Australia & New Zealand – February 2017
Wow, we covered a lot of ground, so many experiences, memories, sites, sounds, scenery , sharing – laughter, thoughts bottles of wine etc. and meeting new people. So many memories, but in particular the amazing & beautiful scenery each country & region has to offer. Ayers Rock, Milford Sound, Sydney Opera House, Great Barrier Reef! Also, the laughter and fun we all shared. It was a fantastic group to spend and entire month with. I look forward to travelling with you again.
Cathy, London ON
This was a trip of a liftetime and exceeded all of my expectations. I will never forget snorkelling on the Great Barrier Reef or the Sounds of Silence dinner at the Outback in the dark with the full view of the Milky Way overhead. SPECTACULAR! Oh, holding a Koala, so many memories, this was a photographers dream. Loved this trip!
Laureen, Toronto ON
The sightseeing was excellent, I saw everything on my bucket list. The tours were excellent, classy and well organized. Milford Sound in New Zealand was a highlight. nDinner under the stars at Ayers Rock was one of the highlights of my life. A wonderful, elegant meal, champagne and a completely clear night sky so full of stars that I was totally in awe of the beauty. This tour was a class act and fulfilled all of Womens Travel Network and Worldwide Quests promises.
Carolyn, Markham ON
South India – February 2017
India was incredible yet again. So far, it has been my favourite country ever to travel to, and Mollie loved it as well. It was great to see the differences from the South to the North, but all wonderful. To pick a highlight of the trip is almost impossible. India hits all of your senses…the sights, the sounds, the smells, the tastes….oh the best food ever! I love travelling with the Women’s Travel Network and hope to be able to plan another trip again soon!
Leslie, Aurora ON
This tour was very well planned, from my first phone call to my flight home to Canada. My first highlight would have to be realizing that I had landed in very safe hands with Nanette, Sandeep and our driver Bala. Travelling with Nanette was like travelling with a good friend who was always inclusive and caring and you knew she was ready to go to bat if there were any issues along the way. Other highlights for me were an impromptu visit inside a family’s roadside dwelling, the whole Chettinad experience (they really did treat us like family), a visit to a spice farm (I felt like a city kid visiting a farm to see where my food comes from – very informative).
Norma, Ottawa ON
I enjoyed the trip to south India very much. Thanks to our local guide and tour leader we saw and did more than was planned. The group size was perfect and very well matched. My surprise birthday celebration from Nanette’s and the ladies and Sandeep was terrific and very appreciated. Thanks Debbie I would not hesitate to travel with you again.
Shahira, Toronto ON
England’s Great Houses – May 2017
Every day held new sites and adventures. Sue was an excellent guide, she gave us great information about the Great Houses and palaces and the history of England which enhanced our excursions. The blooms in England during our trip were incredibly beautiful and the Cotswolds were an amazing sight. It was a wonderful trip!
Marilyn, Camduff SK
Debbie is an absoulte delight. She was competent, good natured and very open. I enjoyed her company very much and can’t say enough good things about her.
It is very hard to pick one single “best” moment on the tour, simply because there were so many wonderful times. How do you pick between Blenheim Palace, Kensington Palace, Hampton Court, Klemscott Manor, Tower of London, St Paul’s Cathedral, Wilton House and Highclere (Downton Abbey). Oh yeah, and Stonehenge!
Colleen, Nanaimo BC
Tuscany, September 2017
“Just arrived back from my Tuscany tour and have so many wonderful memories of the sights, sounds, the people, the food and the wine. Everything was amazing and I can’t wait to plan my next trip with WTN!”
Debra, Toronto ON
The trip was amazing! Primarily for the history and art. I used to live in London, UK, and so miss being surrounded by history! Lori was warm and very accessible. The tours were great too, on the whole. Demetra was a favorite with all! Thanks for all the arranging and organizing!
Samia, Oakville ON
Had an amazing time. Lori is a beautiful person and did an amazing job as a tour leader. Accommodation were amazing offering a different prospective of Europe. Radda was quaint and adequate. Florence was a step up and definitely more luxurious. Rome was all about location. It couldn’t have been better. Enjoyed locations of all hotels for the closeness and made walking around much easier. Demetri was superior. I would recommend her again for your next tour. Enjoyed the cooking class but felt the wine tour and food after way too much. Still full from the wonderful food.
I would definitely recommend women’s travel network and I would travel with you again.
Diane, Toronto ON
Galapagos & Ecuador – February 2016
Thanks Debbie for arranging such a fascinating tour. I never expected to do all the things that I did in the Galápagos Islands! Glad to had all those memorable experiences, including spending a week on a small yacht.
Re : Quito – I found all the tours outside of Quito, which I found sad and dispiriting, ( and polluted! Cough, cough!) much more interesting. I think that the tour to the Equator Centre was really interesting, and the tour of the Orphanage was really eye-opening. I found that visit a grounding counter-balance to the rest of our trip.
As for the Galápagos Experience, we were SO fortunate to have had Juan as our guide – hard to imagine that tour without him and his knowledge and enthusiasm. And we lucked out with the helpful crew, as well. I would suggest that you bill your next Galápagos tour as “Physically Active”, outlining some of the activities offered, including the fact that it will be hot, humid, and sunny, BUT, I must admit, if I had realized how physically demanding it was going too been, then I wouldn’t have gone! and would have missed such marvelous experiences.
Barbara, Burlington ON
This was an incredible trip and I can’t say enough about it. The accommodations were top notch. The Hilton, the Beluga & of course the Spa! Both our guides Gloria and Juan were wonderful. Juan is such a fabulous guide. A perpetual student, terrific teacher and entertainer. We couldn’t have asked for anything more in a Naturalist Guide. The tours were great and the excursion to the Equator was a lovely surprise. As far as the pace is concerned, I know you want to fit in as much as possible in one day, but I think on the first morning (in Quito) a start of 10 or 11 am would have been welcomed. Especially with the full day of travel and late arrival of the night prior.
As far as the excursions in the Galapagos, knowing ahead of time the difficulty of the walks was helpful so I could decide if I was up to it considering terrain and the heat and humidity. I greatly appreciated it when Juan said the trail was “difficult or challenging”. Being able to stay behind on the beach, with a staff member, was also appreciated. Noreen and I thoroughly enjoyed our time there, taking photos of the sea lions and birds. It was a good balance for us that afternoon.
Thank you for all the work you put into our trip to make it as full as possible and run so smoothly. That’s why I choose WTN and speak so highly of you.
Annie, Pickering ON
The accommodations were very good, better than I expected, even with all the rockin’ and rollin’ of the boat. Juan was fantastic! He was very knowledgeable and soooo funny and caring. The sightseeing tours in Quito and the Galapagos were perfect. I have to admit the Galapagos part was exhausting for me (as I’m not in very good shape), but we wouldn’t have seen all the wonderful creatures if it had been less intensive. It was a trip of a lifetime and I miss all you incredible Galapagos Gals.
Eva, Aurora ON
I am still on a vacation high, even though we have been home a week. I finally got my full land legs back on Thursday and until then I was still rolling as I walked. The only complaint I have is the loooooooooooooooooooong trip home, and that is beyond anyone’s control. This year was THE BEST birthday I have ever had and I don’t foresee any other birthday beating it. I am so happy to have traveled with the most amazing group of women (and men too!) I have had the privilege to meet. You are all wonderful people and I am enjoying reliving out time together via the pictures you are sharing. Thank you Debbie for planning the trip, it was fabulous from our time in Quito with Gloria and Victor to our farewell to Juan at the airport. I loved every hot, humid, energizing day.
Sue, Toronto ON
I had an absolutely wonderful time and enjoyed every minute of it. It was even more than I expected it to be. Thank you Debbie for all your work in planning it. I must admit that I sure was tired. It would have been nice to have a little down time but it would have been sad to have missed anything. The hot weather had a lot to do with me feeling so tired. I think the accommodations were good. I liked the tours and I think the tour to “the centre of the earth” was a lot of fun and should be included in any further trips. Juan and the other crew members certainly made it a lot of fun with their participation. It was great being with all you ladies. It was a terrific group and I am looking forward to seeing you again. Thanks again Debbie for everything.
Norine, Markham ON
Danube River Cruise, April 2016
Had a fantastic time. Everything truly exceeded my expectations. Laureen was a great tour leader. She was fun, positive, enthusiastic, and easy going. We had a blast as a group. What a fun bunch of women! Also, an interesting, compassionate bunch. I’ve made 10 new friends!The
ship was fantastic. First class all the way. Incredible food, impeccable service, beautiful accommodations. Couldn’t have asked for more. The Prague hotel was also perfect. Breakfast buffet was outstanding. It was well situated in a quieter part of the city, but within easy walking distance from the sights.
Gail, Thunderbay ON
Spain, May 2016
Although the weather didn’t always cooperate, we made the most of our time and captured some great memories. I so enjoyed meeting up with many “old” acquaintances and meeting so many other friendly ladies, always the best part of our adventures. Thank you again for organizing and taking us on such a great trip. I look forward to many more.
Rebecca, Ottawa ON
Thanks again for a very well organized, safe trip…. Enjoyed the sights, food, and company. Thank you also for the well documented blog… I’m thankful someone was taking notes!! …Till my next trip with WTN… Cheers
Sylvia, Sarnia ON
Iceland, June 2016
Iceland’s country side was awesome to see and the people were very friendly and hospitable. I went to Iceland without expectations other than a good time and a I got a lot more out of the trip within me. I accomplished a number of challenges and I wasn’t concerned that I couldn’t do more of the hiking. The countryside of Iceland took my breath away.
Linda, Newmarket ON
Food, people and scenery all great! I would suggest lengthening the trip 2 more days to overnight on the Westerman Islands. It would be fun to have a day to explore the hiking trails and see the puffins.
Sandra, Toronto ON
One of the best days was when we walked the waterfalls, climbed the glacier then went horseback riding and ended in the hot tub of the hotel.
Cheryl, Toronto ON
Newfoundland, June 2016
Newfoundland has long been a bucket list item for me and in spite of the cold weather, I really enjoyed the rugged beauty, the interesting geology, the humble people and their humour. Andrew of McCarthy’s party was absolutely wonderful – smart, funny and a proud Newfoundlander. The trip was fun and the scenery beautiful. Really enjoyed the whales, puffins, icebergs, the geology and the moose burgers. Best fish and chips I’ve ever had at O’Brien’s in Bay Bulls!
Joanne, Edmonton AB
The Newfoundland trip was the first trip I have taken with WorldWide Quest and also Womens Travel Network. The trip was excellent, the scenery amazing, the Newfoundland people very friendly. Sandy was an amazing tour leader who was very attentive to the needs of all with a great sense of humour and adventure. It was a wonderful group of ladies.
Carolyn, Toronto ON
The tour was fabulous, Newfoundland surpassed my expectations as a beautiful place to visit, I wished I had went there earlier in life. Sandy was a very nice lady and kept us all on track, I would travel with her again if she is leading the tour as she takes her role very seriously. I have to say the highlight of my trip was seeing the whales and puffins, I also enjoyed the other boat trip in Gros Morne park and the screeching in ceremony.
Wanda, Calgary AB
Tuscany – Sept. 2016
Our trip to Italy was lovely. Mom and I had a wonderful time. Tuscany and Florence were beautiful, and Rome blew my mind. I did not have many preconceived ideas about Rome, so I found it wonderful with all the ruins and old buildings scattered everywhere. Shannon was a wonderful tour leader, she was caring and considerate, always present and taking care of any details. I would not hesitate to tour with Shannon again. One of the highlights was our cooking class with Laura. She was lovely, her home was beautiful and the food amazing. I look forward to preparing her recipes. All in all a successful trip!
Leslie, Aurora ON
What a fabulous trip to Tuscany, Florence and Rome. I LOVED everything we did and saw. I liked that we saw so much everyday but still had time to explore on our own some days. The accommodations were very nice, no complaints there. All the meals that were included were excellent, along with the wines!! I am very impressed with the quality of tours you offer and the ease of dealing with both yourself and Kerry.
Morocco – October 2016
Extremely good value for the money. Almost all meals were included so we had very little out of pocket expenses. Some of my favourite memories: Definitely the tented camp, along with the impromptu visit to the Berber nomad camp where we had mint tea with the lady of the house. Food was fabulous too!
