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Tour Information

 

Ag Venture Tours & Consulting specializes in wine tasting, sightseeing and agricultural education tours of the Monterey Bay region of California. Wine tasting tours visit either the Monterey Wine Country (Salinas Valley, Carmel Valley) or the Santa Cruz Mountains. Sightseeing tours include the Monterey Peninsula (Monterey, Pacific Grove, Pebble Beach, Carmel), Big Sur or Santa Cruz. Agricultural education tours feature the world famous Salinas and Pajaro Valleys. Our tours can be customized to your interests, offering both half and full day excursions. Our guides are friendly and knowledgeable with extensive backgrounds in the agriculture and wine industries. If you would like to reserve a tour, you are welcome to book online or contact Ag Venture Tours directly by email or phone. 

 

 

Contact Information

 

Ag Venture Tours & Consulting

P. O. Box 2634

Monterey, CA 93942

831-761-8463 Phone

831-761-5461 Fax

TCP 22683 S

evan@agventuretours.com

 

 

 

 

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Alaska Airlines Horizon Magazine, February 2013. Featuring Monterey County. Interview with Evan.

Wine Enthusiast Magazine lists Monterey County as one of the "10 Best WineTravel Destinations 2013"

Sunset loves us!

 

Current 2017 Rates and Schedule

 

Big Sur Sightseeing Tour - Half Day

 

 

Individual Tours (2-13 Guests):

Half day (3 - 3.5 hours) tours range in cost from $70-110/adult, $55-70/child (5-16 years old) (minimum of 2 guests, maximum of 13 guests, lunch not included). Additional $30 fuel fee for groups of three or less. Tours are not private unless there is a minimum group size of 8 guests. For smaller groups, Ag Venture Tours reserves the right to add additional guests to the tour.


Full day (6 - 7 hours) tours range in cost from $100-145/adult, $75/child (5-16 years old) (minimum of 4 guests, maximum of 12 guests, optional picnic or restaurant lunch depending on the season). Full day tours will be cancelled (48 hours in advance) if the 4 guest minimum is not reached. Tours are not private unless there is a minimum group size of 8 guests. For smaller groups, Ag Venture Tours reserves the right to add additional guests to the tour.

 

Cancellation Policy:

High season (April 1 - November 30). Monday-Thursday, 7 days from date of tour (75% non refundable). Friday-Sunday and holidays, 30 days from date of tour (75% non refundable).

Low season (December 1 - March 31). Monday-Thursday, 3 days from date of the tour (75% non refundable). Friday-Sunday and holidays, 14 days from date of tour, 75% non refundable).

See schedule above or contact Ag Venture Tours for blackout dates.

 

Group Tours (Over 13 Guests):

We offer a wide variety of guided tours and/or step-on guide service. Any size group can be accommodated, please call Ag Venture Tours for more information, tour options and rates.

 

Tours Include:

Pickup and return at your local hotel or residence. Individual rates include transportation in a comfortable 14 passenger van, expert guide service and commentary, wine tasting fees, entry fees, winery tour and/or vineyard walk. A cooler of cold drinks is included for tours with four or more guests. Maps and literature for each guest are included with each tour. Ag Venture Tours & Consulting is a full service tour operator with 20 year's experience that can organize any tour that you may be interested in. We are flexible with the tour schedule and will customize the tour to meet your interests. All tours are designed to be fun and educational. Tours are not private unless there is a minimum group size of 8 guests. For smaller groups, Ag Venture Tours reserves the right to add additional guests to the tour.

 

 

Carmel Valley Wine Tasting Tour - Half Day

Choice of 10:00 am - 1:00 pm or 2:00 pm - 5:30 pm. Pickup at your local hotel or residence in the Monterey Peninsula region. Individual tour ranges in cost from $70-95/adult, $55/child (5-16 years old) (minimum of 2 guests/maximum 13 guests, lunch not included). Visit two to three wineries or tasting rooms. Additional $30 fuel fee for groups of three or less.


