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Daniel Oppliger

Surprise, Arizona Travel Agent
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Daniel Oppliger

Surprise, Arizona Travel Agent
An independent agent with Travel Leaders in Davis, CA
Years of Experience: 25+
19 Reviews | 100% Recommended
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Avalon European River Cruise Specialist

Daniel & Shirley
Daniel & Shirley

Rather than rehash many blogs on river cruising we are going to concentrate on the things that made our Avalon Waterways river cruise so special.

We arrive in Budapest two days early. We stayed off the water about a mile for about a quarter of the price of river front luxury hotels.

The Three Corners Bristol was a boutique hotel between two subway stops, thus a lower price point due to location. Nearby was the Hussar Restaurant where we dined on Hungarian goulash, both beef and chicken. It was served with a side of pickled vegetables.

AS far as I know, we were the only couple on the ship that went to the Gellert Spa. The hot pools were just what our chilled bones needed. It was not really that cold. We left Arizona at 105° F, so anything below 70° is cold for us. The hot mineral water, sauna and steam room exceeded our expectations. In season with the outdoor pools may have been more enjoyable. The historic building was a treat in itself. Before going to the spa, we dropped our laundry off at the cleaners. We picked it up after the spa and headed for the Avalon Expression.

Due to an expected overnight bridge closure, our ship had to depart earlier than usual. We could have taken an all-day coach tour or stay on the ship. About 40 of stayed on the ship. We had more waiters than necessary for lunch and enjoyed the hot tub on the top deck sailing up the Danube.

In Vienna we did the usual tour and saw the Lipizzaner Stallions we returned to the ship for lunch. We took the subway back into town and went to the market where our big purchase was Hungarian paprika. The stalls contained many items and we felt safe the whole time. We also went to the H & M store to purchase sweatshirts. We have become wusses living in Arizona. Not to be missed was the first bakery where we could by apple strudel. We purchased apple strudel and the Avalon staff was more than happy to heat it up for us in the morning. We did this about 5 times on the cruise.

Regensburg was our most favorable stop. We left the ship before breakfast for a walk. We did a loop and stumbled upon the Kepler House-Kepler the astronomer. Great we will come back later. We crossed over the river on the lovers lock bridge. Here there were thousands of padlocks with lovers names engraved upon them along with dates of weddings, I presume. I have seen these bridges in photos and on the television, but this was our first encounter in person. After our tour with the guides, the Kepler house was closed as it is only open on the weekends.The Rhine Gorge is the main attraction of many river cruises.

At Wurzburg castle we saw the Room of Mirrors. Along with the tour came commentary about how it was terrible of the Allies to bomb the castle. The mirrors and artwork were moved to caves for safe storage during the war. We photographed many castles along the Rhine. Close to dusk we came upon the Ludendorff Bridge at Remagen. Actually we saw the remains of it on each side of the river. Our Captain said he would slow the ship down so we could take some photos. We cruised by it pdq. I was intrigued by the cable car over the river. Perhaps on another tour I will ride the cable car.

Our cruise ended in Amsterdam where our cruise director warned us of “killer bicycles.” She was spot on and “ding, ding, ding –zoom.” After our bus tour and canal cruise we went to the Van Gogh museum. The canal cruise would never be allowed in the USA. Either OSHA or the Coast Guard would shut it down. As near as I could tell there was one way in and one way out. I saw no way to open the windows. What if we crashed into a Killer Bike? They told us how many bicycles they fish out of the canals every year. We took the streetcar to the Van Gogh museum and back. We could not figure out how to pay. There were too many folks aboard to even get to the pay station aboard.

One thing Avalon Waterways does right is its’ “Gentle Walker” program. The slow moving folks has a trolley or short train available for them at many ports to keep walking to a minimum. Avalon had the White group on the coaches when touring too. This way both the active and Gentle Walker folks can enjoy the experience.

Please contact us to make plans for your memorable holiday.

