Travel Blog

Experiencing the Edinburgh Military Tattoo

As Americans, we’re used to seeing the word “tattoo” and thinking about getting a permanent artwork on our bodies! But, in Scotland, the Tattoo has an alternate – and fascinating – meaning. The Tattoo is an iconic Edinburgh institution, a cultural and historical performance that sells out year after year after year. Music, dance and …

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Cacio e pepe

I was 18 the first time I went to Europe. A graduation present from my parents, that week spent in Rome with my mother was a revelation.

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Small group gourmet tours of Dordogne, France.

How Olde Ipswich Tours Discovered the Meaning of Cro-Magnon

A small group gourmet tour of France explores the world capital of pre-history.

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Taking Travel Photos with your iPhone Camera

10 Secrets For Taking Incredible iPhone Travel Photos Summarized with permission from our friends at the iPhonePhotographySchool.  Is The iPhone Really All You Need? The purpose of travel photography is to document your journey and experiences. Images serve as memories that will last a lifetime, and it’s likely that you’ll want to share them with family, friends …

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The Traveling App

Have an App – Will Travel Here are some of the apps we have come across recently. There are literally thousands of travel apps so this is a very short list. If you know a good app, one others should know about, let us know and we’ll share in the newsletter. Grab If you’ve only …

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Can You Adapt to Europe – A Plug Primer

Plugs & Outlets Plug adapters are becoming more essential as we travel with our devices. From phones, tablets to laptops and e-readers, many of us travel with at least one device that we want to keep powered. Phones are not just a way to stay in touch, for many of us, it is the camera …

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culinary tour bocuse restaurant

Small Group Custom and Private Tours

At Olde Ipswich Tours, we have planned and operated small group tours for 24 years and while we have seen many travel trends come and go, one trend that looks here to stay and growing fast is the interest in private group tours. The sophisticated traveler is looking for an alternative to ‘do it yourself’ …

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Does Autumn Bring Out the Best in Europe?

Traveling to Europe is always an experience but autumn could be the best time to travel – it means fewer crowds, shorter lines, reservations at some of the best restaurants and often quite idyllic weather – along with some of the most spectacular displays of fall foliage. Visiting parts of Europe during the summer sometimes …

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Onward to Fort William & Oban

Today is Day 6 of our June Scotland & Ireland tour. This morning, we depart from the Isle of Skye, driving through the stunning Highlands region to visit Fort William. Fans of the Outlander series will recognize Fort William as one of the story’s locations, although Blackness Castle stands in for the original fort on …

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Philosophers, Whisky & History – Our First Days in Scotland

Whenever I get to the starting point of a tour before the guests arrive, I do some serious snooping. We explored behind-the-scenes Edinburgh all day on Thursday, taking a unique walking tour with newly founded Christian Heritage Edinburgh, with founder Paul James-Griffiths, who taught us all about Edinburgh’s amazing philosophers and religious leaders. John was …

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Follow My Journey Across Scotland & Ireland

John and I have just arrived in this beautiful, lively, friendly little city. We are ready for our ten guests coming to join us on our two week gourmet tour across Scotland and Ireland. Find us on Facebook where you can follow us as I post every day! Here are some of my favorite photos from …

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matera puglia italy

Visiting Matera: One of the Oldest Inhabited Cities in Europe

Matera and Puglia have been conquered and re-conquered over the centuries by the Lombards, Byzantines, Normans, Romans, Greeks, and the Aragonese. The food and culture have been influenced by these invasions and by trade with Sicily, the Arab World, Africa, and Europe. This historical melting pot makes for unique and stunning architecture, a fusion of …

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wines and chocolate of piedmont italy

Come Taste the WINE!