Wineries can include A Taste of Monterey, Bernardus, Big Sur Winery, Boekenoogen, Boete, Caraccioli Cellers, Carmel Ridge, Carmel Road, Chesebro, Cowgirl Winery, Dawn's Dream, De Tierra, Figge Cellars, Galante Vineyards, Georis, Heller Estate, Holman Ranch, I. Brand & Family Wines, Joullian Vineyards, Joyce, Manzoni, McIntyre, Morgan, Parsonage, Pierce Ranch, Roadhouse Wine Bar, Robert Talbott Vineyards, Scheid, Smith Family Wines, Sylvestri, Testarossa, The Wine Experience, Windy Oaks and Wrath. Tour also includes an exclusive entry to the Ingrid's Vineyard (Bernardus) to learn about growing wine grapes. Observe Carmel Valley points of interest including Earthbound Farm, golf courses and flower nurseries.

 

Book it! Morning or Afternoon Tour

 

Carmel Valley Wine Tasting Tour - Morning Half Day Carmel Valley Wine Tasting Tour - Afternoon Half Day

 

 

VIP (Behind the Scenes) Carmel Valley Wine Tasting Tour - Half Day

Choice of 10:00 am - 1:30 pm or 2:00 pm - 5:30 pm. Pickup at your local hotel or residence in the Monterey Peninsula region. Individual tour ranges in cost from $110-120/adult, $70/child (5-16 years old) (minimum of 2 guests/maximum 13 guests, lunch not included). Visit Folktale Winery for a private educational winery tour (barrel room), vineyard walk and wine tasting. Also visit one additional tasting room. Additional $30 fuel fee for groups of three or less. Please schedule this half day tour directly with Ag Venture Tours.


Tasting rooms can include A Taste of Monterey, Bernardus, Big Sur Winery, Boekenoogen, Boete, Caraccioli Cellers, Carmel Ridge, Carmel Road, Chesebro, Cowgirl Winery, Dawn's Dream, De Tierra, Figge Cellars, Galante Vineyards, Georis, I. Brand & Family Wines, Heller Estate, Holman Ranch, Joullian Vineyards, Joyce, Manzoni, McIntyre, Morgan, Parsonage, Pierce Ranch, Roadhouse Wine Bar, Robert Talbott Vineyards, Scheid, Smith Family Wines, Sylvestri, Testarossa, The Wine Experience, Windy Oaks and Wrath. Observe Carmel Valley points of interest including Earthbound Farm, golf courses and flower nurseries.


 

Carmel Valley Wine Tasting Tour - Full Day

10:00 am - 4:00 pm (weekdays and Saturday) 10:30 am - 4:30 pm (Sunday). Pickup at your local hotel or residence in the Monterey Peninsula region. Individual tour ranges in cost from $100-130/adult, $75/child (5-16 years old) (minimum of 4 guests/maximum 11 guests). Visit four wineries or tasting rooms. Optional picnic lunch (included in tour cost) or restaurant lunch (not included in tour cost, seasonal).


Wineries can include A Taste of Monterey, Bernardus, Big Sur Winery, Boekenoogen, Boete, Caraccioli Cellers, Carmel Ridge, Carmel Road, Chesebro, Cowgirl Winery, Dawn's Dream, De Tierra, Figge Cellars, Galante Vineyards, Georis, Heller Estate, Holman Ranch, I. Brand & Family Wines, Joullian Vineyards, Joyce, Manzoni, McIntyre, Morgan, Parsonage, Pierce Ranch, Roadhouse Wine Bar, Robert Talbott Vineyards, Scheid, Smith Family Wines, Sylvestri, Testarossa, The Wine Experience, Windy Oaks and Wrath. Tour also includes an exclusive entry to the Ingrid's Vineyard (Bernardus) to learn about growing wine grapes. Observe Carmel Valley Points of interest including Earthbound Farm, golf courses and flower nurseries.

 

Book With Restaurant Lunch (year round)

 

Carmel Valley Wine Tasting Tour - Full Day - Restaurant

 

 

Book With Picnic Lunch (April 1 to November 30)

 

Carmel Valley Wine Tasting Tour - Full Day - Picnic

 

VIP (Behind the Scenes) Carmel Valley Wine Tasting Tour - Full Day

10:30 am - 4:30 pm (daily). Pickup at your local hotel or residence in the Monterey Peninsula region. Individual tour ranges in cost from $130-145/adult, $75/child (5-16 years old) (minimum of 4 guests/maximum 11 guests). Optional picnic lunch (included in tour cost) or restaurant lunch (not included in tour cost, seasonal). Visit Folktale Winery for a private educational winery tour (barrel room), vineyard walk and wine tasting. Also visit two additional tasting rooms. Please schedule this half day tour directly with Ag Venture Tours.


