What we're about

Our name couldn't say it better. We love food, wine, chocolate, & travel. Join our local bay area events which range from eating out, chocolate & wine tastings, hiking, foodie events, & local and international excursions (of course we indulge in the first three on these bigger trips too!)

Upcoming events (5+)

The Ultimate Vietnam Adventure

Ho Chi Minh City

Details Our friends at Photofly Travel Club ( https://www.photoflytravel.com/ ) have planned an amazing cultural and visually stunning adventure to the whole of Vietnam! February 19th-27th 2019 Go here to sign up: https://www.photoflytravel.org/vietnam-group-tours/ ***PLUS, don’t forget to check out our Best of Vietnam’s Tropical Paradise Optional Extension! Coming Soon…*** E-mail us at [masked] for the daily itinerary! This time we’ll be exploring both the South & North, which in many ways are like two different countries (visually and culturally)! From the one-of-a-kind floating markets along the Southern Mekong River Delta, to the world famous natural wonders at Halong Bay in the North, to the countries best beaches and tropical waters, we’ll show you our favorite parts (on & off the path!) that this strikingly vertical country has to offer on our Vietnam small group tours. ----------------------------------------- * 8 nights/9 days throughout this unimaginably diverse country: – 3 nights/4 Days of unforgettable Southern Vietnam (Saigon & Mekong Delta) – 5 nights/6 days of stunning Northern Vietnam (Halong Bay & Hanoi) – 4 nights/5 days Optional Extension to Vietnam’s tropical central coast with the best beaches in the country! (Da Nang & Hoi An) * Charming boutique hotels throughout * Breakfast Everyday * 8 Lunches & 4 Dinners Included Southern Vietnam (4 Nights): Covering the Mekong Delta, the extreme southern end of the river, and the area around Ho Chi Minh City (Saigon), Southern Vietnam is unique and stands out as one of the most important regions in all of Southeast Asia. Ho Chi Minh City (formerly known as Saigon) is a “compelling clash of commercial clout and colonial grandeur, showcasing soaring skyscrapers next to tree-lined boulevards, and a lingering aura of French finesse.” -Frommer’s The whole region is a rich and lush area covered with rice fields thanks to the nutrient soil from the upper Mekong. It produces half of the total of Vietnam’s agricultural output (in fact the delta produces more rice than Korea and Japan altogether!). Timeless scenery of farmers planting or harvesting rice make for incredible photo’s here. The delta’s complex system creates a maze of small canals, rivers, and seasonal creeks interspersed with colorful villages and bustling floating markets. – Paraphrased from Wikitravel.org * Tour of Ho Chi Minh City (Notre Dame, Hotel d’Ville, Ben Thanh Market, & Dong Khoi street) * Cu Chi tunnels (Visit the vast underground network of tunnels built first as a defense against the French, and later expanded during the American war) * Floating Markets of Cai Be & Cai Rang (Sampan ride through the floating markets colorfully congested with women and children jostling for space and vying to sell their wares) * Khmer Pagoda in Can Tho City (The most beautiful Khmer pagoda in the Mekong Delta!) Northern Vietnam (5 Nights): 6 days in Northern Vietnam will take us through the Old Quarter of Hanoi to an interesting and delicious street food tour. A 3 day exotic cruise in Halong Bay will complete this part of the journey in the best way possible! This breathtaking secluded harbour has 2,000 limestone islands rising from the emerald waters of the Bac Bo gulf. It is one of Vietnam’s most scenic regions and has been referred to as the eighth Wonder of the World. * Hanoi highlight city tour (Ho Chi Minh Mausoleum, Presidential Palace, One Pillar Pagoda, Ho Chi Minh Museum, Temple of Literature (Awesome photographs of the grounds and architecture here!) * Unique Street Food Experience (Lunch and privately guided tour of the hidden but true taste of Hanoi on a discovery walk-through of Vietnamese street cuisine and culture) * Explore the Old Quarter- (Right outside our hotel, lots of great photos to be taken along the old streets, each well-known for a specialized industry. Silk clothing ready-made and tailored, embroidery, silver products, and so much more can be found at the different merchants.) * Hill Tribes & Rice Paddies (A full day adventure to Hoa Binh province filled with bright green rice paddies and colorful lowland ethnic minority tribes, mostly of nomadic Thai origin. We’ll visit the “White Thai” Minority village of Mai Chau. Amazing cultural and landscape photos to be captured here!) Cruise Halong Bay! A great way to see spectacular Halong Bay is a slow cruise through the seemingly never-ending bay of islands. Lay in the sun, enjoy a selection of the freshest seafood, and take photograph after photograph. On our itinerary, the aim is to get off the beaten track while maintaining a leisurely pace. The size of the vessel allows passengers to get much closer to Halong Bay’s natural wonders, such as its pocket lagoons and small fishing communities. * 2 night/3 Day all inclusive cruise of the best & off the path destinations in Halong Bay * Deluxe cabins w/ ensuite bathrooms and air conditioning on traditional Vietnamese style “Junk Boat” * Explore Bai Tu Long Bay (The largest part of the UNESCO World Heritage Site, most beautiful, off the path, and by far least crowded!) * Explore, kayak, and swim among hidden beaches, lagoons, and magical sea caves! * As always this entire trip will be amazing for photography and one photographer will be on hand to help those who want to learn more about using their camera’s, taking better pictures, etc. (PhotoFly Travel Club adventures are laid back when it comes to photography. They are notworkshop style based tours and you do not need to be an avid photographer to join. All are welcome!) * All transfers & taxes Included * Domestic Flight Included from Saigon to Hanoi (SGN–>HAN) * International Airfare is not included. We are happy to help you find a good flight as always! (Flying into Saigon (SGN) onFebruary 19th 2019 and departing from Hanoi International Airport (HAN) on February 27th 2019) *Don’t forget to e-mail us for the daily itinerary of Vietnam small group tours ( [masked] ) ------------------------- Join Us! *For our solo travelers I will pair you up with someone of the same sex unless single occupancy is requested. Price: $[masked] *Single Supplement:[masked] OR Deposit: $600.00 Go here to sign up: https://www.photoflytravel.org/vietnam-group-tours/ **PLUS, don’t forget to check out our Best of Vietnam’s Tropical Paradise Optional Extension! Coming Soon…**

