2015 Spring Specials Brochure Released

2015-Spring-Brochure-CoverWarm-Weather Discoveries & Land/Cruise Specials

Country Travel DISCOVERIES has posted an online version of our new 2015 Spring Discoveries & Specials travel brochure, which also hits homes this week.

If you're still looking for an exciting springtime travel opportunity, we've "sweetened the pot" with our Travel More, Save More escalating discount program, which you can apply toward several warm-weather discovery tours. Also featured are two early-booking special offers on land/cruise tours to Alaska and the Danube, and our exciting new line of GET ACTIVE tours.

View/Download the pdf2015 Spring Discoveries & Specials Travel Brochure in Adobe PDF Format.

Travel Experience: The Happiest Valentine

valentines-heartThe Gift of Travel and the Key to Happiness

In 2004, researchers from UC-Boulder and Cornell conducted an expansive study on money and happiness for Northwestern Mutual Financial Network. Money, it turns out, can buy happiness…but not in the way we might think. Apparently, what you buy counts, and people claim to be happier when they invest in meaningful experiences rather than material things. Unlike a new iPad or TV or earrings, such experiences as travel, learning, or social action don’t lose their novelty, depreciate, break or become obsolete.


Special Winter 2015 Panama Tour Opened

Private Group Invites You to CTD's Only 2015 Panama Tour

Panama City MarinaCountry Travel DISCOVERIES has announced that a special Panama Cultural Experience & Panama Canal tour crafted for a private travel group from Pennsylvania will also welcome other CTD travelers on an unpublished February 22 – March 1, 2015 departure. Organizers from MYW Tours have graciously allowed us to open up a handful of spaces on the trip for those interested in joining this friendly, Christian-oriented group in Panama City this winter.


CTD's "Wanderings" Radio Series


"Thoughts and Insights Designed to Help You Maximize Your Enjoyment of Traveling"

Starting in September, Country Travel DISCOVERIES began a new series of travel advice radio vignettes entitled “Wanderings,” airing on Milwaukee's WRIT Oldies 95.7 rock radio station. Intended to provide short insights to help listeners get better satisfaction and value out of their leisure time and travel dollar, the series begins in September with multiple rotating spots on the themes, "Be Your Own Group Travel Leader," "Be a Tourist in Your Own Backyard," and "What a Good Tour Operator Should Do for You".


A Costa Rican Treat: The Tabacon Hot Springs

Find Unparalleled Thermal Relaxation in Costa Rica Winter Paraiso

Tabacon Hot Springs WaterfallsThere are many naturally occurring hot springs around the world, many affiliated with volcanic activity. In Costa Rica, there are hot springs of different temperatures, flow volumes and mineral content that can be found in the regions around the Arenal, Irazu, Miravalles and Rincon de la Vieja Volcanoes, and others in the Orosi Valley or near Ciudad Quesada in San Carlos.

But the perfect combination of volume, temperature and mineral content (low sulfur content to prevent strong odors) that is present in Tabacon Grand Spa Thermal Resort is unique in Costa Rica and worldwide.


Unexpected Thrill on Jekyll Island

 Our Coastal Carolina & Georgia Shores discovery tour this past October proved very exciting for our group.

After visiting the Georgia Sea Turtle Center, Country Travel DISCOVERIES' group found out that the caretakers were about to release two giant loggerhead turtles back into their ocean home!

By consensus, the group arranged to changed their planned itinerary by just 30 minutes and managed to watch this moving scene happen on Jekyll Island's beach shore.

Check out the fun photos here, as well as the Center's cool video at the end, wherein all of us crowded around the turtles in a circle to say goodbye. Overhead video footage was filmed with a very small drone just over our heads.

A totally unexpected opportunity, this perfectly timed event became the highlight of our trip!

-- Judy Zerby


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Hats Off to Volunteer Firefighters

AS my wife, Paula, and I pulled up to the fire station in Harlan, the unmistakable aroma of meat on the grill wafted near our car. Several men—volunteer firefighters—were standing around a barbecue grill, and I was tempted to yell out, “Hey, where’s the fire?” But I figured they’d heard that line all too many times before.

We’d driven from our home in Ames on a Saturday evening in early October to meet a busload of travelers on the “Our Iowa’s Western Treasures” tour of western Iowa we offered in 2014 in partnership with Country Travel Discoveries.

The firefighters and EMTs were putting on a grilled steak and chicken supper for these travelers. In fact, this was the seventh busload of our travelers they’d fed and welcomed to Harlan over the summer and fall.

We’d heard from previous groups that this was one of the highlights of the tour, and Paula and I wanted to see what it was all about. Besides, we felt a special kinship to this friendly county-seat town. Paula grew up there, and her dad had served as mayor many years ago. When the current city leaders found out our groups would be staying overnight in the area, they asked the fire department to treat the travelers to some old-fashioned small-town hospitality.


Steve Uelner, Roy Reiman, Reunite on iHeartMedia

Country Travel DISCOVERIES President Steve Uelner, and Reiman Publications founder Roy Reiman, were recently featured in a business news spotlight interview by Jerry Bott for WISN News Radio Milwaukee.

Uelner and Reiman had worked together at the former World Wide Country Tours, the successful travel arm of Reiman Publications before it was bought and closed down by Reader's Digest. The two reunited on the radio to discuss the formula behind WWCT's-- and then CTD's -- unique "editorial" travel programs to off-the-beaten-path destinations and attractions most companies don't go.

They also discussed their newer collaborations, creating surprisingly successful travel experiences to unusual vacation destinations -- a partnership between Country Travel DISCOVERIES and Reiman's publication, Our Iowa Magazine.  They desrcibed how the first attempt to create a single unique guided tour of rural eastern Iowa grew into six sold-out departures, followed by creation of a second tour of Western Iowa with seven sold-out departures, and now a planned third tour of the state. The model is also being replicated now with other publications such as Nebraska Life.

The program originally aired November 22 on WISN, part of the iHeartMedia network. The complete program may also be heard on the Country Travel DISCOVERIES website.

WISN Business Spotlight: Steve Uelner and Roy Reiman (MP3)


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