We are a happy team of qualified wine, food and history guides who have made the Languedoc wine region our home. Our passion and knowledge for the region, its wines, food, culture and history are the reasons we are here, and we want to share this with you. We are personable, engaging and fun people to spend time with and we promise you a fascinating and deeply enjoyable wine and food experience that you will remember for a long time.
All our Scheduled Wine & Food tours, walks and tastings are English spoken, and we promise no jargon just fun and laughter as well as an in-depth understanding of the wines and our beautiful region. Our team comprises of English, French, Dutch, Catalan and Spanish speakers so if you prefer one of these languages, we can create a Private Tour just for you. Whichever language you choose we promise you ‘No Wine Snobbery’..!
Wendy Gedney started Vin en Vacances in 2009 following her dream to live in the south of France. Wendy is from the UK where she was a wine teacher for many years and loved sharing her knowledge with people. But France was calling as were the Languedoc vineyards and she now lives close to Carcassonne in a converted winery, L’Ancienne Cave where our tasting room is situated. Wendy has created Wine Tours that take you off the beaten track to hidden vineyards travelling though beautiful scenery and learning what makes Languedoc so special. She is also passionate about the Wine Walks and Wine Tastings she has designed to introduce you to the beauty of the countryside, the fascinating way that wines are grown and the amazing diversity of wine styles made here in her adoptive country.
Over the years Wendy has been joined by a fabulous team; first Kate who has earned her place as Wendy’s right-hand girl and then followed by Marcel, Carlos and Ana. All of these wine professionals love running our range of carefully designed wine & food tours and tastings and are looking forward to meeting you.
Kate Wardell is a hospitality graduate of HOSTA – the hospitality, food, wine and tourism school based in Leysin, Switzerland and is a dedicated foodie. Kates fun personality, her passion and enthusiasm for Languedoc and its wine plus her love of food make her a deeply knowledgeable and very engaging professional and a wonderful person to spend time with when in Languedoc. Kate heads up our wine school Vinitude and due to her excellent wine knowledge, she is regularly invited to judge wines at Europe’s largest Organic wine EXPO – Challenge Millesime Bio. Although English, Kate has lived in this region since 2007 and knows the place like the back of her hand plus she speaks excellent French. This combined with her first-class knowledge of the whole of France and its wine regions makes her the ideal person to run bespoke tours to other regions of France and she is often found in Burgundy, Champagne and the Alsace, some of her favourite wine regions.
Marcel van Baalen is our favourite Dutchman and valued member of our team. He gained his deep understanding of wine whilst working as a sommelier in the Dutch wine business for more than 25 years. He’s been a valuable member of the Vin en Vacances team for over 5 years since he followed his dream to live and work in the Languedoc. Since arriving here he has become a ‘local’ counting many wine makers as close friends. A true wine professional, he has a relaxed and entertaining style that is wrapped in a deep well of wine knowledge that he loves to share with people. As well as running tours and tastings in Languedoc, Marcels appreciation of wines from other regions of France makes him the ideal person to run a Bespoke tour in Northern & Southern Rhône, Loire Valley and in Bordeaux.
Carlos Lluch lives in the beautiful village of Lagrasse close to Carcassonne, but he was born and raised in Barcelona where he was educated in Catalan, Spanish, French and English. With his natural Latin charm and a gift for languages, he was always destined to be a tour guide and is proud to have attained the prized Official Guide Licence for French National & Historical Monuments & Cities. He also holds a WSET wine qualification and has also worked in the world of wine at well-known châteaux in Languedoc. His wine and history knowledge coupled with his language skills make Carlos the ideal person to run our Barcelona Shuttle Tours and bespoke wine & history tours in Spain. In fact, a tour anywhere with Carlos is always an enriching and fun experience.
Ana Ricard was born in Provence where her passion for wine grew amongst the delicious Cotes du Rhône and Provençal wines. She trained as a wine maker and for 6 years worked her own vineyard before heading to Australia to experience wine making in the southern hemisphere. Although she loved Australia and the wines there, she missed her homeland so returned to France and has now made Languedoc-Roussillon her home. A qualified and passionate wine guide Ana‘s enthusiasm for Languedoc and its wines will ensure you enjoy a very informative tour or wine tasting. Coming from Provence Ana is the ideal person to run Bespoke tours in that region. Ana is also involved in our sales and marketing and will be delighted to help you choose the best tour for you.