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TRAVEL

ALLIANCE

PARTNERS TR AVEL GUI D E

PUBLISHED BY THE GROUP TRAVEL LEAD ER


SEE WHERE GREAT TOURS BECOME GRAND TOURs Downtown takes center stage with events and entertainment at beautiful Bicentennial Park.

Grand tours are made in Cbus. Enjoy captivating performances and backstage experiences from BalletMet. Interpret world-renowned works of art at the Columbus Museum of Art. And anticipate the grand opening of the new National Veteran’s Memorial & Museum in July of 2018. Plan the perfect itinerary in Columbus, with something for everyone in your group.

experiencecolumbus.com/tours


Discover folklore, folk music,

AND FLAT-OUT FRIENDLY FOLKS. Explore one-of-a-kind artifacts at the world-class Will Rogers Memorial Museum. Marvel at fascinating, hand-written lyrics at the Woody Guthrie Center. Dine and shop at the world-famous Pioneer Woman Mercantile. Then rock out to America’s favorite country acts at Blake Shelton’s Ole Red Tishomingo.

Visit Oklahoma, where the legends are just a little more legendary.

Find adventures and itineraries at TravelOK.com/Group.


TR AVEL ALLIANCE PARTNERS

CONTENTS 39 40 42 44 50 56 62 66 34

WELCOME TO TAP A LETTER FROM EXECUTIVE DIRECTOR STEFANIE GORDER

STRONG AND GROWING TAP CONTINUES TO GROW ITS NETWORK AND OFFERINGS.

A SPECTAPULAR DUO TAP HAS TWO SPECIAL EVENTS ON THE DOCKET FOR 2018.

BENEFITS OF TAP GROUP LEADERS HAVE A LOT OF REASONS TO WORK WITH TAP TOUR OPERATORS.

UNIQUE EXPERIENCES TAP TOURS GO BEYOND TRADITIONAL SIGHTSEEING.

INTERNATIONAL ENCOUNTERS VISIT THESE FASCINATING COUNTRIES ON TAP TOURS.

FAMOUS FACES FOLLOW THE FOOTSTEPS OF GREAT AMERICANS ON THESE TAP TRIPS.

ARTS AND MUSIC TAP TRAVEL EXPERIENCES HIGHLIGHT THE BEST OF AMERICAN CULTURE.

ON THE TAP COVER: Groups can see the famous Neuschwanstein Castle on TAP tours in Bavaria, Germany.

2018 TAP TRAVEL GUIDE


Mount Rushmore National Memorial

Bring your groups and discover endless adventures, rivers, lakes and national parks, monuments and memorials. Find free-roaming wildlife, Old West history, Native American heritage and your great place in South Dakota.

800-952-3625 • TourSDakota.com •

/SoDakTravelProfessionals


Badlands National Park

AKTÁ LAKOTA MUSEUM & CULTURAL CENTER — CHAMBERLAIN 800-798-3452 • AKTALAKOTA.ORG The Aktá Lakota Museum & Cultural Center in Chamberlain preserves and promotes the arts and history of the Sioux Indian culture. View beautiful exhibits of contemporary art and historical artifacts. Open year-round. Free admission.

THE MAMMOTH SITE 605-745-6017 • MAMMOTHSITE.ORG Experience an active indoor paleontological dig site and museum. The Mammoth Site is the only Accredited Museum in the Black Hills. Hands-on activities available for children. Open year-round.

SIOUX FALLS THE HEART OF AMERICA 605-275-6060 • VISITSIOUXFALLS.COM/TOURS-ARE-HERE South Dakota’s largest city is conveniently located at I-29 and I-90. Explore Falls Park, a 123-acre park with a triple waterfall flowing over beautiful pink quartzite. Contact us for customized itineraries.

800-952-3625 • TourSDakota.com


BEST WESTERN RAMKOTA HOTELS OF SOUTH DAKOTA

©

CRAZY HORSE MEMORIAL

CUSTER STATE PARK RESORT

605-673-4681 • CRAZYHORSEMEMORIAL.ORG

888-875-0001 • CUSTERRESORTS.COM

Family-friendly, full-service hotels featuring indoor waterparks (free for guests), pools, restaurants and bars, fitness centers, and free WiFi. Located in Aberdeen, Rapid City, and Sioux Falls.

Celebrate Native American history and culture at Crazy Horse Memorial. World’s largest Mountain Carving-in-progress and much more! 17 miles from Mount Rushmore. Open year-round.

1,300 free-roaming bison! Accommodations, bus parking and dining at our State Game Lodge. Experience a Buffalo Safari, Chuck Wagon Cookout, or Trail Ride. Located in the Black Hills.

MITCHELL FIND YOUR PALACE!

PIERRE — YOUR ADVENTURE ON THE RIVER

RAPID CITY — DO BIG THINGS!

866-273-CORN (2676) • VISITMITCHELL.COM

605-224-7361 • PIERRE.ORG

Exp-EAR-ience Mitchell’s history, starting with the Corn Palace! Museums, 50+ restaurants, and complimentary group services. Four hours east of the Black Hills; I-90, Exit 332.

Tours of the Capitol building, memorials, Governor’s mansion, Trail of Governors and the Oahe Dam are available. The Pierre area offers a plethora of outdoor recreation and museums to visit.

Enjoy shopping, dining, events and local favorites like Main Street Square, City of Presidents and more. Nearby, explore Mount Rushmore National Memorial, Crazy Horse Memorial and other Black Hills treasures.

THE SOUTH DAKOTA SCULPTURE TRAIL

WALL DRUG WORLD’S LARGEST DRUG STORE

800-528-1234 • REGENCY-MGMT.COM

800-893-7148 • SOUTHDAKOTASCULPTURETRAIL.COM Explore free public sculpture exhibits on South Dakota’s Main Streets. Discover unique arts, cuisine and culture of South Dakota along with the iconic Mt. Rushmore and Crazy Horse Memorials.

605-279-2175 • WALLDRUG.COM Wall Drug has been entertaining and educating the traveling public since 1931. This wonderland of free attractions includes a restaurant that seats 520. There’s something for everyone. Located in Wall.

800-487-3223 • TOURRAPIDCITY.COM

WATERTOWN 800-658-4505 • VISITWATERTOWN.COM Groups love Watertown. Art galleries, historical landmarks, a trail of sculptures through our vibrant downtown, diverse culinary scene, craft brews, and genuine hospitality. Watertown will awaken your spirit, curiosity and sense of adventure.

SOUTH DAKOTA DEPARTMENT OF TOURISM


Falls Park, Sioux Falls


HELLO TRAVEL FAMILY,

T

More operators equals more product. More product equals more opportuni-

ties for our travel partners to offer fresh tours and destinations to their clients.

TAP firmly believes that it takes all of us — operators, suppliers and sellers of travel — to work together to make this global travel world go ’round. We are proud to be the first company that offered one brochure that featured guaran-

teed departures. Our tour expansion online also features scheduled departures,

custom tour ideas and two exciting SpecTAPular Tours and Events that feature

unique concepts; just search “SpecTAPular” on our website. Along with our elite Guild Members, who offer destinations and services that are consistent

his past year, Travel Alliance

with our goal of expanded partnership, we are ready for 2018 and beyond.

We are committed to contributing valuable education to the travel industry,

Partners (TAP) has been

and we do that in three ways. TAP Into Travel webinars, Tuesdays at 2 p.m.

tiatives that bring revenues

on industry trends. Bus regulations, how to incorporate print marketing and

focused on marketing inito all, as well as celebrating

its 15th official year as a corporation. Using our Power

of Partnership is enabling TAP to gain solid ground in the tour and travel industry. It seems like everyone is talking about TAP.

This year, we welcomed new tour operators into

Eastern Time, feature not just destinations, but also important information negotiating better contracts are just a few subjects that have been reported as

tremendously helpful for the tour business. Also rated highly is our Buyers Educational Tour (BET on TAP), designed for potential new TAP partners and for new travel sellers of TAP tours. This runs in conjunction with our annual

conference, TAP Dance, set for June 4-8, 2018, in Atlantic City, New Jersey. For travel professionals that have an active website, the customized Tour

our family. Three came on in January, with our fourth

Wrap allows active sellers to receive higher commissions and never lose their

the tour offerings available at www.tapintotravel.com.

others in the worldwide travel industry to grow revenues for all.

joining in June and our fifth in October, enhancing The goal is to include quality and like-minded North

clients. We are proud to work in partnership with buyers, sellers, suppliers and

This phenomenon called TAP continues to gain momentum. For informa-

American tour operators that meet the mission of buying

tion on our corporation or programs for sellers of travel, tour operators and

tour offerings different. We encourage you to look at

partners can also help you understand the advantages of being involved with our

and selling unique products in order to make our TAP

the TAP partner profiles featured in this special edition

to find new ideas to help you build your tour portfolio. To make it easy, phone numbers are provided, as we

suppliers, please do not hesitate to reach out and contact me. Our operator network. Strong partnerships translate into more money. So let’s be partners. I look forward to helping you get hooked on TAP.

are all too busy to not know the people who can make things happen quickly.

Do you know that all TAP operators must abide by

a set of standards in order to be in the TAP family of brands and have intense annual reviews to ensure they

SINCERELY,

meet them? This is why a TAP operator should be at

the top of all travel sellers’ contact lists when they are considering new tours to offer their clients. And if you are a supplier, it’s good to know that we have systems in place to stand behind our word.

STEFANIE GORDER, CTP, DS EXECUTIVE DIRECTOR TRAVEL ALLIANCE PARTNERS, LLC 866-373-0790 | WWW.TAPINTOTRAVEL.COM | MARKETING@TRAVELALLIANCEPARTNERS.COM

WWW.TAPINTOTRAVEL.COM

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COLLABORATE

TO

INNOVATE BY B R I A N J E W E LL

TA P DR AWS ON ITS COLLECTI V E STR ENGTHS

T

ravel Alliance Partners, commonly known as TAP, was an innovation when it began 16 years ago. And innovation continues to be a driving motivation for the organization’s tourism professionals. In 2001, a small group of tour operators banded together around a novel idea: They each operated in a different part of the country, which meant that they had different expertise and different audiences. So they decided to form a network that would allow them to leverage that diversity to create growth opportunities for everyone, and TAP was born. Each tour operator member opens its products for sale to all the other members. That allows each tour operator to offer its customers more tours than just the ones it creates. And it gives

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each company an opportunity to attract customers from its partners’ audiences, thus expanding the size of the market for everyone. “We have 30 unique companies in the TAP network,” said Stefanie Gorder, TAP’s executive director. “They are regional experts, offering differentiated products and clients. Some are focused on students. Some are pushing millennial product. Some are pushing senior product. Some are better at special events.” TAP’s reach is larger than just its 30 partner companies, though. The organization works closely with many representatives of destinations, attractions and other travel industry companies to help inspire new ideas and create new tour itineraries for customers. Those industry representatives, called Preferred Professional Travel Providers (PPTPs), gather with the tour operators every summer for a four-day conference called TAP Dance. TAP also has outreach initiatives aimed at helping group leaders make the most of its offerings. “When you look at TAP, this concept of working cleverly together to better everyone’s business is remarkable,” Gorder said. “It continues to

2018 TAP TRAVEL GUIDE


Each weekly webinar is recorded and stored on TAP’s website, which means that travel planners can listen live or after the fact and can browse the archive of content for topics that interest them.

