February 2012 Rambler Newsletter

by ExperiencePlus! - Wednesday, February 1, 2012 ExperiencePlus! Bicycle Tours Rambler Newsletter

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Welcome to the February 2012 ExperiencePlus! Rambler

Dear Folks,

Winter seems to have skipped Colorado but our headquarters in Italy recently received a foot of snow! The unseasonably warm temperatures in most of North America hasn’t detoured bicycle travelers from seeking out the perfect winter getaways, and still others are planning ahead to summer trips (and some – we love you- are doing both!). Our cycling trip in Patagonia has seen record numbers, and we’re very excited to announce that the Discover Northern Argentina bike tours, April 17 – 24, or April 17 – 28  (a staff favorite) are confirmed! If you’ve been wanting to explore some of the world’s most interesting landscapes: expansive salt flats, Argentine wine country, stunning red rock formations, famous Incan Ruins and rainforest riding – all in one tour, join us.  Another staff favorite, Cycling Venice and the Dolomites, is also looking for a few more riders who enjoy great cycling and a mix of landscapes and cultures.

Speaking of cultural exchange we are very pleased to announce the return of our popular Send A Teacher Traveling award. If you know a deserving public school teacher whose curriculum could be enriched by a bicycling trip in Europe, have them apply now for this year’s free bicycle tour.  First started in 1996 our Send A Teacher Traveling award has sent over 20 teachers abroad on bicycle tours.

The 40th Anniversary Bike Across Italy: Pisa to Venice trip in June recently sold out, but don’t despair there is another opportunity for you to join us to celebrate. Our Biking B’day Bash weekend trip here in Fort Collins, Colorado still has space available, though it is going fast, and was recently featured in our local paper. We are limiting this to 50 cyclists, so if you are sort of, maybe, potentially, thinking about possibly considering joining us – on April 28 and 29th – it’s time to commit to great rides, food, beer and fun!

We’re happy to bring you some delightful armchair (or kitchen) reading in this month’s newsletter with customer reports and glimpses of some of our Italy cycling tours, a book review of an important Renaissance countess from Forlì (ExperiencePlus! founding mother Paola’s hometown), a description of a popular festival in Southern France and a hearty beer stew recipe from our cycling tours in Belgium. Enjoy!

Until next month, happy cycling,
Maria Elena and Monica

Adventures in Tuscany

June Wheeler cycling in Tuscany with ExperiencePlus! Bicycle Tours

Some of you may remember June Wheeler from her narrative of her bicycle trip across the Peloponnese in Greece in 2010. We are pleased that she has been kind enough to share her “Adventures in Tuscany” blog which recounts her experiences Cycling the Best of Southern Tuscany Plus! Florence  in 2011.

If you’d like to share your blog or photos with fellow ExperiencePlus! travelers email us at

Simplicity in Italy

Cycling Coastal Tuscany photo Rebecca Brown

Soak in the essence and allure of Italy through Rebecca Brown’s photo lens, a traveler on our Cycling Coastal Tuscany tour here!

Speaking of photos. Our photo contest has finished, check out our album to see all the entries. We are narrowing down the most popular choices for the final People’s Choice award, so vote with the green thumbs up if you really like a photo and think it should be a finalist.

Cycling the Languedoc – Féria de Pentecôte

Feria de Pentecote in Nimes, France

ExperiencePlus! has two brand new cycling options in the Languedoc region of southern France. Our inaugural tours May 27 – June 3, and the Plus! version which ends on the 6th are both confirmed departures and will begin with a remarkable celebration in Nîmes, the Féria de Pentecôte.

Read more about our new Cycling the Languedoc tours and the Féria de Pentecôte .

Book Review: The Tigress of Forlì

Tigress of Forli by Elizabeth Lev

Paola Malpezzi Price, co-founder of ExperiencePlus! writes our book review this month.

“I grew up hearing the story of Caterina Sforza (as we called her) valiantly defending the castle of Forlì, my hometown in Italy…”

Read the rest of Paola’s review of The Tigress of Forlì.

Vlaamse Stoverij or Belgian Beef Stew

Vlaamse Stoverij or Flemish Beef Stew

Tour leaders Michele Boglioni and Enrico Dal Monte were recently doing some reconnaissance for our Bicycling Belgium’s Best Brewery tours and stopped in for some authentic Belgian Beef Stew. They report that it is especially delicious when washed down with a bit of Westlevern beer.

Check out this hearty recipe for Vlaamse Stoverij or Belgian Beef Stew.

Happy Cycling until next month!

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