Lori, Lethbridge AB
The days were full and exciting. The tented camp was a highlight for me, it was like glamping. So much fun with every convenience in an unusual setting. One of my most memorable moments was having tea at the Berber tent and the camel ride into the desert. I was in awe of the age of things still standing and the new knowledge of the Muslim people and their customs.
Barb, Sarnia ON
There were many wonderful experiences from this trip. The camel ride was fabulous and staying in the tented camp under the stars was beautiful. I also loved the bus ride through the high Atlas Mountains. There were many great memories of a fabulous trip, that I enjoyed wiht a fabulous, fun group of women.
Cathy, London ON
Japan, October 2016
The tour of Japan was more than I had expected. It was when I followed the blog myself, that I realized how much we did. Our accommodations were absolutely awesome. Our guide Kim was exceptional. I’ve never been on a tour where one guide could know so much about their country. It’s hard to pick a favourite part of the trip….the scenery going through the mountains, visiting some of the shrines, shopping in the market, dressing up as geisha girls, taking the bullet train to Hiroshima or visiting the museum in Hiroshima.
This was such a worthwhile trip and I’m so glad I chose this one and I look forward to more. Thanks for the memories!
Jan, London ON
Visiting Japan was a great experience! The tour included a variety of activities that were fun and educational – the sushi making class, rice cracker making, and washi paper making. The visits to the Suntory Art Museum, Hakone Open Air Museum, and Ukiyo-e Art Museum were especially appreciated.
Lynn, Toronto ON
South Africa & Victoria Falls – October 2015
Thanks for all your hard work to make this trip such a memorable one. You asked for our comments on specifics of the tour. John and I found the accommodations well appointed and in good locations – especially Kapama, the Radisson Blu in Port Elizabeth, the Sandton Sun and The Commodore. Darryl our guide in Joburg was very informative and concise relaying information about their constitution and road to freedom – his political passion was evident. Also appreciated the experiences he provided in Soweto. While John Mason was kind, thoughtful and good-hearted, we did not find he provided the concise overview of South Africa we were hoping for. He did look after individuals with special needs during the trip i.e. Tammy’s gluten free meals and Barb’s motion sickness. Enjoyed the many varying facets and experiences of the tour itself and while the itinerary was a busy one, don’t know that there is anything we would exclude Also, we appreciated the restaurant arrangements that you made for the times we were responsible for our own meals. As for you and Lori, not only did you make sure everything was taken care of and ran smoothly, but you set the tone for what was an extremely enjoyable tour. We learned; we experienced new things; we had many, many laughs; and we made memories that last!!!
Dorothy and John, Markham ON
What a tremendous trip South Africa. I truly enjoyed every day and the busy schedule was ideal to keep things interesting and exciting. I immensely enjoyed befriending you and having you as a roommate. Everyone on the trip was special for many different reasons and I find myself looking at the pictures every day and smiling as I think of the circumstances around each pic. I have the pic of the seven of us drinking wine in front of our room in the courtyard at our first BOMA as the wallpaper on my phone so I see a great group of ladies many times every day.
Penny, Ottawa ON
My responses are from John and I together:
– loved the hotel accommodations. Loved the variety from the Knynsa log hotel to the opulent Sandton to the fantastic Kapama Lodge. I would say stick with them all.
– local tour guides. How can you not love John? He could drive one a bit crazy with his long winded talks but honestly, I think he was the kindest, most caring guide and made everyone feels so comfortable coming to a new (and for some) possibly intimidating country. I thought John was the best until we met Darrell. Darrell is probably one of the best guides I’ve EVER HAD. And he’s only been doing it 2 years. Just the knowledge and emotion he brought to the whole Apartheid museum was phenomenal. Memories that will stay with me forever because of Darrell.
Overall, the pace of the tour was great. If we are going all that way, we want to see as much as possible without being too exhausted to enjoy it and I thought a nice balance was kept. And of course you are a terrific tour leader!
For John and I, it was the trip of a lifetime and everything we hoped it would be (and definitely more).
Susan and John , Mississauga ON
Tuscany, Italy – Sept. 2015
That certainly was a wonderful trip to Italy! We were able to visit many different towns, historical places, beautiful artwork. The food was excellent and the hospitality of the Italian people was very generous. Last but not least, it was the group of ladies that I travelled with that made the trip so special.
Trudy, Toronto ON
Yes a great trip with a wonderful group of women. I enjoyed meeting you all and sharing our experiences and many laughs not to mention the wonderful food and wine and marvellous scenery. Too little time to see it all.
Dianne, Vancouver BC
Thank you Debbie for the opportunity to join in a wonderful trip to Tuscany . To all the ladies in the group, it was a pleasure to meet you and enjoy the camaraderie we developed. I will treasure all the memories of our time together in Tuscany, Florence, and Rome. You were terrific travel mates.
Charlene, Edmonton AB
What a fabulous first-time European trip … I now have the bug – the travel bug that is! (Sue – hope you feel better soon!).
What an experience … would definitely return to Tuscany – maybe someday when the sunflowers are in bloom. I’d heard so much about this region, and now I understand the attraction.
Enjoyed everything … especially the fun & laughter we all shared! And of course the food!! & wine!!, the scenery, history, art, the antiquities, our local tour guides & drivers … I could go on, but won’t .
How fortunate to have found WTN at this point in my life!
Catherine, Sarnia ON
Ireland, June 2015
Best trip ever! You could tell from the beginning that this group was going to bond and sure enough we did. I loved the group of ladies who were all fantastic and I especially loved Dennis our local guide. Dennis is a loving, kind and generous man and should get a huge raise from his boss. The grounds at Blarney Castle were breathtaking and the old homes and ruins were very interesting. The trip was well organized throughout, the food excellent and the accommodations great. We had lots of safe opportunities to explore Ireland and learn about this fascinating and at times tragic country. Haven’t laughed this much in years. Great trip.
Heather, Toronto ON
I enjoyed my trip to Ireland and here’s some feeedback. Our trip guide Dennis O’Connor was outstanding. He was fun, extremely patient and kind as well as being very knowledgeable about the country. He went above and beyond his role and I wish I could take him home. Our tour bus driver Frank was also very good. I would suggest that travelers could spend more time in Dublin – 4-5 days to see the City and perhaps a play at the famous Abbey Theatre.All the hotel accommodations were great especially Randles.
Carolyn, Toronto ON
Denis was an exceptional local tour-guide, with a wonderful sense of humour. Denis added much local flavour, took great care of us and he added a ton of fun to the trip. My perspective is that the trip would not have been the same without him. I particularly liked the Irish music events – especially the Merry Ploughboys (outside of Dublin). Personally, I liked visiting the Irish pubs (with entertainment) the best. Also, of course, Blarney Castle is a MUST experience.
It was also very interesting exploring different parts of Ireland, with the different landscapes/scenery. The hotel accommodations and food were all very good. Randles Hotel was my favourite. And, of course, Lori was a super tour leader.
Thanks again Debbie for the wonderful trip.
Karen, Toronto ON
Greece, May 2015
The trip was fantastic I enjoyed every minute of it. It was very well planned And our trip guide Cory was amazing. The Hotel and accommodation were good. On the whole it was a trip well worth taking. One point not really a criticism, but the Greek feast, one was leftwondering their interpretation of a feast. Thanking you for the experience.
Collette, Newmarket ON
The trip was marvelous. I really enjoyed myself and the other ladies. Greece is a beautiful country. I enjoyed the other ladies and their camaraderie. Frankly, I believe a beautiful view is not as wondrous unless it is shared with another. The other ladies made it a marvelous trip.The hotel accommodation were great. The choice of sightseeing tours were good and educational. Corey was a terrific tour leader. I believe she met everyone expectations and looked after things well. I look forward to travelling again with Women’s Travel Network and some of the other ladies from this trip.
Karen, Toronto ON
It was great meeting all of you. I loved our trip and all we saw and experienced. I enjoyed all the time together and the many laughs and glasses of wine! Also the Greek men!! I hope we will be able to get together in the future.
Collette, Toronto ON
Argentina & Patagonia, April 2015
The trip to Argentina was wonderful. I learned a lot about the country from the wonderful guides. We were very lucky with our guides. They spoke English very well, were funny and compassionate and knew their country. They are all keepers. The accommodations were fine and comfortable. The people made sure we were comfortable. The food was excellent in most places. I would recommend never to have more than one night’s meal in the same place. The idea of being on vacation is to savour different experiences and foods and locales. The absolute best food I had was at the winery. It was sublime. I had the steak of course. The sights we saw covered a lot of what is interesting in Argentina. The big city of Buenos Aires, the sub tropical Iguazu and the desert of Mendoza. I had chosen not to go to Patagonia and now regret that decision. Oh well. We did however, crisscross the country several times by air. Possibly another routing could be arranged to save time in the air. I would like to add that a trip through the mountains from Mendoza to Santiago Chile by bus seems like it would be an added pleasure.
Finally, our tour leader, Nanette, was amazing. It was really helpful that she spoke Spanish as most of Argentina doesn’t have menus and speakers of English. Nanette was always upbeat and cheerful. She was a pleasure to travel with.
Anne-Mari, Toronto ON
Argentina was wonderful and fun. I certainly enjoyed the small number of women (9). Having known a few women (from Italy 3 years ago) helped. I certainly didn’t consider myself the “newbie” although there’s always stuff to learn.
My favorite memories are: 1) Tango evening at the dinner theatre (as they say leave the best for the last). It was fantastic and none of us knew to what the extent the evening held. The meal was fantastic, very tasty and worth a picture or two. I was the only one who bought a DVD after and the next day a few of the ladies wished they had.
The BBQ day at the ranch just put a smile on my face all day. The food was very good, way too much for us women, but I’m sure the men in the room enjoyed it all. The 2 hour entertainment was a delight and once outside the horsemanship skills from the Gauchos was fantastic (as were the entertainment from them twirling the wooden balls – amazing). A wonderful fun sunny day. BTW, whether young or older those Gauchos were pure “eye candy”.
Iquazu Falls – Lorna and I did the walk with Veronica (tour guide) while the others did the boat ride. Veronica was very patient with us needing to stop and rest at times (humid as all heck it’s a rain forest; Every twist and turn created more scenery and once upon the Falls absolutely stunning, breathtaking and so glad I took over 350 pictures.
To sum it up this was a fantastic fun trip. The scenery and history of everything was so interesting.
Rhine River Cruise, April 2015
We had a marvelous time despite the weather. It was cold and rainy a lot of the time but it didn’t stop us from having a great time. The ship, food, staff and excursions were fabulous and our cruise manager did a great job of making sure everything ran smoothly. I can’t think of anything I’d change. My’favorite tour was of the Keukenhof Gardens which were spectacular.
Anne, Guelph ON
For the cruise itself I would highly recommend AMA Waterways as everyone was very friendly, the ship was clean and tidy and they made every effort to ensure that we enjoyed our time with them. They were very organized and kept us informed all along the way. There are not as many amenities on these boats but it was all I needed. I liked the quieter, more relaxing atmosphere compared to the large ocean liners. The places we saw were fantastic and gave me a good sample of some European cities and towns. It was a good mix of cities, villages and countryside. One of the things I did like was that a map was provided for every stop which was very helpful in getting around and finding the ship again after our free time. The food was fantastic and there were several options for each meal and you could pick exactly what and how much you wanted. Overall I would highly recommend this type of vacation especially for those who want to see several places in a small amount of time. Now that I’ve been on one of these tours I will be able to allot my time better and will feel comfortable exploring more extensively on my own. It might be a terrible thing to say but I loved travelling by myself and will certainly do more of it in the future. Thank you for all your help in making this trip possible. I know that without you this trip would not have happened for me and I really appreciate your efforts. I now have the travel bug and am looking forward to picking out my next trip…one problem though…too much to choose from.
Joanne, Oshawa ON
India for International Women’s Day – March 2015
I think you and WWQ are to be commended for putting together a compelling travel itinerary and pulling it off without a hitch. These things don’t not happen by chance. I know it takes a great deal of hard work, planning and thought. Kudos Debbie to you and World Wide Quest for offering an outstanding travel experience.
Dale, Toronto ON
Thank you for planning such an amazing trip. Every day was an exciting adventure. I actually can’t believe that I am now among the priviledged few to have seen the Taj.
