Electric bikes are available on most Cycle & Sail trips in Greece and Croatia Views of Freney Pillar on the Tour du Mont Blanc |  <i>Sarah Hunt</i> Cycling past vineyards in the Alsace region of France Hiking the Camino through the beautiful Santiago de Compostela |  <i>Edwina Parsons</i> Hiking along the Alpine Pass Route |  <i>Andrew Bain</i>

Who we are

Meet the team

Our team at UTracks is passionate about Europe, adventure, travel and - of course - delivering exceptional service.  And if there's one thing that binds us, it's both the personal and professional travel experience each of us brings to the company. Between us, we've travelled to every corner of the world many times over, and we're nowhere near done yet. In short, we bring a multidisciplined, multicultured and whole-hearted approach to travelling in Europe.

While based in Australia, UTracks has a global presence through World Expeditions, our worldwide agents. UTracks is a wholly owned division of World Expeditions, which has offices in Ottawa in Canada, Auckland in New Zealand and London in the United Kingdom.  Meet our teams below.

Cycling with kids in the Calvados region of Normandy in France |  <i>Kate Baker</i>
Kate Baker, General Manager: UTracks General Manager Kate has travelled widely across Europe, scouring every corner to ensure our UTracks program stays at the cutting edge of active European travel. There are simply too many countries to list, but her personal favourites are France, Italy, Romania and Slovenia. In her previous role, Kate spent three years in London establishing our UK office before returning to Sydney. Her adventure CV includes trekking in the Himalaya, the Andes, Europe, Africa and Patagonia, cycling in China, Vietnam, Laos and India, touring the Silk Road and cruises in both the Arctic and Antarctic. 

Jaclyn Lofts taking a break in Estaing, on the French Way of St James |  <i>Jaclyn Lofts</i>
Jaclyn Lofts, Sales Manager: Jac has been walking and cycling through Europe's unexplored pockets for well over a decade and is still fascinated by the endless options available. Having walked the entire Spanish Compostela Trail & stages on the French and Portuguese paths she is our resident Camino expert and regularly hosts information evenings across Australia. Jac considers her walks in the Mont Blanc region, cycling trips in France's wine regions, hiking in Crete and tackling the Coast to Coast in the UK to be some of the key highlights of her extensive European travels.  Next up will be Romania and Sicily. A lover of good food and wine, Jac tends to plan holidays in areas that are known for their culinary delights so India, Malaysia and Japan have also been explored recently.

Efti Nure enjoying a hike |  <i>Eftie Nure</i>
Efti Nure, Reservations Supervisor: Since birth, Efti has called Europe her second home. Fluent in Greek, Efti has been exploring Europe since 2007. She has visited France, Monaco, Italy, Croatia, Spain, England, Scotland, Austria, Switzerland, Germany, Lichtenstein, Poland, Russia, Belarus, Sweden, Denmark, Finland, Norway, Holland and Czech Republic. Efti is our resident ‘Boat Expert’, having travelled on the fantastic Highlights of Holland by Barge, Greek Islands Bike & Boat, Danube Explorer to Budapest, and most recently the Bordeaux Bike & Barge, as well as the Loire Valley Cycle and Backroads to Venice trips. Her favourite UTracks trip was Greek Islands Bike & Boat, which is where she met her husband. She is excited about revisiting Spain to walk on one of the iconic trails along the Camino.

Hiking the Via Francigena |  <i>Allie Peden</i>
Allie Peden, Sales: Originally from our Canadian office, Allie has an impressive travel portfolio, including self-guided walking on pilgrim trails in Spain, France and Italy; cycling in the Netherlands & Croatia on our bike and sail itineraries; and horseback riding in Iceland. Allie’s passion for active travel has also taken her to UK, France, Slovenia, Greece, Turkey, New Zealand, Fiji, Vanuatu, Cuba, Mexico, Saint Lucia, Thailand, Cambodia, Laos, Vietnam and most recently trekking in Nepal. Allie’s bucket-list is ever growing and this year she is off to Costa Rica to spot a sloth in the wild and walk the hanging bridges. Allie is addicted to Alpine walking after completing the Tour du Mont Blanc last year. Her other favourite experience on a UTracks trip was sharing the Tulip Tour bike and barge with her mum, for her mum’s 70th birthday.

Alana Johnstone in Venice |  <i>Alana Johnstone</i>
Alana Johnstone, Reservations: Alana loves visiting the brisk highlands of Scotland to pay respects to her family heritage. She’s also taken in depth trips to England, touring London, York, Manchester, Bath and Oxford; and to the Emerald Isle of Ireland, where she explored Dublin, Wicklow, Kilkenny, Cashel, Cork, Killarney, Galway, the Cliffs of Moher and the Ring of Kerry. Given these destinations, it’s unsurprising that Alana’s favourite seasons are the not-overbearingly-hot climates of Spring and Autumn. On continental Europe, she’s spent time in Germany, the Netherlands, Switzerland, Hungary and Italy - where she was able to compare her spaghetti bolognese recipe with the local version. For her next trip, Alana’s torn between visiting Croatia or hopping on a bike and barge trip on the Danube river. Maybe she’ll end up doing both.

