Experiential education has been well discussed in a variety of educational contexts. While there are many reports in a diversity of disciplines of examples of experiential education, there is a need to report studies that demonstrate such approaches within tourism and hospitality management education. Many educators have found experiential methods to be useful in supplementing theory with contextualized application; nevertheless, it is important to explore experiential approaches in education further so as to establish more firmly a theoretical foundation and to offer considered examples of successful experiential education experiments. Experiential education has the potential to overcome many of the limitations of traditional approaches to instruction. Firmly based in the educational philosophy of John Dewey and other pragmatists who focused on the necessity of experience in education, it can be an interesting and interactive way of reducing the distance between theory and practice. This paper offers an evaluative account of a distinctive example of experiential education. The International Tourism and Hospitality Academy at Sea (ITHAS) was an educational tour of Croatian National Parks organized for an international group of European university students. An analysis of student experiences demonstrates a high level of interest in this example of experiential education and it demonstrates how the ITHAS experience enhanced learning, encouraged peer facilitation, increased awareness of participant behaviour and ensured participant commitment.