Ciao from Ortigia, Sicily!
First off, apologies for the delay in getting you this newsletter; we had an important software update with our email software over the weekend and we weren't able to get this out until today.
We wrapped up our Tuscany LiveAway last week and now I am in Sicily doing some reconnaissance for the Sicily LiveAway we are putting together for 2023. It's challenging to get to all these places to do on-the-ground inspections and such, but it's very important to me as it allows us to ensure the Wheel & Anchor standard of experience across all of our trips.
I made this week's video blog just before hopping on the train to get to Sicily from Florence, which is roughly a 14.5 hour rail journey. It sounds long compared to flying, but to me the whole point of travelling by train is the experience of the trip itself.
It's about making a conscious decision to eschew the idea that faster is always better, and taking in perspectives of a country you simply can't get by any other mode of travel; I know many in this community feel the same way from the response we had to our webinar series on inspiring train journeys that we did during the pandemic peak.
We were supposed to do our much-anticipated and much-delayed Trans-Siberian rail journey this September; however due to a particularly belligerent fellow in Moscow we had to cancel that program altogether for the time being. It's a shame, but such are the complexities of crossing borders sometimes.
That said, I refuse to let the dream of an iconic train trip die, and I've been talking with our partners in South Africa about doing a trip with a safari component on the famous Rovos Rail, known as 'the most luxurious rail journey in the world,' in June of 2024.
We'll be doing Cape Town to Dar es Salaam in Tanzania, with stops to take in the magnificent Victoria Falls, do game drives in Madikwe Game Reserve, cruise on the Zambezi River, and more.
June 2024 may seem like it's a long ways away, but this is a very specialized trip and one that fills up long in advance, particularly now with the surging demand for travel in the waning days of the pandemic. There will be more details on that to come soon, so stay tuned if you're feeling like a proper bucket list experience is in the cards for you.
This week I'm also pleased to launch the May 2023 sailing of our Adriatic Coast program, where we'll be chartering the whole ship as with our program there this fall. I've linked the webinar replay here should you be interested in checking that out as well.
Other trips soon to be launched include Japan (webinar link here), the aforementioned Sicily LiveAway, and more. As always, let us know where you're interested in going via our New Member Questionnaire and we'll keep putting them together 🙂