Let's get out of the rain & have some great Indoor Fun !!

Let's get out of the rain & have some great Indoor Fun !! Sunday, 24 February[masked]:00 pm to 6:00 pm What we'll do Eat, Play, Drink! Booze, Apples, and Fun, Interactive Games: Co-Sponsored with Indie Tom /Backroads Wine & Nature Adventures & Laurie Gardner,Life and Leadership author/Speaker/Coach. Who cares if it rains outside…we can still have fun! Come join us at the tasty, hip Beer Baron restaurant in the Rockridge ‘hood of Oakland for craft drinks, substantive appetizers, and fun, interactive, mingle games led by life coach, author, and speaker, Laurie Gardner (www.lauriegardner.com). Your all-inclusive fee of $39 covers a Beer Baron craft drink (cocktails, beer, whiskey, or wine), multiple appetizers (sliders, satay, falafel, etc.), all taxes and gratuities, and hilarious, active games to learn how to communicate well and get to know new friends. When and Where: 4-6 pm at Beer Baron, 5900 College Ave, Oakland, CA 94618. Free parking on the street and one block away at Rockridge BART. Payment: $39 to Paypal account: [masked] or by check to Laurie Gardner, P.O. Box 5312, Berkeley, CA 94705. For other forms of payment, contact Laurie at the email below. Please RSVP and pay in advance by Feb. 22 so we can get accurate food counts. All food freshly made for our group. Walk-in fee: $45. There will be vegetarian and gluten-free options. If you have these or other special diet requests, please let Laurie know (email below). Questions: Contact Laurie, [masked], cell: (510)[masked] Can’t wait to see you and play! Warmly, Laurie & Indie Tom \Forward to a friend www.lauriegardner.com Live fun. Live full. Live free. like my page on facebookfollow me on twitterconnect on linkedinsubscribe on youtube You are on this email list to receive Laurie Gardner's Words of Wisdom, video lessons, and other offerings. Our mailing address is: Laurie Gardner Programs and Publications 2705 Webster St. #5312 Berkeley, CA 94705 Add us to your address book

Sumatra and Cambodia: From Orangutan Encounters to Temples ( 3 seats left)

