanying travelers to exotic locales, it has identified highly qualified local guides. Our guide in Namibia was outstanding: he was as excited as we were about the wildlife. He was as adept at identifying birds as he was large and small animals; he explained the singular flora and geology of the country. He was affable, responsive and generous with his knowledge and with photographic advice.
We hope to enjoy many more adventures with Far Fung Places.
Written July 16, 2021
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC.
Dear Explore 404670, Thank you for just the high praise! It was one of the most challenging trips just navigating all the new rules and restrictions for travel to Namibia in May 2021. But, I was so fortunate to have traveled with such an experienced group, who took the changes in stride. The trip was successful due to my wonderful team in Namibia: Niki or Berenike (full name) looked after the details of the trip so well, even calling the clinic to be sure they arrived on time to take our Covid 19 PCR tests in a remote camp in Namibia. She always answered my emails promptly and went to such lengths to be sure all our dietary needs were met at all the camps and lodges. Sean was a delight: bright, articulate, and so knowledgeable on everything pertaining to Namibia. We learned so much from him, and he was so generous helping us with photography issues -- he is a professional photographer with an impressive portfolio. Again, thanks for joining Sean and me on this incredible journey through Namibia, which had it all: more animals than we ever imagined, incredible birdlife, arts and crafts, and hiking and walking to see the beauty of the country. Best, KZFung
Written July 18, 2021
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of Tripadvisor LLC.

Dian S
1 contribution
Wonders of Egypt
Jan. 2021
We have taken a number of trips with Far Fung Places and they have always been excellent. Our most recent trip to Egypt in January 2020 was no exception. The group was small allowing for travel by dahabiya on the Nile rather than the larger cruise ships. Kathleen Fung is always cognizant of food and health concerns for her clients. The Egyptian guide, Muhammed Ali was energetic, enthusiastic and extremely knowledgeable of his country's archeology, history and culture. The sights were spectacular. The trip was beyond our expectations.
Written July 13, 2021
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC.
Dear Dian, Thank you for your positive feedback on the trip, and for letting me know how much you and Jeff enjoyed the trip. Ali, an Egyptologist, knew how to present information in a wonderful story format, so we always remembered the important details. Working behind the scenes was a wonderful operations manager, Lamis, who coordinated all the moving parts of the trip from the hotels, to the authentic Egyptian restaurants, to the flights and even our requests for Plan B's. We had an amazing team on board our newly built dahabiiya, and compliments to the captain and his team for the superb job of navigating the Nile, and for making sure we saw everything and MORE on the river. On behalf of my entire team, here and in Egypt, thank you for coming on the journey and for taking the time to write about your trip. Yours in Travel, K. Z. Fung
Written July 18, 2021
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of Tripadvisor LLC.

Maggy H
1 contribution
Many Stars for Namibia
May 2021 • Family
Far Fung Travel delivers on its promise of five stars accommodations. Each lodge is a unique and beautiful blend of African Art and arquitecture. How would you like to fall asleep counting the stars on the Milky Way from your king size bed on your very private patio at Kulala Dessert Lodge or would you like to relax in your own viewing house as you watch the local birds bathe in you own water hole at Okonjima bush camp.

When you go on an elephant hunt with naturalist and photographer Sean Braine there was always time to take pictures off roading with Sean is an amazing combination of fun adventure and education. He knows every bird that lives in Namibia and all the water holes.

Kathleen Fung is the reason that most of the travelers have repeat adventurers.
Written July 6, 2021
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC.
Maggie, Thank you for allowing me to revisit those unique, charming and personal small camps and lodges in Namibia. I think you and Mary were the only ones to sleep outside in your 'star beds' under those diamonds in the sky! I agree that Sean is an incredible combination of naturalist guide, photographer, witty and fun story teller, and a great connoisseur of South African wines. (Thanks Sean, for introducing me to some amazing reds). I think our readers will appreciate your insights on the accommodations and your high praise for Sean. As for myself, in this time of covid when travelers are just beginning to think about making an international trip again, your praise of Far Fung Places is so appreciated. KZFung
Written July 18, 2021
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of Tripadvisor LLC.