Undiscovered Italy: An Educational Wine Tasting Experience EVENT SOLD OUT Wine Tasting Travel Adventure Saturday, February 18 from 4-6 p.m. The Pickering House, 18 Broad St., Salem, MA On Saturday, February 18 from 4-6 p.m. Salem’s Pickering House on Broad Street will present a captivating talk along with a free wine tasting and travelogue on …

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Why You Must Drink Pastis on the French Riviera

One of the things we enjoy most when traveling is the food – and the drinks! Visiting a French or Italian vineyard and sipping on limoncello on the Mediterranean is a bucket list experience, but every region has special liqueurs that speak to their history and resources. One of our favorites is pastis, an anise-flavored …

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Brittany: Where The French Go On Vacation

When you travel to the French Riviera or Paris in the summer months, you may be surprised to find many Brits and Americans but not many French voices around. As with many popular tourist destinations, when visitors start flooding in, the locals get out of town. One particularly popular location for the French, especially for …

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citadel corte corsica

7 Reasons to Visit Corsica

Read more about our tour to Corsica by clicking here! As travelers, we’re always looking for the destination that has it all. Maybe you choose a beach holiday, but there’s not a lot of history. Maybe you find history, but the location is overrun with tourists. It’s hard to find the perfect place to explore, …

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A Food Trail: Piedmont and Emilia Romagna

This article was first published on BookCulinaryVacations.com. We all know Italy as gastronomic heaven, but it can be equally as easy to fall into a tourist restaurant in places like Rome, Florence, or Venice and have a meal that might have been better at an American Italian restaurant. If you’re looking to experience food and …

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Experiencing the Alhambra

There are many sights in Europe that take your breath away: the Coliseum, the snow-crested Alps, the beaches of Normandy, or the small villages of Cinque Terre set into the cliffs. You want to pinch yourself to make sure it’s real! There is another man-made marvel, which has remained somewhat off the main tourist trail, …

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bagpipe in scotland

Experiencing the Edinburgh Military Tattoo

As Americans, we’re used to seeing the word “tattoo” and thinking about getting a permanent artwork on our bodies! But, in Scotland, the Tattoo has an alternate – and fascinating – meaning. The Tattoo is an iconic Edinburgh institution, a cultural and historical performance that sells out year after year after year. Music, dance and …

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porto douro vineyards portugal

Getting to know Portuguese wine

In America, we are most accustomed to picking up a Bordeaux Red or California Pinot Grigio at their local wine shop, Portugal is host to hundreds of wine grape varietals and produces some very prized wines. And the best part? You can find great bottles of Portuguese wine for less than $10! What kinds of …

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croatia tours ljubljana aerial

Our top stops in Slovenia

As a holiday destination in Europe, Slovenia is often overlooked in favor of Italy to its north or Croatia to its south. But, for such a small country, Slovenia holds it own. You can find well-preserved history, fairy-tale architecture, alpine mountains and deep crystal-blue lakes, untapped wine regions, and Adriatic coastline all often within an …

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typical portuguese food

Typical Portuguese Food: Amêijoas à Bulhão Pato

Typical Portuguese Food: Amêijoas à Bulhão Pato This recipe is an example of typical Portuguese food. We find this dish almost everywhere in Portugal. It is extremely simple, yet with a delicious result. You will see in the ingredients that the recipe contains a lot of oil. This is not a mistake; the olive oil …

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douro valley wine tours - solar de mateus

Douro Valley Wine Tours and the Solar de Mateus

Douro Valley Wine Tours and the Solar de Mateus Solar de Mateus In the heart of Portugal’s Douro Valley near the large town of Vila Real, capital of Tras-os- Montes (lit. “behind the mountains”), sits the Solar de Mateus manor, a species of lady Palace Tartine crossed with a garden the likes of which you …

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porto douro vineyards portugal

The Prestigious Wines of Porto, Portugal

The Prestigious Wines of Porto, Portugal The vineyards of Porto are one of the most prestigious in the world. From the 17th century, its zone of production was jealously protected by the producers of the Douro Valley: it is one of the earliest existing regions. A Fortunate Alliance Although Portugal, like Spain, produced wine since …

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buffalo mozzarella cheese italy

On Mozzarella: Buffalo and Burrata

On Mozzarella: Buffalo and Burrata Because we adore it, we believe we know all about mozzarella. Nevertheless, it may prove difficult for most to distinguish between two varieties: Buffalo and Burrata. Mozzarella Basics Mozzarella is a cow’s milk cheese of Italian origin, but is not only produced in Italy. Since there are no precise regulations …

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trulli puglia italy

Trulli a Treasure in Puglia Italy

Trulli a Treasure in Puglia Italy Beautiful outside, fresh inside! The Trulli houses make up major part of the face of the region of Puglia (Apulia). Today, one of the main functions of most buildings – whether offices, restaurants or residences – is protection from the elements. This had long been the case in areas …

