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Photo Tours 2015

Provence in May Provence
Vaucluse & Bouche du Rhone

In the steps of van Gogh this tour takes us from Vaison la Romaine in the north to the Camargue in the south, with Uzes, the Pont du Gard and St Remy de Provence in between

DATES: May 18-27, 2015,
PRICE:
$3959 per person double occupancy, $400 single supplement
LED BY : Barbara van Zanten
MAX NUMBER OF PARTICIPANTS: 5
PLACES LEFT: 1
PRICE INCLUDES:
9 nights accommodation, all breakfasts, two evening meals including wine and water, ground transportation from pick up to drop off at Marseille airport, baggage transfer service, services of tour leader and driver.
NOT INCLUDED: Air fare/travel costs to Marseille, meals other than mentioned above, personal expenses, obligatory travel insurance.
ARRIVAL: Pick up during the morning of May 18 at Marseilles Marignane International Airport.
DEPARTURE:
Any time during the day of May 27, 2015. last night spent at hotel at Marseille Marignane airport.

For a full description of our photo tour to Provence click here  
Photo Tours 2014
Just back from our spring tours to Burgundy and the Cotswolds...
Photos coming soon! See some of our photos on our instagram feed #europaphotogenica

The Medieval Treasures
of Northern Burgundy
COMPLETED photos coming soon

DATES: May 27 - June 5, 2014
PRICE:
$3650 per person double occ, Single supplement $300 ($3950 single room).
LED BY : Barbara van Zanten
MAX NUMBER OF PARTICIPANTS: 5
PLACES LEFT: 0 Full.
PRICE INCLUDES:
9 nights accommodation, all breakfasts, two evening meals including wine and water, ground transportation from pick up to drop off at Paris Charles de Gaulle airport, services of tour leader and driver.
NOT INCLUDED: Air fare/travel costs to Paris meals other than mentioned above, personal expenses, obligatory travel insurance.
ARRIVAL: Pick up during the morning of May 27th, 2014 at Paris CDG airport.
DEPARTURE:
Anytime during the day of June 5th (last night spent at a hotel at Charles de Gaulle airport)

Photos of tour participants in action here

A full description of our photo tour to the Cotswolds and Oxford here
Photos of tour participants in action here

The Heart of England - Oxford, & the Cotswolds
COMPLETED photos coming soon

DATES: Tuesday June 10th - Thursday June 19th, 2014 (9 nights)
PRICE: $3995 per person double occupancy. Single supplement: $450
LED BY: Barbara van Zanten
MAXIMUM NUMBER OF PARTICIPANTS: 5. PLACES LEFT:0
PRICE INCLUDES: 9 nights accommodation, breakfasts, two evening meals, ground transportation, pick up and drop off at Heathrow airport, services of tour leader/ driver.
NOT INCLUDED: Air fare to London Heathrow airport, meals other than mentioned above, personal expenses, obligatory travel insurance.
ARRIVAL: London Heathrow Airport. Pick up during the morning of June 10th, 2014. Please arrange your flights to arrive by 11 AM if possible. More detailed arrangements to be determined nearer departure date.
DEPARTURE: Please arrange your flights for departure very late morning or afternoon of June 19th, 2014. Last night spent in Oxford.

Photo Susette Willhite

Welcome
2014 marks our 24th year of leading photo tours to Europe's most beautiful (and off the beaten track) destinations, making us one of the longest running and most experienced photo tour organizers in the business. We've seen many changes in our years of touring both in the realm of photography and in the places we visit. The biggest change has been the move from film to digital, and lately the joys of Smart Phone photography with the miriad of photo apps available. I and my clients have adopted these developments (pun intended) with joy and enthusiasm. Follow me on Instagram to see my iphone pics (@europaphotogenica), and bring your Smartphone along on tour... you will not regret it!

WHAT WE DO: Since 1990 when we organized our first photography tour to France (Burgundy to be precise), Europa Photogenica Photo Tours (formerly known as France Photogenique) has been dedicated to providing carefully planned, high quality, small group photo tours to Europe's photogenic destinations. The tours are designed for photographers of all levels who wish to improve their photographic skills using Europe as their classroom, and for more advanced photographers who want to increase their stock of travel photos. The aim of our tours is to take you to places you would not ordinarily find by yourself and to provide you with unique photo opportunities. We do the scouting for you, saving you days of wasted time and money.

