Published on : Wednesday, October 25, 2017
Walking tour specialist The Blue Walk announced that it has finalized tour dates and rates for all of its 2018 walking tours, with an expanded program that includes a new Paris Watercolor Sketching tour. The tours also offer more customizable options to meet the different needs of a growing North American and international clientele. Among the changes, most tours will now be offered as 6-night packages with 3-night extensions that allow guests to “stay a little longer,” sometimes without changing hotel rooms. The extensions can be self-guided or guided tours with four or more guest, when confirmed in advance.
According to Jeannette Candau, co-owner of The Blue Walk, the company is offering shorter tours to meet the needs of American travelers, who are more likely to take one-week vacations. The extensions are a nod to European, Australian and other international guests for whom 10-day vacations “are more commonplace.”
Returning programs include Blue Walk Greece, Oct 2-11, 2018, a guided tour that explores Athens and the islands of Amorgos and Naxos. The tour can be supplemented with a 3-night Santorini Island Extension, which departs from Naxos. The island of Santorini was recently named one of Travel & Leisure’s “25 Trips of a Lifetime.” The Watercolor Sketching Tour in Paris, Oct 7-13, 2018, joins the popular Art Walk Italy, scheduled for September 22-29.
Meanwhile, the company’s classic Blue Walk Italy tours, which explore Rapallo, Cinque Terre, Portofino, Bellagio, and Lake Como, have been scheduled for April 22-28 and September 16-22, 2018. The tour’s April 15 departure has already sold out. The Veneto extension of the tours will take guests by rail from Lake Como to Padua, where they will stay for three nights. Guests will also visit Venice and Verona by rail.
“Walking vacations continue to grow in popularly because they strike the perfect balance between the more strenuous hiking excursions and the traditional sightseeing tours that rush groups from one spot to another,” said Candau. “In a walking vacation, guests travel at a comfortable pace, with more time to explore the hidden urban gems, the beautiful coastal paths and the charming, rural trails of every destination.”
Vive La France
The Paris Watercolor Sketching Tour, Oct 7-13, 2018, will be the first week-long Art Walk in Paris ever offered by the company. It is joined by four classic Blue Walk France 6-night walking tours that explore Nice, Cannes, Menton, and Antibes on the legendary French Riviera. These tours will take place April 30-May 6, May 7-13, September 2-8, and September 9-18, 2018. They feature a 3-night Paris Extension for those who “can’t get enough of a good thing,” said Candau. Self-guided versions of these tours are also available at a lower cost.
“The French Riviera is a cosmopolitan destination that attracts people of all nationalities, social status, and walks of life. The sun shines for more than 300 days a year and the view of the Mediterranean is spectacular,” Candau said. “Walking its fabulous streets is an adventure in itself, but we also go ‘behind the scene’ to numerous sentiers – or walking trails – that intimately traverse the region’s iconic coastline.”
The Blue Walk itineraries include customized morning walks that leave the afternoons to explore and discover at leisure. A typical day averages between one to three hours of walking with stops and breaks, as needed.