Feb 28th-March 13th, 2019 Give Back with our Compassionate adventure! This year Destination Earth and team is bringing a life changing adventure to our groups. Have 60 seconds? SEE VIDEO OF THIS ADVENTURE HERE: https://youtu.be/jwPF4SZpBa0 We spent weeks on the ground on multiple scouting trips to create something truly exceptional. We discovered 4 star boutique properties not bookable online, Sourced the best restaurants in the countries, and enlisted engaging local guides that bring you into the heart of these entrancing regions with trekking itineraries guaranteed to put you face to face with Orangutans in a natural but safe environment. This custom curated intimate adventure has no more than 15 guests in order to blend in and build community. Join our cause and treat yourself to a one of a kind luxury giving back experience that will change your life forever. --In Cambodia, we will have an opportunity to deeply connect with the locals while making a true difference in the lives of these amazing people, staying in a village in the shadows of long forgotten temples. --In Sumatra we will take part in a project to plant trees to save Orangutans and their habitat, while getting up close and personal with these incredible creatures. Sign Up Here: https://www.destination-earth.org/trips/sumatra-the-forgotten-continent/ Want more info first? Just email Jud about this adventure at [masked] * 8 awe-inspiring days in each country * Mostly inclusive: unlike other trips to these regions most of your meals are on us! We prefer you pull out your camera, not your wallet. * 3 Complimentary Massages * Boutique hand crafted resorts * All in country transfers including air Absorb the whole experience for $3,895 or join us for just Cambodia at $2,195, or adventure into Sumatra for as little as $2,395 depending on budget and time constraints. _______________________________________________________________ CAMBODIA: Cambodia offers the largest Buddhist temple monument in the world, incredible food, and Non profits where we can make a huge impact. Dive in and prepare to have all of your senses engaged. Days 1 - 2 The temples and beyond *Immerse in 900 year old temples *Fly high over the temples in a hot air balloon (included) *Get art made by these creative Orphans from ODA orphanage *Eat at at award winning restaurants that are ran by street kids given a second chance! Days 3-7 Forgotten Temples and the Circus *Travel through the backroads of Cambodia to the original Angkor style temples of King Jayamaran the IV * Stay for one night in a traditional Khmer village and Give back in a way you never have,: this 7 minute video will inspire you! https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=HFy5H5blzS8&feature=youtu.be *Witness one of the best performances of your life! Join us for a touching story and unbelievable feats, as these formerly street kids out perform many Cirque Du Soleil acts. * Travel by boat through floating villages _______________________________________________________________ Days 8-15: SUMATRA From the Jungle to Calderas- 8 Day Sumatra mostly inclusive Extension: Day 8-11 Orangutans and rivers *Explore fabulous cuisine in Medan * Treck face to face with the orange "forest Man" * Make Tofu, see Palm Sugar made in front of you, and tour rubber plantations * Plant trees (for 1.5 hours) that will save the lives of these endangered primates Days 11-15 Volcanos, Islands and saving lives * Eat the best street food of your life * Hike live volcanos at sunrise * Bask in private hotsprings * Stay in 4 star villas on Island in largest volcanic lake in the world * Visit rehabilitation center where we give back to cleft palate kids in need Sign Up Here: https://www.destination-earth.org/trips/sumatra-the-forgotten-continent/ Want more info first? Just email Jud about this adventure at [masked] *For our solo travelers I will pair you up with someone of the same sex unless single occupancy is requested.

The Peru Adventure!


March 18th-March 27th 2019 Our friends at PhotoFly Travel Club (http://photoflytravel.com/) have had some epic adventures here over the years and we’re invited for round 6! Don’t miss this one since the threat of Machu Picchu being shut down forever is real! Seeing this wonder of the world with your own eyes is truly mind blowing. More Info here: http://www.photoflytravel.org/peru-adventure-tour/ Email us at [masked] to get the daily itinerary and more details! * 9 nights/10 Days throughout the best of Peru * Boutique hotels and quaint lodging (Encompasses the feel, culture, & atmosphere of each destination) * Breakfast everyday * 4 Lunches, 2 Dinners * Guided walking tour of Cusco * Free day to explore the wonders of Cusco. Lots of great optional activities to choose from: * Weaving, cooking, and gardening classes, river rafting the Urubamba, Mountain Biking, silver workshop, and more in Cusco * Guided tour of the beautiful and historic Sacred Valley (Great photo opportunities here!) * Pisac market and Ollantaytambo village and ruins * Explore Maras village and salt pans and Moray archaeological terraces * Vista Dome train journey to Machu Picchu * Optional Inca Trail hike from Winay Wayna and the Inti Punku (sun gate), lunch en route. * Additional costs apply * Private guided tour of Machu Picchu * All Transfers & Taxes Included * Inter-trip airfare included * International airfare is not included. (We are happy to help you find a good flight as always! Flying in and out of Lima International Airport (LIM). Arrive on 04/18/18 and depart after 8:15 PM on 04/27/18) * Roommate Pairing to save money as always! * Email us to see daily itinerary at [masked] Join Us! *For our solo travelers I will pair you up with someone of the same sex unless single occupancy is requested. Price: $[masked] *Single Supplement: $535.00 OR Deposit: $600.00 Go here to sign up: http://www.photoflytravel.org/peru-adventure-tour/

Past events (359)

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Ave Charles Darwin y Piqueros

Photos (350)