The tours are about making photographs and improving those photos through on-the-spot tuition if you need it. We do not offer a long list of photography tours because we are, after all, professional photographers with work commitments to fill. However, as we really enjoy the group experience of shared photography, travel adventures and laughs we choose to organize a few original, highly researched and planned photo tours each year to be sure to offer the best photo tour experience possible. We aim to provide the highest standards of photo instruction when needed, out of the way locations with lots of varied and UNIQUE photo opportunities, comfortable accommodation, great food, small groups (between 3 and 12), destinations that change every year and above all LOTS OF FUN, all at affordable prices. We can't guarantee the weather but we can guarantee photo opportunities not available with any other tour group.

At Europa Photogenica Photo Tours we’ve had a long love affair with France, and her charms are as potent as ever. Every time we take a tour group to France we re-discover the magic – the landscapes, the medieval villages, the food, the wine, the great history and the matchless architecture. In the past we have also photographed the charms of England, Spain, Italy and Greece. Ever flexible we change with the times and have expanded and contracted along with the world economies. For the moment we are back with our first love, France, but recently as the British pound was lower against the dollar we looked more and more to tours of Great Britain, which has endless photo opportunities to offer. In June 2014 we revisited one of THE MOST photogenic regions in the UK... The Cotswolds! Now however the pound has risen again putting photo tours to Britain out of reach...

WITH US YOU WILL: TRAVEL the beautiful back roads of Great Britain and France. LEARN the essentials of travel photography. ENJOY first-class food and accommodations. MEET like-minded travelers interested in photography and unique experiences as well as local people (we stay in locally owned hotels and bed and breakfasts.. not international hotel chains). You will PHOTOGRAPH landscapes, seascapes, mountains, rivers, medieval villages, churches, cathedrals, outdoor markets, fishing villages, vineyards, flowers, window boxes, sunsets, cafes, people, chateaux, castles, famous landmarks and more.

WHAT WE DO NOT DO is plan tours that cover vast areas or involve long distances traveling in the van. We try to limit the time spent traveling as much as possible, so we tend to stay in the same hotel or B&B for several days, driving out each day to photograph the surrounding areas. We usually stay in a maximum of three places but occasionally we stretch that to four including the airport hotel the night before the departure day. Therefore we do not plan tours that go from one end of a country to another or that incorporate more than one country.

The last few years have been difficult for all of us and the future is still an unknown quantity. Everybody lost money and lost confidence for a while. So invest in pleasure, travel experiences and your own well-being, by creating good memories and great images that you’ll keep for a lifetime. Unlike stocks or shares, great photos do not lose their value, and give you happiness forever. In these times of financial uncertainty, a photo tour is a great investment!

@europaphotogenica

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"I believe a great photograph is not merely documenting the scene at hand, rather it is about fusing the essential vision
of the artist with the reality of the landscape"
wilderness photographer Marc Adamus

*****

Just come back - 2014

Sept 26th - October 7th 2014...France - A custom tour with an individual private client to Paris, The French Riviera and St Tropez. We returned to several of the most photogenic places in Europe, including St Tropez, one of our favorites. A couple of rainy days didn't spoil our total enjoyment of this gorgeous and colorful region on the Mediterranean. Photos from this tour coming soon.

May 27th - June 5th 2014 ... France - The Medieval Treasures of Northern Burgundy - with perfect photographers' weather and a seriously fun group, along with an abundance of some of the best wines in the world this had to be one of the best tours ever. The skies were beautiful, the vines were fresh and green and flowers were everywhere. Highlights of the tour for me: a tour of his chateau given by a real French count followed by a picnic in his park; and the town of Saumer en Auxois. Photo galleries coming soon.

June 10th - June 19th, 2014... England - The Cotawolds and Oxford - the last of our tours to Britain for a while (the pound is rising too high against the dollar) we again had good weather karma for the entire tour, blue skies and morning sunshine giving way to white puffy clouds by the afternoon - classic weather conditions for a stable high pressure system and perfect for the photographer-participants. Highlights of the tour for me: a field of wildflowers in perfect condition at the Cotswolds Lavender fields (as well of course as the lavender fields themselves), roses everywhere and the perfectly formed town of Cirencester. Photo galleries coming soon.

Just come back - 2013

October 7th - 17th, 2013.... France - Alsace and Champagne - It was good to return to Alsace after ten years and to visit the Champagne region for the first time. The grape harvests were in full swing... three weeks later than usual because of the cold and wet spring they had. This also was the reason for the disappointing lack of fall color in the foliage. However we had great weather for landscape photography ... showers of rain interspersed with periods of sunshine which gave us lovely skies full of beautiful cloud formations. The group included three Australians who brought their own unique brand of humor and world view to the tour and made it hugely enjoyable. The villages hadn't changed at all since our last visit.. still cobble stoned and medieval and extremely colorful. The local people were charming and friendly and welcoming. Photo galleries of the tour and coming soon. Here is a gallery of the group in action.