marytgrove
Mill Valley6 contributions
Namibia Safari
May 2021
Having travel with Far Fung Places several times I expected the trip to Namibia to be outstanding. It exceeded my expectations. We felt safe everywhere. The desert terrian was far more interesting, varied, colorful and filled with animals than I anticipated. From Windhoek we could see various formations as we flew to Sussusvlei. Because of unusual rains the desert was a filled with grasses, greenery and wildflowers. We stayed at a wonderful lodge where instead of sleeping in our luxurious room my sister and I slept on the outside bed two nights under the stars and saw constellations and the Milky Way pass overhead. We also had a private dipping pool and both an inside and outside garden shower. There we first encountered the prolific oryx, the national animal, which we saw throughout our travels. We also experienced the red dunes at sunrise and had a chance to climb them. In Swapkopmund we took a catamaran on Walvis Bay. Highlights were seals who also boarded the boat and thousands of cormorants that swarmed overhead darkening the sky. The hotel in town had rooms opening to a lovely garden courtyard. We visited a fine little museum with lifelike animals of almost all the species we would be seeing as well as historical exhibits. We had an optional flight along the coast to Damaraland. There we went in search of the desert elephant which we found after exploring several dry riverbeds in out safari vehicle. We also saw up close the living Welwitschia plant that is said to be over 1500 years old. One of the highlights for me was the Mowani Lodge built among the orange granite boulders. Each unit was private, well designed and comfortable. There were gorgeous public rooms and magnificent views from everywhere on the property. While there we visited the Living Museum of the Himba people where we had an introduction to both their ancestral and present lives. They have an outdoor display of their unique local crafts for sale that you won't find anywhere else. Etosha Pan national Park was where we had rooms right at the watering hole. There were elephants with young during the day. At night you could hear the fearful roar of lions and see numerous visitors including the black rhino. Our phenomenal leader throughout the trip, Sean Braine, took us on safari where we saw a group of cheetahs, countless birds he knew and identified, a group of eight lions and exciting waterholes where hundred of zebra, wildebeests and others including giraffe and elephants were found. Our final days included an excursion to the cheetah conservation center where we saw the feeding of the animals and the great Anatolian Shepherds they raise for guarding sheep. The stop included an orientation to their work, a wonderful lunch with cheese from their creamery and a terrific gift shop. Out last place was Bush Camp at Okonjima. The fabulous large accommodations had outlets for very possible electronic and a detached viewing room with chaise lounges for watching your own private water hole where birds were constantly arriving. In this reserve we went tracking and found the elusive leopard who after our lengthly observation went strolling right by our vehicle. The food no this trip was exceptional. Half our group were vegetarian and they seemed pleased with their presentations. The rest of us had several options even including orynx which was mild and delicious. There were lots of homemade breads and all different kinds of good fruits and desserts. As usual Kathleen, the company owner, graciously insured that all went smoothly and that each participant had a safe and fulfilling experience. It was an extraordinary trip and highly recommended.
Written July 2, 2021
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC.
Dear Mary, Thank you for your impressive 'diary' of experiences on our May Namibian safari. After reading this, I can't imagine anyone NOT wanting to sign up for a wildlife and cultural safari to Namibia. Namibia has such a range of habitats and geological formations where wildlife has adapted and thrived, like the desert elephant in Damaraland. We were fortunate to have Sean as our naturalist guide, whose tracking skills resulted in our spotting so many different species of animals from north to south. On behalf of my team in San Francisco -- Lori and Dennis -- my team in Namibia (Sean, Berenike), and the experienced staff and management at all our small boutique lodges and camps, thank you! Yours in Travel, KZFung
Written July 18, 2021
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of Tripadvisor LLC.