Tasting rooms can include A Taste of Monterey, Bernardus, Big Sur Winery, Boekenoogen, Boete, Caraccioli Cellers, Carmel Ridge, Chesebro, Cowgirl Winery, Dawn's Dream, De Tierra, Figge Cellars, Galante Vineyards, Georis, Heller Estate, Holman Ranch, I. Brand & Family Wines, Joullian Vineyards, Joyce, Manzoni, McIntyre, Morgan, Parsonage, Pierce Ranch, Roadhouse Wine Bar, Robert Talbott Vineyards, Scheid, Smith Family Wines, Sylvestri, Testarossa, The Wine Experience, Windy Oaks and Wrath. Observe Carmel Valley points of interest including Earthbound Farm, golf courses and flower nurseries.


 

Salinas Valley Wine Tasting Tour - Full Day

10:00 am - 4:30 pm. Pickup at your local hotel or residence in Monterey County. Individual tour ranges in cost from $105-130/adult, $75/child (5-16 years old) (minimum of 4 guests/maximum 11 guests). Visit three wineries or tasting rooms. Optional picnic lunch (included in tour cost) or restaurant lunch (not included in tour cost, seasonal).


Wineries can include Chalone, Hahn Estate, Manzoni Vineyard, Odonata, Pessagno, Puma Road, Scheid Vineyards, Smith Family Wines, Ventana Vineyards and Wrath. Tour one winery/vineyard to learn about the wine making process. Observe Salinas Valley agriculture including vegetable harvesting, strawberries and organic farming.

 

Book With Restaurant Lunch (year round)

 

Salinas Valley Wine Tasting Tour - Full Day - Restaurant

 

 

Book With Picnic Lunch (April 1 to November 30)

 

Salinas Valley Wine Tasting Tour - Full Day - Picnic

 

 

Santa Cruz Mountains Wine Tasting Tour Options

Half day (3.5 hours) and full day (6.5 hours) tours available. Pickup at your local hotel or residence in Santa Cruz County (additional cost for pickup outside Santa Cruz County). Half day tours cost $85-100/adult, $55/child (5-16 years old), (minimum of 2 guests/maximum 12 guests, lunch not included). Visit three wineries (vineyard walk at selected locations) or tasting rooms. Additional $30 fuel fee for groups of three or less. 

Full day tours cost $110-130/adult, $75/child (5-16 years old) (minimum of 4 guests/maximum 11 guests). Visit three to four wineries (vineyard walk at selected locations) or tasting rooms. Tour includes your choice of a picnic lunch (seasonal, included in tour cost) or restaurant lunch (not included in tour cost). Please schedule your half or full day tour directly with Ag Venture Tours. 


Wineries can include Alfaro Vineyards, Bargetto, Beauregard, Bonny Doon, Burrell School, Byington, Cinnabar, Cooper-Garrod, David Bruce, Hallcrest, Hunter Hill, Loma Prieta, MJA Vineyards, Nicholson, Pichetti, Poetic Cellars, Regale, Ridge Vineyards, Santa Cruz Mountain Vineyard, Savannah-Chanelle, Silver Mountain, Skov, Soquel Vineyards, Storr's Winery, Testarossa, Villa del Monte, Vino Cruz and Windy Oaks. Observe central coast agriculture including artichokes, Brussels sprouts, vegetable harvesting and beautiful redwood forests.


 

Salinas Valley Agricultural Education Tour - Half Day

9:00 am - 12:00 pm or 1:00 pm - 4:00 pm. Tour departs from Pezzini Farms, 460 Nashua Road, Castroville. Individual tour cost $80-85/adult, $60/child (5-16 years old) (minimum of 2 guests/maximum 13 guests, lunch not included). Additional $30 fuel fee for groups of three or less.

