About Bamboo Trails

Guided Asian Tours & Adventures

Bamboo Trails is a small travel company with big ideas about how to travel and get the best experiences from a select few destinations. Having lived, traveled, guided tours and written guidebooks to all of the destinations in which we operate, our tours will help get you into the heart of a country, and under the skin of its culture.

At Bamboo Trails we believe that walking is the best way to really experience a country: traveling slowly, across specific regions, provides the maximum opportunity to gain an understanding of the geographical and cultural landscapes we're passing through, and interact with the people who live there.

Meet the Family

Simon & Tot Foster, Co-Founders

Simon began his travel career as a tour leader in Egypt in 1997. Two years later he got his first guidebook assignment for Rough Guides in the same country. Shortly afterwards he met Tot in India, who was leading tours for the same company. Since then they have lived and worked in China, India and the Philippines, leading tours and covering all three for Rough Guides. Simon has also written for a variety of other publications including Frommer's China, and wrote a solo Adventure Guide to China for Hunter Publishing in 2007 (with lots of help from Tot). In the same year Simon and Tot began running bike tours for Grasshopper Adventures in Taiwan, then India, and most recently, the Philippines. As well as cycling tours they have also organized and lead a variety of educational trips for international schools, and hosted charity tours in China and India for major multi-national corporations.


In 2010 Simon and Tot established Bamboo Trails and acquired the company mascot, Ribena, a black Labrador rescued from the streets of Kaohsiung in southern Taiwan! In 2011 their first baby arrived, and she has already seen Taroko Gorge, had an elephant ride, been on a sea kayak and soaked in (lukewarm) hot springs!

Hannah Backhouse, Tour Leader

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Having left for India with just a one-way ticket, Hannah spent two years travelling across the globe. From the bright lights of Delhi to the steamy jungles of Amazonia, her experiences only heightened her desire to travel and this passion carried her to Taiwan where she now lives and leads tours throughout Asia.

Lewis Youngson, Tour Leader


Whether sailing the North Sea or trekking through the Scottish highlands, Lewis has had travel in his boots from an early age. After graduating in Social Sciences, Lewis further immersed himself in travel, always learning from and documenting his journeys. Particularly taken by Asia's unique flow, he moved to Taiwan where he now leads tours around the 'Beautiful Island' and China.

Alex Robinson, Photographic Instructor

Our photography tours are accompanied by acclaimed author and photographer Alex Robinson (www.alexrobinsonphotography.co.uk). Alex is a member of the British Guild of Travel Writers and Photographers and was recently voted a fellow of the Royal Geographical Society, and his work has featured in the New York Times, the Sunday Times, the Financial Times, Conde Nast Traveler, Wanderlust, Marie Claire, and Cadogan, Dorling Kindersley, Footprints and Rough Guides guidebooks to name but a few!