Darlene, Toronto ON
Debbie, thank you for being our excellent Tour Leader through this journey! The trip certainly exceeded my expectations. To all my wonderful Travel Companions: Thank you for the journey, I certainly enjoyed getting to meet and know you all. Your participation helped this to be the great experience that it was for me.
Rowena, Toronto ON
I was impressed with every hotel that we stayed in, they were way above any expectations that I had. I have to say I was pleasantly surprised each time I opened my hotel room door. I found the staff everywhere we stayed courteous and helpful. I am sure that everyone will be in agreement that we were very spoiled by our local tour guides, their knowledge of their own cites and towns was impressive. The tours were exquisite…..so many things to see, experience and absorb.
Debbie all in all I would recommend your travel network to anyone who is looking for an adventure in life, a chance to meet new friends and explore this huge world of ours.
Tish, Ajax ON
Kenya Wildlife Safari – November 2014
Everything was perfect. The accommodations were great and the food and wine were always good. The guides were so knowledgeable and answered all of our questions and I think they enjoyed having a group of women. It was a very busy trip but all went well and the weather and animals co-operated. Well except for the leopard who didn’t care to be seen. Carolyn was very organized, caring, fun, and very helpful with all aspects of our trip. I have many special memories but spending time with the other 9 women is at the top of the list. We were all so fortunate to share this amazing experience together.
Colleen, Hanover ON
It was all so fantastic, it is hard to pick a favourite. Certainly the people made the trip – those in our group and those at the hotels and Twiga.
I think the experience that will stand out in my mind was the only time I felt afraid. For me it was when we were parked in a river and a hippo was approaching us. He/she was about 30 ft. away and then went underwater towards us. I know they are very territorial and had already warned us by flicking his excrement with his tail – a warning. Once he disappeared under water our driver started the truck and got out of there. I had seen them open their mouths but not been able to take a photo of it. I certainly didn’t want it to happen up close and personal. I am sure he could have taken the truck and it’s occupants. This is in no way a complaint – it was just a little more exciting. LOL
The drives and guides were excellent. Always something new and exciting, even if not what was initially expected. The guides were very knowledgeable and accommodating. I would recommend Twiga Tours to everyone interested in this type of vacation.
Caroline was a fabulous tour leader and den mother. She kept us all in line and well informed of what was happening next and at what time. At times I am sure she felt she was trying to herd cats but she always did it with grace, diplomacy and a smile. Loved her as our leader!
All in all this experience was much more that I expected in every way. Thank you for all you hard work in putting together such a wonderful program and finding the best people possible to enhance our experience, from Caroline to Twiga and the hotels and their staff. All were most helpful and gracious.
Annie, Pickering ON
Russian River Cruise – Sept. 2014
Local tour guide, Dasha was young, enthusiastic and flexible. Thank goodness, as Nanette, in her gentle but persistent way was able to carve out a more personalized itinerary for her group. That is, more exposure to local flavour, metro to downtown moscow and st Petersburg, cafés, street scapes, lunch in local restaurants. So much more interesting than lunch on the ship and a deck stroll for hours. Speaking of the ship experience, food was fine, accomodations were fine…better than expected. I was prepared for a three star experience…that was good, as services exceeded that level. I have no complaints. It was great to have a Russian crew. Although not “happy go lucky”, they were professional and provided a glimpse into the reality of modern Russian life, talented young people with unlimited potential that will be hard to realize in the current environment….but I appreciated this so much more than having a Viking cruise experience with foreign crew. Entertainment on the ship was lacklustre. Events such as vodka tasting were cancelled despite a high level of interest. We had to stage our own, to the envy of other ship patrons.
Russian language lessons, maruska doll painting, tea ceremony, pirate night…all good Evening entertainment, music and dancing on the upper deck, were poorly executed and thus, poorly attended. We girls just wanted to dance…but dj’s seemed to want to close things down and clear the floor.
Pat, Sault Ste Marie
The Russian Waterways trip was wonderful. It was very exciting to visit Russia and see the amazing sites and be reminded of their colourful and eventful history. The local guides were very knowledgeable. Dasha who accompanied us throughout our journey was delightful and so accommodating. It was great to have the ship as our homebase. Although the cabins were small we managed as Leslie was a most thoughtful and considerate roomie. Nanette was so helpful,caring and fun loving. I would definitely like to travel with her again. The whole group of ladies was very cohesive and welcoming to a newcomer. The only frustrating part was the intermittent wi fi connection on the boat. All in all it was a most positive experience and introduction to touring with The Women’s Travel Network.
Cathy, Toronto ON
I cannot think of one favourite memory as there are just too many. Nanette did a great job – dealing well with the situation during a few tense moments. Accommodation was fine – a bit small but very compact (the ship is 3 1/2 stars so what else can one expect) and well thought through. Rooms were kept very clean, no complaints there. Dining was excellent and not bland or uninteresting as we had heard from previous passengers’ reports. The breakfast was probably the best as it was a buffet and everyone could have what they liked. The other meals were also good and generally very tasty. I was impressed with the fact that every meal had a salad served up as a first course, no matter what the rest of the choices were.
The local tour guides were generally fine and on the very odd occasion spoke very slowly and softly and did not seem to get the group as enthused as other guides. But …. nothing can be done about that as it is outside everyone’s control. Had some excellent guides! Our own tour guide (Dasha) on and off the ship was absolutely fantastic. I think we were the luckiest group on the ship in that regard. She was young, very flexible and accommodating, eager to learn, very respectful and just great value. We were really lucky to have our own mini van for certain sight seeing tours – that was absolutely wonderful. Much better than a 55 seater bus with lots of people, which happened sometimes too but that’s okay. I will treasure the wonderful memories.
Ali, Tasmania Australia
I just wanted to let you know that I thought the Russia trip was tremendous….interesting and beautiful. I don’t have much in the way of criticism as usual. The accommodations were small but adequate, much what I expected. While we were sailing the meals were quite good, but when we were docked in Moscow and Saint Petersburg they were fairly bland with no choice in meals. I felt we should have been given two or three choices for entrees, as the main entree did not always appeal to my appetite. Also, the fitness centre was quite uninspiring…not much in the way of matts or weights.
The staff and tour guides (especially Dasha) were all excellent, with the exception of the the Entertainment Director who did not even bother to come around to introduce himself. I am sure that he did a lot of behind the scenes work but we rarely felt his presence. Some days there were only optional tours available, which I know upset some of the girls and I found a little odd. But you know us crazy women, we always made our own fun. Cathy was a great roommate. She has a good sense of humour and was always up for anything. And as usual, Nanette was terrific.
Looking forward to another trip with the girls in the future. Thanks for everything Debbie.
Leslie, Aurora ON
As you know this was my first River Cruise and I have to tell you, I hope it will not be my last. I had a ball!!
The accommodations were small, spotless and had everything you needed. There even was a hairdryer, which was a surprise, as we were told there would not be any. I really liked the breakfast buffet. It had lots of fruit, meat, cheese, yogurt, cereals, eggs in 3 different ways, other warm items and VERY important (to me) the coffee was delicious!!! Great start of the day!! The local guides were great, some a bit better then others, but they all did a great job, no complaints. The tours were wonderful and VERY interesting. Our BEST guide was our “Dasha” ! She was with us from the beginning till the end of our tour and it was hard to say good-bye . She is a treasure in it self. She went the extra mile for us, changing the itinerary over and over again till we were happy and satisfied. She is a natural and very sweet and bright. We all loved her!
Nanette did a great job, sorting things out for us, like the itinerary with Dasha, and many other things to keep everyone happy. You can see quite clearly she enjoys what she is doing. Well Done!!
I had a great time interacting with all the ladies. They were all VERY interesting and everyone had their own story to tell. I would travel with them again in a heart beat!
Tonny, Toronto ON
My best memory is of Peterhof especially sitting in the warm sun with hot chocolate and a luscious dessert. It was spectacular and the guide was the best we had throughout the entire trip. Least favourite would be the days they served mixed vegetables first as a salad and then as a substitute for a starch. I didn’t mind the food overall.
Accommodation was adequate. I actually grew to like the combination shower/bathroom. Lots of storage as far as I was concerned. Well planned for sure.
Dining was good. It is Russia and my expectations were not based on some high end Viking type tour. The food was enough and the salads and soups at noon were also good.
I am so glad we opted to go to the museum and not continue the bus tour. We got to walk and experience the City. Not all of the tour guides spoke as good English but Tatiana at the end was terrific. Our local guide was Dasha and everyone loved her. Tours, buses do not allow you to see both sides of the road and you get stuck a lot of the time in traffic. In future, we should ask local guides to make more use of public transit. Both of our forays on the transit system proved how easy and how much faster you can access the city.Tour leader – Nanette was good. The fact that we ignored the protocol which required people to sit in the same seats at the dining hall worked really well in providing opportunities for people to get to know one another. That worked out well.
Overall I really enjoyed the trip especially seeing and experiencing old and new Russia in these turbulent times. You would not believe the number of times I have been asked as to whether I felt safe during my time there. People who had been there (a couple of my friends) understood what I saw and felt.
Janet, Cambridge ON
Tuscany, Florence & Rome – Sept. 2014
I thought the trip was amazing, I liked the variety of places we stayed and all the meals being arranged for us, my only complaint as the serving sizes were just too large and it was commented on by the restaurant when we didn’t finish each course, perhaps that could be addressed when the reservations are made.
We couldn’t have been luckier then to have Ruthy as our tour hostess, she was just wonderful, she was patient, friendly, well organized, and really took such good care of us. Alessandro was an excellent tour guide, he really made the trip special for us in Tuscany. Our tour guide (Sarah) in Sienna & Florence was okay but she should have had headsets for us as it was loud in places and she was hard to hear which was unfortunate.
The tour guides in Rome were good too, we were part of larger groups, but I did appreciate the headsets and they kept a good watch on us.
The holiday was first class all the way, with the meals, cooking classes, choice of dining places and tours chosen. I feel I got my monies worth and would definitely recommend the Women’s Travel Network to all my girlfriends.
I enjoyed the Rome Extension and would recommend that if the majority of the group was to travel on that dinner reservations be included as it was a bit of a problem at one meal with the Restaurant owner took advantage of the group by not listening and bringing food we didn’t order and of course the issue of group dinners where people start getting petty over the paying of the bill which I don’t enjoy.
The group size was just right, it was a diverse set of ladies and I enjoyed their company.
Once again, thanks for everything.
Wanda, Calgary AB
I had a great time on the trip. It was amazing! Ruthi is such a great tour leader. She took care of all arrangements, solved any problems, and supported all the women, whatever came up -lost luggage, someone with food poisoning, bus sickness, claustrophobia, etc. She is a very caring and understanding woman, who went over and above what would be expected.
I knew the trip to Italy would be special, but I have to say it exceeded my expectations. Thank you Debbie!!!!!
Brigitte, Newmarket ON
I had a great time. All the ladies were easy to talk too. I found Rome a little to busy for me but loved Florence and Tuscany. I had some good laughs and fun, I would consider doing another trip with Women’s Travel.
Beth Emes, Stouffville ON
I truly enjoyed the trip to Tuscany, Florence & Rome. Tuscany was the highlight for me. Everywhere you looked was a picture. And the wine tours were sublime. The accommodations were luxurious. The dining choices fantastic. The local tour guide Allesandro was so wonderful. Loads of fun and kept all of us ladies entertained and put up with our crazy antics. Sarah was wonderful as well. I would have to say the only tour guide I had difficulty with was the one on our walking tour of Rome (Gartour). I don’t think she ever told us her name but it was difficult to understand her and she was quite rude to me when I couldn’t hear her. The other tour guide, Daniella, was phenomenal. Very patient with us, lots of information (but not too much)
I completely enjoyed all of the sightseeing tours with the wineries & farms my favorites.
Last but most definitely not least – Ruthi. She handled every difficulty (I think she got it all) that was presented to her with such grace, dignity and humour. She was unbelievably helpful when we lost our luggage. She did everything she possibly could for us and even shed a tear with us. She stayed up late into the wee hours handling all the details and writing in the blog. I can’t say enough good things about her. Top Notch!
Veronica, Calgary AB
French Riviera & Provence & Paris Trip #2 – June 2014
I thoroughly enjoyed my very first trip overseas!!!