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puglia wine - vineyards

The Wine of Puglia: Castello Monaci Artas

The Wine of Puglia: Castello Monaci Artas The heel of Italia’s boot, Puglia (or Apulia, as it is sometimes called) is a region of prolific wine production. In past, this region often surpassed Sicily and Venetia in volume. As the traditional markets for heavy and strong wines gradually decreased, local producers put more and more …

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pintxos tapas basque

Basque Tapas (Pintxos): Bite Size Culinary Treasures

Basque Pintxos: Bite Size Culinary Treasures One of the gastronomic treasures of San Sebastián is its famous tapas (or pintxos, to use the Basque term), culinary miniatures which range anywhere from a simple piece of bread covered with food, as in its origins, to the tiny culinary creations of the master chef. Originally, the pintxo …

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Basque Cidreria - France

The Basque Cider House Tradition: Txotx!

The Basque Cider House Tradition: Txotx! Those looking for soft lounge chairs, elevator music and chic atmosphere – look elsewhere. The authentic Basque tradition of cider-making is something else entirely: A warm, friendly culinary experience focusing on exceptional local products in a charming, rustic environment. The History of the Basque Cider House Tradition The historical …

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Basque Vineyard

Irouleguy Vineyards in the Heart of French Basque Country

Irouleguy Vineyards in the Heart of French Basque Country In order to arrive at the vineyards of Irouleguy, you must ascend slopes so steep you will feel like you are standing in the presence of the sun. But O! The mountain is beautiful! The vineyards of Irouleguy are situated in the heart of French Basque …

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Revenge of the Wine Steward: Estelle Touzet

An Interview with Estelle Touzet We have begun sharing interviews conducted by our very own, Jeff Puech, who lives “on location” in Bordeaux, France. He will interview some of the great names of the culinary world and we will share these rare moments with our readers. Today’s guest: Estelle Touzet, wine steward of the famous …

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french tarte apple

Enjoying The Art of the Tarte

Enjoying “The Art of the Tarte” In the post below, Jeff shares the musings of friend and compatriot, Lucie Rose, on a surprisingly flexible and adaptable culinary and cultural art form. Remember how much you loved your grandmother’s apple pie? In France, the tarte aux pommes has just as much emotional appeal. Coming home from school …

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Domaine de Grandmaison

Domaine de Grandmaison: Appellation Pessac-Léognan

Domaine de Grandmaison: Appellation Pessac-Léognan Pessac-Léognan is a fabulous wine growing region directly south of the city of Bordeaux. It has equally strong red and white wines, which makes it a rare treat in the red-rich regions of Bordeaux. One vineyard that we are excited to visit on future trips to this region is the …

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Beef Bourguignon Recipe

French Regional Cuisine: Beef Bourguignon

Recipe: Beef Bourguignon Beef Bourguignon is a typical French family dish. It originated as a recipe of Burgundian farmers. It is from there that the recipe gets its name. For a big increase in flavor, soak the beef in the wine for at least half a day (or overnight) before you begin cooking. Ingredients for …

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Interview with Gordon Ramsay

Interview with Gordon Ramsay This past Friday, the world-renown chef, Gordon Ramsay, took the direction of the Gastronomic restaurant Le Pressoir d’Argent at the Grand Hôtel de Bordeaux. At only 48 years old, this will be his 31st restaurant worldwide. Forbes lists Ramsay as one of the world leaders on the culinary scene. How do …

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Tuscany: The Country of Brunello di Montalcino

Tuscany: The Country of Brunello di Montalcino The first record of red wines from Montalcino dates back to the early 14th century, but the all-Sangiovese Brunello di Montalcino style we know today did not emerge until the 1870s, just after Il Risorgimento (the unification of the Italian regions into a single state). Its evolution was …

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Traditional Neapolitan Cooking: Spaghetti with Clams

Recipe: Spaghetti with Clams Spaghetti with clams is one of the most well-known and appreciated dishes of traditional Neapolitan cuisine. Ingredients for 4 people: Spaghetti – 1 lb. Clams – 2 ¼ lbs. Garlic – 3 or 4 cloves Parsley Extra virgin olive oil Pepper Spaghetti with clams is very easy to prepare, but requires …

