Imagine an event where you could camp with hundreds of other overlanding enthusiasts and learn new skills to become a more self-sufficient traveler. Plus, you could discover the latest and greatest gear for exploring this beautiful globe. Well, you don’t have to imagine it because this event already exists. It’s called Overland Expo, and it’s coming to a city near you.
So set down your to-do list for a minute and join us for a quick look at one of the best adventure travel events in the world. Let’s go!
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What Is Overland Expo?
It all began in 2009 when Roseann and Jonathan Hanson, authors, explorers, and owners of ConserVentures, LLC., put together an event combining their love of overlanding and conservation. They called it Overland Expo, and it has become wildly successful.
Today, Lodestone Events owns the expo, and they tout it as “the world’s premier event series for do-it-yourself adventure travel enthusiasts.”
So what is Overland Expo? It’s a one-stop shop for all things off-roading and adventure travel. Whether you have a passion for motorcycling into the great unknown or get your kicks from camping in your 4x4, this expo has something for you.
Newbies and experienced overlanders will gain tremendous insight into the industry via classes, speakers, and demonstrations. Plus, you’ll find gear galore from hundreds of vendors on site.
Pro Tip: Narrow down your search for overland gear with our list of must-haves: What Gear Do You Need for Overlanding? 11 Top Essentials.
Where to Attend Overland Expo
You might have to travel to Overland Expo, but probably not very far. The 2022 expo will stop in four locations across the United States: Arizona, Oregon, Colorado, and Virginia. Here’s a brief highlight of each event.
Location: Fort Tuthill County Park, 2446 Fort Tuthill Loop, Flagstaff, AZ 86005
Dates: May 20-22, 2022
About: If you ask us, Arizona is one of the best states for overlanding. So, it’s no surprise the May Overland Expo will head here. This gathering features over 300 session-hours of educational programming. Plus, it’s just a short drive to the Grand Canyon if you want to round out your weekend with a breathtaking view.
Pro Tip: If you plan to spend some time at the Grand Canyon before or after the expo, check out our guide: How to Plan an Epic RV Trip to the Grand Canyon.
Location: Deschutes County Expo Center, 3800 SE Airport Way, Redmond, OR 97756
Dates: July 8-10, 2022
About: The Pacific Northwest event takes place north of Bend, Oregon, near Deschutes National Forest, with views of the Cascade mountains in the distance. While we wouldn’t blame you for getting caught up in your surroundings, we also don’t want you to miss out on the fun of the expo. The ride and drives and motorcycle demos look exhilarating.
Location: The Ranch Events Complex, 5280 Arena Cir, Loveland, CO 80538
Dates: August 26-28, 2022
About: The Mountain West Expo lives up to its name. When you attend in August, you’ll be a mere 45 minutes from Rocky Mountain National Park in Colorado. Like the other Overland Expo events, you can learn from over 100 instructors and more than 250 exhibitors at this one.
Location: Oakridge Estates, 2300 Oak Ridge Rd, Arrington, VA 22922
Dates: October 7-9, 2022
About: At Overland Expo East, you’ll get to interact with hundreds of vendors and take classes to your heart’s content, but at a price you’ll love. The October gathering in Virginia has the cheapest VIP tickets and day passes of all the expo locations. Not to mention, it’s in the Blue Ridge Mountains — just one more reason to love it.
What to Expect at Overland Expo
There’s a reason it’s called a “premier” event. Between the classes, exhibitors, and talking with other overland enthusiasts, you’ll leave feeling like an expert on all kinds of new subjects. Below you’ll find an overview of what to expect while attending the Overland Expo.
When we say the expo offers classes, we don’t mean just two or three. We’re talking about over 175. Yes, you read that right. Overland Expo offers almost 200 educational opportunities, including classes, demos, slideshows, and activities.
Want to learn how to install a lithium-powered solar system? There’s a demo for that. Not sure how to earn a living while overlanding? You can join the roundtable discussion. Curious about how to safely pack all your gear on your motorcycle? You guessed it — there’s a class for that too.
What are you hoping to discover at Overland Expo? We can almost guarantee one of the 300 plus exhibitors has it. You can find inspiration everywhere, from lithium batteries and personal locator beacons to off-road trailers.
Notable exhibitors include Air Head Composting Toilets, Battle Born Batteries, Black Series, Dometic, EarthRoamer, Expedition Portal, Garmin, Hellwig Suspension Products, Rivian, Storyteller Overland, TAXA Outdoors, Truma, and Winnebago.
One thing that makes overlanding enriching is discovering a whole community of explorers who love roaming the backroads just like you. And you can meet a ton of them at the expo. The event even has a happy hour baked into the schedule where you can mix and mingle with fellow overlanders.
But the fun doesn’t stop there! Enjoy off-road ride alongs, the Overland Expo Film Festival, raffles, a Moto Party, and “Slow Race” for motorcycle lovers. You can also grab a bite to eat at the Oasis Bar and food court between attending classes and perusing exhibits.
Can You Camp at Overland Expo?
Yes, you can camp at Overland Expo, but it has some restrictions. In keeping with the overlanding theme, tent campers and explorers with overland vehicles and small trailers are welcome. However, you can’t bring your Class A and Class C motorhomes, fifth wheels, and traditional travel trailers.
You’ll need to purchase a special ticket if you plan to camp at the expo. The all-inclusive Overland Experience ticket includes camping for one adult and one vehicle, VIP access to classes, free happy hour drinks, and more. Prices for this ticket vary between locations but start at $375.
You can also purchase a standard Weekend Pass with onsite camping included for one adult and one vehicle starting at $150. If you plan to camp with other adults, you’ll need to purchase a camping ticket, plus a passenger ticket for each additional person.
How to Buy Tickets for Overland Expo
You can get tickets online, and they do sell out early, so don’t wait to purchase yours. Visit the Overland Expo website, click on your preferred event location, then click “Buy Tickets.”
When purchasing a ticket online, you’ll have the option of selecting a camping package or a general admission ticket. General admission weekend passes start at $70, and day passes start at $17. You can also get a 20% military discount.
Don’t Miss the 2022 Overland Expo!
If we haven’t convinced you that the Overland Expo is worth it yet, overlanding is probably not one of your hobbies. On the other hand, it’s a great place to start if you want to find a new way to travel and explore. The 2022 Series is jam-packed with opportunities to learn from and have fun with other adventure travelers.
Will we see you at the 2022 Overland Expo? Let us know in the comments!
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