Learn all about the Salinas Valley agriculture industry otherwise known as the "Salad Bowl of the World". Observe vegetable field harvesting and packing, irrigation, planting, organic farming, etc. (lettuce, broccoli, artichokes, spinach, asparagus, strawberries, grapes, etc.). Over 40 different crops, experienced knowledgeable guide to answer your questions. Learn where your fresh food comes from! Pezzini Farms artichokes included on this tour.

 

Salinas Valley Agricultural Education Tour - Half Day

 

 

Salinas Valley Agricultural Education Tour - Full Day

9:00 am - 3:00 pm. Individual tour cost from $110-120/adult, $75/child (5-16 years old) (minimum of 4 guests, maximum 11 guests, optional picnic or restaurant lunch). Please schedule this full day tour directly with Ag Venture Tours.

Learn all about the Salinas Valley agriculture industry otherwise known as the "Salad Bowl of the World". Observe vegetable field harvesting and packing, irrigation, planting, organic farming, etc. (lettuce, broccoli, artichokes, spinach, asparagus, strawberries, grapes, etc.). Over 40 different crops, experienced knowledgeable guide to answer your questions. Visit one winery or vineyard. Learn where your fresh food comes from! Pezzini Farms artichokes included on this tour.

 

 

Monterey Peninsula Sightseeing Tour - Half Day

9:00 am - 12:00 pm or 1:00 pm - 4:00 pm. Pickup at your local hotel or residence in the Monterey Peninsula region. Individual tour cost $75-80/adult, $55/child (5-16 years old) (minimum of 2 guests/maximum 13 guests, lunch not included). Additional $30 fuel fee for groups of three or less.

Tour includes sightseeing and local points of interest in Monterey, Pacific Grove, Pebble Beach (17 Mile Drive), and Carmel. Several stops will be made to learn about local history, marine biology and the Monterey Bay National Marine Sanctuary.

 

Monterey Peninsula Sightseeing Tour - Half Day

 

 

Monterey Peninsula Sightseeing / Wine Tasting Tour - Full Day

9:00 am - 3:00 pm. Pickup at your local hotel or residence in the Monterey Peninsula region. Individual tour cost $100-125/adult, $75/child (5-16 years old) (minimum of 4 guests/maximum 11 guests). Visit two wineries. Optional picnic lunch (included in tour cost) or restaurant lunch (not included in tour cost, seasonal).

Tour includes sightseeing in Monterey, Pacific Grove, Pebble Beach (17 Mile Drive), and Carmel in addition to wine tasting in Carmel Valley (Bernardus, Boekenoogen, Cima Collina, Heller Estate, Joullian Vineyards, Morgan or Parsonage). A fun combination of history, beautiful scenery and wine tasting!

 

Book With Restaurant Lunch (year round)

 

Monterey Peninsula Sightseeing / Wine Tasting Tour - Full Day - Restaurant

 

 

Book With Picnic Lunch (April 1 to November 30)

 

Monterey Peninsula Sightseeing / Wine Tasting Tour - Full Day - Picnic

 

 

Big Sur Sightseeing Tour - Half Day

9:00 am - 12:00 pm or 1:00 pm - 4:00 pm. Individual tour cost $80-85/adult, $55/child (5-16 years old) (minimum of 2 guests/maximum 10 guests, lunch not included). Additional $30 fuel fee for groups of three or less.

Tour includes a sightseeing drive along the Big Sur coast with several stops to enjoy the beautiful scenery, redwood trees and marine wildlife. Optional stops at Big Sur Lodge or the River Inn.

 

Big Sur Sightseeing Tour - Half Day

 

 

Salinas Valley / National Steinbeck Center Tour - Full Day

10:00 am - 4:00 pm. Individual tour cost $105-125/adult, $75/child (5-16 years old) (minimum of 4 guests/maximum 12 guests, optional picnic or restaurant lunch depending on the season). Please schedule this full day tour directly with Ag Venture Tours.

Tour includes visiting two Salinas Valley wineries, the Salinas Valley agricultual education driving tour, and entry to the National Steinbeck Center in Salinas. 

