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elizabeth.killough's picture

Foundation Fridays: Blazing an Eco-Friendly Trail

on Fri, 04/27/2012 - 10:10
CEPRODEL leaders trained by SosteNica, Sustainable Development Fund of Nicaragua, an Untours Foundation loan recipient

The Untours Foundation invests in microlending in the Global South, where not all microlending is created equal. Many projects supported by microlending help individuals along the unsustainable and destructive path of Western development assisting in the purchase of dangerous pesticides, GMO seeds, cars, and the like. Instead, we look for projects that offer the Global South a real future and create a model for the North to eventually follow, we hope! SosteNica fits the bill for us.

This week's guest blogger is Alan Wright, the founder and president of SosteNica -- The Sustainable Development Fund of Nicaragua. Here's Alan..............

nickfortunatus's picture

Lucerne - The Gateway to Central Switzerland

on Thu, 04/26/2012 - 10:56
Chapel Bridge, Lucerne, Switzerland

If you want to see any of the great places in Central Switzerland or if, like most travelers, you arrive in Zurich on your way to a Swiss Untour, you'll most certainly pass through Lucerne. Just an hour away from the Zurich airport, Lucerne is brimming with reasons to visit - Lake Lucerne is breathtaking, Mount Pilatus is in plain sight (although its dragon is not as visible these days), the beautifully rustic Kapellbrücke (Chapel Bridge), which was originally built in 1333 and, after most of it burned down in 1993, was restored to much of its original glory a year later.

mtaussig's picture

Swiss German: a language? or a condition?

on Tue, 04/24/2012 - 11:48
Swiss German, language, Switzerland

When Untours was a fledgling company, we did some pretty goofy things.  One thing we did was assume that our American staff, (aka me, my Dad, and about 5 other family members or good friends) were the only ones who could manage the day-to-day overseas operations of an Untour.  In those days, we were only in Switzerland.  I am not sure what our reasoning could have been, since for many years now, in all of our Untours, all the day-to-day operations are run by our local staff who (duh!) know a lot more that we ever did.

nickfortunatus's picture

The Most Convenient Hotel in Switzerland

on Tue, 04/24/2012 - 10:49
Allegra Hotel near the Zurich Airport in Zurich, Switzerland

When our clients take a Swiss Untour and need an extra night to accommodate their flight schedule, we recommend the Allegra Hotel, just outside of Zürich. The Allegra is considered an airport hotel (it offers free airport shuttle service, after all!), but it also has easy access to the excellent galleries and museums (like the Kunsthaus and the Swiss National Museum) in Zürich.

mtaussig's picture

Untourists of the week: the Flynn family

on Mon, 04/23/2012 - 09:37
Swiss, family, travel, Untours

Tell us a little bit about your most recent Untour.

In 2011, we visited the Swiss Heartland for three weeks.  This was our second Untour and our second time in Lungern.  Both times we stayed at the Gasser-Müggler apartment; the hosts are a lovely older couple, and the property is warm and welcoming to our family of four.  We travel with two sons, ages 18 and 11.  The Swiss Heartland is a wonderful family destination.  During our last trip, we hiked, swam in Lake Lungern, snow tubed on Mt.

elizabeth.killough's picture

Why Not Visit Untours’ Hometown of Media, PA!

on Fri, 04/20/2012 - 09:40
Untours Foundation blog about Fair Trade Live 2012, Media, PA

And what better day to visit Media than this October 21st when Fair Trade Live 2012 will be gracing the streets of “downtown” Media with dozens of musicians and dancers. Find unique clothing, jewelry, and other items at the Fair Fair. The Untours Foundation helped organize Fair Trade Live 2008 when over 5,000 people showed up – despite the fact that it was about hottest day of the year. We are helping to organize the event again and look forward to seeing you there!

nickfortunatus's picture

Untours Featured Property: Bonalumi Upper

on Thu, 04/19/2012 - 10:38
View of Lake Maggiore from Untours vacation rental Bonalumi Upper in Locarno, Ticino, Switzerland

I'm hesitant to write anything about our Bonalumi Upper vacation rental because the photo above (taken by amazing Untours staffer Francy Breon) really says it all. However, I've spoken with Francy and she has given me permission to qwerty my way through a post that may give you a little more information. But, dag, that's a nice picture, isn't it?!

mtaussig's picture

How Swiss Cheese gets it's taste

on Wed, 04/18/2012 - 09:54
cheese, Swiss, Emmental

First of all, "Swiss Cheese" is not really a kind of cheese in Switzerland.  What the outside world calls Swiss cheese is usually a close relative to what is known, in Switzerland, as Emmentaler cheese.  And it's most distinctive quality is its holes.

So, go on your Swiss Untour prepared with the knowledge that not all Swiss cheese has holes.  If you want 'hole-y' cheese, look for Emmentaler (cheese made in the Emmental valley). How does Emmentaler get its holes?

nickfortunatus's picture

Lungern has our favorite restaurant in the Swiss Heartland

on Tue, 04/17/2012 - 10:24
Restaurant Bahnhofli in Lungern, Switzerland, a favorite of Untours

As I mentioned in a post last week, staying in the Swiss Heartland offers plenty of things to see, do and explore. If you happen to stay in Lungern, as I had the privilege of doing last September, you'll notice (before you even get there) the startlingly gorgeous blue Lake Lungern. For me, this lake's hue has only one peer, and that is the electric blue of Capri's Blue Grotto. I had the good fortune of being on Capri on a day where the sea was calm and I was allowed to sneak my way into the Grotto. At the time, I thought I'd never see another body of water that would take my breath away like the Grotto had. And, I was right, until I saw Lake Lungern.

mtaussig's picture

Untourist of the Week: Bill and Marj HIll

on Mon, 04/16/2012 - 12:16
Switzerland, hiking
Our Bear friend is in the short hallway between the Woodcarvers school and Jobin's in Brienz

Tell us a little bit about your most recent Untour.

We stayed four weeks in our favorite place, Chalet Berit in Sachseln in the Swiss Heartland Untour region. We became so close to the Greuterts and Omlins during our first trip in 1998 that it is more like visiting the family home than going on vacation. So we have never wanted to stay anywhere else. But that is all right because Sachseln is a lovely village and with the great Swiss train service it is convenient to everywhere we want to go.

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