NEW TOUR IDEAS

TAP’S PARTNERSHIP OFFERS TRAVEL PLANNERS ACCESS TO HUNDREDS OF DESTINATIONS, INCLUDING HOLLAND. Courtesy Image Tours

grow because it’s not one-sided. It takes our operators, our suppliers and our buyers of TAP tours. We’re all working together for the larger goal.”

FOCUSING ON INNOVATION

TAP’s concept has proven successful: The network added five new tour operator members in 2017 and has many PPTPs from around the country participating in its programs. Now, the organization is focusing on refining and innovating its model to achieve new successes in the future. “If we do the same old thing, we will have the same old result,” Gorder said. “The TAP of the future is getting new results. That means revitalizing every program.” A key element of this initiative is a focus on new technology platforms. TAP has long marketed tours with a website, as well as the TAP Tour Wrap, which allows other travel organizations to market TAP trips directly on their own websites. Now, Gorder said, TAP partners are enhancing those platforms with travel videos and outreach on social media networks such as Facebook Live. The group is also expanding the scope of its successful TAP Into Travel webinars, which take place every Tuesday at 2 p.m. Eastern Time. Each webinar features a presentation by a different TAP member tour operator. For several years, those presentations have focused on specific tours those members offered, but now some feature educational elements as well. “The focus of the webinars is not just on product anymore,” Gorder said. “It’s on how to help someone’s company grow, whether through enhanced print buys or targeted email marketing. Trends and changes in the industry are a big deal right now, and TAP continues to be the leader in providing educational opportunities to enhance the end user’s business.”

WWW.TAPINTOTRAVEL.COM

One of TAP’s most significant early innovations was its Guaranteed Departures program. The first of its kind in the travel industry, this program consists of dozens of tours that TAP guarantees will operate on their scheduled dates, regardless of how many customers sign up. In addition to its Guaranteed Departures, TAP offers many more Scheduled Departures, which are tours they expect to perform well, and Custom Tours, which are exciting travel products available to group leaders on request. Those two types of trips are creating opportunities for TAP members to offer new tour experiences. “We have some really cool cruise programs,” Gorder said. “Traditionally, we haven’t focused on those, but we have some great ones now, like a new PBS Garden Smart cruise program. There are new group products, like Hippies to Honeymoons, in upstate New York. And we’re selling the 2020 Oberammergau Passion play — you don’t want to wait to book that. We have huge numbers already, and there are lots of Custom Tours available around the Passion play.”

FUN AND PRODUCTIVITY

Many of these new travel ideas are the result of meetings between TAP Operators and PPTPs at TAP Dance. Tour operators have four solid days of appointments with destination representatives and use that time to find new travel ideas. “We have a partner whose entire 44-page catalog is all fresh product developed at TAP Dance 2017,” Gorder said. “Another partner has done 11 custom products from TAP Dance.” The schedule of appointments is demanding, but Gorder said, in the spirit of innovation, the organization is finding new ways to incorporate fun and community into these meetings. “Sometimes we do better business at social events,” she said, “so we’re restructuring our social events. Put on a bathing suit instead of a business suit, and the conversations take a whole new turn.” There will be plenty of opportunities for fun at the next TAP Dance, to be held June 4-8 at a beachfront hotel in Atlantic City, New Jersey. The 2019 edition of the conference is headed to the Little America Hotel and Resort in Cheyenne, Wyoming.

41 Courtesy Visit Salt Lake


THE

SpecTAPular

TWO BY B R I A N J E W E LL

Courtesy Aramark

A

N EW ENGL A N D A N D L A K E POW ELL STA R IN 2018 EV EN TS

dynamic duo of special events in 2018 will showcase Travel Alliance Partners’ (TAP’s) product diversity and growing expertise in creating one-of-a-kind specialty experiences. Known as SpecTAPular Tours and Events, these occasions were introduced by TAP in 2012 and have become an important part of the organization’s distinctive offerings. “SpecTAPular is something totally unique,” said Nick Calderazzo, president of TAP partner Twin Travel Concepts and the organization’s SpecTAPular committee chair. “You’re not going to find it anywhere else in the marketplace. It has elements of exclusivity — an exclusive concert,

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an exclusive event, something that makes it stand apart.” Each SpecTAPular event is created by one of the TAP member tour operators, and the rest of the members sell it to their customers. Previous editions have included USO-style shows in Virginia Beach, Virginia, and “The Great Gatsby”-themed weekends at the Grand Hotel in Mackinac Island, Michigan. In 2018, TAP will offer two very different experiences. The first will take place in New England, September 18-21, and is centered on the Big E, a state-fair-style festival. The second will be a houseboat excursion on Arizona’s Lake Powell, October 13-21.

THE BIG E

Officially known as the Eastern States Exhibition, the Big E in Springfield, Massachusetts, is one of the largest annual events in the Northeast, serving as a state fair for all the New England states combined. “It’s all six New England States coming together at one time,” Calderazzo said. “It’s a huge fair, carnival and circus, with the most incredible food.” TAP member Richard Durgan of Durgan Travel will be coordinating this SpecTAPular and is arranging for participating groups to have

2018 TAP TRAVEL GUIDE


where they tie up at night. Guests will be able to enjoy the landscape of Lake Powell, which is surrounded by towering, colorful sandstone cliffs, and participate in active exploration if they wish. “Each houseboat will be carrying kayaks and will have a powerboat,” Murray said. “So people can go waterskiing, wakeboarding or tubing. They can go fishing off the houseboat or take the powerboat out to fish. We’ll also go hiking up some of the slot canyons to scenic areas in and around the lake.” In addition to the active options, participants will be treated to astronomer programs that highlight the area’s clear night skies. For more information on either event, visit www.tapintotravel.com. 2018 SPECTAPULAR EXPERIENCES WILL TAKE PLACE AT LAKE POWELL, ARIZONA (LEFT), AND THE BIG E IN MASSACHUSETTS (RIGHT). Courtesy Eastern States Exposition

a full day of fun at the Big E, as well as excursions to some of the other popular attractions in the area. The itinerary will include a day in the Berkshires with a visit to the Norman Rockwell Museum in Stockbridge, Massachusetts, and an evening event at the Yankee Candle headquarters in nearby South Deerfield. The trip will also include a visit to Hancock Shaker Village in Hancock, Massachusetts. “It’s the best Shaker representation in the country,” Calderazzo said. “It’s a working Shaker village. When we go there, we’ll do a lot of hands-on stuff.” The event has been timed to coincide with New England’s popular foliage season, and several TAP members are offering longer fall foliage tours that will include the SpecTAPular portion in Massachusetts along with other destinations and activities.

LAKE POWELL

About a month after the Big E, a different SpecTAPular will unfold out west, where up to 110 guests will enjoy a nine-day, eight-night tour from Phoenix to Salt Lake City that will include a five-day houseboat excursion on Arizona’s Lake Powell. “We’re going to be on 75-foot, luxurious houseboats,” said Jason Murray of Southwest Adventure Tours, the TAP operator coordinating this tour. “They each have five or six staterooms with queen beds and satellite TV. They have a hot tub on deck and a full kitchen. It’s basically a floating home that takes them around with all the amenities of a house itself. They have couches and chairs that you can lounge on throughout the day and waterslides you can fly off into the water.” The houseboat will be piloted by professional crew, and the all-inclusive tour will feature meals served either on board the boats or on the docks

WWW.TAPINTOTRAVEL.COM

CHRISTIAN VAN METER WINS SPIRIT OF TAP AWARD Travel Alliance Partners (TAP) presented its 2017 Spirit of TAP Award to Christian Van Meter, manager of group sales, Americas, at Carlson Rezidor Hotel Group. Van Meter was nominated by TAP members for his outstanding role in the tourism industry and particularly for his work in helping to bring the 2017 TAP Dance conference to Tucson, Arizona. “Christian is a deeply caring individual who goes the extra distance for everyone he interacts with: customers, colleagues and hotel teams,” said Tracy Gruber, TAP’s meeting and event coordinator and daughter of late TAP member Ann Thomas, in whose memory the award was established. “He has an amazing travel and destination knowledge, and educating himself on global destinations is his personal passion. He is always surprising me by how he quietly and unassumingly pursued availability and rates for a client when others would have moved on.” The Spirit of TAP Award was established in 2012 after the passing of Ann Thomas, owner of TAP tour operator Western Discovery. The award annually recognizes a Preferred Professional Travel Provider who truly encompasses the TAP vision and embodies the true spirit of TAP. Rather than waiting for others to ask for help, the awardee asks, “What can I do for you?” and “How can I help?” The award was presented at a luncheon during TAP Dance, the organization’s annual meeting.

43 Courtesy Visit Salt Lake


ADDED

VALUE BY R AC H E L C A R T E R

THER E A R E R E A L R E A SONS TO USE TA P OPER ATOR S

T

ravel Alliance Partners (TAP) gives group leaders the power of partnership. TAP members offer a variety of programs and products to help group leaders reach new customers and grow their business. TAP has preferred vendor agreements in place with three cruise companies and runs a weekly webinar series that’s free and open to anyone. One TAP partner offers an advertising-share program, and others provide special incentives and niche itineraries that help entice new travelers.

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2018 TAP TRAVEL GUIDE


ADVERTISING HELP

Image Tours partners with travel agents to split the costs of advertising their tours. The company creates a newspaper ad for each agency, builds in the tour and airfare price from each agency’s city and then splits the cost with that agency to run the ad in the local newspaper. “We have a program that’s proven to bring new customers to your business; and by the way, we’ll pay for half of it,” said Justin Osbon, sales director for Image Tours. Image Tours first started the advertising program in the early ’90s and has been running it ever since; it is now in about 193 papers across the country. In addition to designing and customizing the ad, the company also helps throughout the sale, including providing a template cover letter for the first mailing to make it more personal and follow-up to give clients a personal touch in getting the tours they want. “We’re helping [agents] build their business by setting them up as their local European tour expert,” Osbon said. When people say newspapers are a dead medium, Osbon has hard numbers that say otherwise. Many group tour customers still read newspapers and trust using them more than using an online agency. They’re looking for help with their first trip abroad and like that there’s a local office staffed by local people. “It brings new clients into their business, who buy this one tour then turn around and buy three or four or five more tours,” Osbon said. “They’re going to buy more because you helped them with that first big international vacation.”