I felt so well taken care of the whole time and every necessary detail was looked after. We saw so much yet it left me wanting to go back and explore even more. You just can’t take it all in, there’s so much to see!
I was impressed by the hotels. I wasn’t sure what to expect. I’d heard about the tiny bathrooms and sometimes complicated showers, but I had no issues. My favourite hotel overall was the Mercure Pont Avignon due to the excellent location – close to shopping, sites and restaurants, and also because it was so nice to open the windows onto the old streets of Avignon. The breakfasts at the hotels in Avignon and Paris were very good overall. The Holiday Inn Nice hotel was fine. The bed was comfortable that’s for sure. The breakfast service was not great as we all know and I know you had a conversation with the hotel manager about that. That still puzzles me that the staff went out of their way to NOT do their jobs! The other unfortunate thing about the H.I. was proximity to everywhere we needed to be. And I know that couldn’t be helped as the hotel the 1st group stayed at was unavailable.
Loved all of them! One of my favourites was the illuminated show in the cave set to music – fantastic. Also loved the walking tours through the old towns especially Arles. And the small towns like Rousillon, Antibes, and St Remy. My least favourite was the cooking class. I liked the idea of it but it was just too long.
I am so fortunate that Debbie accompanied me on my “virgin European adventure”! I felt so comfortable and worry free the entire trip, and I do think it was in large part because she was there. Both Debbie and Pat had some unprecedented (and I hope never to be repeated) challenges on this trip. They handled a difficult situation so well by managing the issues in such a way that it minimized the impact as much as possible on the rest of us. One day I’d love to do a partial repeat of this tour – Provence in particular – with a side trip to other parts of France. Or to completely different areas of France!
Lori, Lethbridge AB
Thank you for providing a taste and introduction to the French Riviera and Provence. For me, it was a welcomed stress reliever from the events of my life in the past couple of months. As for the accommodations, I had no complaints, except there were no washcloths… but this is probably a European custom. All FEMALE tours guides were excellent. Tours were great, except in some areas would have liked more time for shopping… sometimes felt rushed.
Activities to be added…. Yacht day.. in Nice. I know because of unforeseen circumstances… Beach Day… never used my bathing suit. Would have loved to spend Saturday night at the Casino in Monte Carlo…. get dressed up, mingle with “high rollers”. Thanks to you and Patricia for a wonderful trip.
Sylvia, Amherstburg ON
French Riviera & Provence Trip #1 – June 2014
Thanks Susan and Pat. Once again, you two organized and ran a great trip. Was it only 8 days? It seems longer given all that we did! I have been talking about it to anyone I have met since home.Life has been very busy as I am sure for everyone else now home. If we get little breaks though we can always reminisce and think about the wonderful experience we had in France!I hope the next travel group enjoys the trip as much as I did!
Yvette, Thornhill ON
Thank you! You two did a wonderful job touring us around such a wonderful part of the world! Thank you so much. I will have fond memories forever of this special trip! Heather, Pickering ON
I wanted to drop you a personal note to say how unbelievable our trip was and that it will always be one of my favourite memories. Pat sure described those beautiful villages to a “T” and her book will certainly allow me to retain all that we saw. What a fun bunch of “gals”, and we sure covered a lot of beautiful territory. Thanks so much for your enthusiasm which spread to us all. You and Pat did an amazing job! Thanks to you both for making Promise of Provence come alive for me.
Carol, Waterloo ON
I enjoyed my time in Provence. It was a great adventure and I was very glad to be a part of it. Thanks to you and Pat for being our fearless and energetic leaders.
Chris, Markham ON
We had a great time on the trip. Everything was so well-organized, and you and Pat were wonderful leaders.
Mary and Lauren, London ON
Good morning Susan, I just got my wifi up and running. Thank you for helping make our trip to Provence such a positive experience. Sooooo many wonderful memories. I purchased the Carrieres de Lumieres DVD and am enjoying sharing its sights and sounds with friends.
Diane, Mississauga ON
Thank you so much Susan. I have a lot of jealous friends as I have shared our experiences in Provence. Coming home was such a let down at first but you get back in your activities and you have great memories to enjoy. Keep in touch.
Norma, Komoka ON
I do have many fond memories of our trip to Provence. It was such fun.
Ruth, Mississauga ON
What a great trip that was! Wonderful things and places to see and in such good company.
Margaret, Toronto ON
The trip to Provence was amazing, I really loved it and it has been on my bucket list for some time now.
Rosemarie, London ON
Florence & the Amalfi Coast – May 2014
Definitely that song is ingrained in my brain and keeps running on repeat! That one and Quondo, Quondo!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
What can I say about the most amazing women in the world! I love you all and had the best time. Thank you Debbie for once again, looking after us with such love and care! I look forward to our next adventure.
Heather, Thornhill ON
To all the wonderful Babes – thank you for a great trip and for helping to make such fantastic memories!! I can’t believe how quickly the time flew by, but each day I did my best to absorb the awesome sights and surroundings and, of course, the food. I think Italy will always be one of my favourite countries. You are all the greatest of travelling companions – so much fun and friendship. And Meaghan fit in so comfortably with all the “old” Babes. Hopefully we can all be together again in a couple of years.
Rebecca, Ottawa ON
Thanks to Debbie and all the ladies for another terrific ‘babies’ trip. Meaghan and I had a wonderful time in Italy – a dream trip for us both and a place I’m sure we’ll return to again.
Anne Marie, Toronto ON
Danube River Cruise – April 2014
It was an amazing trip and I am so glad that I was able to experience the beautiful cities along the Danube. I’ve have met such wonderful friends and hope to be able to make a trip with you again. You did a terrific job as the leader of our group. It must be difficult to take 16 women and keep them all happy. Thanks again for a most enjoyable trip. I certainly would like to get together in the near future.
Barb, Madoc ON
The trip was absolutely wonderful, and Carolyn as our tour leader was terrific! Professional, organized, friendly, accommodating – I don’t think I can say enough good things about her. The cruise ship accommodations and crew were fabulous and the hotel in Prague extremely comfortable and gracious. Our local tour guides were great – I’m so impressed how well everyone speaks English.
Gordie, Newark NJ
This trip was FIRST CLASS I could not have wished for anything better I am telling all my friends how great it was and giving them your address. I so enjoyed.
June, Toronto ON
We had a wonderful trip! Carolyn was a terrific leader and always kept the group informed and up to date about the tours and what was happening. It was a fun group too and I made some new friends who I hope to keep in touch with, or even travel with again. The ship was lovely and really five star. So was the staff. My room was in a good location on the ship (centre, middle level) which was fine, and it’s not necessary to pay extra to be on the upper floor.
The hotel in Prague was very good. It was in a great location and modern and very comfortable. The buffet breakfast was good also. The local guides were excellent. I enjoyed the tours very much, and all the sightseeing was wonderful. I liked the busy itinerary on this cruise.
It really was a great trip that I would highly recommend. I’m looking forward to travelling again with one of your groups!
Louise, Toronto ON
Sedona Golf & Spa – April 2014
Sedona was my first excursion with Women’s Travel Network and it was a great trip!
Thank you Debbie for all your upfront and behind the scenes organizing, and thank you to everyone for the wonderful women you are and for making our time together comfortable, relaxing, enjoyable, and FUN! I hope we have the opportunity to share some more time golfing, eating, painting, spaing, and/or travelling in the future.
Love & Hugs, Nancy, Stoney Creek ON
Sedona was my first experience with the Women’s Travel Network as well and it was indeed a great trip. Second to meeting all you fantastic women, the highlight of the trip for me was seeing the Grand Canyon. I guess since we saw it in a snow storm we’ll just have to see it from the Vegas North Rim the next time!!
Wishing you all a great year and happy travels wherever you go. Debbie, thanks for all your work to make this a wonderful adventure.I hope our paths will cross again soon.
Cheers, Kathy Toronto ON
This was my very first trip with WTN however, I did know quite a few of the travellers from other functions. I really enjoyed meeting new travellers. They really made the trip a very enjoyable experience. I had a great roommate too!! Thank you Debbie for making all the arrangements.
Cheers, Mig Ancaster ON
Ladies … let me add my voice to our chorus of praise for the Sedona vacation. Thanks to each of you for making it (another) fabulous ‘Debbie vacation’.
Let’s make sure we keep in touch.
Carole, Toronto ON
I had a great time!. Like Mig and others, I did know a few participants before I booked my first trip with Women’s Travel Network, having been previously wary of traveling in an all ladies group. I was delighted to find everyone, old and new acquaintances, to be so friendly, so interesting, so pleasant and so much FUN! Thank you all. I haven’t laughed so much in a long time.
Also, thanks to Debbie. Having traveled with several different travel companies, I was most impressed at how well arranged everything was and how smoothly everything ran. I will certainly book another “fabulous Debbie vacation.”
Fiona, Millbrook ON
Sedona was a wonderful trip. Many laughs, on and off the golf course, at the bar, even the horseback riding……
Thank you Debbie for another great trip with a fabulous group of women. Looking forward to our next get together.
Marion, Toronto ON
I,too, would lie to join the chorus in singing the praises of a WONDERFUL trip to Sedona. I had a fantastic week and enjoyed all of you amazing women ..Debbie did a great job of organizing both before and during the trip and I really appreciate all that she did to make this trip so successful. I hope to keep in touch and perhaps meet you again on 1 of Debbie’s adventures or elsewhere.
Keep well, Bonnie Toronto ON
Vietnam, Cambodia & the Riches of the Mekong – Nov. 2013
I want to thank you for planning such an exciting trip. I can honestly say there was not one thing that was not perfect. Cudos to you. The sofitels are fabulous, so clean, so beautiful and the service was unbelievable. This was the first time I have stayed in one but it won’t be the last. I guess there is a reason they have five stars. I am so glad I added the Halong Bay extension. It certainly was a wonder, and beautiful to boot. Of course Angkor Wat was all it could be and I’m certainly glad I took a private car for not only did it cut down on my walking, but he spent the afternoon taking us shopping. Between Linda and me we kept him busy taking us to many jewelry stores plus, plus. Did I mention the shopping the prices were really a pleasant surprise . Thank you again for all the time and attention.
Loree, El Paso Texas
This trip was absolutely amazing. Every step of the way, I was do impressed with the amount of excursions, the quality of the tour guides, how well organized everything was, and of course our outstanding tour leader Lori. Becky and I extend our appreciation for what you did to set this up, from day 1 until we arrived home last night, we couldn’t stop talking about all of the wonderful things we did each day. Thank you!
Angeline, Oshawa ON
The only disappointment in this trip is that I missed the tunnels tour in Saigon the day before we left. Accommodations, dining, tour guides, sightseeing tours and tour leader was all wonderful. I may just need to go back again to fit in what I missed. This trip was better than I figured and I saw more than I anticipated. I might add that if there any future trips to some of the 3rd world countries where health care is lacking, the S.O.S. clinic I went to in Saigon was wonderful. They are in 35 cities in the world and having that valuable information could help someone else. It was the guide in Saigon that recommended it.
Jan, London ON
The Sofitel hotels were wonderful. I enjoyed the ship but it wasn’t as nice or the service as good as the one in France but this is NOT a complaint. The local tour guides were great, very friendly and knowledgeable. The sightseeing tours were good. We got to see the way people really live and learned about their culture.
Colleen, Hanover ON
Italy Art Tour – Florence & the Amalfi Coast – Sept. 2013
I enjoyed the trip and I’m glad I went. I keep thinking of Pompeii and how incredible it is/was. There was so much to see in Florence and would be worth another visit. I had a great walk the last morning in Florence before 7 oclock when there were no tourists around and found a completely different mood! Perhaps my favourite time was spent sitting on the patio in Sorento looking out over the ocean watching the sun go down at sunset while sipping a Martini Rosso!! The whole trip was worth it just for that! thanks for the opportunity!
Diana, Dundas ON
The tour guides were great. They tried to accommodate all of Bonnie’s wishes. Our rooms and hotels were wonderful. We did miss not having the guides with us more often and maybe the same guide so that we could have better report with them.On the whole, it was a wonderful trip, something I will remember all my life.
