Gaylene Otto

Colfax, IA

Gaylene has just returned from her FOURTH trip with Tenon Tours! This time, Gaylene traveled to Ireland and Iceland. Read about her adventures and why she chooses to travel with Tenon Tours:

 

Ireland


What made you want to travel to Ireland again?:
“I had previously visited northern portion of Ireland with my husband & wanted to share the wonderment with my travel girlfriend. Who wouldn’t want to see it twice?!”

Where were the top 3 places to visit on your wish list? If you made it to them, what did you think?:
“Giant’s Causeway was fantastic! Northern Ireland twist & turn coastal drives (often 1 lane). Away from coast, seeing homes, farms, farmers, sheep & all the green!”

Tough question alert! What was the best part about your vacation?:
“Driving in rental car in northern section of Ireland, seeing sheep by the ocean. Too may ‘best parts” to list!”

What made you want to travel with Tenon Tours? What advantages did you have booking with Tenon Tours?:
“My travel girlfriend & I had already traveled with Tenon Tours “self-drive” in the southern half of Ireland. My husband & I had traveled Tenon Tours “self-drive” in northern half. We knew Tenon Tours could assist with this (my third) Tenon Tours trip.”

How was your experience with your Personal Sales Representative(s)?:
“Stephanie was exceptional as were other sales representatives! They ALL were helpful & respectful of my zillion questions.”

Do you have any advice to offer up about the weather?:
“We packed for cool damp weather, carried ponchos, umbrellas & dressed in layers. We didn’t wear cloth or canvas shoes that would get wet immediately. I had black low cut leather, water repellant walking shoes.”

Were you able to meet any friends along your journey?:
“We always visit with guests at hotels & B&B’s. We also visited with local citizens, shop owners, etc.”

What are your favorite souvenirs you brought home?:
“I don’t buy souvenirs anymore, I bought several all occasion greeting cards to send & share from home, Ireland (County Mayo) soccer/football jerseys for 2 grandsons. My friend bought soccer shoes, soccer socks, t-shirts, a beautiful dress for kids & grandchildren.”

Were there any unplanned parts of your trip that wound up turning into one of your favorite travel stories?:
“Our flight from Chicago to Dublin was “rescheduled” from evening to next day/late morning: airlines put us up overnight in nice airport hotel, dinner/breakfast vouchers, upgrade to penthouse suite upon arrival at 1am Dublin Hotel. The rain/gale wind in Letterykenny when taking the Walled City walking tour. THE wind at Cliff’s of Moher! When learning our ORD to DUB flight was rescheduled to the next day, I emailed Tenon from Chicago, Stephanie & other sales reps rescheduled our airport greeter/driver & alerted hotel we’d be arriving at 1am instead of day before. We were afraid we’d lose our hotel room since unable to check-in on time. We checked in several hours later than planned, were surprisingly upgraded by hotel to a beautiful “Georgian” penthouse suite, it made up for everything! Even if we had not been in penthouse suite, we would have been happy! The hotel clerk waved to us from his desk while we tapped on hotel window at 1am to enter, he pretended he wasn’t going to open the locked door:) We waved back laughing, he let us in & was very kind. A pleasant unplanned experience! Other travelers (not with Tenon Tours) for our same flight, sitting in Chicago airport were frazzled as were unsure how to call Dublin hotels, rental car, B&B’s from Chicago, some were missing connecting flights. We were not stressed, Tenon had our backs.”

How did you feel about driving on the “wrong” side of the road?:
“It is “alarming” the first hour, especially when driving through round-a-bouts. We took turns, each drove every other day.”

What tips do you have for others planning a self-drive tour?:
“You are not in a hurry, you can take the wrong turn out of a round-a-bout or elsewhere. You are on vacation! We used GPS on cell phone. Don’t over schedule, you are on vacation!”

How did you go about planning your itinerary, picking sights, arranging them and figuring out how long to stay?:
“Our travel representative asked what we wanted to do, Stephanie answered all our questions, we looked at 10 day self-drive suggestions on website & planned accordingly. Travel reps will say if an idea is feasible or not.”

Iceland

What made you want to travel to Iceland?:
“My travel girlfriend & I had wanted to take this trip. We didn’t want to “self-drive” in Iceland & decided to try a “hopper” tour.”

Where were the top 3 places to visit on your wish list? If you made it to them, what did you think?:
“Reykjavik, Akureyri & Day Tours to various places. The day tours were with 16-18 other people in a van. They took us places we wouldn’t have been able to do on our own.”

Tough question alert! What was the best part about your vacation?:
“Whale Watching, riding Icelandic horses, geysers, waterfalls, hot springs & volcanoes.”

What made you want to travel with Tenon Tours? What advantages did you have booking with Tenon Tours?:
“This was my 4th trip with Tenon Tours. There was no question of looking for another tour company. The “Hopper Tour” hotels (2) were centrally located & we could walk everywhere we wanted to go!”

How was your experience with your Personal Sales Representative(s)?:
“Stephanie & ALL tour reps were 100% helpful. Stephanie knows my “likes”, knows we don’t want to over schedule, knows I don’t travel to only see big cities, knows I like country sides, etc.”

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