CRUISING PARTNERS

IMAGE TOURS HELPS GROUP LEADERS WITH LOCAL ADVERTISING FOR ITS TRIPS TO DESTINATIONS SUCH AS ESTONIA.

TAP has preferred vendor agreements with three cruise companies that allow TAP partners and people who work with TAP partners to get better deals and bigger discounts on Holland America Line, Norwegian Cruise Line and AMA Waterways. “If you go through a TAP partner, if you’re going to deal with one of these three companies, you’ll get a lot better rate or a better value, and you might get cruise credits, dinners or a combination of value-adds,” said Steve Everidge, secretary and treasurer of Shenandoah Tours and cruise chairman for TAP. “It brings better value for the end user.” Shenandoah has an in-office travel service, and when someone calls up wanting to go on a particular river cruise line, the TAP agreement allows Shenandoah to offer AMA Waterways cruises as a comparable option. Sports Tour and Travel recently created a specialty itinerary with Norwegian to have a baseball umpire on board to tie into the company’s Bahamas Spring Training Cruise. “It’s unique to both companies, unique to [Sports Tour and Travel] and unique to Norwegian,” Everidge said. “They’re going to have an expert on board; it’s something they normally wouldn’t have, so it gives them a different market.” Shenandoah Tours often uses Holland America in Alaska and the Panama Canal. Everidge particularly likes Holland America’s product in Alaska because the company owns the cruise ships, the hotels, the buses

Courtesy Image Tours

WWW.TAPINTOTRAVEL.COM

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SHENADOAH TOURS AND TAP PARTNER WITH AMA WATERWAYS FOR RIVER CRUISES IN EUROPE.

and even some passenger cars on the McKinley Explorer dome train. In addition to providing consistent quality throughout the trip, it also gives TAP members and groups working with TAP access to those preferred vendor agreements from start to finish. “It’s somewhat of a package there,” he said.

EDUCATIONAL WEBINARS

Courtesy Shenandoah Tours

Every Tuesday, anyone can tune into the “TAP Into Tuesday” webinar. Although most webinars are focused on travel — destinations, attractions and experiences — Tri-State Travel has homed in on another aspect of the travel business: motorcoaches. Tri-State Travel is a full-service tour operator and one of only three TAP members that is also a charter motorcoach operator. Most group travel leaders rely on motorcoaches, but many have no idea of what to look for when it comes to booking them. “No matter if you’re a tour operator in California or a group flying into Chicago, you have to get around somehow,” said Andy Hillard with Tri-State Travel, and “not all motorcoach companies are created equal.” Tri-State Travel has twice led webinars about motorcoach education. The first was on motorcoach safety, and the second was about electronic logging devices, which the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration will require all motorcoach drivers to use beginning in December. The devices, which sync up with the engine to record driving time,

#1 Scenic Railroad

An Antiquated Adventure!

CUMBRESTOLTEC.COM/GROUPS 1-877-890-2737 46

2018 TAP TRAVEL GUIDE


AN IMAGE TOURS ALPHORN DEMO IN AUSTRIA

Create unforgettable Minnesota memories. Visit the Mississippi River headwaters. Cruise Courtesy Image Tours

A STAT BASEBALL ROAD TRIP SPORTS TRAVEL AND TOURS FANS AT A GAME Courtesy Sports Travel and Tours

on Lake Superior.Travel the Great River Road or 20 other scenic byways. Experience worldclass dining and theater, concerts, museums, shopping and hands-on attractions.

Courtesy Sports Travel and Tours

“NOT ALL MOTORCOACH COMPANIES ARE CREATED EQUAL” — ANDY HILLARD are intended to improve safety and make it easier to track data about drivers’ shifts. The change will affect the group market, Hillard said, because group leaders will need to start thinking about tightening up itineraries or adding more time, an extra night or a relief driver to avoid going over the daily limits on driving time. For motorcoach safety, the webinar went over questions to ask, such as the carrier’s Department of Transportation (DOT) rating, if it has a full-time safety director and what its maintenance practices include. Group leaders should also ask about the average age of the operator’s fleet and the coaches’ amenities. For comparison, the average age of Tri-State’s 25 coaches is 2.5 years. Group leaders should also ask for a carrier’s DOT number to look up its records online. TAP Into Tuesday webinars are free and open to everyone; they take place every Tuesday at 2 p.m. Eastern time. The webinars are available at www.tapintotravel.com/webinars.

BASEBALL PASSPORT PROGRAM

Travelers are always looking for some sort of incentive, and STAT Baseball Road Trips is essentially “a frequent travel program,” said Michael Coldesina, manager with Sports Travel and Tours. The company started the baseball passport program about 17 years ago. The agency gives travelers a Passport to Baseball, P L A N YOU R M I N N E S O TA T O U R AT E X P LOR E M I N N E S O TA .C OM

WWW.TAPINTOTRAVEL.COM

C A L L 1–8 8 8 –8 4 7 – 4 8 6 6 F O R M O R E I N FOR M AT I ON

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and every time they visit a stadium on an itinerary, they get a stamp in their passport. When they’ve visited all 30 Major League Baseball stadiums, Sports Travel and Tours invites them on a weekend trip to the National Baseball Hall of Fame and Museum in Cooperstown, New York. As the Hall of Fame’s official licensed travel partner, Sports Travel and Tours holds an induction ceremony there for travelers who have acquired all 30 stadium stamps and even pays for their overnight hotel accommodations. “I think it gives group leaders a product that I don’t think they’ve traditionally looked at,” he said. “People are trying to do these trips on their own and visit the stadiums on their own because they don’t realize there’s an outlet for them to go and take all the hassle out of the process.” Sports Travel and Tours has been running baseball trips pretty much from when it opened in 1996; the company soon realized that “a lot of impetus of these trips wasn’t the game itself but to visit the stadium,” Coldesina said. The company tries to include all 30 MLB stadiums on at least one tour each year. Some itineraries include three or four stadiums, especially on the East Coast, such as Fenway Park in Boston and the Yankees’ and Mets’ stadiums in New York. Although the program centers on stadiums, itineraries include plenty of other attractions, destination and historic sites.

WOMEN-ONLY GETAWAYS

Main Street Experiences started its Women in Need of Spoiling (WINOS) program to take girlfriend getaways beyond wine tastings and day spas to fully escorted trips tailored for a female audience. “The tours are for women, by women,” said Jennifer Lum Lee, director of marketing for Main Street Experiences, formerly Main Street Tours. The five-woman company has mostly worked with seniors, so WINOS “opens up a whole new world for us,” she said. “This is going to be a lot of fun because it’s what we would want to do.” Main Street started the program about a year ago as a partnership with Elaine Moulder, owner of Brilliant Edventures, based in Georgia. Most girlfriend getaways don’t include transportation and meals, and the partners wanted to offer the full group experience to small groups of women. Although the smaller groups won’t get the same deep discounts as large groups, Main Street and Brilliant Edventures have the connections to get some discounted rates and special perks. The two companies have plans to launch WINOS as a retail product but have also been doing custom group itineraries. WINOS in Waco includes a tour of sites from HGTV’s smash hit “Fixer Upper” and a stop at Magnolia Market, owned by the show’s hosts, Chip and Joanna Gaines. The trip is built around the Rootstock Wine Festival and includes dinner on the historic Waco Suspension Bridge. A new itinerary, WINOS and the City, will launch in May 2018 and plays on HBO’s popular show “Sex and the City.” Travelers will take a walking tour, visit filming locations from the show and be pampered by a beautician before a night out on the town to see a Broadway show. WINOS will be launching four to six new itineraries next year, with destinations such as Maui, Hawaii; Wyoming; and San Francisco.

A WINOS GROUP AT MAGNOLIA MARKET Courtesy Main Street Tours

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2018 TAP TRAVEL GUIDE


800.488.8998 | MyrtleBeachGroups.com Fresh Itineraries |Diverse Accommodations | Live Entertainment | History & Nature Coastal Carolina Cuisine | Incredible Shopping | Southern Hospitality


MAKE YOUR

FRIENDS JEALOUS BY R AC H E L C A R T E R

BOOK ONE OF THESE TAP-ONLY ITINERARIES

T

he whole point of traveling is to see something new and experience something different. But too often, individual travelers and group leaders get stuck in a rut of letting the sights and sounds pass them by, whether through a motorcoach window or on a walking tour. Many of the tour operators of Travel Alliance Partners (TAP) have tapped their creativity to find unique experiences for travelers in the destinations they visit. These TAP itineraries go beyond the norm to give people a chance to drive a steam locomotive, travel with a TV show host, cross an international border, see a national park in a new way and, maybe, just maybe, speak to the spirits.

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2018 TAP TRAVEL GUIDE


DRIVE THE RAILS

In a recent episode of CBS’ smash hit “The Big Bang Theory,” Leonard buys Sheldon a certificate for the ultimate train experience at the Nevada Northern Railway Museum in Ely, Nevada. The closing scene shows Sheldon operating a coal-fired locomotive, shirtless in bib overalls, his face smeared with grease and a grin. Ever since the episode aired in February, the museum’s Be an Engineer program has “been selling out all the time,” but Leisure West Tours still has priority, said owner Lee Dahl. Travelers on Leisure West’s Railroad Engineer: Ultimate Experience itinerary “have to have a shirt on, but they get great big smiles on their face,” he said, jokingly. People often don’t realize they’ll be at the throttle, blowing the whistle and signaling at crossings, because “they just think it’s not something they could ever do,” he said. And it’s not just five minutes in the seat. The in-depth program gives each participant nearly an hour at the throttle of two locomotives. Guests start on the diesel engine, which is more straightforward and less overwhelming than the century-old, coal-fired steam locomotive, Dahl said. Over the course of two days, each person gets to drive each locomotive and may also operate a two-person speeder car and the “hand-pump cars you used to see in the old cartoons,” Dahl said. The Nevada Northern Railway, including the engines, buildings and rolling stock, is a National Historic Landmark. The railroad was built in 1905 to reach the copper mines about 140 miles north of Ely; but when the mines shut down in 1978, so did the railroad. “They thought they’d be back to work as soon as the mine opened back up, and it never did,” he said, so everything is much as they left it: tools, equipment, paperwork — including workers’ time cards.

YELLOWSTONE IN WINTER

TRAVELERS CRUISE ON THE SEA OF CORTEZ ON TRIPS TO MEXICO WITH GRAY LINE TOURS.

