About & History

Pauwels Travel Bureau was founded by Norbert Pauwels in 1965. Since Norbert passed away in 1990, the family business has been managed by his wife Bertha and daughter Sandra, and has expanded to 25 staff members and associates.


Ship's School Educational Tours

Founded in the 1960s, Norbert was a long time associate of the company and when offered the opportunity to buy the business in the mid-seventies he did so seeing the natural fit it provided to his already successful retail travel agency. Ship’s School was later merged with Pauwels Travel Bureau and is now a division of that company.

Why Ship's School? In the sixties, groups of high school students would tour the Mediterranean by ship, combining formal classes on board with field trips and sightseeing ashore. Ship's School was founded with this kind of educational travel in mind, hence its name. The ships are gone, but the tradition of fine educational tours continues! In subsequent years, the activities of Ship's School expanded considerably.

In addition to European travel, air and coach trips throughout North America and the Caribbean have become a major part of our tour program.

While we still offer tours for high school students, Ship's now provides a wide range of educational travel services for groups of all ages, interests and composition, including university alumni, community music ensembles, church groups, seniors, etc. Our tours are individually constructed to suit the specific needs of any group.

Please feel welcome to contact us to discuss your group's travel plans. Pauwels Travel and Ship's School also welcome individuals on a wide range of cultural tours. With us you can follow Europe's medieval pilgrimage routes or China's fabulous Silk Road, enjoy Bach's music in Leipzig, attend Remembrance Day ceremonies in Flanders' Fields, explore the world of the Aboriginals in Australia's outback, or sample Merlot in the Argentinian wine capital of Mendoza. While our cultural tours are reputed for their quality and depth, we are always doing our best to ensure that our travelers get exceptional value at a reasonable cost.