Maria, Mississauga ON
France River Cruise – April 2013
I want to thank you for a wonderful holiday. The river cruise was fantastic and I don’t know if I could ever do a big ship again. I want to thank you so much for keeping me calm while I was sitting in the Ottawa airport waiting for my flight. That was a close call in not not making it to Toronto in time. You did a great job in roommate matching, Sue was a great choice. We got along well. And hope to do it again. Nanette was very good at her job. She was always easily accessible and tried to make everyone happy. Again, thank you so much. Looking forward to seeing what you have to offer for Russia.
The boat and hotel were wonderful. I loved not having to pack and unpack every couple of days. I would choose the lower level of a river boat again because all we did in there was change and sleep. A lot of the time there was another boat tied up beside us and blocked out the light and view anyway. The meals were fantastic, there was not anything that I didn’t like, (except the waffles for breakfast) and the portions were enough to taste and fill, but now overfill. The local tours were fun and entertaining and the tour guides were knowledgeable about the areas they were guiding us on.
Sue, Toronto ON
I really enjoyed the cruise. I thought accommodation was great and the food was fantastic. I enjoyed all of the shows too.
– The ship tour director (Rachel) was fantastic
– Visit to truffle farm very good
– Beaujolais tour good
– Viviers ghost tour was my favourite
I would take a river cruise again. Although as you likely know the general crowd is a lot older so I would enjoy going with a group again where you can “make your own fun”.
Susan, Mississauga ON
Girlfriend Getaway Weekend, Collingwood ON – April 2013
Ladies weekend was F A N T A S T I C. Debbie out did herself again. Everyone had a wonderful, funny, heartwarming, food eating, bonding weekend. A stellar event!
Carolyn, Unionville ON
I want to thank you,Debbie, for your hard work organizing our great weekend of laughter and events. I had a great time. It was a pleasure to meet so many empowered women and see how much fun we can have on a short getaway weekend. It was a real boost for me. I look forward to our next getaway…..where ever it is!!!
Sandy, Newmarket ON
Thanks for a wonderful weekend. Debbie, you did a great job in putting it all together! Ardice and I really appreciate how welcomed we both felt by you all.
Anne-Christine, Toronto ON
Thank you Debbie for organizing such a fun, relaxing break. The quality of people I met and reconnected with makes me want to particpate in one of Debbie’s longer trips even more. Thank you so much for the great energy you all gave me on the mountain top. ALthough technically nothing has changed, I changed this weekend and life feels grand. I look forward to the next time I can connect with everyone.
Veronica, Keswick ON
I had a great time and enjoyed meeting all you lovely ladies. And was able to enjoy the Beild House and just relax for the weekend. Hope to do it again soon, till next time, have a great day. PS I also would like to thank Debbie for organizing this beautiful weekend.
Linda, Thornhill ON
What a lovely weekend that was. How nice to see old friends and make new ones. As Heather and I (and all who were on the walking tour) discovered, sometimes you just need to stop and look up. It was nice to stop and look up to find you all there.
Helen, Markham ON
Africa – Kenya, Tanzania & Zanzibar – Feb. 2013
I’m still on cloud nine and have enjoyed showing family and friends my pics. Every time I look at them I go back to our trip.
Irene, Toronto ON
Thank you from the bottom/top of my heart for an unbelievable Africa Trip. It was amazing, all the adjectives cannot do the trip justice. The ladies were amazing, also. Cannot wait for another Africa Trip or some other trip which I am interested in.
Linda, Thornhill ON
Thank you for another beautiful trip. I can’t say what would be my “rose” because it was the whole trip. My “thorn” would have to be the ending with having a day long tour. Again, thank you for a wonderful trip.
Anne, Guelph ON
Morocco – Oct. 2012
My trip – in one word – was wonderful! I loved Morocco. Dining choices – the food was mostly OK, albeit a bit boring. The menu was the same in every restaurant. By the end we were sick and tired of Moroccan food. Having said that – I did buy a tajine. Our local guides were very good. Our main guide improved with time and was actually very good and nice. The driver, by the way, was extremely kind and pleasant. Everything we saw in the various cities was very interesting. Personally, I am happy the guide took us in Fez to visit the synagogue and the cemetery. He also took just me in another location to visit a cemetery and small synagogue while the others had a drink and toilette break. I so appreciated that. It seemed like he really enjoyed telling us about Jewish history, contribution and culture – that for me was the highlight. The cooking class was lovely, it was particularly interesting to see the house, which is an inn. The end product of the meal wasn’t great but it didn’t really matter. The two women were charming. Jo-Anne was good, responsible and well organized. She was keen to please.
Tamara, Vancouver BC
I thoroughly enjoyed the trip to Morocco. This was an opportunity that I would not have had otherwise and that I wouldn’t trade for anything. The countryside was breathtaking, the cities full of marvels and the desert was an experience of a lifetime. Our local guide, Jamal Nouri deserves nothing but praise; he behaved in a very professional manner at all times and only had our best interest at heart. Given that we were traveling in a Muslim country and that our guide was a man, it is to be expected that sometimes we would feel like we were being spoken to in a way that we are not used to in North America. However, Jamal was always courteous and respectful of us. He answered our innumerable questions very patiently. He was also very protective and knew what to look out for as we made our way through the market in various cities. Also, his knowledge of the country was incredible.
Lise, Ottawa ON
I thoroughly enjoyed Morocco and loved many parts of the trip. The hotel accommodation was fine with some a little better than others but overall no complaints. The hamman experience and cooking lesson were great and should definitely be kept on this trip. I appreciated the efforts of Joanne and Diana to rearrange this day. The restaurant choices were good too. It was nice to have breakfast and dinner included in the price and we had some amazing meals. I don’t consume alcohol so having wine included is not important. Lunches were bigger than I would normally eat and would often be the same fare that was offered for dinner. Lunches sometimes were very late in the day so we learned to bring snacks on the bus. I thought some of the entertainment was a little amateurish and not necessary to get a real feel of Morocco.
Josey, Ottawa ON
Florence, Rome & Amalfi Coast – Sept. 2012
I had a wonderful time!!!!!!! I find it hard to suggest a change to anything. The only issue was with the meal the second night and Nanette had that changed quickly. I, for one, did not lack for anything appealing to eat. The women travelling on this tour were all wonderful. I would travel with any of them again. Nanette is a first class lady and guide. Her concern for everyone shows, yet she knows how to go out and enjoy herself with everyone. Our tour guide was accommodating to change, some things were not in his control to change, but he looked after everyone. The local tours were good and the guides had good english skills. The guide in Pamplona was exceptional with her humour. Having just finished the Trafalgar Tour I can tell you Pepe was wonderful. I have written to Trafalgar Tours to let them know of my disapppointment in their guide BUT we had a bus driver who made up for it. It was a great tour as well, but I now know will continue to travel with you Debbie. The comfort of travelling with 12 – 14 women and having everything included makes for a relaxed and fun trip.
Jan, London ON
Sorrento and the Amalfi coast was AWESOME!! Our bus driver was so good we really didn’t have concerns about that crazy highway. He was also a lot of fun. Carolyn was terrific…very organized and as usual…lots of fun. She did a great job, very professional. would travel with her again anytime.
Thanks for having the Women’s Travel Network!!!!
The trip was a fabulous memory and I think more so than 1 particular thing it was an overall fun time with new and old friends (just a lovely bunch of friendly ladies, we had great fun, loved everyone of the girls). Florence was spectacular from the moment Dixie and I opened the window and saw the picturesque views. LOVED THE HOTEL. Rome, although there was history and an interesting place (in it’s time years ago) but certainly no good accomodations. Sorrento was gorgeous..loved it!
I thought the trip was fabulous and the group of women couldn’t have been more fun and entertaining. We all got along so well! All in all, the trip was absolutely wonderful, and I have great memories and great pictures! Hard to say what my favourite memory would be, there were so many. The dinner in Florence was so much fun, and also the bus rides in Amalfi were a highlight. And seeing the Vatican was pretty amazing! Thank you for all your good travel advice in your emails prior to the trip also! I’d love to travel again on one of your tours.
Treasures of Tuscany – Sept. 2012
Travel through Tuscany was excellent – Italy has proven again to be a excellent destination with so much to offer.
Overall, I loved the tour and felt I had made the right choice for me – it was fun travelling with the ladies and many of them were exceptional people.
Your accommodation? Great choice of hotels. I was especially pleased with the hotel choice in Florence. Both the location and the services provided by the hotel were top notch. The dining choices? Over all the meals were really excellent and delicious – I was afraid that we were were going to get substandard tour meals but no, it was excellent. The local tour guides? Sara and Nicola (the driver) were wonderful. Very sweet and kept us on time and informed. The sightseeing tours?
The tours were great – I would have liked to spend more time in Siena and a deeper tour of Duomo in Siena. I would not want to miss out on any of the cities we went to. The choices were excellent and having some free time was great. The cooking class? The cooking class was a highlight. Many people said that it was best part of the tour. I totally loved it and thought Laura was super nice and lovely. Your tour leader?
Corey was great and so pleasant. She is a very nice lady and you really did get the sense she was listening to you. I would love to travel with her again.
I had a great time and know I made the right decision booking with your company. I loved the level of quality we experienced in accommodations, tour guides and dining.
Family Reunion on the Disney Wonder to Alaska – July 2012
For my 75th birthday, I treated my 3 daughters, 3 sons-in-laws and 7 grandchildren to a cruise to Alaska aboard the Disney Wonder. Wonderful family memories were made as we boarded the plane to Seattle and cruised to the ports of Tracy Arm, Segway, Juneau, Ketchikan, and Vitoria.
There was events on-board ship for all ages from children’s activities during the day to family entertainment at night and even some beer and cognac tasting for when the children went to bed!
From airport and ground transportation to excursions the Women’s Travel Network took care of everything.
Helen, Toronto ON
Danube River Cruise – April 10 to 21, 2012
(mixed company tour)
I have to say a huge THANK YOU for making my first major travel experiences something I’ll always remember!!! I’m afraid the bar has been set so high; my next venture won’t possibly live up to my expectations!! J
Cindy, Waterloo ON
It was a class act all the way and we loved every minute of it. You were so organized and had everything well taken care of from our arrival in the departure lounge at Pearson until we left in Prague. So, thank you once again. We won’t hesitate to book with Women’s Travel Network in the future.
Ellen and David, Burlington ON
Sedona Art Tour – Aug. 31 to Sept. 09, 2012
I had the most amazing trip to Sedona Arizona, with 9 artists. This was a painting trip, and we painted up a storm. We stayed a fabulous hote (Best Western Arroyo Roblel, saw incredible places, and the highlight was the grand canyon. As a bonus, we dined at wonderful restaurants (The Cowboy Club and El Tovar). We met fantastic people, including Alan our driver/guide, a native American that taught us about the native philosophy. All in all, it was an inspiring trip.
Bonnie , Thornhill ON
Florence, Rome & the Amalfi Coast – Sept. 2013
I thought the trip was fabulous and the group of women couldn’t have been more fun and entertaining. We all got along so well!
Louise, Toronto ON
It was amazing! All the ‘gotta see’ sights were included..and the Amalfi Coast was to dream for……pinch me!
Deb, Burlington ON
TREASURES OF TUSCANY – Sept. 2013
Hello Debbie, travel through Tuscany was excellent – Italy has proven again to be a excellent destination with so much to offer. Overall, I loved the tour and felt I had made the right choice for me – it was fun travelling with the ladies and many of them were exceptional people.
Maria, Toronto ON
SPANISH HIGHLIGHTS – Sept. 2013
The Spain trip was wonderful (not on the same scale as exotic India), but wonderful just the same. All of the ladies were interesting, fun, and easy-going. I felt we got to see a lot of highlights of the north area of Spain and Barcelona as well. The Rioja wine region was not to be missed. Nanette was great, and so was our tour leader PePe. The cooking class at the masia was wonderful. It was fun, delicious and the surroundings were beautiful. I would take my husband there for a stay in a heart beat.
All in all, it was an unforgettable trip through Spain. I will return again someday!
Leslie, Aurora ON
I really enjoyed the trip to Spain. I loved the whole atmosphere of the country and being able to practice my Spanish. The local tour guides were amazing and so informative, friendly and positive. Nanette is a very dedicated tour leader and makes sure everyone is looked after. Cooking class was great especially the amazing location where it was held.
