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Journeys of Distinction announces new “experiential and enlightening” global touring programme

Leading escorted touring specialist Journeys of Distinction is re-inventing escorted touring as `enlightened touring’...


Leading escorted touring specialist Journeys of Distinction is re-inventing escorted touring as `enlightened touring’, part of a branding exercise as the company launches seven new brochures (September 2011) and enters its 40th season of operating, since it was established in 1972. 2011 also marks the first year in which Journeys of Distinction started selling its luxury escorted tours through travel agents. The seventh of six new destination brochures is a compilation of tours put together especially for travel agents to help clients choose the right tour.
MD Karen Gee said “Escorted touring is the clever way to see the world. The whole concept of touring has changed since Journeys of Distinction launched in 1972. These days it’s far more experiential. Our clients are seeking travel experiences way beyond the ordinary while travelling in the company and safety of a group of no more than twenty five guests. We pave the way for them to explore further, while in the company of a personable and experienced tour manager, and local tour guides”.
Karen Gee continued “While many of our tours are to classic destinations, we offer opportunities to build unique and unusual memories by taking longer in each location and digging beneath the surface, whether that be paddling up a river with a Maori chief or drinking yak butter tea with a family in China. We know that guests want to be more adventurous, without putting themselves at risk so we plan ahead for them to ensure that there are no nasty surprises. While they are following a well trodden path they also have the time and the opportunity to add in their own unique and memorable experiences, never having to worry about travel, transfers and hotels. That’s a far cry from the original concept of an escorted tour from A to B!”
Journey’s of Distinctions portfolio of tours on six continents across the world is launched on September 15th. Copies of brochures will be with travel agents or can be obtained by calling 0161 491 7616 or visiting Highlights of each of the six destination brochures follow:-
Touring Europe:-
For the first time Journeys of Distinction is producing a European touring brochure, offering tours from 8 days to 17, including a new Grand Balkan and Adriatic Adventure through Croatia, Slovenia, Bosnia and Montenegro. The tour includes accommodation in character hotels, including Tito’s former summer residence, Vila Bled, and excursion opportunities such as truffle hunting in Croatia and visiting the war tunnels in Sarajevo.
In Turkey Journeys of Distinction has a new 12 day tour by road from Istanbul to Cannakale, Izmir, the hot springs at Pamukkale and Konya, with the focus on the mythical and legendary aspects, with visits to the ancient sites of Ephesus and Troy as well as a stay in a cave hotel in Cappadocia.
Touring South America:-
A one off opportunity to attend Peru’s Inti Rayami (Feast of the Sun) is being offered for the first time during Journeys of Distinction’s `Very Best of South America’ tour. Clients will have to wait until June 2013 to witness the solemn evocation of this historic Inca rite. The tour also operates during 2012 visiting Machu Picchu, Iguazu falls and Rio de Janeiro, with unforgettable experiences that include travelling by coach over the Andes from Chile to Argentina and blending wine in Mendoza, the highest winelands in the world, where guests will be able to blend, bottle and label their own wine.
Also new in South America is a “relaxed, adventurous tour” through Patagonia, staying in the heart of the national parks of southern Chile and Argentina. Memorable experiences include a traditional Argentinean asado (fine Argentine meat barbecue), rubbing shoulders with a gaucho at a traditional estancia and sailing the waters on Last Hope Sound and the Rio Serranto past the Balmaceda glacier.
Touring the USA:-
Singing with a Gospel Choir and visiting the old haunts of Ella Fitzgerald and Duke Ellington on a tour through Harlem is one of many highlights of Journeys of Distinction’s new 12 day itinerary from Washington to New York, via Niagara Falls and Gettysburg. The tour provides a fascinating and in-depth way to discover America’s cities and iconic suburbs, blending top tourist sites with opportunities to learn about life and the different cultures in the U.S. from local tour guides.
The Very Best of California and Canyonlands also offers the opportunity to explore the great outdoors. The 23 day tour includes stays at the incredible National Parks of Zion and the Grand Canyon as well as enjoying the California sunshine in Los Angeles and San Francisco. 
Touring Africa:-
Journeys of Distinction are one of only a few UK companies to be offering a train journey on board the world’s most spacious and luxurious train; the privately owned Rovos Rail. Carrying a maximum of 72 passengers in 36 suites it recaptures the romance and atmosphere of a bygone era on an iconic rail journey from Durban to Pretoria. The 3 day trip is part of a new itinerary, `South African Heartlands’, which travels from Johannesburg to Durban through the plains and mountains of KwaZulu Natal with excursions to a wildlife park and the battlefields.
`Imperial Morocco’ is a second new tour itinerary in Africa, starting in Casablanca and finishing in Marrakech. This 12 day journey travels through Fez and Rabat and high into the Atlas Mountains and Ouarzazate on the edge of the Sahara, where guests have the option of visiting a Saharan village to meet and dine with the bedhouin.
Touring Asia & The Far East:-
Introduced into the JOD portfolio due to popular demand ‘The Very Best of Vietnam’ is described as a `modern day gap year’, this 17 day tour travels from north to south along the length of the country. Highlights include an overnight stay on a deluxe Bhaya Junk on Halong Bay, a hands-on Vietnamese cookery class at the Red Bridge Café in Hoi An, entering the tunnels at Cu Chi, a series of underground passages used by the Viet Cong to fight the U.S Army and a trip along the canals of the Mekong Delta with a two night stay at the 5* Can Tho Victoria resort.
The most exciting innovation for 2012/13 is a new exploration of China, in the `Footsteps of the Plant Hunters’, which explores the lesser known Yunnan Province and includes a trip to Zhongdian (Shangri La). Guests embark on a journey of discovery to learn how intrepid botanist Joseph Rock’s fascination with this region changed the face of our own culture and can witness the species he discovered resplendent in their native habitat which is an exciting addition to China Holidays 2012.
Touring Australia and New Zealand:-
One of Journeys of Distinction’s most popular destinations, tours of Australia and New Zealand continue to appeal to clients by providing time effective ways to see these vast areas without compromising on quality. It is definitely worth looking into New Zealand tours and Australia tours for 2012
One of the most popular tours is’ `The Very Best of Australia’ An optional journey on the Ghan train through the outback from Alice Springs to Adelaide will again be offered in the 2012/13 tour. In New Zealand there are a variety of itineraries that are designed and tailored to appeal to differing interests and new inclusions allow for more time to be spent in Queenstown, where a relaxing atmosphere and clean, fresh air has long been enjoyed by guests, while a memorable visit to Lake Tekapo, famed for its flora and fauna and clear night sky, has also been included.
Further press information is available from Mary Stuart-Miller, The Creative Connection UK Ltd., 01403 738844,


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