Rick Thomson

Small Business Owner in Watertown, Massachusetts

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When you’re from New Zealand, you either have to resign yourself to knowing more sheep than people, or you have to travel the world.

I chose the latter.

I’ve visited dozens of countries, but the novelty never wears off: I can’t imagine anything more exciting than that first glimpse of a place I’ve never seen, or that first smile from a stranger already on the way to becoming a friend.

But there was one country that was more than just a fascinating new experience: Tanzania stole my heart.

Together with Judi Wineland, I founded Thomson Safaris, now a part of Wineland-Thomson Adventures, in order to share this amazing country with fellow adventurers. It’s been over 35 years now, but Tanzania is still as awe-inspiring to me as it was the first day I stepped foot there; the vast unspoiled landscapes, the dizzyingly rich culture, and the profusion of every imaginable kind of wildlife always show me something new.

Since then we’ve gone on to found Thomson Family Adventures, a company dedicated to creating the kinds of unforgettable trips that a family remembers for a lifetime.

I’ve never forgotten the wonder I felt the first time I visited a place that was completely foreign, a place that I couldn’t have possibly expected. There’s nothing more rewarding than giving that moment to someone else, day after day.