CERTIFICATES & AWARDS

Certified ASTA Travel Agent
Avalon Waterways Specialist

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My Reviews

Rating: 4.9 19 Reviews | 100% Recommended

Special trip with special care

Reviewed By Plany - Vienna, Austria | Traveled to Argentina ~ South America
Excellent service. Especially the site for watching the solar eclipse was an optimum location. As we were the onl Europeans in the group, we had several special problems (payment etc.) but all this was handled efficiently and friendly.
I would recommend this agent to my family and friends
Daniel Oppliger responded:
Thank you for your kind words. We found a faster way to take oversears payments by using VEEM. It is faster than banks and much less expensive than credit cards or Pay Pay. An Irish client used NicePay and that was fast and efficient.
3 of 5 people found this review helpful
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A very memorable trip

Reviewed By Brewery Man - Shotley Bridge, United Kingdom | Traveled to USA
Frequent and accurate communications. He suggested someone I could share accomodation with and saved both of us a significant amount.
I would recommend this agent to my family and friends
Daniel Oppliger responded:
Thanks T. We have matched several men and women over the years to save them both money. I hope you enjoyed my talk in Idaho Falls.
17 of 33 people found this review helpful
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The best trip of my life

Reviewed By Alex - Farmers Branch, TX ( Dallas area) | Traveled to Chile ~ South America
It was great to be able to speak with Daniel personally via telephone before the trip. He was informative, responsive, interested and courteous and followed up appropriately with emails and correspondence
I would recommend this agent to my family and friends
Daniel Oppliger responded:
Thank you for your kind wordsl
3 of 7 people found this review helpful
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July 2, 2019 Total Eclipse

Reviewed By Umbraphiles - Mesa, AZ | Traveled to Vina Del Mar ~ Chile ~ South America
The tour was generally well-planned and managed. The tour guides were friendly and helpful. There were a few little "glitches", but that is almost to be expected with any international travel that involves chasing a total eclipse of the sun. One factor that might work better in the future is to have everyone on the tour stay in the same hotel. For our trip we had two hotels in each of the two cities visited, and since they were a fair distance apart there was often a certain amount of confusion about meeting/finding the bus/timing and so forth each time we went to one of the various events. Logistics would have been much simpler if everyone had stayed in the same lodging.
I would recommend this agent to my family and friends
2 of 5 people found this review helpful
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A country wide tour to remember.

Reviewed By D.G. - Summerland, British Columbia | Traveled to Chile ~ South America
The Kimal group tour of Chile was just outstanding, jam packed with a wide variety of experiences that covered an impressive range of the multi-faceted nature of the country. Very well conceived and organized.
I would recommend this agent to my family and friends
Daniel Oppliger responded:
Thank you for you kind words.
5 of 11 people found this review helpful
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An Amazing Tour Experience

Reviewed By 'Astro-Dave' Reneke - Sydney Australia | Traveled to Wyoming ~ USA
I found Daniel to be courteous and thorough in his approach to organizing the many tours he schedules. I was especially impressed by his attention to detail - working well in advance to ensure a smooth transition between client, tour manager and venue operators. I also thank him for his confidence in me as an enrichment speaker and eclipse guide during the recent eclipse tour of August 2017. It made my contribution all that much easier having Daniel's expertise backing me up. I highly recommend Daniel and his company to anyone looking for a well run and value added tour package.
I would recommend this agent to my family and friends
Daniel Oppliger responded:
Thanks Dave, I think you may have left a note earlier. Ok not to approve.
18 of 37 people found this review helpful
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trip

Reviewed By ev - Arroyo Grande, CA - Central Coast | Traveled to Thailand ~ East and Southeast Asia
professional, detailed oriented, knowledgeable, prompt....went above and beyond 'the call of duty'
I would recommend this agent to my family and friends
Daniel Oppliger responded:
Thank you for the kind words.
1 of 4 people found this review helpful
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Nice trip

Reviewed By Pinyonj - Pittstown, NJ | Traveled to Santiago ~ Chile ~ South America
Nice trip. Beautiful happy people, great time. Dan was personally involved, answered calls and was very responsive. Maybe its the culture in Chile, but the experience on the ground could have neen a little better organized. Overall, though, a satisfied customer.
I would recommend this agent to my family and friends
3 of 8 people found this review helpful
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All Three Times Were A Charm!

