Our Story


If history were taught in the form of stories, it would never be forgotten.

– Rudyard Kipling

We are a team of storytellers and adventurers who believe that travel is a vital part of life’s journey. Through exploration and adventure, our mission at Arcadia Expeditions is to immerse our travellers in the living history of civilisations, their cultures and peoples so they are inspired to gain a new perspective of the world and themselves.

When David Adams, a documentary maker and investigative journalist, and David Mannix, a leading travel industry professional, became friends in their hometown of Sydney, Australia, it didn’t take long for them to take a leap of faith in creating a business together based on their diverse set of skills and their shared passion for travelling to the world’s most exotic places.

They realised that if they combined their experiences in the right way, they could create a new style of expedition travel completely different to what other travel businesses were offering.


Immersive storytelling

This new way of seeing the world is based on immersive storytelling that gives discerning travellers the opportunity to go deeper, to become more engaged and to have first-hand experiences and intellectual exchanges that contribute to their lifelong learning. This is travelling with a sense of purpose.


Like joining the making of a documentary, without the film crew

From the very beginning, the guiding principle in the creation of our unique itineraries was to have our clients feel that when they are travelling with Arcadia, it’s like they are joining the making of a documentary, but without the film crew.  Like any good documentary, this involves the telling of a story (the theme of our expedition), providing a knowledgeable narrator for that story (our expert Expedition Leader) and gaining privileged access to people and places not normally available to the public.


Travel as a force for good

Just as important is the need for our entire business to act in a responsible and sustainable way. We believe that travel can serve as a force for good in our lives, and in the lives of the people and places we visit – which is why as a business, and on our expeditions, we are committed to reducing our negative environmental impacts while increasing our positive social and economic impacts.


David Adams FRGS

A filmmaker and photojournalist, David is well known for his investigative work. Over the past 20 years he has researched, written, directed and produced numerous documentary films, most notably Journeys to the Ends of the Earth, a 13 part documentary series made for the Discovery network and Alexander’s Lost World, tracing his extraordinary 1,500 mile journey through Afghanistan and Central Asia. In addition to his adventures in documentary filmmaking, David is a widely published photojournalist with articles appearing in over fifty countries and has also acted as a war correspondent in Afghanistan and Georgia. Residing in his native Sydney, David’s passion for archaeology, anthropology and history continues to take him to exotic locations worldwide including Iran, Siberia, the Pacific Rim, Northern and Central Africa in search of indigenous peoples and their disappearing cultures.

David Mannix

Growing up as an expat kid sparked an early passion in David for exploring, with his insatiable curiosity taking him to the far reaches of the globe. Ending up as an expat himself throughout his career, he has managed international travel companies in Vietnam, Egypt, Turkey, Morocco and Europe. For more than 15 years, David has held several senior positions in some of the largest and most well-respected companies in the adventure travel industry, providing him with a global network of trusted partners and extensive experience in managing complex on-ground tour logistics. David has a natural talent to track down the very best local partners, and with them custom make unique and transformative experiences – from crafting expeditions to some of the world’s most remote places such as Papua New Guinea, the Russian Far East and Antarctica, to designing street food tours in the bustling cities of Hanoi and Istanbul. David now lives between Sydney and Marrakech, with the contrasting beauty of the Pacific Ocean and Atlas Mountains providing daily inspiration.

David Mannix


  • We believe the pursuit of knowledge, through immersive and authentic travel experiences, is a noble undertaking

  • We believe that meaningful and purposeful travel experiences can act as a catalyst for a more fulfilling life
  • We believe that engagement with the wider world can break down social and cultural barriers
  • We believe travel can facilitate experiences and conversations that challenge us to question who we are and our place within the global community
  • We believe that it is our responsibility to incorporate principles of sustainable tourism and development into everything we do by committing to supporting local communities, protecting the environment and giving back to the places we travel


The term ‘Arcadia’ dates from antiquity and derived from the Greek province of the same name. In Greek mythology it was a version of paradise and was used as a poetic byword to describe an idyllic, unspoiled wilderness. Later in the Renaissance period, where it was a popular artistic subject, Arcadia was seen as an unattainable place that existed in the past, a place of bountiful natural splendour, whose inhabitants lived lives of peace and simplicity.


We chose the name Arcadia for our company to reflect the curiosity we have for the peoples and cultures of the past. Today’s world is arguably more complex than days gone by and that Arcadian spirit of living in harmony with nature is out of reach for most of us. We believe however that people can enrich themselves, and perhaps create their own version of Arcadia, by travelling in a certain way. Join an adventure with us and we will share with you some of the rustic, simple pleasures in life that can be only found on the road.

Be the first to get the latest on new expeditions, updates and exclusive content straight to your email inbox.