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Travel: ENV Travel begins offering global culinary adventures

Travel: ENV Travel begins offering global culinary adventures

  • Updated
Christmas Markets

ENV Travel is restarting culinary adventures, including a holiday trip to the Christmas markets in Europe. 

After a year and a half hiatus due to the COVID-19 pandemic, ENV Travel plans to start taking small groups on global culinary adventures again this year.

In 2019, Karen Rowley, owner of ENV Travel, escorted groups to Morocco, Italy, Japan, Vietnam, Cambodia, as well as, New York and Alaska to cook, taste and explore culinary traditions and trends.

As travel opens up to many countries, Rowley has decided it’s time to satisfy people's hunger to travel again.

“There’s definitely pent-up demand and my regular clients have already made reservations for safaris, cruises, and other destinations," she said.  "Most of my clients are vaccinated, which cruise lines require for all passengers and crew. At least 93 countries are opening their doors to US citizens with some restrictions. The EU plans to open travel sometime this summer to fully vaccinated travelers.”

Rowley said every day she gets calls and questions about when and where to travel. "Most of the countries open to US citizens require a negative PCR COVID-19 test within 72 hours before arrival and some require additional health screening or testing while visiting," she said.

“It’s important to check before you make travel arrangements and before you depart since situations can change rapidly.”

Vaccine requirements will be getting more specific in the next 60 days according to many travel industry sources. "Many countries already require vaccines for yellow fever, so it’s not a stretch to think that countries will not require Covid-19 vaccines," Rowley said. 

She suggested that the culinary adventure she’s planned for the Christmas markets in Austria, Germany, and France could be a great way to start traveling again.

“We’ll visit Vienna, Salzburg, Basel, Strasbourg, and Paris, eating and drinking our way through the festive Christmas markets whose traditions date back to medieval times," Rowley said.

Some spots remain available to join the adventure.

ENV Travel has more culinary adventures in store with the Ice Festival in Sapporo in February, including a stop in Napa’s sister city, Iwanuma, where Miyagi oysters originated. The trip also explores the markets, street food, and gastronomic delicacies of Tokyo and Kyoto. Then on to Morocco in March for the third annual culinary exploration of Morocco steeped in French, Spanish, Berber, and Arabic traditions.

"This year my tours will focus on women chefs, winemakers, producers, and experiences to help them recover from the enormous impact that COVID-19 has had on them," Rowley said. 

“I am very excited to travel again and to share global cultures through food, wine, cooking, and local producers. It’s the same experiences that draw people to Napa.”

For more information about ENV Travel culinary adventures, email or call 925-785-2902.

As vaccination numbers rise in the U.S., so does interest in travel, but there are a number of missteps travel experts are seeing as more people go on trips. Veuer’s Maria Mercedes Galuppo has more.

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