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Bordeaux: Best European Destination 2015

Bordeaux Named Best European Destination 2015 Bordeaux has always been a dynamic, cosmopolitan city and never ceases to reveal exciting, new facets of its character. The city of Bordeaux’s inscription as a UNESCO World Heritage Site in 2007 and its bold modernism have made it a key destination for everyone interested in French culture, lifestyle… …

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Grenache: An Honorable Vine

Grenache: An Honorable Vine The Grenache grape is of Spanish origin, from the province of Aragon, and is wide-spread in Provence, Corsica and Sardinia. It is a grape commonly used in the production of Mediterranean wines and gives its most beautiful expressions in “Château Neuf du Pape”. It is one of the most cultivated vines …

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lemons sorrento peninsula italy

Lemons and Limoncello on the Sorrento Peninsula

As the old saying goes, “When life gives you lemons, make lemonade.” But may we might suggest a more flavorful and unique use for those lemons? One word: limoncello. The bright yellow liqueur is as sunny as its place of origin – Sorrento and the Amalfi Coast in Italy – and the lemon itself has …

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wines and chocolate of piedmont italy

The Wines and Chocolates of Piedmont

When it comes to gastronomic pairings, there are few combinations more tantalizing than wine and cheese – but have you ever tried pairing fine wine and good chocolate? Although one might be more of a dessert course than an appetizer, choosing to combine a bold red wine with rich smooth chocolate might just be a …

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bagpipe in scotland

The 2015 Edinburgh Military Tattoo

“Hark, when the night is falling Hear, hear the pipes are calling Loudly and proudly calling down through the glen There where the hills are sleeping now feel the blood a leaping high as the spirits of the old highland men . . . ” from “Scotland the Brave” by Cliff Hanley Are the bagpipes …

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Amalfi Coast

Traveler’s Journal: The Sphinx of San Michele

Last May, a great group of travelers joined us on a trip to the Amalfi Coast & Isle of Capri. One traveler, after returning home from the trip and reflecting on some of the wonderful experiences she enjoyed, decided to write a story about her experience. We thoroughly enjoyed the story and asked permission to …

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Milan Italy Expo Gate

2015 Milan Expo: The World at Your Feet (and on Your Tongue)

If one country just feels too limiting for your fall travel, consider organizing your trip around the 2015 Milan Expo, where 145 countries show off their best in cuisine, wine, agriculture, technology, art, and culture. The Expo’s one-mile promenade winds between 53 national pavilions: huge structures that showcase each country’s unique culture and contributions. With …

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Guided Tours Europe 2015 | France, Italy, Prague

Pack your suitcases! If you’ve been thinking about travel to Europe in 2015 (or maybe it just came to you?), wait no longer for your chance to join a small group guided tour to France, Italy and Prague. The following guided travel tours to Europe are guaranteed for Spring 2015: Loire Valley Culinary Tour (May 1-10) …

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manoir de chaix tour

Past meets Present at a Loire Valley B&B: Le Manoir de Chaix Tour

Family, friends, and businesses are created at Le Manoir de Chaix The Manoir de Chaix in France’s Loire Valley is more than just a place to sleep. It is altogether a bed and breakfast, a historical landmark, and a home ready to make you a part of the family. This chambre d’hôtes has its own …

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Italy Tour: Taormina

Ahh, beautiful Taormina.  How fitting that we end our grand adventure of Italy with you.  Now we see why so many Italian ballads are written for you. Before we arrive in our final destination, we visit the Villa Romana del Casale at Piazza Armerina. This impressive villa is another UNESCO World Heritage site; a fine …

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Italy Tour: Sicily’s Northern Coast & Agrigento

After our day in ancient life in Pompeii and Herculaneum, we board a ferry boat which takes us on an overnight cruise to Palermo, Sicily. Here we are in the lounge, having a cocktail before dinner. We wake up on the ferry in Palermo and meet our local guide, Giusi, at breakfast. Giusi gives us a …

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Italy Tour: The Amalfi Coast and Pompeii

Today we spend a day exploring the beautiful Amalfi coast, with visits to Positano, Amalfi, and Ravello. We strolled through the quaint streets of Positano before boarding a boat for a sunny ride along the Amalfi Coast. We couldn’t have asked for better weather! We arrived at the picturesque village of Amalfi, which has to …