Yellowstone National Park is a different place in winter. Snow blankets the ground, muffling ambient noise. Wildlife stands out, stark against the white carpet. Steam from geysers and thermal pools turns into billowing columns in the freezing air. “It’s just really quiet,” said Shawn Horman, vice president of Western Leisure. “It gives you a different experience in the park.” Yellowstone’s winter season — when there’s enough snow cover for over-snow travel on the roads — usually runs from mid-December through mid-March, and Western Leisure typically runs its trips to the park in January and February. For travel, the company uses a combination of modern snow coaches — vans or minibuses that have been converted to tracks for winter driving — and historic snow coaches, which are basically World War II-era snow machines. Each can hold eight to 12 people. The snow coaches are “totally part of the experience,” Horman said. Local guides drive and narrate, showing passengers where wolves are feeding on a carcass or where bison “like to lay on the warm ground,” he said. Groups also ride a horse-drawn sleigh into the massive herd on the National Elk Refuge near Jackson, Wyoming. “You’re out on the elk refuge with magnificent views of the Grand Tetons, and there’s, on average, 4,000 elk on the refuge,” Horman said. “They’re used to the sleighs — they don’t run away. All the bulls are fight-

Courtesy Gray Line Tours

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ing and wrestling all day long — it is a fabulous experience.” In addition to standbys like Old Faithful, the itinerary can also include attending the weekly broadcast performance of the Mormon Tabernacle Choir in Salt Lake City and a tour of Utah Olympic Park near Park City.

RIVER CRUISING WITH A TV HOST

Alki Tours’ Holland and Belgium River Cruise with Amadeus River Cruises puts passengers on board a river cruise with a national television host: Eric Johnson of PBS’ “GardenSmart.” “The whole idea is it’s an interactive opportunity for people to learn and live their passion on their holiday and bringing them that much closer, in this case, with public television,” said Tyson Verse, travel manager with Alki Tours. Johnson and his crew will be filming on the trip as well as hosting seminars and participating in cruise events. The trip begins in Amsterdam with a visit to the Rijksmuseum, where guests can see works by Rembrandt and Vermeer up close, followed by a stop at the Van Gogh Museum. In Amsterdam, travelers can also visit the Hortus Botanicus, which was founded in 1638, making it one of the world’s oldest botanical gardens. During a tour of Aalsmeer Flower Auction, Europe’s largest building, filled with acres of flowers, groups will learn about how the auction sells some 20 million flowers daily from around the world.

LEISURE WEST TOURS’ RAILROAD ENGINEER EXPERIENCE

Courtesy Leisure West

ESSE PURSE MUSEUM, LITTLE ROCK

crystal bridges museum of american art, bentonville

THE OHIO CLUB, HOT SPRINGS

plans Naturally Made

Groups of all sizes love The Natural State because of our seemingly endless variety of things to see, do and experience, like world-class museums, national historic sites and more. Plan your trip at arkansas.com or call (501) 682-1219. What will you make in Arkansas?

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Arkansas.com

2018 TAP TRAVEL GUIDE


Keukenhof is an 80-acre garden with more than 7 million tulips, daffodils and hyacinths. The garden is “the best of everything on show,” Verse said, and the bulbs are planted at different depths, a technique called lasagna or layer planting, so there’s always something blooming. But the cruise isn’t only for gardeners; it includes stops in Antwerp, Bruges and Ghent and excursions to castles, windmills and World War I museums and memorials. Kinderdijk is a village known for its elaborate network of historic 18th-century windmills, pumps, dikes and reservoirs that control flooding in the lowland. “We try to keep the entire audience interested,” Verse said.

GRAND TETON IN WINTER

GHOST TOURS AND TOWNS IN NEVADA

Mark Hoffmann, president and founder of Sports Leisure Vacations, is a skeptic when it comes to the supernatural. But the more experiences he has during ghost hunts in the ghost town of Goodsprings, Nevada, the more he can’t explain — including a recent encounter that hit close to home.

Courtesy NPS

“YOU’RE OUT ON THE ELK REFUGE WITH MAGNIFICENT VIEWS OF THE GRAND TETONS” — SHAWN HORMAN

Discover a place where the lasting legacy of the Old West combines with the flavors of the first UNESCO City of Gastronomy in the U.S. Find out more at VisitTucson.org

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Sports Leisure Vacation’s six-day Death Valley and Nevada Ghost Towns itinerary departs from Sacramento, California, and travels to Las Vegas. From there, guests will visit several Old West ghost towns where they’ll find old miners’ cabins, abandoned post offices and deserted train stations. In Goodsprings, the group goes on a ghost hunt, a tour that for years was led by Robert George Allen, a retired entertainer who started the Haunted Vegas tour and who recently passed away. Each person has a “ghost box” to ask spirits yes or no questions. During a recent trip, Hoffmann’s ghost box was lighting up, which indicates a spiritual presence. After asking several questions, Hoffmann finally asked, “Robert George Allen, is that you?” And the box “blinked like crazy,” he said. Goodsprings’ other claim to fame is the 100-year-old saloon where

Clark Gable awaited word about Carol Lombard’s plane crash. “He sat there and burned a hole in the bar with his cigar,” Hoffmann said. The remote town of Belmont doesn’t have power, but it does have people — about a dozen residents. And those residents welcome visitors to see the ruins of collapsed buildings, the remains of partially standing structures and the Belmont Courthouse, which locals are trying to restore. The company recently expanded the itinerary to add Death Valley National Park, where guests will spend two nights at the Oasis at Death Valley, formerly the Furnace Creek Resort.

CROSS THE BORDER INTO MEXICO HOLLAND’S KEUKENHOF GARDEN

Courtesy Keukenhof

Courtesy Gray Line Tours

Give Them the Experience of a Lifetime

Few motorcoach tour operators still offer itineraries that cross the southern border into Mexico, but Gray Line Tours is — proudly — one of them. TJ Morgan is president and CEO of the Tucson, Arizona-based company that his grandfather started in 1916 as Citizen Auto Stage Company. Gray Line offers a variety of itineraries, among them Best of the Barrio, which explores Tucson through its Sonoran cuisine, and the Border Crisis: Fact and Fiction tour, which was designed to allow people to go on personal fact-finding missions and see the border firsthand in a safe and secure way. But for people who want to travel into Mexico, Gray Line’s Beaches of Rocky Point, Mexico, itinerary is a “nice, safe way for people to get an exposure to Mexico tourism,” Morgan said. “Rocky Point is very safe.” For those who have never traveled to the country and feel unsure about the best way to do so, Gray Line drives its motorcoach across the border to the beachfront Peñasco Del Sol Hotel. Gray Line’s bilingual guide has built a relationship with the border agents, and the drive is about four hours total: three hours to the border, then one more hour to the hotel. The resort fronts the Gulf of California, also known as the Sea of Cortez, and when guests arrive, they enjoy a margarita reception at the hotel. While there, groups can opt to take a sunset cruise, a bird island boat tour or a whale-watching trip with EcoFun Rentals, which also rents kayaks, paddleboards and boogie boards to beachgoers. Travelers will visit Rocky Point’s Old Port, where they can buy fresh seafood from fish markets and explore curio shops filled with handmade knickknacks and souvenirs.

Discover a Dozen Vacations in One Destination™ Durango.org • Julianne Fredrick • Sales Manager Julianne@durango.org • 970-459-9055

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GROUP T HE

TRAVEL LE ADER

A LUXURY RESORT ON MEXICO’S SEA OF CORTEZ


Your group will love our inlets. And our outlets. Waterfront cruises. Dining. Museums. Maritime history. Now you can add the newly opened Norfolk Premium Outlets to the many attractions your group will enjoy in our waterfront city. No wonder Norfolk was named one of the “50 Best Places to Travel in 2017!� Contact Melissa Hopper, Associate Director of Tour & Travel, to plan your next trip today!

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THE

WORLD AWAITS BY R AC H E L C A R T E R

TRAVEL THE GLOBE WITH TAP-MEMBER COMPANIES

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o matter where in the world groups want to go, Travel Alliance Partners’ (TAP’s) tour operators can take them there. TAP’s 30 partners provide international and exotic tours that give travelers distinctive experiences — watch a play that has been produced since 1634; see the ocean tide reverse a river; walk underwater in the Great Barrier Reef; visit the ruins of a Roman Emperor’s palace; and get close to the wildest of animals on a Kenyan safari.

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2018 TAP TRAVEL GUIDE


ATLANTIC CANADA

Three provinces make up the Canadian Maritimes: New Brunswick, Nova Scotia and Prince Edward Island. Add Canada’s easternmost province — Newfoundland and Labrador — and you have Atlantic Canada. “When I hear about any of our Atlantic Maritimes trips, the first thing that comes to mind is the friendliness of our people,” said Atlantic Tours president Richard Arnold. But the region also offers nautical heritage, delicious seafood, great wines and incredible scenic beauty — “all those things lead to us being a wonderful destination,” said Arnold. In New Brunswick, the city of St. John sits on the northern side of the Bay of Fundy, which boasts what some consider the world’s highest tidal range. The ocean floor is exposed during low tide and covered by 50 feet of seawater during high tide. The massive tidal shifts create another phenomenon: the Reversing Rapids. The St. John River empties into the bay, but the power of the ocean forces the river to flow backward during high tide, creating roiling rapids and whirlpools. The Bay of Fundy is also spectacular for whale-watching, with up to 12 whale species using it as their summer feeding ground. In Shediac Bay, the group will go out on a lobster boat to haul up lobster traps and eat their lobster dinner right on the boat. There are 10 National Historic Sites in Newfoundland and Labrador, including L’Anse aux Meadows, a Viking or Norse settlement dating to the year 1000, and Red Bay, the site of a 16th-century Basque whaling station on Labrador’s southern coast.

CROATIA’S ADRIATIC COAST

TRAVELERS CAN SNORKEL AT AUSTRALIA’S GREAT BARRIER REEF ON A TOUR WITH ANDERSON VACATIONS.

The Adriatic coast in Croatia has long been a favorite vacation spot for Europeans, but it’s just starting to catch on with Americans. There, U.S. travelers find a safe, picturesque place where everyone speaks English, said Sue Biggs, owner of Custom Holidays. “This is about scenery and history, and you get plenty of both,” she said. The company’s Croatia and Venice cruise begins in Dubrovnik, which sits on the southernmost tip of the Croatian coastline. Old Town’s creamy stone walls and matching buildings with red-tile roofs in Old Town are always surprising to visitors. A walking tour of the “Pearl of the Adriatic” includes stops at the Rector’s Palace and Franciscan Monastery’s Pharmacy. As visitors take a walking tour through Plitvice Lakes National Park, they explore several of the park’s 16 terraced lakes, and “you see a beautiful waterfall” around practically every corner, Biggs said. Farther north in Zadar is the city’s sea organ, which looks like a series of large steps down to the water; the steps hide tubes that allow air and water to flow into resonant chambers, essentially allowing the sea waves to play an ever-changing song. “You can sit there and listen for a long time,” she said. “It’s really, really special.” In the city of Split, groups visit the palace of the Roman emperor Diocletian. The massive historic ruins have been repurposed as an openair gathering place with courtyards, shops, buskers and street performers.

