Travel Resolutions

Travel Resolutions for 2016

By Beer, Food, Taste Vacations, Wine No Comments

Let’s face it, even those with the best intentions find it hard to keep their New Year’s resolutions past the first few months of the year. This can sometimes be from a lack of detailed resolutions or resolutions that follow the same old patterns. Rather than the normal “I want to travel more this year,” try spicing things up by making more specific goals that can either add up to traveling more or at least make the most out of your travels.  Here’s a few ideas to get you started:

Focus on a culture’s signature dish.

Open your mind and your palate to new and exotic flavors this year.  When traveling, don’t try to find restaurants that have menus that are similar to those back home. Even if your travels keep you in the U.S., there are still opportunities to taste new cuisines.  Trying local cuisine will take you a few steps closer to understanding the culture of wherever you are visiting.

Unplug and actually relax.

Tech gadgets and travel apps can certainly make life on the road much easier, but they also can be blocking you from truly relaxing. Try to be more present and enjoy your surroundings.  You can always check your emails and post your travel photos to social media when you get back.

Be a tourist in your own town.

There may be times when you feel like you really need a vacation but either schedules or finances just won’t allow it.  Try being a tourist in your own town or region.  With a little research, you’ll be surprised at how much there is to do and see that is just a short drive (or even walk!) away.

Read an inspirational travel book.

Not quite sure where you want to travel to next? Grab an inspirational travel book to get the trip planning juices flowing. You’ll start to imagine yourself in new and exotic settings in no time. Check out Conde Nast’s 86 Greatest Travel Books of All Time and get reading!

Take that trip you’ve been talking about forever.

Bite the bullet and FINALLY take the trip you’ve talked about for years. Want to taste your way across Italy or explore the magnficent wines Argentina has to offer? Do it! And if it truly doesn’t fit into your 2016 schedule, you can resolve to plan out your itinerary for 2017 so that when December rolls around again, you’ll be starting to pack your bags and getting ready to check that trip of a lifetime off your bucket list.

No more half-hearted resolutions. Let’s make 2016 your best travel year yet!

Wine Tourism Day

Wine + Travel = Fun! Wine Tourism Day 2015

By Wine No Comments

Join in the celebration of the third annual Wine Tourism Day on November 7th!  For some, there is little else that can improve a vacation than adding wine to the equation. It’s almost a fact that Wine + Travel = Fun!

Taste Vacations not only supports the industry of wine tourism in North America by offering luxury wine vacations such as our Washington Wine Country Tour or Sonoma County Wine Tour, but we are also one of the organizers of the annual Wine Tourism Day.

Wine Tourism Day is designed to celebrate the many wineries and other businesses offering wine-related events throughout North America and beyond, promote the concept of traveling to wine regions on vacation, and highlight the economic impact of wine tourism. For this year’s Wine Tourism Day, many organizations will be donating all (or a portion) of their earnings for the day to a charity or non-profit of their choice. So Wine Tourism Day is not only good for the organization, it’s also good for the industry and good for the community!  Check out Wine Tourism Day events being planned in your area.

Wine Vacation GIveaway

In addition to attending one of the events occurring throughout the country, you can also enter to win a wine vacation for two to beautiful Penticton, BC! Prize package includes:

  • 2 round-trip plane tickets
  • 2 night stay at a Bed & Breakfast
  • A guided wine tour
  • A four-course wine pairing dinner for 2

Join in the celebration!

Red Wine Bottle with Corks

How to Pack Wine for Travel

By Taste Vacations, Wine No Comments

You’re feeling relaxed and refreshed having just returned from a fantastic vacation filled with beautiful sights, delectable food, and incredible wine. You go to unpack your suitcase only to find that its contents have been tinted a deep shade of red due to the broken bottle or two that you had tried to unsuccessfully bring back home with you. Talk about a buzzkill.

Here are a few tips on how to effectively pack wine and to help avoid those unfortunate situations of broken bottles on the flight home:

  • Use wine-specific packing materials.  The Wine Mummy and similar products are specifically created to carefully transport wine or other alcoholic bottles in checked bags. Most have a layer of bubble wrap to help cushion the bottle.  We would also recommend using one that has either a zipper seal similar to a seal on a sandwich bag, or if it is a one-time use wine bottle protector, one that has an adhesive seal so that if the bottle does break, it doesn’t get all over your clothes.
  • Line the outside perimeters of your bag with soft clothing for additional padding. You should basically create a “nest” for your wine bottles and then pack the wine in the middle of the cushioning.
  • Use a hard-sided suitcase rather than a canvas one.  Baggage handlers are trying to load and unload planes as quickly as possible and are most likely not thinking about what you have packed in your suitcase.  Having a hard-sided suitcase will provide a little extra protection for when your luggage gets tossed around.
  • Purchase a wine-specific checked bag. If you’re planning on bringing home more than a few bottles of wine, you might consider purchasing wine-specific luggage, such as The Wine Check.  This type of bag includes a wine shipper box that is enclosed in a padded case.

Next time you’re either traveling to a wine region or you want to bring wine with you to your destination, plan ahead.  It will save you the heartache, the wine, and the dry cleaning bill from a broken bottle.

Washington Wine Tour

Sipping with Sarah – Washington Wine Country Tour

By Wine No Comments

Sarah Wolcott, the creator and guide of the upcoming Washington Wine Country Taste Vacations Tour, discusses Prosser and the Yakima Valley while enjoying a delicious 2014 Chinook Wines Chardonnay.

Sipping with Sarah – Washington Wine Country Tour

Chinook Wines is one of the eight different wineries that we will be visiting on the Washington Wine Country tour, occurring September 27 – 30, 2015. This tour visits Walla Walla, Prosser, and Benton City, including numerous AVAs. There are currently 3 spots left on this tour – book your trip today!

Friends on a patio

Private Tours – Vacationing Your Way

By Beer, Food, Taste Vacations, Wine No Comments

Have you ever spent long hours researching the perfect vacation only to find out that the listed tour dates have passed, it doesn’t fit into your schedule or the trip is sold out? Skip the hassle and consider booking a private tour. It’s not hard to fall in love with traveling exclusively with your family or friends, selecting the perfect destination and choosing exactly when you’d like to go. And one of the best parts is that you don’t have to plan the entire trip yourself.  Working with a trip coordinator, you can decide on the general trip criteria and they’ll take care of the details of booking hotels, making dinner reservations, and securing activities.Chile & Argentina - Allan Wright

Private tours can also be a perfect way to celebrate a number of life’s milestones like birthdays, anniversaries, or retirement.  We’ve also seen them successfully used as a way to motivate a team at work by creating a business incentive trip for top performers.

All of our Taste Vacations trips can be booked as private tours – and we won’t charge you extra just because it isn’t part of our public group tours, unless you request additional customized options. We also don’t require you to have large groups in order to book a private tour, with a majority of our trips only requiring a minimum of 4 people.

Sonoma County Wine Tour: Minimum 4
Tuscany Food & Wine Tour: Minimum 4
Basque Country & Rioja (Spain) Food & Wine Tour: Minimum 4
Washington Wine Tour: Minimum 4
Peru Food Tour: Minimum 4
Chile & Argentina Wine Tour: Minimum 6
Belgium Beer Tour: Minimum 6
Kentucky Bourbon Tour: Minimum 8
Napa Wine Tour: Minimum 8

So what are you waiting for? Join us on a Taste Vacations private tour today.