Who are we?

For The Love Of Wine + Travel

The Wine Journeys was born of a passion for experiencing the living history of the places we visit. Nowhere else has this been more true for us than when visiting vineyards, meeting 3rd and 4th generation winemakers, dining on family recipes that magically compliment every glass of wine. 

The Wine Journeys provides wine lovers with travel experiences designed around the enjoyment and education of wine. Whether you’re a by the glass drinker or a bottle collector, our itineraries are designed to help you learn more about the art and science of wine in some of the most incredible locations in the world. We have found that wine is all the more enjoyable when it’s story is told. Our itineraries give clients the ability to leave the art of discovery to the wine and not the travel logistics involved.

The Wine Journeys pairs travel with educational wine and food experiences through four types of travel styles: Wine River Cruises where you will sail Europe’s most well-known rivers and explore the local wine scene at every port as well as enjoy learning from the Wine Host on board; Group Travel where you will explore the backroads of Europe in luxury transport with no more than 16 people; Independent Travel where you will travel fully at your own pace in the top wine regions of the world; Travel with Us where members of The Wine Journey team will be your guides in a hands-on learning experience to some of the less discovered wine destinations such as Mexico and Spain.

Our parent company, The Journey Group, is a boutique travel firm that has helped thousands of clients make once-in-a-lifetime memories for over 18 years. With that many years in the travel business, we’ve perfected our craft of matching clients with the best possible vacation for their specific needs and desires. What brought our team together is a shared love for the education of wine and global exploration. We are all at different stages of our personal wine journey and invite you to come and learn along with us.



Through the years, we have built personal relationships with all of the suppliers we recommend, such as hotels, river cruise companies, and tourist boards. In an effort to only sell what we know, our travel consultants take every trip we sell. We convey our client’s special requests to the staff member on property we know will expedite the consideration.


We encourage our clients to think outside the box when selecting the perfect location for their vacation plans. We offer all of the popular wine destinations, but many of our itineraries will take you off-the-beaten path to unique cities, towns, and villages. We pull our suggestions from a long list of proven successes, brand new emerging tourism markets, all with a focus on the celebration of wine.


By staying up-to-date on industry trends, we are able to provide our clients with swift answers to any questions they might have. We only sell what we know. By focusing solely on grape growing and winemaking regions, we have in-depth local knowledge of what’s happening locally. This ensures our clients make the most informed decisions possible.



The Wine Journeys current itineraries are focused on the local US wine markets, Spain, Italy, France, New Zealand, Australia and South Africa with plans to add Mexico and more countries in Europe and South America in the coming year.

River Cruises

River Cruising is about so much more than the destination; it’s about the journey. Our partner for River Cruises is an industry leader with over 15 years experience. We feature a wide variety of cruising destinations, each with a focus on wine and culinary experiences throughout Europe.

Group Tours

We’ve partnered with a boutique tour company with over 25 years experience crafting small group travel to Europe. The culinary + wine tours we are offering are designed to enable you to connect with the entire food process, from soil to serving and from grape to glass.

Independent Travel

We’ve hand-picked bespoke itineraries in the top wine regions around the globe. Each package includes luxury hotel accommodations and visits to world-renowned wineries in such places as Australia, New Zealand, California, South Africa and France.


MENADE WINERY // RUEDA, SPAIN – October 2017 Feature

At Menade, it’s all in the family. The Sanz siblings have five generations of winemakers behind them. So the footprints they walk in are important ones. They have been working on their own project since 2005. That includes becoming pioneers in the organic certification of their winery and vineyard in Rueda – a region in Spain that sits a at considerable elevation (around 700 metres in altitude) and lies to the north and west of Madrid. The impressive elevation is one of the reasons the wines in this region, especially the signature white grape variety, Verdejo, are so crisp. Menade has 120 Verdejo vines, including an ancient, ungrafted, 30 hectare parcel of bush vines. Marco, the viticulturalist, Richard, the winemaker and Alejandra, who manages sales and communications worked together to create Menade and their wines have become an important example in effort and perseverance.

“I had a dream in the family, in which the sixth generation in which we, together with my brother an “I had a dream in the family, in which the sixth generation in which we, together with my brother and my sister, start doing something that really ran through our veins,” says Richard Sanz. The dream that started as a little vineyard showcasing natural wines grew into something family estates are made of. “

The Talents

Meet The Team

Laura Sangster

Laura Sangster

Laura Sangster founded The Journey Group in 2000 after wanderlust & a six-month tour of Central America forced a change of heart from medicine to travel. While The Journey Group handles every type of travel, we’ve created a few branches of our company to focus on our specialties, such as wine travel. Laura loves putting her connections to use and watching her clients embark on once in a lifetime travel experiences.

FAVORITE WINE – Far Niente Chardonnay

Tracy Lavender

Tracy Lavender

Tracy Lavender started in the travel industry in 1991 working in management at a 5 star hotel and as a flight attendant for two commercial airlines. It was a natural progression to go from spending most of her time in the sky to being on the ground planning the travel she so enjoys. Tracy’s meticulous attention to detail ensures our clients wishes and needs are never overlooked.

FAVORITE WINE – Dashe Cellars Riesling



Sherry Pekarek has had a successful career in human resources. She’s a people person with an infinite love for conversation. A wine aficionado by hobby, she decided to join our team and put her passion for the grape to work. You’ll find Sherry at local wine events perfecting her craft of understanding the complex nature of wine growing.

FAVORITE WINE -Roar Rosella Pinot Noir



Fabiana Santana has been covering the world of food, wine and culinary travel for over a decade. An accomplished journalist, wine expert and chef, she is a graduate of the French Culinary Institute. Fabiana is pursuing both a Certification in Wine and Spirits from the WSET and a degree in viticutlure and enology, so drinking with her, while delicious, might be boring. She can do some serious damage with a Santoku knife but regularly gets her butt kicked by her three toddlers.

FAVORITE WINE – Taittinger Comtes Blanc de Blancs Vintage



Nadine Johnson-Wagoner’s background extends beyond 15+ years working in international trade with many years in the beverage industry selling wine, spirits, and ales. An avid traveler, she’s traveled to many countries around the globe for both work and play. With an appetite for new experiences, she’s joined our team to help fellow travelers on their journey to enjoy the best wine regions of the world.

FAVORITE WINE – Dr. Loosen Wehlener Sonnenuhr Riesling


The Wine Journeys provides a simple approach to customized vacation planning. Please provide your contact details below, and one of our team will reach out to you immediately.

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