Courtesy Tourism Australia

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IRELAND

Ireland is a longtime favorite for people’s first foray into European traveling. The Irish have “such an affinity for America” because so many Irish emigrated to the United States, and the feeling is mutual; “some cities in the United States have larger Irish populations than some cities in Ireland,” said Sandi Pufahl, president of Fancy-Free Holidays. Many of her custom groups want to visit because they have Irish roots and want to learn more about their heritage. Pufahl starts her tours in Dublin, where it’s almost a requirement to visit the Guinness Storehouse. The building’s stories and exhibits are built around an interior atrium that’s designed to mimic a pint glass. After the tour, groups go to the top level, a circular glass level — again, like the rim of a pint glass — that gives a 360-degree panoramic view of the city with information about sites and buildings etched into the windows as part of the view. At Trinity College, the group learns about the Book of Kells, which contains the first four gospels annotated by monks and was found in a bog, and visits St. Patrick’s Cathedral. The group will enjoy a medieval banquet at the 11th-century Bunratty Castle. The evening includes performances of medieval songs by a harpist and singers wearing period costume, and a banquet of squab and roasted potatoes for which “you have to use your dagger and your fingers,” she said.

take your next tour somewhere

new

AUSTRALIA AND NEW ZEALAND

What tour doesn’t need to stop somewhere new to ensure an experience that’s fascinating, fresh and fun? In Oklahoma City there’s something new to discover on every corner. From our gleaming new downtown to the Old West at the National Cowboy & Western Heritage Museum. From a new appreciation of our spirit at the Oklahoma City National Memorial & Museum to being welcomed like a new friend everywhere you go. Add us to your next itinerary and you’ll soon discover that around here, things are more than just new. They’re OKC new.

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8/4/17 3:16 PM

A red carpet evening at the Sydney Opera House “is a great way to start or end your itinerary, depending which way you want to go,” said Vasil Vladinski, operations manager for Anderson Vacations, which offers a variety of itineraries in Australia and New Zealand. Groups can take a backstage tour followed by dinner and a performance. During a cruise in Sydney Harbour, the 56-passenger boat takes passengers to area beaches and a locals’ restaurant. Travelers can also climb the Sydney Harbour Bridge, where the “views are phenomenal,” he said. Near Queensland, the Whitsunday Islands provide the iconic Australian beach experience, and Cairns is a gateway to the Great Barrier Reef, which people can explore in countless ways: in a helicopter, on a glass-bottom boat or in the water snorkeling, diving or ocean walking. Uluru, formerly known as Ayers Rock, is a sacred place and a huge draw for cultural tourism. In Daintree Rainforest, groups can walk with an Aboriginal guide through their ancestral lands. Off the coast of South Australia, Kangaroo Island is a haven for wildlife where “everyone comes back and says, ‘I wish I had more time there,’” Vladinski said. In Rotorua, New Zealand, Maori guides use the thermal mud to cook a traditional hāngī meal, which travelers then eat for dinner. “Lord of the Rings” fans can visit the Hobbiton Movie Set near Matamata, and in the Waitomo Caves, living glowworms light up the walls. An overnight stay on a boat in the remote Milford Sound allows travelers to watch the sunset from their kayaks and discover waterfalls as seals jump all around their boats. 2018 TAP TRAVEL GUIDE


ON SAFARI IN KENYA

Going “on safari” invokes images of trekking in rugged terrain, sweating under a glaring sun and batting away unthinkable bugs. But Talbot Tours’ Kenya Safari Adventure is one of the most relaxing vacations you’ll ever take, said president Serge Talbot. The itinerary includes five game reserves: Amboseli, Samburu, Mount Kenya, Lake Nakuru and Maasai Mara national parks. Travelers stay in African lodges that rival American resorts and spend their days swimming, napping and reading between twice-daily game drives in the early morning and late afternoon. During each outing, travelers will see an “incredible variety of animals,” Talbot said. Guides, many of whom Talbot Tours has been using for more than 10 years, navigate six-person, pop-top safari vehicles through reserves where guests will spot lions, cheetahs, giraffes, gazelles, antelopes, elephants, baboons, wildebeests, zebras and more. At Sweetwaters Serena Camp, travelers stay in luxury tents that look directly across the game reserve; a fence keeps the animals separate. Serena Mountain Lodge is a four-story lodge built on stilts where every guest room, along with the dining room and lounge, overlooks

PUFFINS IN NEW BRUNSWICK

Courtesy Tourism New Brunswick

AN INDIGENOUS EXPERIENCE IN NEW ZEALAND

By Fraser Clements, courtesy Anderson Vacations

“WHEN I HEAR ABOUT ANY OF OUR ATLANTIC MARITIMES TRIPS, THE FIRST THING THAT COMES TO MIND IS THE FRIENDLINESS OF OUR PEOPLE.” — RICHARD ARNOLD

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an illuminated waterhole and salt lick. Guests can watch the “pecking order” as animals take turns arriving to drink, Talbot said. Travelers marvel at thousands of pink flamingos at Lake Nakuru; the trip also includes visits to a giraffe compound, a chimpanzee sanctuary and an elephant orphanage. But one of guests’ favorite moments is the Maasai Mara village, where travelers can interact with the tribe and the children. IRELAND’S DINGLE PENINSULA Courtesy Fancy Free Holidays

MAASAI WARRIORS IN KENYA

Before he was Pope Benedict XVI, Joseph Ratzinger was a boy from Germany’s Bavaria region, where travelers can learn about his life during Ed-Ventures’ Pope Benedict’s Bavaria and the Passion Play itinerary. Groups will visit Marktl am Inn, where Benedict was born in 1927, and the village of Traunstein, where he spent his childhood. The trip also includes stops in Freising, where he studied and later taught at the School of Philosophy and Theology, and at the Cathedral of St. Mary, where he was ordained in 1951. But the showstopper is arguably the Passion Play in Oberammergau, a production the town has been doing since 1634 after vowing to put on the play if God spared them from the bubonic plague. Townspeople now perform the play several times a week May through October during every year that ends in zero. Actors must be from the town or be a direct descendent of someone who is. “It’s in German, but you know the story,” said Shannon Larsen, vice president of operations and TAP partner for Ed-Ventures. “The drama is amazing. It hits you right in the heart.” Although the trip is popular among Catholics and other Christian groups, “there’s so much to see in Bavaria, you could take Pope Benedict off there and just call it ‘Bavaria,’ and it would still be a nice, cool trip,” she said. “Frankly, there’s a ‘wow’ every day.” Those wows include a visit to Salzburg, scenic views of the Alps and plenty of World War II history, such as touring the Eagle’s Nest teahouse, which was given to Adolf Hitler as a gift in 1933.

John Tlumacki/The Boston Globe

Courtesy Talbot Tours

POPE BENEDICT’S BAVARIA AND THE PASSION PLAY

A BUILDING IN OBERAMMERGAU, GERMANY

Explore headline-making FBI cases and learn how the bureau is fighting terrorism and cybercrime in this special update to one of the Newseum’s most popular exhibits.

NEWSEUM.ORG 555 PENNSYLVANIA AVE., N.W., WASHINGTON, D.C. TripAdvisor’s 2016 Travelers’ Choice Top 25 Museums in the U.S.

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Courtesy Ed-Ventures

2018 TAP TRAVEL GUIDE


NAMES YOU’LL

KNOW

BY R AC H E L C A R T E R

FIND THE FAMOUS ON A TAP ITINERARY

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rom the Black Hills to the Florida Keys, travelers can find the faces of famous Americans. More U.S. presidents have called Virginia home than any other state. New York’s Hudson Valley drew the magnates and tycoons of the Gilded Age. Boston was where the Sons of Liberty fomented the birth of the nation. Florida drew all sorts of notable names to its shores, and South Dakota is best known for the famous faces carved into its stone facades. These Travel Alliance Partners itineraries showcase some of the most influential people in American history.

HOMES OF PRESIDENTS

Thomas Jefferson was the third U.S. president. James Madison was the fourth. And groups will get an idea of how different the two Founding Fathers were while touring their 62

TWIN TRAVEL CONCEPTS TAKES GROUPS TO SEE KYKUIT, THE ROCKEFELLER FAMILY ESTATE ON THE HUDSON RIVER.

By Jamie Martorano, courtesy Twin Trave Concepts

2018 TAP TRAVEL GUIDE


Courtesy Twin Travel Concepts

A NORMAN ROCKWELL SELF-PORTRAIT

homes and estates during the Homes of Presidents and Virginia Byways itinerary operated by Mid Atlantic Receptive Services (MARS). “Madison was a very different person than Jefferson,” said Kate Scopetti, president of MARS. “You get kind of a different perspective of really the personalities of Madison and Jefferson, what they did together and how they communicated.” MARS customizes each trip, but most groups will tour Monticello, Jefferson’s home and mountaintop estate. The visitors center features a museum and a film that acclimates guests to Jefferson’s world before a shuttle takes the group to the house itself, which is filled with “things invented by Thomas Jefferson during his lifetime that are in use in the house still,” Scopetti said. Guests will see the slave quarters and the farmland and stop at the nearby tavern for a tour and “the best fried chicken in the world,” she said. Visitors can see where Madison and his wife, Dolley, lived at Montpelier in Orange, Virginia, and visit Mount Vernon, George Washington’s estate. During a guided tour, groups will see the bedroom where the United States’ first president died in 1799 and the key to the Bastille that hangs in the main hallway. In Washington, D.C., tours include Woodrow Wilson’s house and President Lincoln’s Cottage. Other options in Virginia include Jefferson’s boyhood home at Tuckahoe Plantation and Washington’s cottage in Winchester.