Michele Salazar Bushwalking |  <i>Michele Salazar</i>
Michele Salazar, Reservations: When Michele travels she makes the people closest to her green with envy. She first travelled to Europe on a 12 month British working holiday visa. While there she skied in Verbier, Switzerland; worked on a kibbutz in northern Israel; and sailed on a boat in the Red Sea. Michele’s been to Latin America a few times: partly for the ceviche, partly because she met her future husband in Cuzco, Peru. Previously in Australia, she’s worked at ski resorts in the Snowy Mountains and spent her free time staying active in the snow. Michele now gets to share her travelling passion with her children and - great mum that she is - she’s taken them on family holidays to Asia, Europe and of course back to Peru to visit the relatives. They’ve successfully caught the travel bug and are currently coaxing Michele to take them on a self guided walk in Germany soon.

Jorge regularly leads our 'Best of the Camino' tours
Dana Garofani, Operations: Dana joined UTracks after many years away from the travel industry working in industries she didn’t love nearly as much. Well travelled throughout Europe, she has also lived and travelled in Asia and the Middle East; and visited several Pacific islands, New Zealand, the Caribbean and the US. But she studied art history and worked for a wine importer so it’s hardly surprising that Europe beckons most. At UTracks she has thoroughly enjoyed walking around Mont Blanc and along parts of the Camino in Spain, and cycling along the Po from Venice to Mantova. Switzerland is her next destination including walking parts of the Via Francigena near Lake Geneva and at Zermatt. 

PR Manager for UTracks
Virginia Haddon, PR Manager: Virginia was born under a wandering star and loves talking about travel so it’s fortunate she handles the PR for UTracks. Her career in the travel industry spans decades and her passion for exploring has seen her visit five of the seven continents. While living in London, Virginia used every opportunity to explore Europe. She has sailed the Greek Islands, walked all over Switzerland during her five - and counting - visits and devoured many a pub meal in quaint villages across England. She has also travelled to Spain, Germany, France, Belgium, Austria, Norway, Scotland, Ireland and Wales in Europe and the UK, interspersed with many visits to Africa and Asia along the way. She has not forgotten to explore Australia, New Zealand or the United States, and her bags are always packed for the next adventure.   

Sue Badyari
Sue Badyari, CEO: From her first family trip to Nepal at the age of 14, Sue developed a passion for and intimate knowledge of the Himalaya. Sue’s love of travel led her to World Expeditions in 1986, when adventure travel was still considered very niche, before computers and well before the internet boom. Since being appointed CEO in 1999, Sue has transformed the company from a single brand to a multi brand operator and distributor of travel products. The company now has over 10 separate brands - including UTracks - each speaking to different market segments and interests with a variety of travel products and services. 

Marketing Director Brad Atwal
Brad Atwal, Marketing Director: Brad's travel portfolio in Europe includes cycling the Berlin Wall, exploring various sections of the Francigena Way between Florence and Rome, walking in the Cinque Terre with his newborn, sailing the Greek Islands and exploring England, Spain, Iceland and Holland. His fondest memory is experiencing the classic Italian landscapes in Tuscany and sampling rustic meals in villages he walked through. 

Scott Kirchner, Advertising & Publications Manager
Scott Kirchner, Advertising & Publications Manager: The impact of travel images and words can be tremendous and Scott is responsible for generating evocative communication pieces that inspire you to travel. One such newspaper ad caught Scott’s eye in 1985 and led to his first big adventure, at 19, to Kashmir and Ladakh. Later, Scott travelled through Europe, experiencing Holland by bicycle, immersing himself in the Champagne region, the French Riviera, the Italian regions of Tuscany, Umbria and the Dolomites and exploring the Greek Isles. More recently, Scott fell in love with the Highlands on Scotland by Bike & Boat, relaxed in Croatia on the Bike & Sail, sauntered along a section of the Camino and fulfilled a long-term wish to visit the Austrian Alps, on the Austrian Lakes Walk.

William Counsell walking the Camino Frances |  <i>William Counsell</i>
William Counsell, Marketing Assistant: Will went on his first overseas sojourn at the impressionable age of 11, when he went trekking in Nepal. This trip lit his passion for travel and he’s been getting away ever since. Will took a gap year exploring and teaching in South East Asia; spent two semesters abroad in Indiana and the Netherlands; and took another gap year to explore South and Central America. After working in advertising, Will was fortunate to score a job guiding tours in Europe and Asia and spent the next 4 years doing just that. In the off season, he embarked on the Camino Frances and found all the wonderful rumours about a pilgrim experience to be true. Will loves the unexpected thrills of Eastern Europe and can’t wait to get back there to hit UTracks’ walking tours.

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