Patricia V
1 contribution
Wonders of Egypt's Past Patty V
Jul. 2020
I loved the small, intimate tour with Far Fung Places in January 2020 before Covid shutdown. We had a unique Nile-river cruise on a private dahabiyq. Fabulous ! We also enjoyed dining in an Eqyptian home which was unusual. I have taken 12 trips with Far Fung Places and once you experience these amazing adventures, you'll probably never consider a large, average tour again. Patty V
Written June 29, 2021
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC.
Dear Patty, What a personal and heartfelt review. It is an honor to have such a loyal client and friend, who has taken 12 trips in 10 years to some of the most remote place in the world. You are one of the fittest seniors I've ever taking on a trip, and you always encourage others to join in a walk or a hike, even if they take it slow. You always support the artisans, especially women who are working so hard to support their families. Thank you for writing such a lovely review and for remembering our special culinary experience in Cairo, where an entire family - three generations - hosted us for an authentic dinner at their home in Cairo. Yours in Travel, KZFung
Written July 18, 2021
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of Tripadvisor LLC.

sweart
New York City, NY16 contributions
A deep dig with outstanding guide
Jul. 2020
We've traveled repeatedly with Kathleen in out-of-the-way places, experiencing local cultures with guides who are intelligent and really want to show you their places. Egypt is not out-of-the-way but our tour there -- Feb. 2020, the last one before the virus hit -- had the same features. Besides all the amazing things that you expect in Egypt, we went beyond the standard tourism. We cruised the Nile in classic Victorian-traveler style on a small ship that could dock anywhere, visited private homes, ate real Egyptian food (it's okay, Kathleen is a fanatic about health safety). Our guide, Ali, knows both Egyptology and current Egyptian society inside and out, and he shared his knowledge freely and frankly. We would travel anywhere with Kathleen, highly recommended.
Written June 29, 2021
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC.
Dear Spencer and Carole, What a wonderful response to our Egypt adventure. Yes, we were lucky to finish our journey before the country closed for Covid 19. As you pointed out, we couldn't have asked for a more knowledgeable guide. Ali was a scholar, well organized, prepared and proud of his country. The dahabiya, which only had eight cabins, was small enough to go places the larger vessels couldn't, but it was a spacious 150 feet with a large top deck for viewing and dining. We share a fondness for obscure and unique places -- thanks to your recommendation, I discovered the exquisite tapestry weavers at the art center in Cairo. Thank you for joining me on this Egyptian adventure and for writing such a positive review. Looking forward to the next 'obscure' and delightful exploration. KZFung
Written July 18, 2021
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of Tripadvisor LLC.

Steven C
Atlanta, GA2 contributions
Adventure to Bhutan with Far Fung and Karchung
Nov. 2019
Here is the bottom line: I did my homework and concluded that Far Fung is the best travel company to plan and facilitate your adventure to Bhutan, and their guide, Karchung, is the best individual to introduce you to Bhutanese culture and society.

Why? Our family of five just spent three wonderful weeks in Bhutan. We had the advantage that Far Fung has had a long-term, 25-year presence within Bhutan. Through their established relationships with many Bhutanese, we enjoyed a very personalized and educational introduction into Bhutan. In addition to touring and learning the history of Bhutan, we also met with a representative spectrum of individuals throughout Bhutanese society: farmers, teachers, business leaders, scholars, authors, Buddhist leaders, doctors, mental health workers, politicians, and various civil servants. Kathleen, Denis, and their staff were meticulous in helping us plan and flawless in orchestrating the logistics of our visit.

Since I have spent a lifetime traveling and studying various cultures in pursuit of my anthropological and psychological interests, I have fairly high expectations of travel companies and guides. Karchung is the best overall guide that I have ever encountered. His breath of knowledge regarding history, society, Buddhism, and culture was stunning. His storytelling abilities entertained and enlightened us. Karchung is also one of the nicest and kindest individuals that I have ever met. His warm heart, caring disposition, humor, and continuous attention transformed our relationship from guide to friend.

