Terrific Travel Insider Tours for 2020

Did you resolve to treat yourself to an international experience this year?  We hope so, and have created four terrific and hopefully tempting Travel Insider tours for you.

We’ve two already accepting bookings, and two more in planning, to be available for booking in February.

 

Bordeaux and Beyond Landcruise - May


Because of all its wine exports, Bordeaux has always been a very wealthy city. This is the "Place de la Bourse" or Customs Square.
Monte Carlo in the evening.

A slightly whimsical perspective on a typical Bordeaux street scene.

We visit Bourg on one of our days of touring out of Bordeaux.

We’ll learn about the art and science of wine one afternoon (oh yes, and taste some, too!).

Chenonceau is one of the iconic Loire Valley castles we’ll visit in our Loire Valley extension.
This tour has you enjoying a lovely long week in the world heritage listed city of Bordeaux.  No repeated packing and unpacking of your bags!

Most days we offer touring out of the city to some of the lovely towns and villages in the region.  And, noting its pre-eminence as one of the greatest wine regions in the world, yes - we do visit wineries and enjoy cellar tastings.

We add an optional pretour based in Marseille, showcasing some of the ritzy/glitzy French Riviera, including traveling to Monaco.

After the tour we offer optional post tour extension up to the wonderful Loire Valley, home to so many amazing castles and chateaus, based in the city of Tours.

Easy transfers by high speed rail between Paris/CDG and the tour locations make this easy to join and leave, no matter where else in Europe you might wish to also include in your travels.

May is a lovely time of year, with mild weather and long days, but no summer crush of crowds.

Immediately after this tour we schedule our Scotland tour (next, below) so you can enjoy both tours on one trip if you wish.

Available to join now

Scotland's Four Corners - June


An earlier Travel Insider group at John O'Groats in the north of Scotland.
Part of the World Heritage New Lanark Mill site.

The southernmost portion of the Mull of Galloway and its lighthouse.

The other end of the beautiful town of Tobermory on the Isle of Mull. The building in the back left is part of the distillery.

Balmoral Castle was purchased in 1852 by Prince Albert, as a gift for his wife, Queen Victoria.

Two level streets on the road up to the Royal Mile in Edinburgh.
Our Scotland tours are always special and different, taking you to wonderful parts of the country that other tours (and many Scotsmen too) inexplicably never visit.

This year's tour, starting conveniently after the end of our French tour (above) is another great example of this.  We include some familiar favorites with some unique destinations, and take you to the four extremes of mainland Scotland - its northern, southern, eastern and western extremities.

Although we travel literally the length and breadth of Scotland, we enjoy a calm and leisurely pace, with two night (or longer) stops everywhere.

An optional pre-tour takes you to our favorite old castle for a night, and then to a world heritage industrial revolution town for another night.  And an optional post-tour gives you a great chance to explore Edinburgh, including a visit to mysterious Rosslyn Chapel (as featured in "The Da Vinci Code" and as full of real life as well as fictional mystery).

We've timed the tour to get the best weather and longest days while still avoiding the summer rush (such as it ever is in the Scottish highlands!).

The tour starts in Glasgow and ends in either Edinburgh or Glasgow.  As a special treat, why not take the new overnight sleeper train to or from London at the beginning or end of your tour.

Available to join now


Kazakhstan - September


Nur-Sultan, the amazing modern capital city of Kazakhstan.
Kiev's impressive skyline.

Charyn Canyon, Kazakhstan's answer to the Grand Canyon.

An old Orthodox cathedral in the former capital of Almaty.

The central city square in Bishkek, Kyrgyzstan
We've been doing consulting work for a travel company in Kazakhstan for over a year, and are using this relationship and the knowledge we've acquired to offer you a wonderful experience in the wealthiest, friendliest (no visa needed) and most stable of the 'stan countries.

We'll visit areas of extraordinary beauty, historic cities with beautiful architecture and the world's most modern capital city and its futuristic buildings.

As part of the fun, we include a modern overnight sleeper train between the country's two major cities.

Before our time in Kazakhstan there's an option to visit Ukraine and Moldova, and after our time, we have an option to extend on to Bishkek in Kyrgyzstan and even Tashkent and Samarkand in Uzbekistan.

September is a lovely time to be in this region - after the sometimes fierce summer heat, but with warm long days and prior to the onset of the colder weather.

Details to follow in February

European Christmas Markets - December


Savor all the beauty and sparkle of Christmas on our Christmas Market Tour.
Sadly, we're unlikely to experience much snow, but we can always hope. This picture of Vienna in the snow a couple of years ago.

Lovely historic town centers with great little restaurants abound on our tour.

Be sure to enjoy some gluhwein and collect some of the souvenir mugs.

The wonderful Christmas markets are especially magical at night.
We didn't operate a Christmas tour in 2019, so it is definitely time for another one this year.

These tours go through central Europe, visiting lovely markets in lovely historic towns.  The markets are full of seasonal cheer - lovely ornaments and unique handcrafts from each region, as well as wonderful hot food (also varying from town to town in style) and the ever-present hot gluhwein to drink.

We expect the tour to be somewhere between 7 - 18 December, so you'll have time for any final Christmas preparations once you return home again.

Details to follow in February

 

 

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