Reviewed By Charlie - Cohasset, Massachusetts | Traveled to Idaho Falls ~ Idaho ~ USA
It has always been a pleasure. We have done three eclipse tours with Dan. The first was in 1998 with Star Clipper in the Caribbean. Then came Holland America in Indonesia in 2016. Finally last summer we actually did a land trip to Idaho for the Great American Eclipse. We got the post card for the Indonesian and Idaho eclipse in 2015 the day I was raking snow off the roof. We immediately booked them both. His agency is a delight to work with. Every step is planned well in advance, and the process is simple. All three adventures were flawless - including seeing the eclipse! All three experiences were very different, but we felt comfortable, safe, and appreciated. The mix of people on all three trips was incredible, and everyone found someone to be close to.
I would recommend this agent to my family and friends
Daniel Oppliger responded:
Thank you for your kind words. I wish I could have been with you on the first two trips. As you know we had multiple groups for each tour.
15 of 32 people found this review helpful
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Total Eclipse Cruis: Turkey

Reviewed By GlenL - Ft. Collins, CO | Traveled to
My wife and I toured Turkey in 1999 on Tropical Sails’ Eclipse Cruise. It was our best vacation ever! We got to explore Greek ruins, enjoy local food and culture, and see a total solar eclipse all while living on one of two 80 foot “gulets” (sailboats.) Our twenty or so fellow travelers made a good-sized group, and our ship’s crew was professional, friendly and the crewmen were also good cooks! All of Dan's arrangements for the ships, our knowledgeable tour guides, shore transportation along to historic sites on the Aegean coast, in Istanbul, Gallipoli, and on the Black Sea were smooth and problem free. Experiencing the total solar eclipse from our gullet (boat) while on the Black Sea was simply awesome! We look forward to traveling with Tropical Sails again!
I would recommend this agent to my family and friends
19 of 41 people found this review helpful
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sailing on ther Mandalay

Reviewed By new - Indianapolis, IN | Traveled to St. Maarten ~ St. Martin ~ Caribbean
Daniel helped me find hotels, restuarants, and dock site for my Mandalat sailing trip.
I would recommend this agent to my family and friends
Daniel Oppliger responded:
Thank you M. I was my pleasure to help with your sailing adventure.
13 of 30 people found this review helpful
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Dan the man

Reviewed By GregB - Coldstream Australia | Traveled to
What a great guy and extremely knowledgeable. Had a great time when we went on our cruise and was made even better by Dans presence.
I would recommend this agent to my family and friends
17 of 38 people found this review helpful
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An Amazing Eclipse Experience

Reviewed By 'Astro-Dave' Reneke - Sydney, Australia | Traveled to USA
I’m proud to be associated with Daniel Oppliger and his world renowned travel company Tropical Sails Corp. Dan recently invited me and fellow astronomer Cliff Watson to host one of his sold out tours in August this year as astronomy guide for the much heralded ‘Great American Eclipse!

All places stated were visited, nothing was any trouble for the organisers and we enjoyed a fabulous coach drive throughout the tour with detailed and friendly commentary highlighting landmarks and other important points of scenic interest.

We Started from Salt lake City, traveled into Utah, and Wyoming against the backdrop of the Grand Tetons, onward into Yellowstone National Park. I had the pleasure of lecturing to and guiding a fantastic group of passengers throughout the eclipse experience. I'll always remember the camaraderie we shared.

I’ve traveled extensively with many tour companies but never felt more comfortable or confident as I have with Dan and Shirley’s company, Tropical Sails. R
I would recommend this agent to my family and friends
17 of 40 people found this review helpful
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Encouraging, knowledgeable, but not pushy

Reviewed By Hooked on Cruises Now - Peoria, AZ | Traveled to
My husband and I booked our MSC cruise to the Caribbean through Dan. He was great. He suggested the cruise line as he was looking for best options all around, including price. It was perfect for us and we had a great time. Dan presented the material and was encouraging but was not pushy and I really appreciated that. He also followed up with a reminder and well wishes and a few things for us to be sure to pack and that was helpful and showed me that he didn't just book us and forget us. We will definitely work through Dan on another excursion.
I would recommend this agent to my family and friends
16 of 38 people found this review helpful
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Great tour – hope to book again!

