Summer is nearing its end, and the spectacular days of fall are almost here. While 2020 has been strange in many ways, it has also been quite lovely in Haliburton this summer. The weather has been near perfect, and many Ontarians who normally travel outside the province have spent their vacations with us in cottage country. As such, we have many reasons to be thankful.
Over the past couple of weeks I have reviewed TravelMaven’s upcoming tour line-up and made several adjustments. Basically, I have shifted our 2021 tour calendar to 2022, and created a new one for 2021. This new calendar offers many great options, including a new German Car Museum tour in August. As it turns out, the other two new tours we were planning for 2021 (Israel and Azerbaijan & Istanbul) require on-the-ground research that I have been unable to complete this year. As such, they have been rescheduled to 2022, and Morocco, Russia and Uganda & Rwanda will be offered in 2023.
As many of you know, in addition to operating TravelMaven tours, I also plan and lead summertime hiking tours in Canada for DeNureTours. While those tours are detailed at www.denuretours.com , I have also listed them here so people will know what’s available. Check ‘em out, you may want to join me to wander in the woods, meander along the shore, or maybe even climb a mountain!
In recognition that travel planning has become more uncertain for everyone, TravelMaven has implemented new and more client-friendly policies regarding booking, payments and cancellation. Going forward, deposits will be fully refundable, final payment will not be due until 45 days prior to departure, and cancellation terms will be more flexible.
As such, if you book a TravelMaven tour and are subsequently unable to travel for any reason, we will cheerfully refund your money if you notify us 45 days or more before departure. As a result, you can make (or keep) vacation plans months in advance and guarantee yourself one of our 12 spots while incurring zero financial risk until 45 days prior to departure. How can you beat that?
Barry Devolin - September 2, 2020
We believe that very small groups of 6-12 travellers offer the "sweet spot" for travel: big enough to have others to share experiences, but small enough to get personal service and not waste time waiting around for others.
TravelMaven's combination of flexibility, free time and optional meals makes our small group tours perfect for solo travellers. Better yet, our Single Supplement rate reflects single hotel room rates only.
We believe the best way to see most places is on foot. That's why we typically leave the hotel about 9 am with walking shoes and daypacks, ready to explore the streets & sights and immerse ourselves in our destination.
One big advantage of very small groups is we can be flexible and open to spontaneous ideas and opportunities. We are also happy to help find & organize special attractions & activities for guests during their free time.
Packing and unpacking, and moving from hotel to hotel takes time and energy. Nobody likes to be told "bags outside your door at 7 am". That's why we carefully select central hubs and stay in as few hotels as possible.
TravelMaven’s offerings fall into the middle of the price range for group tours, but offer extraordinary value due to their maximum size of 12 travellers and personalized service from our experienced Tour Concierge.
Everyone dreams of a special place. For some, it’s an African safari or visit to Holland during tulip time. For others, the dream is Christmas Markets or a car museum tour in Germany.
These tours are all about spending a week in one iconic city. With a maximum of 12 guests, we walk the streets and visit the classic sights of some of the world’s greatest cities.
Each year we offer families an amazing and affordable alternative to the typical beach or winter sports vacation. In 2021, we're going on safari to Kruger National Park in South Africa!
Travellers have lots of off the rack options, However, for groups wanting to visit a special place at a time of their choosing, private tours can offer a surprisingly affordable alternative.
In addition to operating TravelMaven Tours, Barry also manages, plans and leads DeNureTour's hiking tours across Canada in the summertime. While these hiking tours are different from TravelMaven’s overseas offerings, they appeal to many of the same people. As such, links to DeNureTours hiking options are presented here on the TravelMaven website.
TravelMaven is also an official affiliate of DeNureTours. As a result, TravelMaven clients benefit from DeNureTours 60 years of experience and stellar reputation. DeNureTours takes our bookings, holds clients’ funds in trust, and provide excellent group rates for travel insurance, flights and airport hotels to all TravelMaven clients.
In the past 2 years we’ve learned that lots of Canadians dream about visiting South Africa and taking a real safari. In response, we have developed several options. For 2021, we are offering 2 small group departures: our 16 day Cape Town & Kruger tour on January 30 and our 10 day Kruger Safari for families during March Break. In 2022, we expect to extend our offerings with a 15 day Relaxed and Extended version of our regular 10 day Kruger Safari.
Another option for 2021 is Private Tours of Kruger Park and the surrounding region hosted by CD Tours (based in Kruger). And finally, in partnership with other trusted partners, we can now arrange single or multi-day "add ons" to many other regional attractions, such as the Western Cape wine region, south coast Garden Route and even Victoria Falls! Ask us, and we will add it!
"(Kruger) was an amazing trip. I’d highly recommend this to anyone who has a African safari on their bucket list but thought it might be outside their comfort zone or budget. I’ve got to hand it to Barry, he has put together an awesome itinerary for a price that is affordable. The week in Cape Town was a surprising bonus to this trip of a lifetime."
"TravelMaven planned a 10 day trip for my assistant to Prague last spring. Barry was great to work with, and I couldn't believe how easy the process was. Best part: he definitely saved us more than his fees."
"Barry recently planned a multi-stop 7 week trip for us to Europe and Southeast Asia in 2019. He looked after many of the flights and hotels, made lots of suggestions, and we will look after the rest ourselves."