ELANOR ROOSEVELT OUTSIDE VAL-KILL COTTAGE

LITTLE BIGHORN BATTLEFIELD

Courtesy Twin Travel Concepts

FAMOUS FLORIDIANS

Florida claims many famous people, from the original conquistadors searching for the Fountain of Youth to Ernest Hemingway and President Harry Truman. Wade Tours takes groups from the Gulf of Mexico to the Atlantic Coast and to the nation’s southernmost spot during its Florida’s Coastto-Coast itinerary. The nation’s oldest permanently occupied European settlement, St. Augustine feels like a European city. “We call it the oldest European City in America,” said Crystal DeLorenzo of Wade Tours. A trolley tour highlights sites including the Cathedral Basilica of St. Augustine, the Oldest Wooden School House, Flagler College, Tolomato Cemetery and Ripley’s Believe It or Not! museum. But one of the most popular stops is the Fountain of Youth, a 15-acre historic park; legend claims the park’s spring is the Fountain of Youth that Spanish conquistador Juan Ponce de León was seeking in 1513. In Sarasota, John and Mable Ringling’s Ca’ d’Zan mansion sits on the shores of Sarasota Bay. The Ringlings built the Venetian-style mansion between 1924 and 1926, and groups can tour it along with the Ringling Circus Museum and Museum of Art. The winter estates of Thomas Edison and Henry Ford sit on the banks of the Caloosahatchee River in Fort Myers. Guests can explore 20 acres of botanical gardens; nine historic buildings, including Ford’s winter home; Edison’s Botanic Research Laboratory; and the Edison Ford Museum. “It’s really pretty and very old-Florida with a lot of live oak and Spanish moss,” DeLorenzo said. As the Florida Keys continue to recover from damage from Hurricane Irma, Wade will continue to travel there, where a historic guided trolley

By Brandon Blackburn, courtesy NPS Photo

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tour highlights President Truman’s Little White House as well as Hemingway’s haunts, including his home and his favorite bars.

and the Crow Agency also provides guided tours. The tour also includes a stop at the Crazy Horse Memorial, an ongoing mountain-carving project that depicts the famous Oglala Lakota war leader and is designed to honor all Native American tribes.

MOUNT RUSHMORE AND CRAZY HORSE

More than 3 million people visit Mount Rushmore National Memorial every year, making it South Dakota’s top tourist attraction. But when groups visit, they often don’t plan enough time because “there’s really two parts to Mount Rushmore,” said Shebby Lee, owner of Shebby Lee Tours. During the day, visitors enjoy the viewing veranda and the ranger programs and take a flurry of pictures. But for the evening lighting ceremony, rangers lead a program about the meaning of the memorial, show the film “Freedom,” and ask active military and veterans to help with the lowering and folding of the flag before lighting the memorial. At Fort Abraham Lincoln, Lt. Col. George Armstrong Custer’s final command post, the group tours the rebuilt Custer home. Guides wear period costumes and lead the tour as though they’re servants in the home while Custer and his wife are away. “It’s more than a tour; you go back to 1874,” Lee said. “It’s absolutely wonderful.” At Little Bighorn Battlefield National Monument, groups learn about the infamous battle where Crazy Horse brought together tribes to defeat Custer and his army. Rangers often lead talks, but Little Big Horn battlefield sits completely within the Crow Indian Reservation,

ROCKWELL TO ROCKEFELLER

For Nick Calderazzo, president of Twin Travel Concepts, the three R’s have a different meaning: Rockwell, Rockefeller and Roosevelt. The company’s From Rockwell to Rockefeller itinerary takes groups through the Hudson Valley and the Berkshire Mountains to the Gilded Age mansions and country retreats of some of the nation’s most notable names. The FDR Presidential Library and Museum is a national park where the home of Franklin D. Roosevelt is better known simply as Springwood. Groups can explore the library and museum during self-guided tours, but a guided tour of FDR’s home “is fascinating because you really get stories of all the leaders of the day that came there,” Calderazzo said. Another Roosevelt stop is Val-Kill Cottage, Eleanor Roosevelt’s personal home, about two miles from Springwood. Though she lived at Springwood, so did FDR’s mother, and Eleanor “decided she wanted her own place,” Calderazzo said. “It’s a great tour because she was an amazing woman.” Kykuit is the Rockefeller Estate along the Hudson River that was home to four generations of the Rockefeller family, starting with John

Josh Duhamel

off-off broadway Off-off Broadway is on-on-on in cities across the state. North Dakota native Josh Duhamel enjoys one-of-a kind dining, shopping and entertainment in our vibrant downtowns. Share the fascinating cities of our state with your travel group. Visit us online to plan your next tour itinerary.

NDtourism.com/groups 64

Fargo Theatre, downtown Fargo

2018 TAP TRAVEL GUIDE


D. Rockefeller, founder of Standard Oil. A tour leads groups through the main rooms of the six-story stone house and into the gardens that are dotted with Gov. Nelson Rockefeller’s sculpture collection. At the Norman Rockwell Home and Museum in the Berkshire village of Stockbridge, groups spend most of their time exploring the museum and Rockwell’s studio. Rockwell was famous for his Saturday Evening Post illustrations, and groups can see all the covers at the museum along with many of his larger pieces.

for his famous midnight ride before walking by the Paul Revere House. Many of the Sons of Liberty would gather at pubs along the Blackstone Block to plan the Revolution. There, travelers can eat at a culinary landmark: the Union Oyster House, America’s oldest restaurant. Guests will also learn about another pivotal but more contemporary figure in American history while touring the John F. Kennedy Presidential Library and Museum. In the Oval Office exhibit, groups will see a rocking chair Kennedy used in his Oval Office and two photographs of his daughter, Caroline, that he kept on his desk.

SONS OF LIBERTY

Boston was where the United States of America began, and All American Tours’ Bean Town, Boston and the North Shore itinerary walks travelers through the footsteps of the people who shaped the nation. Groups will see some of the city’s and the country’s most important landmarks on Boston’s Freedom Trail either from the coach or during a walking tour. The Freedom Trail Foundation’s standard 90-minute Walk Into History tour features 11 of the trail’s 16 sites, and the threehour group tour covers all 16 sites, although visitors don’t go inside all of them. Either way, a costumed Freedom Trail Player guides the tour and talks about the significance of each stop. During a walk through the historic North End, visitors can stop at the Old North Church where the lanterns were hung to signal Paul Revere

WWW.TAPINTOTRAVEL.COM

SOUTH DAKOTA’S MOUNT RUSHMORE

A FLORIDA FOUNTAIN Courtesy Wade Tours

Courtesy NPS

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WE’VE GOT

YOUR

TICKETS BY R AC H E L C A R T E R

TAP COMPANIES DELIVER ON CONCERTS AND CULTURE

M

usic and art: The two go hand in hand when it comes to evoking a reaction, conjuring a memory or inspiring a feeling. Maybe people grew up listening to the Grand Ole Opry on the radio or poring over a book of French impressionist works. Maybe they fell in love with Elvis Presley on the record player or studied modern art in college. Travel Alliance Partners (TAP) offers groups dozens of opportunities to encounter favorite arts attractions and discover new ones. The following TAP itineraries immerse travelers in culture, from contemporary art to country music.

ADVENTURES IN ART AND HISTORY

New York has the Met, Los Angeles has the Getty, and Columbus, Ohio, has a surprising number of art museums, collections, galleries and hands-on experiences to offer visitors. 66

GROUPS CAN HEAR LIVE MUSIC IN NASHVILLE HONKY-TONKS ON A TOUR WITH OREGONWEST EXCURSIONS.

Courtesy Nashville CVC

2018 TAP TRAVEL GUIDE


Courtesy Nashville CVC

NASHVILLE’S RYMAN AUDITORIUM

During the Adventures in Art and History itinerary offered by Joy Tour and Travel, groups will tour the Columbus Museum of Art (CMA), which recently renovated about 38,000 square feet in the original 1974 wing and expanded with a new 50,000-square-foot two-story building. The project allowed CMA to display more of it permanent collection, including some larger pieces and contemporary installations. Topiary Park is an outdoor park near the museum and is the only known topiary rendering of a painting, specifically Georges Seurat’s postimpressionist work “A Sunday on La Grande Jatte.” There’s even a point where visitors can stand to get the right perspective and can reference a picture of the painting on a nearby plaque. In the Short North district, groups can explore 16 or so galleries, take in murals throughout the district and visit shops, restaurants, boutiques and bars. The district is also home to the Pizzuti Collection, the private collection of Ron and Ann Pizzuti, which is housed in a historic building. During a Coffee and Canvas session at Brandt-Roberts Galleries, people break into groups of four and each paint a quadrant of a canvas that hooks together in the back so that each person can take home a piece.

AMERICAN BANJO MUSEUM

Courtesy American Banjo Museum

MUSIC AND MORE IN TENNESSEE

Tennessee is home to two music meccas: Nashville, known for its country roots, and Memphis, home of the blues. That makes OregonWest Excursions’ Music and More in Tennessee itinerary a must for music lovers. In Nashville, guests take a backstage tour of the “new” Grand Ole Opry and its previous venue, the historic Ryman Auditorium. “They love all the history of the Grand Ole Opry because they may have seen that on TV or listened to it growing up,” said Tony Minden, owner of OregonWest Excursions. The group tours the Gibson guitar factory and visits the Country Music Hall of Fame and Museum, where “people don’t realize what’s there until they get inside of it,” Minden said. “Sometimes, they go back on their free time to see more.” While touring the Historic RCA Studio B, the group gets into the booth to record its own song, usually one of Elvis’ gospel hits. “We all get a CD at the end, which are pretty bad,” he said with a laugh. Memphis, of course, calls for a tour of Elvis’ iconic home Graceland, which “is on their bucket list.” The mansion and grounds also serve as a museum, preserving not only how the King lived, but also costumes and keepsakes from his career, and his gravesite. During a city tour of Memphis, a step-on guide from Backbeat Tours will play songs on a guitar as he tells stories about Elvis and the city.

CAJUNS, CREOLES AND GOOD TIMES ON THE BAYOU TOUR OKLAHOMA OPRY

Before visitors hear their first note of New Orleans jazz or taste their first bite of crawfish, the first thing they notice about Louisiana is “how friendly the people are,” said Rick Pharr, owner of CTN Travels. “People say hello and greet you and talk to you like you’ve been family friends for two generations,” he said. Visitors’ favorite part of CTN Travels’ tour Cajuns, Creoles and Good Times

Courtesy Centennial Rodeo Opry

WWW.TAPINTOTRAVEL.COM

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on the Bayou is a toss-up between the food, the music and the people. The foot-stomping music of New Orleans often has the distinctive sound of an accordion, which is likely a Martin. Melodeons, or diatonic button accordions, have buttons rather than keys like those on a piano, and Clarence “Junior” Martin has been making them for more than 30 years. Martin Accordions is a family-run business that’s housed in a large warehouse in Scott, Louisiana, just outside Lafayette. When groups visit, Junior; his daughter, Pennye Huval; and his grandson, Joel Martin, give a one-and-a-half-hour presentation that includes playing several types of music. “You can’t get ’em out of Martins; they would stay there forever if they could,” Pharr said of his groups. Guests also tour Oak Alley Plantation, which is like most English plantations in terms of scope; that’s countered by the colorful Laura Plantation, one of the few remaining Creole plantations. The trip includes visits to Louisiana’s Old State Capitol and the Capitol Park Museum in Baton Rouge, as well as a bayou swamp tour at McGee’s Landing, before hitting New Orleans.

