October 2011 Rambler Newsletter

by ExperiencePlus! - Monday, October 3, 2011 ExperiencePlus! Bicycle Tours Rambler Newsletter

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Welcome to the October 2011 ExperiencePlus! Rambler



Dear Folks,

The crisp morning air and turning of the Aspen leaves in Colorado welcome the arrival of October and one of our favorite cycling seasons.  As the European season winds down we’ve loved hearing about your exciting tour stories—keep sending them along with your photos, they make us smile! In fact, don’t forget about our Photo Contest best photo wins a free tour! This past month Maria Elena enjoyed getting back in the saddle leading one of our Camino tours this year—always good to get out of the office and pedal, chalk and see you all.  Monica, now 8 months pregnant has been hosting groups who ride by the “farm,” our European headquarters, as she plans for this new exciting stage in her life (and for the 2012 European cycling season – our 40th anniversary!).

As you start planning for next year, we’re happy to announce that our full 2012 calendar is published online and many of you likely received our brochure in the mail. If you didn’t, we can get one out to you. We made some exciting tweaks to some existing tours and added exciting new itineraries and some upgraded hotels on many tours (see our hotels now showcased on our website in each day’s itinerary description and in a new series in the Rambler!) We are even more excited to announce that once again, we have kept 90% of our prices the same as 2011 – which means we haven’t changed prices on most tours since 2007!

This doesn’t mean we are cutting corners, but reflects the changes we’ve made in keeping with the realities facing all of us these days. We have reduced the number of tours we offer so that some trips will be running every few years, hotels have reduced their rates in the face of the economy, at our home office we are finding more efficient means of communicating with you all as well as with hotels, partners and restaurants.

What we ARE doing is making sure we put our money where it matters: tour leaders, lodging and meals, route planning, and bikes – you know, the things that really matter on a bike tour. So traveling with us in 2012 is guaranteed to be a good deal, and you can get a greater deal by taking advantage of our Early Booking Discount ($200 off per person) and reserve your spot on a 2012 European tour by October 31, 2011.

Those who are doing some arm chair traveling this month – you’ll find a new series in the Rambler called “Accomodations We Love”—the first part is in this months’ newsletter features some of our favorite hotels. Also in this month’s Rambler, a virtual day on tour in Costa Rica and a brief feature on one of our favorite places in Chile.

We hope this October finds those of you living down under enjoying spring and the rest of you taking advantage of the fall to get out on your bicycles. If you need some ideas about where to travel this winter or this next year, feel free to give us a call (1-800-685-4565) we promise a human will answer between 8 – 5 pm Monday – Friday (MST).

Monica and Maria Elena Malpezzi Price

P.S. For those of you eligible to redeem your Re-Cycle discounts (how does $1200 – $3000 off a tour sound?), book early as we do have a limit of Re-Cycle rewards per departure.

A Virtual Day in Costa Rica

Another day in paradise in Costa Rica with ExperiencePlus!

The best way to experience a place is to visit it.  We haven’t discovered a transporter that can do that via the internet (yet) so the next best thing we thought was to share a virtual day on tour – this month, in Costa Rica.   We are going to soon be dreaming of winter destinations, so we thought we’d help you dream of sun and palm trees! If this looks like a day you’d like to experience for yourself, check out our cycling Costa Rica trips.

Accommodations We Love: Part 1

Guest room at the Recour in Belgium

In 40 years of operating bicycle tours throughout the world, we have seen a lot of different accomodations. In 1972, the few crazy people who thought bicycling through Italy would be a vacation, slept in tents!  Of course, things have changed (just a bit!) and we are realizing that we haven’t made a big enough deal of how great our hotels and accommodations really are. So, this year we have added our hotels to each of our itinerary pages.   In addition, we are starting a new series of articles in our newsletter: Accommodations We Love.  Since it was too challenging to narrow our favorites to just a few, we’ll feature additional accommodations in the coming months.

Read more about Accommodations That We Love: Part 1

Chiloé Island: The Crown Jewel of Patagonia’s Lakes District

Colorful boats on Chiloe Island

Patagonia’s Lakes District is possibly one of the most stunning locations in the world. Pristine rivers feed dazzling lakes reflecting snow-capped volcanoes.  We look for the ribbon of smooth pavement meandering gently through this paradise. What could possibly top this? A special place that is (so far) virtually undiscovered….

Check out Chiloé Island: The Crown Jewel of Patagonia’s Lakes District.

Book Review: Iberia by James Michener

Iberia image courtesy of

ExperiencePlus! traveler Bill Giovinnazzo reviews  James Michener’s Iberia. A must-read if you are heading to Spain – the good news is you can pick which chapters you want to read if you don’t have time for the whole thing!

Read Bill’s review of Iberia.

Risotto with Pears, Gorgonzola, and Walnuts


Pears are now in season so it’s the perfect time to make tour leader Enrico Dal Monte’s favorite risotto recipe.

Enjoy Enrico’s version of Risotto with Pears, Gorgonzola, and Walnuts

Happy Cycling until next month!

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