Marie, Thornhill ON
MAGICAL MOROCCO – October 2013
I thoroughly enjoyed Morocco and loved many parts of the trip. The hotel accommodation was fine with some a little better than others but overall no complaints. The hamman experience and cooking lesson were great and should definitely be kept on this trip. Jamal our local guide was very passionate about his country and wanted us to see as much as possible. I know he often went beyond the call of duty to look after us and did his best to meet our needs.
Josey, Ottawa ON
I thoroughly enjoyed the trip to Morocco. This was an opportunity that I would not have had otherwise and that I wouldn’t trade for anything. The countryside was breathtaking, the cities full of marvels and the desert was an experience of a lifetime. Our local guide, Jamal Nouri deserves nothing but praise; he behaved in a very professional manner at all times and only had our best interest at heart.
Lise, Ottawa ON
My trip – in one word – was wonderful! I loved Morocco. The accommodation was very good.
Dining choices – the food was mostly OK, albeit a bit boring. Everything we saw in the various cities was very interesting. The cooking class was lovely, it was particularly interesting to see the house, which is an inn.
Tamara, Vancouver BC
India from a Woman’s Perspective – Oct. 22 to Nov. 05, 2011
First of all, let me say that it was an incredible experience and one that I would certaily not have taken advantage of if it had not been part of a well-planned and co-ordinated package. I always felt that we were in good hands and that we were well protected from any eventuality. Travelling unsupported in India would have been a nightmare for a group of women and I thank you and the Worldwide group for taking care of all of the important details and for keeping us very safe.
The itinerary was intense and fascinating and rich with information. At times it felt over-whelming and almost too fast-paced but there was so very much to see and to do. I appreciated that when we said that we were exhausted and over-whelmed that Ashish was comfortable slowing down the speed and letting us just relax. He was very sensitive to our needs and quite patient with us and our numerous foibles and I praise him for his tolerance. Not easy for one man to manage the idiosyncracies of 22 women and to come out of it sane!! I was sorry that we didn’t spend more time talking to women and girls about their experience of growing up in India but appreciate that Diwali and our timing there interfered with previous plans. Hwever, contact with more women might be one thing I’d suggest adding next time.
I really liked the new guides at each locaton with their unique perspectives and specialties. I particularly liked and enjoyed Pretty in Delhi because of her clear and direct conversation about the role of women in India. More women guides might have been interesting although all of the men were excellent.
I loved the majority of the hotels especially the Heritage ones that weren’t tacky. Most of the hotels were of a high standard and clean…some cleaner than others. All of them were interesting and unique and I appreciate the thought that must have gone into their being selected. I loved the hotel in Udaipur the best..Who could have expected to be in Venice while in India…so beautifu and peaceful for our last day there!!
Also the hotel to change and freshen up on our way home , in Delhi was great and a lovely, thoughtful thing to do. Thank you for that.
A major concern for me because of my reaction to certain Indian spices was the food. In retrospect I had no reason to be concerned. On only one occasion did I go hungry and that was not because of the Indian spices but because of the quality of the breakfast…I did not starve. Thanks for the excellent selection and the choices of food. I’m certainly far more comfortable with Indian dishes.
And then there was the shopping! That was fun and a delightful experience and I have many lovely treasures to remember India by. Thanks to the gentlemen for their patience as we touched and smelled and haggled about prices and hesitated and bought. My partner would have been in sheer agony if he had been shopping with the 22 of us. Ashish was a saint!
I’d also like to thank you for your concern about our health. You were excellent at bringing a nutritionist to us before we left to talk about protecting ourselves and you were diligent in making sure that we took the necessary medicines and tinctures, etc.. Only two cases of Delhi-belly among 22 women must be a record and I think that it is largely due to the excellent preparation that we had. Thanks….Even though I resisted some of the poisons that you made me take I appreciate your twisting my arm!! Yuck..I can still taste that stuff!!
Thank you again for the work that went into this trip. I think that there was lots of behind-the-scenes planning that occurred and that we were not privy to. What we experienced was fascinating and fun. Now I can say that I’ve ridden an elephant and a camel, and been kicked in the shins by a rebellious camel and walked through desert sands with a camel driver to a tent rendezvous and been lost in a tuk tuk in a crazy market place, fearful of never being found, and …sigh..I’ve been to the Taj Mahal. Wow!! So much and so many incredible memories! All in all a memorable and a ‘once in a lifetime’ experience!
Barbara, Aurora ON
Roses: Everything…Indian people, food, and sights and sounds. And the people on the trip – good group. The village walk-abouts were especially enjoyable.
I wasn’t a big fan of the “heritage” hotels, while they were nice to look at I preferred the “real” hotels with all their comforts and efficiencies. Thanks again for a wonderful trip.
Shirley, Toronto ON
-the blog you did. Amazing. Great summary. Nice for people at home to follow. Never seen it done before on a trip and it sets your organization apart for quality.
-the other woman on the trip
-Pretti (sp?) the guide on the first day
-the water on the bus. Safe. Clean. Available.
-your ability to manage 21 women through conflict and still have them all like you at the end of the trip
Lynn, Vancouver BC
Overall, the content of the tour and the tour guides were very good. India, the country, was amazing (the marketing slogan is truly correct – Incredible India). All of my fellow women travellers were terrific. We had some great laughs and made very good memories together. Hopefully, some enduring friendships will have been made. The highlight for me was Reggie’s Camel Camp with the sunset ride, dinner and of course, the after dinner dancing.
Vicki, Comox BC
Italy Art Tour – Sept. 06 to Sept. 11, 2011
We had a fantastic time, the organization was excellent and the accommodation was amazing for the price! We loved Venice and are planning to return.
The Hotel in Venice was fine, although I hear some ladies felt the receptionists were rude!! They were fine with me! The breakfasts were lovely and I still laugh about walking in to find a mirrored ceiling (no I am not joking!!) and as far as we know no one else had one!
Tuscany, Borgo de Cortefreda was fantastic and wonderfully situated between the two villages. We walked into both and ate there most of the time in the evening. Great pizza, pasta and wine! The hotel was very well run, great food and the staff were fantastic. The day trips were great, San Gimignano and the Vineyard for lunch was fantastic, Sienna was wonderful, Cinque Terre amazing, and Assisi was OK!
Florence was wonderful and the hotel was fantastic! Great location and great accommodation again. We loved Sarah, and the fact that she stayed with us all the way to Florence, she was a sweetheart. The Uffizi was great but exhausting! Glad I went just to see the Birth of Venus. Paul had a fantastic time and I swear he loved every minute of his time playing chaperone to 15 ladies!
Venice was our favourite of all, I did not paint that day as Paul and I walked all day to see as much as possible. My second favourite was San Gimingano and the vineyard lunch at Fattoria San Donato.
Sharon and Paul, Hamilton ON
I cannot over emphasize enough how much I/we LOVED Italy. And it is a direct result of what you did for us Debbie. Every day was better than the day before. We had a blast downloading the pictures to our facebook blog every day…and adding our little sayings to them all…and then sitting there in awe at where we had been…lol…
I have been asked several times what was the highlight…and I can honestly say the WHOLE trip…Cate and I laugh over this because it was true…I felt like a little girl every morning…so excited to see what we were going to see and experience another adventure…this trip exceeded my expectations…I honestly never dreamed that I would be so moved…on several occasions…moved to tears at what I experienced…it was truly a spiritual thing for me personally…and I cried when I left Florence…I didn’t want it to stop…I didn’t want to come home…!!!
Italy is in my heart and soul now…and as Cate said…I/we am going back…and planning for 2013!!!
So, again, thank you for making this the best trip of my life (so far!!!)…
Jeanette, Hamilton ON
I think that we would definitely love to join you on a tour one day… I’m pretty sure Italy will be on my list of “need to visit again” places for sure. And Jeanette & I decided we both loved travelling together, so that’s a go…Hope you had a fab time in the Amalfi coast, etc. We would love to go back there again and the little B & B we stayed at in Positano was simply spectacular. We would both stay there again in a minute, highly recommended f.y.i. “Gilda’s Holiday House”.
One of the things I would have liked to change: I would have definitely liked at least one more day in Venice, one day was just not enough.
All in all, the trip scored 10+ on our list of experiences. Thank you so much for all of the advance planning you did for us, including our transfers to/from Naples. We were greeted at the Naples airport by our friendly driver in a beautiful leather, air-conditioned Mercedes Benz! We felt really special!! The Hotel in Tuscany was incredible and we loved the staff there. We felt the same way with our hotel in Florence too, the staff, our rooms, everything was fantastic.
We would definitely recommend The Women’s Travel Network for a great vacation – and I have already, actually! Hope to see you again sometime and thanks a million again, the trip will never be forgotten.
Cate, Waterdown ON
My Rose is everything on the trip. It was well organized. I don’t think we could have fit any more into the trip.The group of people were terrific. Bonnie made sure everyone was included. We had so much fun. The scenery was spectacular. It was the trip of a life time. I would difinitely go on a trip organized by you again.
Maria, Mississauga ON
I wanted to give you some thoughts about our Italy Art tour. It was an amazing trip.
My ‘rose’ would be the itinerary and all the great planning that went into it. I had been to Venice, Florence
and Assissi a few times before but still found new things to discover. I loved staying in Tuscany and making day trips to various highlights in the area. The hotel was a great place to land in the evening. It was a in a beautiful setting and the location was ideal because we were a short walk into the towns.
If if I had to choose a ‘thorn’, it would be the tour guide in Assissi. I think his name was Emilio? Perhaps we got so spoiled by Sara. She was so involved with our group whereas Emilio did not seem all that interested, or interesting.
The hotel Berchielli in Florence was also great. Belle Epoque in Venice was not quite to the same standard as the others (a little lacking in customer service).
Hope your trip is as wonderful as ours was, and thank you for all of your diligent work in planning for our group.
Tracey, Ancaster ON
The tour was fantastic. The hotels were excellent and the main guides were very helpful. Bonnie tried her utmost to make everyone happy and fortunately it was a very congenial group. We really “lucked out.”
It will be very difficult to duplicate the dynamics of this group. The whole trip was outstanding with many memorable moments. Thanks for all your assistance
Eileen, Thornhill ON
European River Cruise – Mosel & Rhine – April 06 to 17, 2011
Although WTN’s 2010 Ireland tour remains one of my favourite travel experiences, the 2011 Rhine Cruise was almost as special. Our first three days in Paris were a wonderful opportunity to get reacquainted with the city and a chance to get to know a new group of companions. The Seine boat tour, the view from the steps of Sacre Coeur, the show at the Moulin Rouge, lunch in the sunshine on the Champs Elysees, shopping on the Ile St-Louis, and a twilight concert at Sainte Chapelle – all were highlights. Even getting lost on the streets of Paris was fun.
The following week on the river cruise was just as spectacular. The views of the Moselle vineyards and the castles on the Rhine were beyond description. The excursions were well organized, informative and offered enough free time for shopping or sightseeing on our own. And the food! Delicious homemade soups and even an ice cream bar in the lounge as a special treat.
My thanks to Debbie Ross and the sixteen other women I grew to appreciate during our time together. I look forward to the privilege of sharing your company on another fabulous WTN trip in 2012.
Anne Marie, Toronto ON
Debbie…I just wanted to send you a note of sincere thanks for putting together such a wonderful ( and fun!!) trip not only on the Rhine cruise but 3 fabulous days in the beautiful city of Paris.
I never laughed so much with such a friendly group of women. Everyone mixed so well and enjoyment of the trip by everyone was obvious. Everything from the start was first class, even to our education of the underground system of Paris. The tour guides in each of the stops from Paris to Amsterdam were delightful and so knowlegeable of the history of the medieval cities that we stopped at as we cruised along the Mosel and Rhine rivers. I have to say the river cruise ship was amazing…so calm, it felt like we were sitting still and the scenery was rolling past us!! I don’t think I will ever do another big ship cruise! The service was outstanding and the food…well, what can I say….fantabulous! Even the chef sharing his recipes for his delicious soups and strudel was great.
Debbie, I can’t thank you enough for pairing me, once again, with a wonderful room mate! Both of my trips with you have resulted in good friendships after so much fun. The very neat thing was your blog, that my family and friends were able to follow back home, as we travelled. I thank you for the hours that you put in almost every evening putting it together.
I have already enlisted for the Tuscany trip next year and can’t wait, as I know you will put together a “six” star trip for another wonderful group of ladies that just enjoy travel.