June 9th - 19th, 2013... England - Kent and East Sussex - a NEW destination for us - to the south eastern counties of Kent and East Sussex in England. Although only 40 minutes from London Kent is a rural region know as the Garden of England because of its fruit orchards, market gardens and hop fields. Due to the sudden illness of a participant which forced him and his wife to pull outat the last minute we were a much reduced group of three (plus me) this time. We found images of quintessential Englishness... red phone boxes, flower filled gardens, thatched cottages, ancient pub facades, red mail boxes, fish and chip shops, cricket matches on the village green, stately homes, castles, old churches, abandoned fishing boats, the soaring ceilings and medieval stone effigies of Canterbury Cathedral, the famous gardens at Sissinghurst, bell ringers in a country church, Morris Dancers, and the ultimate seaside town of Brighton (see a prize winning photo from Brighton above), not to mention a cream tea in a churchyard, pub lunches and country house hotel accommodation. For the first time our i-phone cameras played a big part in the tour, supplementing our regular equipment and providing fun at the dinner table trying out several photo apps. It all reminded me of Polaroid Manipulation days. For full details of our 2013 photo tour to Kent and East Sussex click here. For photos of the group in action click here. Photos of the group in action. For client photos from the tour click here.

COMPLETED!

Alsace and Champagne..

Great landscapes, beautiful white puffy clouds in blue skies, exquisite villages, the wine harvest in full swing.... and this photo opportunity in the medieval village of Ribeauville..

For participants' photos from the tour
click here

 

COMPLETED!

Kent and East Sussex
The Darling Buds of May in The Garden of England



This photo taken on Brighton Pier by tour participant Kay Beausoleil won a photo competion! Click on the link below to see it:

http://www.phoozl.com/phooznews/results-summertime/
For photos of the group on tour click here

For Barbara van Zanten's photos from the tour Part 1)click here and Part 2 click here
For participants' photos from the tour
click here

 

Photo Galleries from past tours: here are links to ALL our image galleries from ALL our photo tours.
And here are links to our tour archives - images of photo tour groups in action


Cotswolds & Oxford

June 2014

Burgundy & Giverny

May/June 2014

Alsace & Champagne

October 2013

Kent & East Sussex

June 2013

Best of Western France

June 2012

Pilgrims' Way in Southwest France

September 2010

Image galleries coming soon

Image galleries coming soon

Image galleries coming soon

Barbara's images from our photo tour to Kent & East Sussex part one

Kent & East Sussex photo tour part two
Barbara's images from our photo tour to Western France part one

Best of Western France photo tour part two
Barbara's images of The Pilgrims' Way Aubrac, Aveyron Gascony photo tour part one

The Pilgrims' Way, Aubrac, Aveyron & Gascony photo tour part two
Images of the Cotswolds & Oxford photo tour participants here Images of the Medieval Treasures of Burgundy & Giverny photo tour participants here Images of the Alsace & Champagne photo tour participants here Images of the Kent & East Sussex photo tour participants here Images of Western France photo tour participants here
Images of Pilgrims' Way photo tour participants here

Beaujolais
& the Jura Mountains

October 2009

Normandy, Brittany & Giverny

June 2009

Paris Walking Tour

June 2009

Summer in Provence

June 2008

Dordogne & the Lot Valley

May 2007

Rhone Alps & the Beaujolais

May 2007

Barbara's images of the Beaujolais & Jura Mountains photo tour part one here

Beaujolais & the Jura Mountains photo tour part two

Barbara's images of the Normandy, Brittany & Giverny photo tour here Barbara's images of the Paris walking photo tour here Barbara's images from our photo tour to Provence here
Barbara's images from the Dordogne & Lot Valleys photo tour part one

Dordogne & Lot Valleys photo tour part two

Barbara's images from the photo tour to the Beaujolais & the Rhone Alps
Images of Beaujolais & Jura Mountains photo tour participants Images of Normandy & Giverny photo tour participants

no group images available

Images of Summer in Provence photo tour participants Images of Dordogne & Lot Valleys photo tour participants Images of Beaujolais & Rhone Alps photo tour participants

Recent comments on our tours:

Hi Barbara! Happy to 'Link In' after a few years of no travel. Your trips bring fond memories of what a photo tour can and should be. No detail unattended to. ...Many happy travel experiences. WP Lansing MI