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Italy Tour: Sorrento and the Isle of Capri

It’s now Day 3 of our Italy Tour and we have left Rome and arrived in Sorrento in time for lunch. Tammy and Phil agree the local tomatoes are to die for. We will stay in Sorrento for three nights with our group is split between two dreamy waterfront hotels: the Bellevue Syrene and the …

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Italy Tour: Rome

Leading two tours back-to-back has been both exhilarating and exhausting! I got to Rome a day before the Rome, Amalfi Coast & Sicily tour officially started, which gave me a chance to rest up and get oriented. John and I did some more pre-tour exploring at the Pantheon and Hadrian’s Palace. Such fascinating places! After Hadrian’s Palace …

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Slovenia and Italy Tour: Piran and Venice

The day began by saying goodbye to Lake Bled and driving to the southernmost tip of Slovenia, which juts down into the Adriatic Sea. The seaside resort town of Piran offered us a fun place to walk around and enjoy a glass of wine with lunch. Piran is beautiful and has an unmistakable Venetian feel to it, …

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Slovenia Tour: Bled

We were sad to leave Ljubljana until we arrived at the equally beautiful Lake Bled. We were met by this handsome local Slovenian, Rolf, who is a master rower, training for the Olympics. He told us most Slovenians are passionate about sports– rowing, skiing, biking, mountain climbing–because their country is so blessed with mountains, lakes …

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Slovenia Tour: Ljubljana

Today we left Croatia and crossed the border to Slovenia. We arrived in Ljubljana (pronounced lyoo-BLYAH-nah) and checked into our hotel in the center and met our local guide. Ljubljana, capital of Slovenia, is a dream of a city. Its architecture is colorful and interesting, its streets are lively and full of students, cafés and music playing. The …

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Croatia Tour: From Split to Zagreb

After a beautiful drive along the coast, we arrive in Split and check into our elegant hotel in the center of the old town (Stari Grad) where our host, Andrea, welcomed us with a glass of local wine. If you’re planning a trip to the area, consider staying at the Judita Palace! Andrea is the nicest, …

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Croatia Tour: Dubrovnik

I think Dubrovnik may just be the most beautiful city in the world. It is certainly right up there with the best. The weather is gorgeous, and everyone here is incredibly friendly. Walking down the main street of Old Town, full of beautiful ancient buildings, was an experience in itself. I met up with my new group …

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Italy Tour: Stresa and the Borromean Islands

From Salo we ventured west to Stresa on Lake Maggiore. The favorite activity in Stresa is strolling the lakeside promenade, relaxing with a gelato or a Prosecco, and enjoying the beauty of the lake, the flowers and the mountains. Those islands out there in the distance were just begging for us to visit… and visit we …

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Italy Tour: Verona, Sirmione and the Villas of Lake Garda

This morning we visited the lovely city of Verona. Our Verona guide, Katia, shows us many interesting medieval neighborhoods. Katia tells us the TRUE story of Romeo and Juliet while we look on to the famous balcony, which provides a great photo op for tourists! To sum up Verona in a few words: beautiful architecture, medieval piazzas, hundreds of trattorias, great …

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Italy Tour: Menaggio and Salo

The first day of the Northern Italy portion of our trip was a traveling day. We departed from Tasch and stopped for lunch in lovely Ascona. After a beautiful drive along the shore of Lake Maggiore, passing through Lugano, we drove through a pass in the mountains, crossing into Italy, and arrived at Menaggio on …

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Switzerland Tour: Zermatt and the Matterhorn

Zermatt is so beautiful.  Yes, of course it is touristy – but we tourists know a beautiful place! And one cannot visit Zermatt without a trip to the top of Kleine Matterhorn for a spectacular close-up view of the mountain of mountains: the Matterhorn. You know it’s going to be a good day when you …

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Switzerland Tour: Gruyeres, Broc and Montreux

Did I mention our hotel in Brienz is beautiful? Too bad we have to leave… but the adventure continues! You really can’t say you’ve experienced Switzerland until you see and sample the best cheese and chocolate in the world. So, onward to Gruyeres, the tiny Swiss town made famous by a great cheese. La Maison du Gruyeres was our …