Reviewed By Plany - Vienna, Austria | Traveled to Yellowstone National Park ~ Wyoming ~ USA
It was a great experience. Everything was well organized, and the choice of the sub-contractors was excellend, especially the choice of tour director Steve Kaverman: the right person on the right job. This man has a charisma with people. Also, the river float on the raft was a great idea. As for the clipse, the choice of the place to see it was the best idea : far away from traffic jams and places, where "everybody" tries to watch it.

Some little thing (but that's outside the reach of Tropical Sails and the subcontractors): while the accomodations were ok and nothing to complain about – in terms of value for money –, it's amazing how little space some hotels avail to the guest, not for the persons, but for the things these persons want to unpack....
All together: great! We'll recommend Tropical Sails to many!
I would recommend this agent to my family and friends
Daniel Oppliger responded:
Thank you for your kind words.
18 of 43 people found this review helpful
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First total solar eclipse

Reviewed By Tom Collins - Atlanta, GA | Traveled to Idaho Falls ~ Idaho ~ USA
Daniel provided us with a complete itinerary in an area where accommodations were scarce.
I would recommend this agent to my family and friends
15 of 38 people found this review helpful
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Excellent Vacation by Dan

Reviewed By Art - San Francisco, CA | Traveled to
Dan helped put together an awesome vacation package a few weeks prior to a total eclipse through Tropical Sails. Exotic islands, Proboscis monkeys, orangutans, and an Eclipse all packaged together into a well organized schedule. He really went out of his way to help put this together at the last minute for me and my brother and he was very knowledgeable and responsive, keeping me informed of all possibilities. If I could give more stars than 5 I would. I highly recommend Dan.
I would recommend this agent to my family and friends
14 of 38 people found this review helpful
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Gre experience with Dan and Tropical Sails Corp

Reviewed By John G - Moss Beach, CA | Traveled to Turkey ~ Middle East
1999 Solar Eclipse Gulet Sail trip (mostly motored, as the winds were not in the required direction at that time of year) from Tropical Sails. We did, and we all had the best time! Turkey was an eye-opening, positive experience.
We were on the Sultan, which was (is?) a wonderful gulet (yacht) with an expert crew (the cook was fantastic!). The location on azure seas, great food & drink, fun and enlightening shore excursions, and Dan (Tropical Sails) ensured we all enjoyed our entire trip. The itinerary was well thought out, and somewhat flexible... We didn't go on one shore excursion but stayed on the yacht and swam in the indescribably turquoise blue Mediterranean... During the walking tour of Ephesus I walked off to explore several alleyways on my own... Fantastic!
For the eclipse we sailed to the center line and had perfectly clear view!
I fully credit Dan (Tropical Sails Corp) for setting up the cruise and trip. It is one of the most unforgettably wonderful experiences of my life
I would recommend this agent to my family and friends
Daniel Oppliger responded:
Thank you John. See you August?
17 of 46 people found this review helpful
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Fun Tour of Turkey

Reviewed By Chuck Kansas - Dallas, Texas | Traveled to Turkey ~ Europe
I spent a lot of time researching a Biblical Tour in Turkey. I found that the Tropical Sails company quote was 40-50% cheaper than other companies for the same itinerary… and this caused concern why so cheap??? I called up Daniel and talked with him. He was very kind and knowledgeable… and had personally been on the Turkey trip before. I decided to use him.

The trip in several ways was one on my favorites. The tour guide and driver were so kind, timely, and professional… more than I was expecting. The quality of the hotels and the food were once again more than I was expecting. A couple times I had a balcony facing the Ocean. The itinerary was just as advertised. It seems the people are working to get return customers and good reviews. I am not used to getting more than I expected.

I really think Daniel’s company is doing the research to find the best deals. I found that Daniel is an honest person. I plan to check with Daniel again to ask him what good deals he has co
I would recommend this agent to my family and friends
Daniel Oppliger responded:
Charles, I am pleased that the tour went well. Thank you for your kind words.
13 of 42 people found this review helpful
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My Travel Experience

Places I’ve personally traveled to or destinations I’ve booked for my clients.