ExperiencePlus! Blog

Four Favorite Tour Leaders

With the announcement of our 40th Anniversary Bike Across Italy trip we thought it the perfect time to feature a few of the tour leaders who have been with us the longest, Mario Cordero, Yorgos Paraskevopoulos, John Giebler, and Cristina Taioli.

Mario Cordero has led tours and managed our operations in Costa Rica since 1993. Mario speaks 4 languages and back before he had his twin girls he also led tours for us in France, Spain, and the Czech Republic. He encourages you to get away from it all this winter and join him in sunny and warm Costa Rica for a bicycling or multi-sport trip!

In this month’s Rambler we also feature our inaugural Bicycling Scotland’s Highlands Coast to Coast trips and tour leader Yorgos Paraskevopoulos (far left in photo) was part of the extravaganza. Originally hired to lead tours in Greece back in 1999 Yorgos broadened his repertoire and has led tours in Ireland, Italy, Turkey, Romania, Czech Republic, France and his latest favorite Scotland. There is still opportunity to join Yorgos this September 4 – 11 or September 4 – 14.

John Giebler (back row, far left) has been leading ExperiencePlus! tours in France and Italy since 2000. In the past 11 years he’s relocated from France to Italy, has learned Italian, become a sommelier, and recently become engaged. You’ll next find him leading the Bicycling the Castles of the Loire Valley tours, September 6 – 12, or September 6 – 15.

If you’ve done a bicycle tour with us in Italy it is very likely that you’ve traveled with Cristina Taioli (back row, second from left) who will lead her 60th ExperiencePlus! tour this fall in Puglia (October 19 – 26 and October 19 – 30). Besides being one of our most popular leaders Cristina is also a published author and marine biologists in the off season.

We think that Herb Williams’ toast to Cristina and fellow tour leader Enrico Dal Monte summarizes the unique relationship between our bicycle travelers and guides perfectly.

A Toast to Our Guides – Cristina and Enrico (aka Nona and il Professore)

A toast to our guides for planning our rides
And for showing us fabulous sites.
We learned some Italian, drank wine by the gallion (sic)
At meals lasting into the nights.

Enrico’s so fine, Cristina’s divine
Each day was a wild celebration.
But our favorite sight was them up on the right
At the door of each day’s destination.

Sí, from Venice we biked wherever they liked
From flat lands to high elevation.
We pedaled, we talked, as the roads they were chalked
To ensure us the finest vacation.

From buon giorno to ciao, its arrivederci now.
We go on our own separate ways.
So we toast now to you for all that you do
For our Experience – Plus you amaze.

Herb Williams
Venice to Florence – May 2011