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Bernese Oberland

Switzerland Tour: Trümmelbach Falls and Männlichen

Trümmelbach Falls and Männlichen Our day in the Lauterbrunen Valley in the Bernese Oberland region was like a dream. Spectacular mountains and breathtaking scenery. We began our day with a visit to the world famous Trümmelbach Falls.   Then we made our way to Wengen where we would ride along the gondola cableway all the way up to Männlichen. …

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switzerland tour brienz

Switzerland Tour: Lucerne and Brienz

Switzerland Tour – Day 2: Lucerne and Brienz Our friendly Swiss driver Rolph picked us up in his shiny new Eurobus 16-passenger minibus at 8:30am sharp. Everything is sharp to the minute here. I guess that’s because they have so many clocks and watches. We took a beautiful drive south into the mountains to the …

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switzerland tour zurich

Switzerland Tour: Zurich

Switzerland Tour – Day 1: Zurich All eleven of us arrived on schedule in Zurich, Switzerland and spent our first night at the Claridge Hotel, a lovely family run Swiss hotel with plenty of charm. Our Swiss guide, Miranda, led us on an outstanding walking tour through the loveliest streets in both the old and …

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Leaving on a jet plane

Today is the day! When 8:45PM rolls around, I’ll be on my way to Zurich, Switzerland to lead a group through the Swiss Alps, quaint villages, and the picturesque lakes region of Northern Italy. Then it’s on to Croatia, Slovenia and Venice for two weeks. Along with nine travelers, we’ll make our way through gorgeous sea-side towns on …

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royal-edinburgh-military-tattoo-2014

Royal Edinburgh Military Tattoo

Royal Edinburgh Military Tattoo 2014  “Experiential travel” is the new buzz phrase in travel these days. It basically means traveling with an experience in mind, not just touring mindlessly from one place to another. A great way to delve into the culture of an area is to plan your travel around an important festival, such …

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Delectable Dordogne

As fall is fast approaching, we have been dreaming about our tour of the Dordogne and Southwest France. Pont Valentré, in Cahors, built in the 14th century with it’s 6 gothic arches and 2 remaining medieval towers (there were 3 when completed in 1368) is a beautiful place for a stroll. We will visit Cahor …

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The incomparable beauty of the Amalfi Coast

  I recently returned from leading a 10-day tour to the Amalfi Coast and Capri, and I can’t stop thinking about the beauty of the area. In fact, I fall in love with it a little more each time I go. This is a picture taken from the Sentiero degli Dei…

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amalfi coast tours

Amalfi Coast Tour: The Scents Of Spring

The Scents Of Spring On Our Amalfi Coast Tour I recently returned from leading a 10-day Capri & Amalfi Coast tour, and I can’t stop thinking about the beauty of the area. In fact, I fall in love with it a little more each time I go. The scents that permeate the air, the rugged …

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Ireland & Scotland: Our Favorite Little-Known Facts..

With Olde Ipswich Tours’ next small group tour embarking to Ireland & Scotland, what better time to post fun facts about these charming countries? Ireland 1) Life from a different perspective? Ask children on their birthdays! Irish tradition is to hold children upside down and bump them lightly on their heads for each year of their age for …

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interesting facts about ireland

Interesting Facts About Ireland & Scotland

Interesting Facts About Ireland & Scotland With Olde Ipswich Tours’ next small group tour soon embarking to Ireland & Scotland, what better time to post interesting facts about Ireland & Scotland? Interesting Facts About Ireland Life from a different perspective? Ask children on their birthdays! Irish tradition is to hold children upside down and bump them lightly …

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Happening Now: Amalfi Coast & Isle of Capri Tour- Path of Gods Photo

Thanks to Olde Ipswich Tour Leader, Vicki Parker, we’ve got plenty of photos to make you green with envy from our current small group tour along the Amalfi Coast. You will just have to join us for the tour next year and stay tuned for her upcoming post with more details!   The Path of …

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Amalfi Coast & Isle of Capri: Photos from the Tour

We just returned from a busy day: guided tours of villa cimbrone and Villa Rufolo in Ravello and then a delicious lunch of local specialties!– Vicki Parker, Olde Ipswich Tour Leader  Amalfi Coast & Isle of Capri Olde Ipswich Tour Amalfi Coast & Isle of Capri Day by Day Itinerary

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Great news about the Mediterranean diet!

