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First Person Account: A Barcelona Report on the Catalan Independence Vote

on Tue, 01/02/2018 - 09:56
Barcelona and the Catalan independene vote
Adriana Nadal coordinates our Barcelona Untour and welcomes our guests on the ground in Spain. She was born in Barcelona and works there as a journalist and in theater. Here she reflects on the movement for Catalan independence, its history, and what she's seen on the streets in her beloved hometown.
 
If I look back at this past year in my beautiful Barcelona, I can’t tell when exactly this situation made the click and how it did so fast.
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Andalusia, Spain, Close to Home

on Tue, 12/12/2017 - 11:47
Apartment stays in Andalusia

We decided it would be fun to drive around in the local country and explore the villages of Rute and Iznajar. Juan, our wonderful landlord, had furnished us with grapes from the vine in the courtyard. It was time to cut the vines back and he saved us some of the most delicious, sweet white grapes. We took them on every picnic! Armed with our maps and Garmin, we set off for Iznajar, driving the most spectacular scenery roads along the way.

They were harvesting some olives at one point, and we learned these were for green olives; they were not yet ripe, when all are picked and crushed for olive oil. We entered the village of Iznajar after a fair amount of driving and drove on some of the steepest grades I've ever been on! Wow, was the view from the top spectacular! The town is on an embalse, or reservoir of the Genil River. The plaza by the church of Santiago is the place to get the best views, but there are charming walks all over town.

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Paris, in the Footsteps of Grandmere

on Mon, 11/20/2017 - 11:11
Personal journey on a Paris Untour

Elizabeth Pontarolo recently joined us for Untours in Prague and Paris. Her time in Paris was a personal journey of sorts, in pursuit of her late grandmother's haunts. Here she shares some images and thoughts from her time in the City of Light. A highlight was finding the apartment building that her Grandmere lived in when she was a baby and young child

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Vickie's London: 9 Tips (and 14 websites) to Help You Make the Most of London

on Wed, 10/18/2017 - 10:33
London tips, apps, and websites for travel

We have been traveling with Untours for 26 years. Hard to believe it has been that long! Our most recent Untour was two weeks in London and one in Scotland. If you are interested, I maintained a daily blog with photos for our friends at web.wordpress.com. Researching and preparing for a trip is part of the anticipatory fun for me. There were some things I did before leaving that I found to be invaluable during our trip and wanted to share them with fellow Untourists.

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A Marvel & Maze: Untourists' Venice Report on the Regatta, Churches and Other Marvels

on Wed, 09/13/2017 - 10:32
The regatta in Venice, Italy on an Untours apartment stay

The Toepfers just returned from the Venice Untour and shared these thoughts and images.

Venice is a miracle marvel:

A unique city with its magical and spectacular scenery that claims a priceless art and historical heritage was a true miracle of creative genius. It is an engineering marvel built on mud, sand, and slime in a difficult and inhospitable landscape.
 
This engineering marvel is due not only to the skill and intelligence of the builders but also to the nature of the place itself.

Venice is a mysterious maze:

There are so many narrow streets (calle), alleys and pathways in this maze
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Jerry's Provence: The Textures of Southern France

on Tue, 09/05/2017 - 13:06
Provence Untour apartment stays

Jerry and Deena Koffler have traveled with Untours almost 20 times, and to many different destinations, on both Untours trips and Ventures.

You may have already checked out their photos of Holland and the Amalfi Coast here on the blog. If you have, you already know that Jerry is a fantastic photographer, and that he and Deena have an eye for the local foods, markets, architecture, and streetscapes of the towns and villages they visit as travelers.

Provence was no exception! On their recent Provence Untour, they enjoyed exploring the charming villages, lively markets, and lovely waterways on

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Jerry's Italy: The Lovely and Delicious Amalfi Coast

on Tue, 08/22/2017 - 15:39
Amalfi Coast on and Untour

Jerry and Deena Koffler have traveled with Untours at least 18 times, taking more than one trip in some years. Whether they find themselves Untouring in Italy or cruising on an Untours Venture, the Kofflers always have a good time and eat well. As they love good food and scenery, it is no surprise they fell in love with the Amalfi Coast. Here Jerry has captures some of their favorite sights, impressions, and tastes of the Amalfi Coast and Naples. The Kofflers have traveled to Italy many times, but Amalfi stood out. Check out Jerry's gorgeous and evocative images!

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The Golden Train Line of Switzerland, Blazing through the Swiss Heartland and Oberland

on Mon, 08/14/2017 - 10:54
Swiss rail travel, Swiss Untour
There's no place in the world for train travel quite like Switzerland
 
The GoldenPass Line links three regions, two languages and eight lakes, tempting travelers to discover some of Switzerland’s most diverse delights. In the morning the timeless tradition of German-language Central Switzerland. Followed by the beautiful Bernese Oberland. And in the evening the French flair of Lake Geneva.
 
The first stretch runs directly through the Swiss Heartland Untour. This first the modern Luzern-Interlaken Express takes travelers along the lovely lakes of Alpnach, Sarnen, and Lungern, climbing to
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Mountain Excursions to the Most Scenic Swiss Summits

on Thu, 08/10/2017 - 10:32
Switzerland rail trips on the Swiss Untour
For Alpine enthusiasts, a visit to Switzerland is pure paradise. It is also easily discovered and enjoyed, thanks to the extensive network of mountain railways, all accessible with the Swiss Travel Pass. The pass covers travel between cities and into the mountain villages around Untours territory.
 
But sometimes, our guests want to venture to the highest peaks of the Alps.
 
Swiss Untourists know that on most premium routes, holders of a Swiss Travel System ticket pay only half price.
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Untourists Report from Central Scotland: News and Reviews You Can Use!

on Tue, 07/25/2017 - 10:21
Dunblane, Bridge of Allan, Stirling, Central Scotland Untour

Our Central Scotland Untour has been running for almost a year now. We introduced it in fall of 2016 as the “Scotland Untour” but rechristened it Central Scotland this summer to make way for our newest offering in Inverness, the Scottish Highlands Untour. From its inception, the (Central) Scotland Untour has gotten rave reviews, most notably for our staff person Val and for the friendliness of the Scots. Here are some reviews directly from our guests there, from both 2016 and the first part of 2017. I hope their apartment info and other suggestions are helpful!

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