Luca Alfatti named world's top guide
Intrepid Italian tops the list of travel guides at the World Guide Awards
Last night was the seventh annual World Guide Awards sponsored by Wanderlust Magazine and it saw Luca Alfatti, a tour guide for Dragoman, named as the world's top guide.
Luca, from Italy, has led expeditions across Africa, Asia and South America and has worked as an overland driver for Dragoman since 2006. The kid's even fluent in three languages which makes him a pretty cool cat is our eyes.
He was presented the award at last night's ceremony in London having been picked by a panel of expert judges, including the author Bill Bryson and the television presenter Mark Carwardine. He won £5,000 bursary which he plans to donate to a project for orphans in Guatemala (what a hero...)
The judges had this to say of Luca: "Clear, confident and precise from day one, Luca is a charismatic communicator par excellence. Everything was always perfectly under control, which helped his clients feel safe, included and valued. An ‘overlanding legend' he is professionalism personified, and what he doesn't know about truck mechanics..."
The silver award was given to Simyra Taback-Hlebechuk, who founded the Hallo Bay Wilderness Camp in Alaska in 1994. She leads small groups to observe bears in their natural habitat.
Bhupendra Sharma, a G Adventures guide based in India and Nepal, and Nyi Nyi "Frankie" Naing, who works for Panoramic Journeys in Burma, both won bronze awards.
Have you ever been on an overland tour? What did you think of it? Let us know on the message boards!
If you're thinking of going on an overlanding adventure then head to our overland tours section for more advice and information. Also, make sure you read our feature on '30 years of Dragoman' for an in-depth view of how far the company's come since it first started out.