Dixie, Mississauga ON
First of all, I would like to THANK YOU so much for putting this trip together. I LOVED IT!!! The small cruise ship was superb !! and I sure did have lots of laughs with the gals.
You always do such a fabulous job of watching over us all but, still manage to join in with us as a friend sharing and helping to make another great memory. That’s why you are “ YOU “. !
Gosh!!! Do we have some Great Gals or what? Each person is unique in their own special way!.
Jacqueline, Mississauga ON
I loved Paris and the European River Cruise. Castles galore, historic sites and so much fun and laughter. Thank you for a wonderful experience. My expectations were exceeded”.
Carolyn, Markham ON
Treasures of Tuscany – Oct. 07 to Oct. 16, 2010
I just wanted to thank you for the fantastic trip ! I had a wonderful time and have so many beautiful memories of my sojourn in Tuscany. Everything about the trip was excellent, the hotels,the different tours and events, not to mention the amazing food and wines. For me, it certainly was the trip of a lifetime !
I am already saving for my next trip !
With gratitude to an excellent and charming hostess.
Wendy, Winnipeg Manitoba
First of all, I want to thank you very much for a wonderful trip. I, too, think it was ag reat group and we had a LOT of fun. I really can’t say that there was 1 “rose”, there were soooo many special moments. I think we were very lucky to have Claudia as our guide and Michele as our driver. I was very pleased with the variety of places visited and our different experiences. I think you filled in a lot of different things and feel we certainly got excellent value for the price of the trip. Many thanks, too for all of your wonderful pictures. You certainly captured a lot. Mille grazie.
Bonnie, Toronto ON
I thought the trip was very fast-paced, but realize now that it had to be that way to get all the things in that we did and see all the sights that we saw. I’m glad now that it was fast-paced. I would have been disappointed otherwise (but didn’t think about that at 7:00 a.m. every morning). I think we got a pretty thorough insight to Tuscany and saw some beautiful countryside. The meals were great, even if too much at times. Our guide, Claudia, was a joy to have around and was very informative on different aspects of our trip in and around Tuscany. All in all, I think it was a wonderful trip and I wouldn’t take anything for it.
Florence, on the other hand, to me, was another fast-paced metropolis with too many people and too many motorcycles. I did, however, like the leather markets (5 purses later!). I also enjoyed seeing the statue of David–such an awesome piece of artwork, made out of one single piece of marble. I don’t think one could do Tuscany, and not at least visit Florence which is so near. It was good to compare the two, which were completely different. Thank you for such a wonderful time and great memories!
Becky , Dallas Texas
- staying in one place for 6 nights.
- the hotel in Radda…wonderful staff
- our room in Radda
- the food but smaller portions would be nice
- the farm and winery tours
- our bus and Michael
- the cooking class
- the Boboli Gardens
- eating outdoors
- the small group of women…all lovely ladies and so much fun
- your enthusiasm and professionalismAnne H, Guelph ON
Promenade en Provence & Paris – Sept. 17 to Sept. 27, 2010
Nanette and the group were great! Air France was great. The hotels were conveniently situated: every room may have been slightly different as I shared with Pat and we had a coffee machine and mini bar (lucky I guess). I will remember the olive trees, cyprus trees, herbs growing wild, melons, the food…. Les Halles Market and cooking class. Definitely the long long walk (from light to dusk) to the Champs Elysees and Arc de Triomph with Pat and Kathy.
I loved Les Beaux medieval village, and then again I loved St. Remy and Roussillon and Garde (oh dear…)
I loved the food at the restaurant first night in Avignon – D’Ici and d’Ailleurs (the pate, duckling and warm choc pudding yummy) and the restaurant the first night in Paris (can’t remember the name). Aux Charpentiers was also good (Chef said Brian Mulroney and Jean Chretien always ate there when they were in Paris (was that true?).
Aileen, Toronto ON
The enthusiasm, energy and friendliness of the group was a rose as it is impossible to know how this will play out. The itinerary was really good and the break in the middle with a free day was great. I love the format of staying at only two places for the duration of the trip.
Judy, Nanaimo BC
WTN tour leader Nanette did a great job of keeping us on track – it’s a good model to have a host from Canada as well as a guide from France. Tour guide Laurence went above the call of duty, she’s an excellent guide and I would recommend using her again.
- Hotel L’Horlage was good and I would recommend using it again. The location at the town square made it easy to tour around Avignon and always get back to the hotel. My room accommodation was very nice – good beds. The front desk staff were accommodating.
- The itinerary was good. On Friday, we went to Gordes instead of Bonnieux and I would recommend keeping that change. Travelling to Gordes and Rousillon in the same day was an interesting comparison. You can see each town from the vantage point of the other and it is interesting to note how different they are given their proximity.
- The day with the chef was my favourite and we certainly did not need dinner after a day of cooking and eating.
- I think you struck the right balance of planned activities and downtime. On our free day, Lindsay and I went to Marseille and were able to easily make it back for dinner. Restaurants: D’Ici & d’Ailleurs, Piedoie and Chez Francois were very good. The food at Le Lutrin was disappointing, however, the view of the Popes Palace through the open door was lovely.
Paris hotel de L’Avenir was somewhat disappointing after our first hotel. The location was excellent and the main floor amenities (breakfast, library and sitting room) were perfectly fine.
Martha, Toronto ON
What can I say, I had a fantastic time. It was a blast travelling with Martha. We enjoyed ourselves immensely. It was very unfortunate that Nanette suffered back issues in the middle of the trip but I think everyone pulled together marvelously well and dealt with her setback allowing her to rest.
Roses: Tons and tons but here are a couple – Laurence and Valerie our guides for the Provence Region were fabulous! Their insight, knowledge and service was top-notch. They were a pleasure to meet!
– The hotel in Avignon was marvelous. How much better could it get – very comfortable beds, a view over the square, pretty room, lovely and accomodating front desk staff, etc.
– the areas and towns we visited were fantastic – my pictures definitely show the diversity of the region.
– having a hotel around the corner from Les Jardins du Luxembourg!! FAAAANtastic!
Thorns: Nothing major for me – a bit of an issue for everyone with the hotel in Paris but Martha and I were fine as it was part of our adventure – the accomodation was more “motel quality” rather than “boutique hotel quality” but the actual location more than made up for it!
Would I go on another Women’s Travel Network trip?? If I had Martha as my travelling companion, you bet I would!
Lindsay, Newmarket ON
My favorite memory was our time in Avignon. Alas, my time in Paris was tantalizingly brief.
I am very happy to say to all I meet here that our trip to France was very well-planned and marvelously executed from beginning to end.
The only small glitch was that our van driver let us off at the wrong terminal on the 27th; however, having Lindsay, Martha, Liz and Marie to help get us to the right spot smoothed that wrinkle out in record time.
Leslie, King City ON
Ireland’s Southern Gems – May 20 to May 29, 2010
“This is the fourth fabulous trip I have taken with Debbie Ross from the Women’s Travel Network. My past year was filled with tragedy and trauma, so spending nine glorious days in Ireland, sharing, laughing, learning and exploring was the best medicine to soothe my soul. Most of us had traveled together before, so we knew each other and got along well. Debbie carefully organized new additions (who are now new friends) to our group to ensure that our trip was as smooth as Jameson Whisky. Debbie was more than successful in her task. Thank you Debbie for all your efforts. I eagerly anticipate our next trip in 2012.”
Heather Resnick, writer and activist. Thornhill, ON
I’m sure I was touched by a Leprechaun while there: Somebody filled up all of my suitcases and bags~.!! The magic of the Pub music and live street musicians still dances in my head while I remember the tastes of Irish tradition, ( Of course that means Guinness and Irish Coffees as well. Ha. Ha.) The 5 Star Hotels nestled along side of the lakes, the Bright, intricate and welcoming Pub entrances, the meals, the Fabulous Tour Guide/Bus Driver who left no stone unturned in taking GREAT care of us. Oh, and of course, the colorful hand painted tops of the Sheep grazing in the ever flowing green. The History the Castles, the walks through the Estate houses with stories of days gone by: Did I mention : My Marriage Proposal?
Debbie, just how do you manage to pack so many activities and adventures into your tours and still allow us to have our free time to dilly dally about shopping and exploring new ground ? Another very successful Trip with “ The Babes on The Bus” coming home with great memories and new friendships made. What’s next ? I can hardly wait to find out so that I can begin the planning. Thanks so much Debbie for a FABULOUS WEEK of Total Excitement each and every day!.
Jacqueline Witchell, Mississauga.
What a wonderful vacation. Women’s Travel Network took care of absolutely everything. All we needed to do was show up for the fun and excitement. Food, accommodations and tour guides were all exceptional – even the weather was beautiful! I will put my trust in WTN for all my future vacations.
Carolyn Whitaker, Unionville ON
Having just returned from the “babes on the bus” Ireland trip, I am already considering signing up for another of the WTN’s excursions. I can’t thank Debbie Ross and the other “babes” enough for welcoming me into their little group and making me feel so comfortable from the first day. The Irish scenery was spectacular, the food and accommodations beyond what I expected, and the attention to detail meticulous. Our driver/guide Keith Williams was not only a treasure trove of knowledge but kept us entertained as well with songs and stories as we travelled the countryside.
I feel as though I have made eleven new friends and will carry the memories of our shared laughter and experiences always. (In my mind, Queen Victoria will never be the same. Or horse drawn carriages either.) My gratitude also to the “babes” for allowing me to take up residence in the front seat of the bus – your understanding and patience was much appreciated.
Debbie, I am in awe and hope to be just like you when I grow up. Your energy and enthusiasm is inspiring and infectious. My best to all the “babes” and trust we will keep in touch.
Anne Marie Morello, Toronto ON
I just wanted to write a note to thank you for putting together such a wonderful trip for all of us women that elected to go to Ireland recently. Debbie, I have never traveled alone or with a group before but I can’t wait to go on my next planned trip with the Women’s Travel Network …”The European River Cruise”
The congeniality of our group was amazing!! No one felt alone or “out of things”. Everyone mixed so well altho’ we all came from very different backgrounds. Travelling about the Emerald Isle on a smaller but luxury bus with our amazing driver and guide Keith was excellent.
Keith was super with his wit and songs of Ireland. I was so impressed with the absence of the usual “check-in” processes. Our accommodations were five star all the way and to check in we just had to walk in and our keys were handed to us. Our luggage then magically appeared in our rooms. All due to great planning on your part, Debbie. And the Food!! amazing! gourmet! what can I say but how often does one take pictures of their serving???
I didn’t know anyone prior to the trip but feel that I have made some real friendships that I will enjoy for years to come. Thanks again for recognizing the need for a “Women’s Travel Network”.
Dixie, Port Credit, ON
Danube River Cruise – Nov. 29 to Dec. 09, 2009
The best thing about our trip was the wonderful group of funloving fellow travellers. My second best choice was the great Mozart/Strauss concert in Vienna and we were even treated to Betty,s concert debut on the triangle – too bad we couldn’t take a picture. I don’t know how you arranged for the ship’s crew who seemed to love their work and the terrific local guides. I can’t think of a single thing that I would change.
Gerry, Newmarket ON
It seems to have taken me so much longer to ‘adjust’ back to Cdn time, but I wouldn’t trade a minute of the journey and the opportunity to meet everyone. I agree wholeheartedly that we had a great group.
I truly can’t think of any negatives about the trip as far as my personal satisfaction goes. Had I purposely gone to shop the Christmas Markets I think I would have been disappointed since so many of them were the same as the one before and I’m sure that a lot of goods were not hand crafted! But I went to see the cities and how Christmas is celebrated elsewhere and I certainly was not disappointed. Each city was a delight in its own special way. Although I liked Prague the best it probably was because Karen was able to join me and the fact that we had more time there. I would honestly consider going back to any of them!
Carole, Toronto ON
I wanted to let you all know how wonderful it was to meet you. When friends ask me about my trip I find myself telling how much fun I had with this group of people I had never met before. Eventually I tell them about the scenery, meals and bottomless bottles of wines at the dinner table.
Christine, Sarnia ON
Treasures of Tuscany – Sept. 25 to Oct. 04, 2009
The trip was everything I had hoped for and more. I just loved both the medieval towns and cities in Chianti and the many charms of Florence.