You have my unconditional endorsement of Far Fung!
Written November 21, 2019
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC.
Dear Steve, I must apologize for not responding sooner to your most complimentary review of your three week trip to Bhutan, but I've been in remote parts of Ethiopia without internet. Most travelers to Bhutan spend an average of 8 nights in Bhutan, visiting just western Bhutan. I was truly impressed that you and your wife wanted to visit the entire country and arranged your busy schedules to accommodate a personal journey to Eastern Bhutan with Karchung, our field manager, and then return to Paro to begin a twelve night cultural trip from Paro to the Tang Valley with the rest of your family. What an epic trip! Because of your keen interest to meet and engage with locals, scholars, artisans, and professionals in the field of health and government, we were able to arrange personal visits to expand your understanding of Bhutan. I've known Karchung for more than twenty years, and there is no doubt that he is an 'ambassador' for his country. His wide range of knowledge, engaging and caring personality are just a few reasons our travelers love to travel with him. Thank you for requesting Karchung lead your family trip - he thoroughly enjoyed every minute and was delighted to show you his new home in Paro, also. On behalf of myself and Karchung, we thank you for your high endorsement of our services. Tashi Delek! KZurich Fung
Written December 11, 2019
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of Tripadvisor LLC.

Catherine H
San Jose, CA3 contributions
Another memorable trip with Far Fung Places
Oct. 2019
Just came back for a trip in the Spice Islands , another wonderful trip from Far Fung Places led by Kathleen Fung . The Spice Islands are very rarely visited by tourists ( I would say almost never!) but the incredibly warm welcome of their inhabitants is just amazing ! Not to mention all the cultural history since this is where started the trade of the spices such as Nutmegs and Cloves, a real gold mine then for the traders ! We were lucky to have Bruce giving us so many lectures and informations . We certainly learned a lot ! Our trip was so well organized in any way and we had all the comfort we needed on our boat the Blue Manta ( wonderful crew !) . Not to mention the big opportunity for Scuba Diving or Snorkeling in this incredibly rich Indonesian ocean , a must to do for divers or snorkelers ! We had everything in this trip , but most of all we had the feeling of travelling like a family thanks to a small group of very nice and interesting people ! This is our third experience with Kathleen's travel agency and there is no one better than the other ... We will definitely choose Far Fung Places for other future expeditions !
Catherine
Written November 11, 2019
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC.
Catherine, What an enthusiastic and positive review! The Blue Manta team really looked after us on land and sea, and we couldn’t have been in better hands. Bruce Carpenter enlightened and entertained us with his nightly talks on the spice islands. Thank you for mentioning so many of the other compelling aspects of these rarely visited islands. Our next challenging is to make sure the marine environment remains pristine so that others will come to know the beauty of these special islands. On behalf of my team in Indonesia and in San Francisco, thanks for your wonderful heartfelt review! KZurichFung
Written November 15, 2019
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of Tripadvisor LLC.

Mary Turney
Fair Play, SC69 contributions
Spice Islands 2019
Oct. 2019
Wonderful trip led by Kathleen Fung to the Spice Islands of Indonesia. These seldom-visited volcanic islands were beausitful and fascinating. The history and traditions of the region are rich and educational. The people were simly amazing - warm, welcoming and gracious even if we could not speak their language. The trip's activities were varied each day from cultural experiences to markets. The marine life was spectacular - colorful coral, abundant tropical fish, and glimpses of sharks and manta rays!
When you are on one of Kathleen's adventures, you know it will be interesting, educational and fun. Your fellow travelers will be interested in global issues and well-informed. And you will have FUN!!
Written October 28, 2019
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC.
Mary, Your description of the Spice Islands as hidden jewels is spot on.The islands are so rarely visited, we saw only a handful of foreigners on our three week trip. I don't think any of us could forget the warm welcomes on the many islands we visited - few villages had ever seen foreigners, but they asked us into their homes, invited us to tea, and even asked us to hold their babies in our arms. I was especially impressed with the mixed Christian and Muslim villages that were co-existing harmoniously. The islands are a haven for brilliant marine life, and judging from your compelling underwater photos, we knew this to be true. But, as we learned from a renowned marine biologist in Banda, local people, cultural tourists, and diving boats need to be educated in marine conservation to keep the waters clean so that the islands will continue to be unforgettable experiences. Thank you for your wonderful review of our exploratory cruise to the Spice Islands. KZ Fung
Written October 30, 2019
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of Tripadvisor LLC.

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