  This article in the New York Times is great news for those of us who love wine and olive oil! So we suggest you not only follow the new diet, but follow us to the Mediterranean to try out the Mediterranean diet while enjoying the Mediterranean itself.  Seven of our 2013 small group gourmet …

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Mediterranean diet foods

Great News About Mediterranean Diet Foods!

Mediterranean Diet Foods: Delicious & Healthy I recently happened upon an article in the New York Times that is great news for those of us who love wine and olive oil! These and other classic Mediterranean diet foods have been linked with, among other things, a lower rate of heart attack and stroke. Some of …

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Ten Good Reasons Why Corsica Should Be Your Next Vacation

Why? Because I said so! (Didn’t your mother used to say that?)  I’m Jean Moss, owner of Olde Ipswich Tours, and I have been planning perfect vacations for eighteen years.  I know a lot about what makes a great travel experience, and Corsica is one of those heavenly destinations everyone who loves travel should not …

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europe tours 2013

Europe Tours 2013: The Year Ahead In Travel

Europe Tours 2013: The Year Ahead In Travel With a new year just around the corner, it’s the perfect time to reflect upon 2012 and to consider what we would like to improve upon and strive for in the coming year. We have specifically been considering just precisely what to offer on our Europe Tours …

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Exploring the Scottish Highlands

Today was a ride through some of the most gorgeous scenery on the planet: the Scottish Highlands. I was so excited to see the Harry Potter bridge!  This is in Glenfinnan, where the movies show the train riding on a bridge over a spectacular gorge — it doesn’t even seem real! We took several little …

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irish tours

Blue Skies On Our Irish Tours

Irish Tours: Ireland & Scotland Our Ireland & Scotland tour is well on its way and everything is going wonderfully. We are having perfect, sunny, blue sky weather – perfect to tour Ireland – and meeting wonderful people. The other day one of the friendly women who works at the Hotel Eccles brought us to …

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Blue Skies On Ireland & Scotland Tour

Everything is going wonderfully on our Ireland & Scotland tour.  We are having perfect, sunny, blue sky weather, and meeting wonderful people. Yesterday one of the friendly women who works at the Hotel Eccles brought us to her sheep farm, where her husband Gerard showed us around.  We got to meet his two awesome sheep …

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puritanism in america

The Roots of Puritanism in America

East Anglia: The Roots of Puritanism in America This year we decided to offer a very unique Christian tour — a journey tracing the roots of Puritanism in America back to East Anglia, England. We enjoyed lectures and interactive discussions along our route, exploring the villages and churches our Puritan forefathers frequented, discovering the history …

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What a lovely day for punting on the Cam!

Today was graduation day for several of the colleges that make up Cambridge University.  It was really exciting being in the middle of all the celebrations!  Our Blue Badge guide, David Berkeley, was a walking encyclopedia of Cambridge history and took us to several chapels and colleges where our Puritan forefathers attended school in the 1600s. Tomorrow we’re off to …

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Olde Ipswich Tours goes to East Anglia

We had a wonderful visit to Colchester, England’s oldest town.  (Although Ipswich has the right to say THEY are the oldest English speaking town.  Colchester’s first inhabitants spoke Gaelic)  Our friend and radio broadcaster Liz– who has been to our Ipswich, MA twice doing stories on Massachusetts– showed us around. It is a beautiful town …

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tours of sicily

Wine And Volcanoes on Tours of Sicily

Tours of Sicily: Erupting with Gourmet Experiences Have you ever dreamed of visiting a vineyard in Italy? Imagine sitting in the sun, glass of DOC red in your hand and an antipasto plate in front of you that would satisfy even a Gladiator. Then imagine that the vineyard is on the slopes of an active volcano. …

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Wine and Volcanoes in Italy

A hat full of grapes

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Small-Group European Tours

Small-Group European Tours

We just returned from our tour in Andalusia and Extremedura, Spain, and it was wonderful! We got to see some Andalusian horses at a stud farmImage; see a Flamenco show in Sevilla; and enjoy tapas all around the area. Will post more later!

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