I had no idea of how beautiful the countryside would be and I cannot say enough about Tuscany as a whole.
It would not be a complete affirmation of the trip without including Nanette’s contribution. She was a wonderfully organized and patient travel escort and her personal touch throughout the ten days, right up to the group photo with space for notes to each of our fellow travellers, created a truly memorable experience.
Raphaele, too, was an incredible asset. What an amazing guide!
Many thanks, too, for all your input and guidance in organizing for the trip., Debbie.
Looking forward to the next adventure.
Leslie King City, ON
It was an absolutely fabulous trip and I think it was unanimous that it exceeded everyone’s expectations! Nanette was wonderful – so easy-going and good with everyone and well organized. Loved her. The group was a very collegial one – everyone got along so well. together. The tour guide Raffaele was outstanding. If I had to pick one highlight – it was the lunch at the agri-tourisimo. Outstanding!! And the first morning in San Giamgnano.
Susan N Toronto, ON
I loved the Agritourismo’s very very much….I like the countryside and Medieval villages much much more than Florence…..Ciao…..Deborah L Mississauga, ON
Thanks again…. it was a great time.Elizabeth G Brampton, ON
Classical Egypt – Oct. 01 to Oct. 12, 2008
“The trip to Egypt was fantastic. We arrived to fireworks celebrating the end of Ramadan and we left as a wonderful group of new friends. All the trips and times in between were amazing and felt like we were on a movie set as we cruised down the Nile. I can’t believe I was actually there, when I look at my photos. Thanks again Debbie for putting together a fabulous vacation.”
Denise Tierney, Waterloo ON
“My trip to Egypt was the realization of a lifelong dream to visit the Pyramids which my dad had visited in 1944 during WWII. All of the sites were awe-inspiring and the ladies that I travelled with were a great bunch – I enjoyed getting to know everyone! I would definitely travel again with the WTN.’
Debbie Reiche, Toronto ON
“A commitment to the entire travel experience is what best describes my recent trip to Egypt booked through Debbie Ross at the Womens Travel Network. The relationship did not end after I gave my deposit and final payment, in fact in took on a whole new dimension. I was nervous about this big trip. I had not travelled in over 10 years and I had to decide where I wanted to go and once I decided that, plenty of questions followed. Debbie Ross at the Womens Travel Network walked me through all of it. From what vaccinations I needed to have, what the culture would be like, what books and videos to watch to educate myself on Egypt, to the security and comfort of knowing I would be safe, well looked after and that I would not a miss any of the magnificent sites that Egypt had to offer. In a day and age where customer service ends after payment and level after level of voice mail and unreturned messages are the norm, it was a pleasant and welcomed surprise.”
Janis Taylor, Whitby ON
The experience of ‘living’ the history of the country was truly a memorable event in my life. Thanks for the planning.
Carole, Toronto ON
Have seen more than can be absorbed in one trip and the pictures will not do the experience justice…Interesting East/West clash, seeing women fully dressed in traditional black with only eyes exposed, and women walking beside in North American clothing. The religious dress with the scarves have become more of a fashion statement for the younger ones. Horses and buggies share the street with cars and trucks. There seems to be no traffic rules, and it is all for himself. Have ridden in horse, on camel (yes!…my camel’s name was Mickey Mouse) and once again, witneesed lots of poverty and lots of begging. Having said that, we see satellite dishes and cellphones everywhere we go. Animals are treated well for the most part, as they are a source of income for their masters. They are very tightly controlled though, and very submissive. This is all part of the culture, as tourism is the main thing.The natural attractions – pyramids and temples are amazing…you can “feel” the energy. I have beautiful pictures and memories to share and have met some wonderful wonderful people.Donna, Whitby ON
Glorious Greece – May16 t oMay 29, 2008
My trip to Greece was, indeed, GLORIOUS!!!! I can’t stop telling people about what a wonderful trip I had – everything I wanted and hoped for was included – many exciting and interesting places to visit, enough “down” time, including some sun and pool time and, as usual, lots of walking and climbing! It is a trip that will remain in my memory for many years to come and will always bring to me a feeling of warmth and a smile to my face.
Thank you – for your patience, laughs, understanding, and great trip planning. Be sure to keep in touch as you start to think about 2010 for the Babes!!
Rebecca, Ottawa ON
I appreciate all the work you do trying to arrange a great trip! Thank you.
I had a great time and my long-time dream was fulfilled and I am greatful that Rebecca and I get along so well as roommates. Ilook forward to our next adventure!
Heather, Thornhill ON
Carnival Freedom, 12 day European Cruise – May 22 – June 3, 2008
“We had a wonderful cruise! Ship, excursions, everything was so beautifully organized. It was wonderful to know that everything was arranged for us. Rome was beautiful, in spite of the rain. Lori was just great she certainly looked out for all of us. I can’t thank her enough. We enjoyed the company of all the gang. Thank you for all your surprises. This is certainly appreciated and this is the first time I have ever received so many wee surprises. I will gladly recommend you to any of my friends, (I have a few in mind) Thank you again.”
Carole Janke, Sudbury, Ontario
“We had a wonderful trip!!! The new Carnival Freedom ship was exquisite. Our stateroom was huge compared to other cruises – what a nice surprise. The food was excellent – lots of choice, delicious and excellent waiters. My favourite of course was the Lido deck with the poolside movie theatre.
It was a dream vacation going to the culturally rich ports of call – Venice, Barcelona, Cannes, Florence, Pompei and Messina. My favorites were Venice, Florence and Barcelona for the beautiful streetscapes, architecture, food and shopping.”
Fran Schwering, Markham ON
Tuscany & Florence – October 2007
In Oct 2007 I travelled with the Women’s Travel Network to Tuscany, Italy.
It was a delightful experience. From the moment I spoke with Debbis Ross, I knew that I was in good hands. Debbie is a professional who listens to her clients and builds an unforgetable event. From air transportation to land transportation, from excursions to meals, Debbie had everything well organized. We stayed in upscale hotels and travelled in style in a 9 seater minivan with our tour guide Laura. Laura was extremely knowledgeable about Tuscany, shared great stories and made sure we were always well fed and
happy. It was a classy trip! Thank you Debbie Ross for your attention to
detail and understanding just what we need!
I’ll see you next year for another delightful experience!
Carolyn, Unionville ON
Greece & Turkey, Minos Magic – June 2006
I just wanted to send a quick note to tell you that Ivan and I really had a wonderful time on our vacation. I’m sure that it was your expertice that made things go as smooth as they did. We are really greatful to you for helping all who needed help.
Thanks again, all the best!
Promenade en Provence & Paris – June 2006
“Provence is a beautiful part of France that everyone should experience. It was great travelling with such a wonderful group of women and having everything looked after for you made it a stress free holiday.”
Sharon Brown, Goderich ON
“Thank You for Your Amazing Help
I wanted to send you a virtual bouquet of flowers for helping me in Toronto to get a rental car.
I came by your card by chance or design when I was at the Calgary Women’s Show. I don’t think we even chatted but being a single woman and wanting to travel, I took your business card with me from the show (not realizing you were not “local”).
Shortly thereafter I had to go to Toronto and again by chance or design I put your business card in my information for my trip.
Well it turned out a ride I was counting on did not happen and in a panic I phoned you from downtown Toronto. I explained to you that I needed a cheap rental car and where would I be able to find one on such short notice???
You took control of the situation and found me a rental car immediately. You were professional and extremely helpful for some one you did not know.
Again I would like to pass on my thanks for your service. I am pleased to give you a glowing endorsement to your company and especially to you, for going above and beyond
Best wishes and much success,”
Francie Kane, Go4Us, Calgary, Alberta
Spas of Tuscany Tour – Sept. 2004
“Thank you for all the work you did in helping to create the Tuscan Spa Tour. Everything was wonderful, the spa services, the food, the accommodations and especially not having to worry about anything. The group loved it. I’ll be back.”
Kailee, Toronto ON
“From the moment that I first contacted Debbie, I was very confident in her ability as a travel planner. I wasn’t mistaken. Every detail of the trip was taken care of and we traveled in style. We ate at the finest restaurants and were pampered in some very nice spas. The accommodations that she chose were above expectation. One thing that really impressed me about Debbie is that she asked each and everyone of us individually what the one thing was that we really wanted to do while in Italy …the one thing that would make the trip extra special, and she made sure that it happened. Debbie is a very down-to-earth, genuine person. I look forward to the day that I will be able to join Debbie on another travel adventure. Thanks a million for the memories!”
Darlene Knezevich, Rycroft, Alberta.
New York City Design Tour – October 2004
“What an exciting venue….the showrooms in New York were wonderful! It was evident to our ladies’ group that you listened to our needs and were able to put together exactly what we were looking for. Although we had limited time, I personally felt that I got a taste of everything from great restaurants and plays on Broadway to the wonderful walking tours that gave me an understanding of the eclectic mix of population that makes New York what it is. I know I can expect the best and look forward to more trips in the future!”
Ingrid Kyranis, C.I.D., Owner, Refining Spaces
Debbie organized a trip for the Canadian Decorators’ Association in October 2004. A group of 20 women went to New York for a weekend of education, fun and shopping. Debbie had organized everything to perfection. The hotel was in a great location and easily accessible by subway.
It was a fabulous weekend, and even more fun because Debbie was able to join the group, to make sure we had everything we needed. She is a fun and outgoing person who excels at what she loves to do.
I have used Debbie’s travel expertise for other trips since then, and her service and pricing has continually surprised me very pleasantly.
I can highly recommend her travel agency. You will get excellent service with a smile, and always very fast.
Nanette Snel, NANIQUE INTERIORS
Tuscany Wine and Culinary Tour – June 2004
“I had a Great experience with the Women’s Travel Network – exceptional services provided – always prompt, courteous, very helpful – and loved Debbie’s personal touch. Although I am a married woman, my husband is not a traveller. This proved to be the answer to my prayers, a way for me to travel with other women, but in a small enough group (I didn’t want to be sitting on a bus with 48 other people). We ranged in age from a very young 40’s to mid-70’s. Right from the start, everything went smoothly – documentation arrived on time and many of us met for the first time at the airport. The arrangements in Italy were perfect – food, accommodations, transportation – it was a First Class trip! The group of 10 women (we called ourselves “The Babes on the Bus”) got along beautifully. Everyone was excited yet relaxed – we went with the flow. If we decided we wanted to make some changes to the itinerary for the day, there was no problem. The guides were excellent, extremely well-informed about the topics and the locales. Debbie had arranged for some special events, such as our evening dinner in a Tuscan Castle, and a wonderful evening and dinner on an outdoor patio to celebrate Canada Day! Everything in Tuscany was perfect – from the cooking class (so much fun!), to the wine tastings, to the hotels, to the ancient towns, etc. Really, I could go on forever – Florence and Rome were also great! Debbie was amazing – I would recommend the Womens Travel Network to any of my friends and am looking forward to future trips. Thank you, Thank you, Thank you!”
Rebecca Bennett, Ottawa ON
“…After the first Day we knew this was going to be a very special group and named ourselves: “The Babes on the Bus”.
We laughed, supported each others wants, took votes on what was most important when time ran out – teamed up for shopping for like minded desires – had many instant parties and enjoyed the company of each other and sharing our findings of the day at every dinner event.
What a way to travel – Debbie Ross had reselected the best hotels in the cities of Italy that we chose to visit which were in walking distance to the highlights of the area and great restaurants. She offered us a private bus for each day that we were traveling to out of city places where we could store our belongings and drop off our Italian wares and bargains (and some just have to haves). No waiting in long line ups on hot days as our group was small. Our tour guides were extremely knowledgeable and had the time to answer our many questions and never complained as we stopped often to take so many photos. We experienced variety in wineries and were able to enjoy a wonderful day in a country vineyard with a hands on cooking class taught by very entertaining ladies. Changes and emergencies were quickly taken care of with little effort shown and no disappointment to any one of the group. Lots of very special locations thrown in that would be difficult to find on ones own. Yes, it was a bit more costly, but definitely worth going away with every detail taken care of. Completely hassle free!!! Experiencing much more than one could manage on their own and offering a carefree environment – while following the itinerary which was so excellently presented.
The “Babes on the Bus” have agreed that we will travel once again as a group and are now planning our next destination.”
Jacqueline Witchell, Mississauga, Ontario