You are a seasoned and excellent tour leader, Barbara.  There was admirable attention to detail before, during, and post-trip... SL, NY. Kent andEast Sussex, June 2013

The scenery was fabulous with great photo opportunities everywhere. Our tour included places that were off the beaten path and away from tourists. I enjoyed the people that we met along the way. They added interest and flavor to the trip. You did an excellent job of preparing for and leading this trip. You found the most interesting places for us to photograph during our stay in Western France. If one location did not work out, you always had several alternate places for us to visit. Your preparation and attention to detail made this a successful tour. DW. Illinois. Western France, June 2012

Thank you again for a great photo trip. I really relaxed and enjoyed it! I think for me it was the best one yet. I loved the locations and B&B's. Great choices and many thanks! I am dreaming about doors, shutters, hollyhocks,etc! D.B. Naples, FL. Western France, June 2012

"Thanks for a memorable trip. We saw more beautiful French locations in ten days than I have seen in all my previous visits to France. The sites were outstanding; it was even more enjoyable seeing them in the company of an interesting group of photographers..." DW. Chicago - Western France, June 2012.

This was a great photographic trip, and I'll have lots to keep me through the cold winter months. The highlight for me was the Farm, a place where I'd love to spend a month writing a novel if only I could write ... KDB. Quebec, Canada - Western France, June 2012

"A great experience... full of personal meaning. Thank you for all your efforts to make it so. I got to see an area long on my "to do" list..... W.C. Canada - Pilgrims' Way and Cathar Extension, Fall 2010.

I really enjoyed our last trip and have been spoilt by the fun and rewards (and wine choices) of your tours. I had a most enjoyable time and look forward to travelling with you again. RL. Australia - Pilgrim's Way and Cathar Extension, Fall 2010

"The trip is with me almost every day as I pour over my production... this has to be absolutely the best tour I've been on with you. You found great spots and we all seemed to get along as a group. Maybe it's because not having warm clothes made me Suffer For My Art, but I have a warm feeling remembering the shooting and the conversations, and I have lots of photographs to work on."... K.B. Quebec City, Canada. - Pilgrims' Way and Cathar Extension, Fall 2010.

Thanks for creating such a human ambiance  throughout. Indeed I owe you an even bigger thank you for providing such a  capital experience of photography. You are very good at what you do.  Though I often travel alone for my photography, I could never have  had such an intense experience as I had with this tour. Your  extensive research and experience made all the difference. So too  your non-judgmental way of helping me correct my mistakes and learn  to seek perfection rather than 'good enough'. I could go on, but just  be assured that I am so very grateful for this extraordinary tour."...W.C. Canada. - Beaujolais and Jura, Fall 2009

"The trip was the best of the six trips with you (since 1997 in Bretagne). As Bill was mentioning, we seemed to be quite compatible and very interested in the kind of shooting opportunities you were offering us. Thanks for everything."... J.B. Quebec City, Canada - Beaujolais and Jura, Fall 2009

I was having such a good time I wanted it to last forever....I doff my hat to you Barbara. You selected great sites in the best light. You have a fine sense of pacing, good energy to stay on top of things and inspire confidence. And you share knowledge and experience unobtrusively. These are all indicators of an expert adult educator. You effectively create the opportunity and atmosphere for a great experience to happen. W.C. Canada - Beaujolais and the Jura Mountains, October 2009.

"I decided to use the Normandy and Paris shots for the new photos for my 2010 exhibitions and sales.  It was a terrifically productive trip and I believe the best so far."... T.S. Kalamazoo, MI - Normandy, The D-Day Beaches and Monet's Garden, June 2009.

This is my 8th tour in 11 years. That's an unqualified endorsement.... M.W. Normandy, the D-Day Beaches and Monet's Garden, June 2009

"Barbara you made the trip spectacular! Your attention to detail, research and planning of so many great experiences provided us with fun, great pictures and forever memories... We would not have wanted to miss a single location. B & B, Los Angeles, Normandy, The D-Day Beaches and Monet's Gardens. June 2009

Everything was wonderful from the planning, the accommodations, the locations and the illustrated itinerary when we returned home. DG. Summer in Provence, June 2008

"The biggest delight of the tour was meeting you and your knowledge of the region..." R.S. MI - Rhone alps, Beaujolais and Lyon, May 2007

Barbara - you did such an exceptional job on the tour notes and photos. I have to say I enjoyed everything about the tour. I look forward to doing another tour as soon as I can. Dordogne and Lot Valley, 2007. J.C. CA.

