Tour Operator Announces New Europe Packages

Avanti Destinations has introduced several new European tours for 2010.

“In the past few months, we have seen a strong surge in sales for our independent programs for Europe,” says Avanti's president Harry Dalgaard. “We think that many people put off Europe travel plans in 2008 and 2009 based on the general economy and the weak dollar. Now things have improved on both fronts and, as always, the appeal of Europe travel is very strong – especially for innovative travel experiences.”

Dalgaard adds that the new programs are focused on the independent traveler who wants "more unique and authentic things to see and do."

The three-day “Côte du Rhône Wine Package” focuses on the wines of Châteauneuf-du-Pape. The trip includes two nights accommodations in a Provençal country house in the heart of this wine region, a visit to the Maison Bouachon winery with tasting, a gastronomic dinner at a celebrated local restaurant, and a three-day economy car rental to explore other wineries in the area. Prices start at $699.

The three-day “La Rioja by Bicycle” package focuses on wines from a different region. The La Rioja area produces some of Spain's best vintages. Included are two nights in Haro, bicycle rental and a full-day wine expert. The package is priced from $499.

The “Reykjavik City Package” permits a short Iceland stopover between the U.S. and Europe. It is a three-day package with hotel and sightseeing. Included is a visit to the geothermal Blue Lagoon spa with its restorative mineral-rich waters. The package is priced from $215. (Dalgaard notes that most airlines allow the Iceland stopover with very modest surcharges, and it helps break up a long flight into more leisurely segments.)

Visit or call 800-422-5053.