Get to Know our Beautiful Places
We fell in love with Europe almost 20 years ago. We’re romanced by the beauty, the history, the lifestyle of Europe. We’re enchanted by the variety of scenery, culture, tradition, and language we experience, sometimes dramatically different just an hour or two away. And we’re embraced and enriched by the warm and friendly people who have opened their hearts and homes to us. The magic of Europe has captured our hearts, changed who we are, and impacted the way we live even when we’re back at home.
Over the years we’ve found ourselves returning again and again to several very special areas… rural areas of incredible natural beauty, smaller villages that have retained their unique character and tradition, cultures that are distinctive and welcoming. These places feel like home and are the “beautiful places” we feature in our Experience trips.
Our European Experiences schedule varies every year, and we don’t return to every destination ever year. We normally offer two to three weeks in the Luberon in May and early June, followed by weeks in one or two other areas in June. We’re sometimes able to offer Luberon trips in September, or we can offer trips for private groups in the Luberon or the Dordogne in the fall.
We know many of our travelers plan ahead, and so do we. Specific dates for the following year are usually announced at the beginning of March. Our trip sometimes book 6-12 months in advance, so early booking may be important if you want to join us.
Learn more about each of our special places in Europe. Be sure to look at the photo albums to see what you would experience during each week. We’d love to share these beautiful places with you!
The Luberon is an incredibly beautiful valley surrounded by low mountains, with views in every direction. Our village of Bonnieux is the perfect base to experience the best of Provence. We love simplicity and tradition of the area, and it has just the right amount of French sophistication. Our week includes perched villages, colorful outdoor markets, wineries, picnics, ruined chateaus, even a goat farm. Learn more here or on our Luberon Experience website.
This trip is offered every year. In 2013 we’re offering trips in May. In 2014 we’re hosting trips in May and September. Private groups are sometimes possible in the fall.
This new trip is designed for Travelers Circle members who have experienced the Luberon once and want to discover more of this special area. Bonnieux will continue to be our home base, but much of the week will involve new experiences in the Luberon and other parts of Provence. Learn more about this special week here. (Travelers Circle members have priority for this trip until January 1, 2013.)
This trip is offered in late May 2013. It may be offered in the future, based on interest from our Travelers Circle members.
The famous wine region of Chianti is located between Florence and Siena in the heart of Tuscany. From our guesthouse outside the village of Panzano, we can relax and savor the beauty of the Chianti countryside. Our week includes bustling towns (with great shopping), quiet hilltop villages, a cooking class in a country kitchen, three distinctly different winery visits and an evening with Italy’s most famous butcher. Learn more here.
This trip will be offered again in June 2014.
The Cotswolds is the English countryside you’ve dreamed of: an idyllic land of rolling hills, gentle streams, grazing sheep, and quaint stone cottages. The well-preserved village of Chipping Campden, with its lovely High Street, is our home for the week. Our week includes historic castles, traditional pubs, magnificent gardens, lunch on a working farm, and surprisingly good food! Learn more about our week in the Cotswolds here.
Our next trips will be offered in July 2013 and July 2014.
Our newest trip is based in the lovely Dordogne region of southwest France, famous for its rivers, castles, prehistoric sites, and cuisine. The week includes an archaeology day, a visit to the town of Sarlat and its famous market, explorations of several of France’s most beautiful villages, and memorable meals in a variety of settings. Learn more here. Reserve your spot now; more details will be announced this summer.
Our next trips will be offered in June 2013 and June 2014. Private groups may be possible in the fall.
The Salzkammergut is a magnificent region of mountains and lakes in the Austrian Alps. Our home for the week is the storybook village of St. Gilgen on the shores of Lake Wolfgang, only 30 minutes from Salzburg, birthplace of the composer Mozart. Our week includes strolls on scenic mountain trails, a concert at an historic palace, and a trip through an ancient salt mine. Learn more about our week in the Salzkammergut here.
We hope to return to the Salzkammergut in the future… let us know if you’d be interested.
Our base in the Bavarian Alps is the welcoming village of Garmisch, located at the foot of the Zugspitze, the highest mountain in Germany. Although best known for skiing, in summertime the mountains are green and lush and easily accessible by mountain train and cable cars. Our week includes mountain trips, fairytale castles, colorful alpine villages, and (of course) a German beer hall. Learn more here.
We’re considering offering this trip in the future… let us know if you’d be interested.