BRANSON, BENTONVILLE AND BEYOND

In Branson, Missouri, travelers are inundated with toe-tapping, hand-clapping music. Then, in Bentonville, Arkansas, they are inspired by breathtaking works of art.

Between the two destinations, “not only are they getting the entertainment and the art, but they’re getting the scenery,” said Kim Vance, owner of AdVance Tour and Travel. Though subject to change, the current lineup in Branson includes Doug Gabriel, “The Dutton Family Show,” “No. 1 Hits of the ’60s (and ’50s Too!)” and Classic Country’s “Patsy Cline and Friends” show. The “Six” show features six brothers singing a cappella, and Doug Gabriel’s show, which “just blew me away,” Vance said. With upbeat tunes and lots of costume changes during “No. 1 Hits of the ’60s (and ’50s Too!),” “people come out dancing, and a lot of them say it’s their favorite,” Vance said. A new experience Vance offers that has been a huge success is Wine, Dine and Yacht With the Stars on the Landing Princess yacht. Entertainers from the itinerary come out for an hourlong wine reception aboard the cruise and mingle with the group. “Usually, we get a pretty good turnout — sometimes we get as many entertainers as group members,” she said. The group visits the modern white-and-glass Crystal Bridges Museum of American Art, nestled on 120 acres of Ozark forest on the edge of downtown Bentonville. The museum displays as many as 500 of its several-thousand-pieces collection at any time, including two iconic portraits of George Washington. At the George Dombek Studio and Gallery in Goshen, Arkansas, the artist will greet guests during a reception and do signings, an exclusive experience for the group, Vance said. Visitors may be able to take a hands-on glass class or watch a demonstration at Terra Studios, famous for its “Bluebird of Happiness.”

S T A Y L A F AY E T T E Plan your escape to the Happiest City in America. 68

L A F AY E T T E T R AV E L . C O M /Groups

2018 TAP TRAVEL GUIDE 800 346 1958


OPRY TO OPRY

Say “opry,” and everyone immediately thinks of the Grand Ole Opry in Nashville. But there’s another opry in Oklahoma City: the Centennial Rodeo Opry in Stockyards City. During the Let’s Go Travelin’ itinerary Opry to Opry, people may focus on the Tennessee side of things — the Opry, Graceland, Historic RCA Studio B, and the Country Music Hall of Fame and Museum; but overlooking Oklahoma’s music contributions would be a mistake. The Centennial Rodeo Opry got its start as a backyard gathering of family and friends who loved to play and sing country music before becoming the Oklahoma Opry in 1977. The show moved into the historic Rodeo Theater in Stockyard City in 2002. Weekly Saturdaynight shows introduce new performers and bring back Oklahoma City favorites in a live music show that’s appropriate for all ages. The American Banjo Museum in the city’s Bricktown features more than 400 instruments and explores the history of the banjo, from primitive banjos built by African slaves to minstrel-age instruments from the mid-19th century to classical-era instruments dating to the late 1800s and early 1900s, and continuing with the bluegrass, folk and jazz genres. Groups can take a self-guided tour followed by a banjo recital or a sing-along performance in Your Father’s Mustache’s event room, which is modeled after a popular banjo nightclub of the 1960s. The Oklahoma Music Hall of Fame is housed in the Frisco Depot in Muskogee. Every year since its founding in 1997, the Hall of Fame inducts new musicians and has now inducted over 100 artists. The historic freight depot serves as a concert venue and often hosts perfor-

mances, including a September show by Milton Patton, the country singer from Season 8 of NBC’s “America’s Got Talent.”

“YOU CAN’T GET ’EM OUT OF MARTINS; THEY WOULD STAY THERE FOREVER IF THEY COULD.” — RICK PHARR “SIX” IN BRANSON

ARKANSAS’ CRYSTAL BRIDGES MUSEUM

Courtesy AdVance Tour and Travel

DANCING AT MARTIN ACCORDIONS Courtesy CTN Travels

Courtesy AdVance Tour and Travel

your adventure begins at visitkansascityks.com | 913.321.5800

WWW.TAPINTOTRAVEL.COM

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TRAVEL ALLIANCE PARTNERS FEATURED TRIPS FEATURED TRIPS • THE BEST OF TEXAS: Discover the Hidden Gems of Texas

KIM VANCE 417-485-7445

• BRANSON, BENTONVILLE AND BEYOND: Best of Branson and NW Arkansas • BRANSON AT SEA: Cruise with your Branson favorite entertainers We specialize in great customer service and hands-on outside the box itineraries. We make sure our passengers experience everything the destination has to offer. ADVANCETOURANDTRAVEL.COM KIM@ADVANCETOURANDTRAVEL.COM

• GREAT TRAIN ESCAPES, NEW ENGLAND FALL FOLIAGE • GREAT TRAIN ESCAPES TRAINS ACROSS COLORADO

JAYME MILLER 206-935-6848

• RIVER CRUISE WITH GARDENSMART OF PBS FEATURING AMSTERDAM, HOLLAND AND BELGIUM Alki Tours can your make your World Wide Travel Dreams come true. Check out all our web site has to offer. We look forward to making your travel dreams come true! www.alkitours.com WWW.ALKITOURS.COM

JAYME@ALKITOURS.COM

FEATURED TRIPS • LOUISIANA, NEW ORLEANS, HOUMA, LAFAYETTE, LAKE CHARLES & BATON ROUGE, from 959.00 ppd

DAVID G. BURNS 800-905-0590

• HOT SPRINGS OR EUREKA SPRINGS, ARKANSAS, 4 days from $325.00 ppd Since 1970, we have offered the perfect all inclusive distinctive and economical package tours throughout the US and Canada, for groups of 30 persons or more. Five offices across the US. ABA, NTA, TAP DAVID@ALLAMERICANTOURS.US

FEATURED TRIPS • CANADIAN MARITIMES: CIRCLE THE BAY OF FUNDY • CIRCLE NEWFOUNDLAND & LABRADOR

• INUIT LANDS & THE ROAD TO THE ARCTIC – 8 DAYS • BEST OF THE CANADIAN ROCKIES - 10 DAYS

JIM WARREN 866-814-7378

• AUSTRALIA & NEW ZEALAND HIGHLIGHTS - 15 DAYS

• PHILADELPHIA OR BOSTON, 4 days from $440.00 ppd

WWW.ALLAMERICANTOURS.US

FEATURED TRIPS

RICHARD ARNOLD 800-565-7173

Anderson Vacations is the leader in customized tour planning for Canada, United States and Australia/New Zealand. We also feature sheduled departures and Independent travel arrangements. WWW.ANDERSONVACATIONS.CA

JWARREN@ANDERSONVACATIONS.CA

FEATURED TRIPS • ROAD TO THE GREAT PACIFIC NORTHWEST • THE ASPEN GOLD OF COLORADO TRAINS

CARLA MEIEROTTO 319-753-2864

• CANADA BY RAIL: THE WORLD’S GREATEST TRAIN TRIP Atlantic Tours offers custom-designed group programs, scheduled guaranteed departures and self drive/city stays in the Canadian Maritimes, step-on-guides, private cruise shore excursions and day tours. WWW.ATLANTICTOURS.COM

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RARNOLD@ATLANTICTOURS.COM

Offering custom planned group tours for those wishing to expand their travels with the aid of a Burlington Trailways professional driver and a friendly, experienced tour host. TrailwaysTravel.com WWW.TRAILWAYSTRAVEL.COM

TOURS@BURLINGTONTRAILWAYS.COM

2018 TAP TRAVEL GUIDE


W W W.TA P I N T O T R AV E L .C O M

FEATURED TRIPS • TANZANIA: The Great Migration, the Serengeti, fantastic sightseeing and wonderful lodges

RICK PHARR 800-596-8687

FEATURED TRIPS

SUE BIGGS 313-388-0448

• WALTZ ACROSS TENNESSEE: A musical wonderland featuring Pigeon Forge, Nashville and Memphis

• THE GREAT GATSBY GETAWAY • ADRIATIC CRUISE, CROATIA, VENICE

• CALIFORNIA HERE WE GO: Los Angeles to San Francisco

• SOUTHERN CHARMS

CTN Travels begins in 28 year of serving a variety of group travelers. Customized group tours are our specialty. Groups of all sizes are welcome.

We offer guests an exciting and informative tour coupled with a cost effective rate. Our tours include planned activities as well as ample time for guests to pursue their own interests.

WWW.CTNTRAVELS.COM

RICK@CTNTRAVELS.COM

FEATURED TRIPS • MAGNIFICENT SCOTLAND & THE EDINBURGH TATTOO • MONTREAL & QUEBEC CITY

JULIA BRYAN 800-668-6859

WWW.CUSTOMHOLIDAYSONLINE.COM SUE@CUSTOMHOLIDAYSONLINE.COM

FEATURED TRIPS • GRAND TOUR OF SICILY FROM PALERMO TO TAORMINA

RICHARD DURGAN 800-234-9959

• GRAND TOUR OF ITALY FROM VENICE TO THE AMALFI COAST

• NEWFOUNDLAND & LABRADOR

• SORRENTO FEATURING NAPLES, CAPRI, POMPEII, AMALFI DRIVE

DeNureTours is a Canadian company that began in 1960. Our vacations in North America, Britain and Europe feature a kaleidoscope of experiences designed to turn ideas and dreams into lasting memories.

Award-winning full-service agency with a focus on high-value European group tours with Italy a specialty. Our forte is to be able to customize a European Tour to meet your exact specifications for your expected number of travelers.

WWW.DENURETOURS.COM

JULIABRYAN@DENURETOURS.COM

FEATURED TRIPS • 2020 PASSION PLAY IN OBERAMMERGAU • BRITISH ISLES: SCOTLAND, WALES & ENGLAND

SHANNON LARSEN 507-289-3332

WWW.DURGANTRAVEL.COM

FEATURED TRIPS • EXCEPTIONAL IRELAND • DOWNTON ABBEY & ENGLISH CASTLES

RDURGAN@DURGANTRAVEL.COM

SANDI PUFAHL 800-421-3330

• CENTRAL EUROPE: GERMANY, SWITZERLAND, AUSTRIA & PRAGUE

• JFK 100TH CENTENARY ON CAPE COD

With decades of experience creating tours, Ed-Ventures has gained the skills and reputation for delivering top-notch customized group tours to worldwide destinations.