I thought the group worked well together and you are very organized and patient and don't get frazzled when things aren't perfect - like the weather! Dordogne and Lot Valley 2007. J.C. CA

 "You put together another fantastic tour.  Many of my successful images come from your tours.  I am pleased with the great photographic opportunities you provided for us."... M.W.Santa Cruz, CA - Loire Valley, 2005.


All photo galleries: for client and tour leaders' image galleries from our previous tours click on the links or pictures below:
images of France images of England images of Greece images of Italy images of Spain Polaroid Manipulation gallery
Sign up for a tour
Tour Archives Galleries
to sign up for a tour click here
photos of photo tour groups enjoying themselves

Doom and Gloom? Or Lemonade?

The economy continues to improve, then it doesn't, then it moves forward, then it is slowing down... then we have revolutions and catastrophes that threaten to stall the recovery for everyone. This is not going to be easy is it? The good news is that the dollar is still much stronger against the euro and the pound than it was this time last year. This is great for all of us who have put on hold our travel plans while waiting for the world to be a happier place. The fall in the value of both currencies against the dollar makes trips to Europe much more affordable for the cash strapped American tourist.

The future outlook for the euro is that it will remain weaker against the dollar for the foreseeable future so tours to France will work out much less expensive too. Currently the euro is trading at around 1.36 (the million dollar rate, which you or I never get). This is better than the rate of 1.60 it was in summer 2011. The British pound is currently trading at 1.66. Contrast this to the 2.2 rate it reached a couple of years ago. This means that travel to Europe is much less expensive this year and most probably next year also. All the more reason to book your tour now so that I can watch for the most favorable rates and keep your dollar price as low as possible.

At Europa Photogenicawe, like everyone else, have had to deal with Mad Cow disease, 9/11, and the London bombings of July 2006 all of which took place just before we were due to depart for a tour. But when the going gets tough the tough go traveling. None of the participants of any of those tours backed out, with the exception of one gentleman whose flight connections were too numerous and too short to allow for the extra security measures put in place after 9/11. Nature continues to provide interesting challenges to travelers... two years ago it was the Icelandic volcano with the unpronounceable name of Eyjafjallajokull that regularly disrupted travel to and from Western Europe. Nothing worthwhile ever comes easy does it?

With extra security precautions, extensive examinations of our luggage and shoes, and luggage limitations etc, air travel has become an uncomfortable experience. However, we grit our teeth and put up with it because the rewards of getting somewhere exotic and different are many, and the experiences we enjoy while being in a different country create lasting memories. We seem to be able to adjust to whatever the airlines or nature throw in our path. It's admirable. My thoughts are that flying has always been dangerous and tedious. During the sixties, seventies and eighties (and beyond) it was the technology that couldn't guarantee the plane would stay up (as well as several terrorist high-jackings). Now it is mainly terrorism that threatens us. It remains true, however that statistically you stand more chance of being killed in a car accident on the way to the airport than being involved in a terrorist incident. I don't enjoy flying but I take my chances. It is the inconvenience of not being able to fly with hand-luggage containing camera equipment, laptops etc. that may one day seriously threaten the whole concept of photo tours abroad...

Travel while you can I say...you never know what will happen in the future to prevent world travel all together.

Barbara van Zanten-Stolarski


Our tour archives - group photos from past tours

When I started organizing photo tours twenty four years ago, personal computers were not around. We typed everything on a typewriter and made photocopies. We thought we were lucky when Kinko's (who?) came along. The Internet had not been invented yet, everyone used film and I spent hours intoxicating myself in a dark room trying to create perfect prints. When I started taking photographs in college I had a Praktika Nova 1B manual SLR camera and each frame had to be wound on manually. It is hard to believe that we have come so far with the technology in such a short time. Now we are geeking it up as if we had learned it in kindergarten. The Internet is our oyster and film is "SO last Millennium"...(at least for some people. I still shoot film for my more "arty" work).

Well, history may be well and truly in the past, but for alumni of France Photogenique and Europa Photogenica Photography Tours who want to wax nostalgic, or for those of you who are interested in seeing what we have been doing for the past fourteen years (I think that is far enough in the past for our archives...), I have created an archives page, where I have put up some group pictures from past tours. The photo collections are by no means complete. I have lots of photos from more recent tours but for some tours I have no group pictures, and I still have to look through several more shoe boxes full of photos to find others.

I will add more pictures as I find them, and if any of you alumni out there have any pictures of any tours that you want to share please send them in. You can e-mail them if you like, just format them to 350 pixels across the top edge and send them as a high res JPEG. To visit our tour archives page click here


 

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