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Phil and Jane King, Untourists of the Week: Kids relive first trip to Switzerland

France Heartland Paris Switzerland Untourist of the Week

July 1, 2014 by Mtaussig

1. Tell us a little bit about your most recent Untour.

Our most recent, and I believe our 14th, Untour was to the City of Light, Paris. This was our fourth trip to Paris and our third Untour there. It is an unbelievably beautiful city and so enjoyable to walk, both day and night. Plus, a great Metro (subway) system for getting around.

2. Why did you choose to go there?

Paris is our favorite city in the whole world with Venice (another Untour) being a good second. Jane is a former French teacher, so Paris is a thrill for her. However, I have very limited language skills and even I have fun with the French language, using the little bit I have to try to relate to the Parisians. Nobody should avoid France for fear of not knowing the language, and especially if they mistakenly believe the myth that the French are rude. The French people we have encountered in our trips to Paris, plus an Untour to Provence and other trips to France, have been delightful.

Frederic Magissonβ€”where they stayed in Paris

3. What is your favorite UnTours memory?

This question is really diffcult, as we have enjoyed so many great trips with UnTours. A first trip anywhere is always memorable. Our first Untour was to Lungern in the Swiss Heartland in 1993. We had cool, rainy weather much of the time but our son and daughter, both single back then, joined us on that trip and we had a wonderful time. Probably our favorite UnTours memory was when we took our kids, their spouses, and our 4 grandsons back to the Heartland in 2008, this time to our favorite town, Meiringen. It was so much fun watching our kids relive their first trip to Switzerland, plus “showing off” the country to their spouses and their boys. It was a truly memorable trip.

4. How is taking an Untour different from other ways of travelling?

You have knowledgeable support staff on site to help if needed and you are provided with tons of ideas for things to see and do in your home area. Unlike a tour, however, the choice is up to you. You get to pick and choose what you want to see and do and when. No need to be on a bus with 40 other people at 7:30 in the morning. No packing and unpacking. No need to go with a group to a woolen mill when you would rather visit a museum. In fact, your schedule is your own to see and do what you want when you want. It is like living like the locals rather than being on a trip.

5. If you could describe an Untour in just three words, what would they be?

Wonderful Way to Travel (OK, I used 4 words, but UnTours is a wonderful way to travel).

6. Have you heard of our trailblazing UnTours Foundation? What do you think of a company whose profits have gone to create jobs among vulnerable populations through loans to pioneering, green businesses?

This is a wonderful idea. Rotary International and my local Rotary Club do this very thing. One of our current projects is micro-finance loans to coffee farmers in Honduras.