Guided Deluxe Worldwide Vacations since 1989. We are a family owned business and a Partner in Travel Alliance Partners since 2005. Members of NTA since 1991, CLIA since 1996 and ABA since 2010.

WWW.ED-VENTURES.COM

WWW.TAPINTOTRAVEL.COM

SHANNON@ED-VENTURES.COM

WWW.FANCYFREEHOLIDAYS.COM

TOURS@FANCYFREEHOLIDAYS.COM

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TRAVEL ALLIANCE PARTNERS FEATURED TRIPS

“TJ” THOMAS B. MORGAN, JR 800-276-1528

• BEACHES OF ROCKY POINT, MEXICO • BEST OF THE BARRIO CUISINE TOUR

FEATURED TRIPS

JUSTIN OSBON 800-968-9161

• 15-DAY HEART OF EUROPE CIRCLE TOUR • 16-DAY HEART OF BRITISH ISLES TOUR

• TUCSON, UNESCO CITY OF GASTRONOMY

• 17-DAY WORLD WAR II MEMORIAL TOUR

Family owned & operated since 1916- we specialize in tours of the Southwest and Mexico, sightseeing tours, (culinary and local), and vehicles for charter from vans to state of the art motorcoaches.

Image Tours is a 3rd generation family owned and operated company specializing exclusively in escorted Europe Tours since 1939.

WWW.GRAYLINEARIZONA.COM

INFO@GRAYLINEARIZONA.COM

FEATURED TRIPS

GREG WINGHAM 513-777-8221

• RED CLIFFS ADVENTURE BY RAIL • LILACS & LEISURE ON MACKINAC ISLAND

WWW.IMAGETOURS.COM

JUSTIN@IMAGETOURS.COM

FEATURED TRIPS • RAILROAD ENGINEER: THE ULTIMATE EXPERIENCE

LEE DAHL 303-659-4858

• FALL COLORS ON THE SCENIC BYWAYS OF COLORADO

• ROCK -N- SOUL OF MEMPHIS

• YELLOWSTONE IN WINTER: A MAGICAL PLACE

Joy Tour & Travel has been developing exciting trips for groups since 1985. We serve mid to upper scale clientele with nice hotels that are 3 star or better and many inclusions and few options.

Experience the true Southwest. We offer unique, active and informative travel experiences. Our philosophy is to provide the best value and service possible.

WWW.JOYTOURS.COM

GREG@JOYTOURS.COM

WWW.LEISUREWESTTOURS.COM

LWT@LEISUREWESTTOURS.COM

FEATURED TRIPS FEATURED TRIPS

• SPRINGTIME IN THE MOUNTAINS: Ranch Relaxing and Biltmore Touring, • CAJUNS TO COWBOYS: Zydeco, Cowboy Cookouts, Cattledrives and Cowboys Stadium

• MOST INCLUSIVE ROSE PARADE EXPERIENCES • CAMAZING GIRLFRIEND GETAWAYS WINOS (Women In Need Of Spoiling)

LAURIE LINCOLN 800-300-6246

• OPRY TO OPRY: Oklahoma Opry to Grande Ole Opry

• MAJESTIC NORTHERN CALIFORNIA COAST

We are Peach Cobbler, Fried Green Tomatoes, Grits and Gravy.Golf, Music, History and Culture and more fun than you can shake a stick at. We love it all and we want to take you there.

From our innovative day and multi-day tours to our specialized Rose Parade and WINOS itineraries, we have provided our travelers with unique and enriching experiences since 1985.

WWW.LETSGOTRAVELIN.COM

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JUDY JOHNSON 866-992-8784

JUDY@LETSGOTRAVELIN.COM

WWW.MAINSTREETEXPERIENCES.COM

LAURIE@MAINSTREETTOURS.COM

2018 TAP TRAVEL GUIDE


W W W.TA P I N T O T R AV E L .C O M

FEATURED TRIPS • FOOTSTEPS TO FREEDOM, FEATURING THE TUBMAN TRAIL, NMAAHC, MLK , MORE!

KATE SCOPETTI 800-769-5912

FEATURED TRIPS

TONY MINDEN 503-585-3979

• AN EAST COAST SWING, NYC, BALTIMORE, PHILADELPHIA, LANCASTER, GETTYSBURG

• CIRCLE OREGON • JOURNEY UP THE KITSAP PENINSULA FEATURING VICTORIA, WHISTLER & VANCOUVER BC • SAVANNNAH CHARLESTON & THE GOLDEN ISLES OF GEORGIA

Mid Atlantic Tours and Receptive Services operates hundreds of hand crafted, custom tours for groups traveling to Washington DC, NYC, Virginia, the Mid Atlantic Region, and the World!

Our tours are designed with a “love of discovery”. We include upscale accommodations, exciting and unique attractions. Our Tour Directors are professional and experienced, to ensure everyone has fun.

• WASHINGTON DC, CHERRY BLOSSOM FESTIVAL WITH HOMES OF THE PRESIDENTS

WWW.TAKEAFUNTRIP.COM

FEATURED TRIPS • CUSTER STATE PARK BUFFALO ROUNDUP • LEGENDARY NORTH DAKOTA • LEWIS & CLARK TRAIL

MARS@TAKEAFUNTRIP.COM

SHEBBY LEE, CTP 605-343-4852

TONY@ORWEST.COM

FEATURED TRIPS

STEVE EVERIDGE • CANALS, CASTLES AND CRUISE: NEW YORK FINGER LAKES 800-572-3303 • NASHVILLE COUNTRY CHRISTMAS AT THE OPRYLAND HOTEL • HOLLAND TULIP FESTIVAL

Journeys of Exploration and Discovery. Explore the West where legends live. Enjoy magnificent western parks as you’ve never seen them before with special insights provided by experts in the field. WWW.SHEBBYLEETOURS.COM

WWW.ORWEST.COM

SHEBBY@SHEBBYLEETOURS.COM

A tour operator based in Staunton, Virginia, offering superior escorted tours throughout the United States and Canada since 1972. Quality vacations at value pricing with a personal touch. WWW.SHENANDOAHTOURS.COM

SHENANDOAHTOURS@COMCAST.NET

LLC

FEATURED TRIPS • MIGHTY 5 SALT LAKE CITY

JASON MURRAY 800-970-5864

FEATURED TRIPS

KEVIN MURPHY, CTP 800-951-5556

• KEY WEST, MIAMI & THE EVERGLADES

• GRAND CIRCLE EXPERIENCE

• FERRIES & TOWNS OF PUGET SOUND

• TRAIL OF THE ANCIENTS

• NEW YORK CITY: BEYOND BROADWAY & THE BRONX

Receptive Tour Operater focusing on adventure, scenic, and photography tours throughout the Southwestern US. Small Group Experience from 1 to 25 customers. Private and Custom Tours also.

Our company prides itself on creating memories through unique experiences with many options. Our groups are smaller in size enabling us to provide more personalized service and individual attention.

WWW.SOUTHWESTADVENTURETOURS.COM INFO@SOUTHWESTADVENTURETOURS.COM

WWW.TAPINTOTRAVEL.COM

WWW.SPORTSLEISURE.COM

KEVIN@SPORTSLEISURE.COM

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TRAVEL ALLIANCE PARTNERS FEATURED TRIPS MICHAEL COLDESINA 800-662-4424

• BASEBALL HALL OF FAME INDUCTION WEEKEND • PRO FOOTBALL ENSHRINEMENT WEEKEND • MULTI-DAY BASEBALL ROAD TRIPS

MIKE@SPORTSTRAVELANDTOURS.COM

FEATURED TRIPS

ANDY HILLARD 800-779-4869

• THE BIG E (EASTERN STATES EXHIBITION) • A NEW TWIST TO MACKINAC

We own and operate an award-winning fleet of deluxe motorcoaches, including a tour division that provides fully escorted travel packages for both individuals and groups throughout the United States. INFO@TRISTATETRAVEL.COM

FEATURED TRIPS

Talbot Tours offers groups, individuals and families exceptional values on tours, cruises, and international destinations. Fully escorted and independent travel services. WWW.TALBOTTOURS.COM

INFO@TALBOTTOURS.COM

FEATURED TRIPS • HAUNTED, THROUGHOUT NEW YORK: GHOSTS, ASYLUM, WINE AND SURPRISES!

NICHOLAS CALDERAZZO 917-575-6600

CRYSTAL DELORENZO 800-955-9233

• FROM ROCKWELL TO ROCKEFELLER: ROCKING THE BERKSHIRES & HUDSON VALLEY Always thinking of something new, quirky and surprising, our tours are custom-designed to your tastes and budgets. NY City, The Northeast and Mid-Atlantic are home. TWINTRAVELCONCEPTS.COM

FEATURED TRIPS

NICK@TWINTRAVELCONCEPTS.COM

SHAWN HORMAN 800-532-2113

• MYRTLE BEACH SPRING SPECTACULAR • EXPLORE MICHIGAN FEATURING MACKINAC ISLAND AND THE UP

• THE YELLOWSTONE EXPERIENCE • CANYON COUNTRY EXPERIENCE

• CAPE COD…..THE LOVELY ISLAND OF NANTUCKET

• CALIFORNIA RAIL TOUR

Wade Tours & Travel, a family owned business since 1926, serving the Northeast offering single & multi-day tours across the continental US and Canada with our fleet of modern state-of-the-art coaches.

Western Leisure is a full service receptive tour operator specializing in custom group tours to the National Parks of the west and along the Pacific Coast.

WWW.WADETOURS.COM

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• KENYA SAFARI ADVENTURE • COSTA RICA

• VERMONT & NEW HAMPSHIRE IN JUNE: LOCAL EXPERIENCES, JUNE BLOOMS

• A SPECTACULAR SOUTHERN SPRINGTIME

WWW.TRISTATETRAVEL.COM

SERGE TALBOT 800-662-9933

• SAN FRANCISCO, WINE COUNTRY & MONTEREY

We offer Baseball Road Trips, Spring Training, Hall of Fame packages, Major Sporting Events and can customize packages to fit your schedule and budget. WWW.SPORTSTRAVELANDTOURS.COM

FEATURED TRIPS

CRYSTAL@WADETOURS.COM

WWW.WESTERNLEISURE.COM

INFO@WESTERNLEISURE.COM

2018 TAP TRAVEL GUIDE


To help you discover the rich history and culture that permeates our historic districts and museums. VisitSiouxFalls.com/Tours-Are-Here

2018 Travel Alliance Partners Travel Guide  

The 2018 Travel Alliance Partners Travel Guide features the latest TAP news and next year's trip offerings.

2018 Travel Alliance Partners Travel Guide  

The 2018 Travel Alliance Partners Travel Guide features the latest TAP news and next year's trip offerings.