 

 

Horseback Riding / Wine Tasting Tour - Full Day

9:30 am - 5:00 pm. Individual tour cost $150-175/adult, $120/child (age, height and weight restrictions). After a beautiful one hour horseback ride in either Big Sur, Moss Landing or Pebble Beach, this tour is complete with visits to two wineries in Carmel Valley and a delicious picnic or restaurant lunch (depending on the season). Please schedule this full day tour directly with Ag Venture Tours.

 

 

Family Fun Adventure (Kid Friendly) - Half or Full Day

Three to six hours long. Tour includes a drive along the coast looking for sea otters, sea lions, seals and whales. A stop at Dennis the Menace Park (playground), feeding ducks and geese and tidepooling also included! Tours can include attractions like the Monterey Bay Aquarium, National Steinbeck Center, Wild Things Animal Ranch and Zoo, Elkhorn Slough Safari boatride, Gilroy Gardens Family Theme Park and the Santa Cruz Beach Boardwalk. Children must be accompanied by adults! Please call for rates and to schedule this half or full day tour directly with Ag Venture Tours.

 

 

Other Options To Include In Your Tour

Winery dinners, gourmet cooking classes, beer tasting, cheese tasting, chocolate tasting, olive oil and balsamic vinegar tasting, horseback riding, whale watching, shopping, kayaking, mountain biking, etc.

 

 

Miscellaneous Customized Tours

Gourmet Food and Wine Tour

Gilroy Garlic Tour

Santa Cruz County Agricultural Education Tour

North Monterey County Tour

South Monterey County Tour

Wine Tasting Lectures available

 

Van transportation for dinners, parties, local events, weddings and shopping also available.

$95 per hour + 20% gratuity, 3 hour minimum.

 

Gift certificates available!

 

 

evanguide

 

 

Meet Your Guide

 

Evan Oakes, owner and tour coordinator for Ag Venture Tours & Consulting. Since 1992, Evan has been working as an agricultural scientist for the University of California Cooperative Extension office in Salinas, California conducting research in vegetable and wine grape production. He has agriculture degrees from both University of California, Davis and Fresno State University with a specialty in viticulture (grape growing). Evan spent two years in Australia working for a large vineyard and winery before working in Monterey County. He is President of the Monterey Bay Chapter of the American Institute of Wine and Food. Evan currently lives in Watsonville, California.

 

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Evan Oakes of Ag Venture Tours speaks out about John Steinbeck's "Pastures in Heaven" at Castle Rock in Monterey. (A Vino Las Vegas LLC Production)

 

 

Evan Oakes of Ag Venture Tours talks about the wealth of agriculture produced in the Salinas Valley, "The Salad Bowl of the World". (By Thomas Wilmer/Audio Log)

 

 

Video of Watsonville and the Pajaro Valley, CA (Santa Cruz County)

 

 

 

COMMENTS:

 

"Get to know your artichokes" Visited April 2017 "Turn on your ears and brains and get fascinated by how agri-business works in the Salinas valley. Not midwest monoculture here! - varieties of crops rotated through the fields. Evan is easy to listen to and very interesting. Many implications for US labor and immigration policies as well (I'll let you draw your own conclusions). You'll be glad you did this tour."


"Great visit to America's Salad Bowl" Visited March 2017 "I have searched long and hard to find a good agricultural tour in California. We travel thru this area at least once a year and I am always left wondering what is growing over there? Well yesterday my search ended with Evan and his Salinas Valley Agricultural tour. It was well worth the wait and price. Evan shared his wealth of knowledge with us and gave us a very well rounded tour of the area that included the crops, cultivation, irrigation, labor force, successes, growth and yes the problems facing the area. I learned so much. I had lots of questions and comments and Evan answered and addressed them very patiently. Thank you, Evan! The Monterey Peninsula is so much more than Fisherman's Wharf and the Aquarium. I urge you all to explore the rich history and industry here."


"Excellent Tours" Visited December 2016 "Our two Carmel Valley Wine Tasting Tours were outstanding. Evan has a wealth of knowledge about the history of Carmel Valley wineries and wine making that he shares. His selection of wineries was great, and he knew the people running each of the tasting rooms so we were given excellent, personalized service. I would definitely use him again."


"I want to thank you for the amazing tour you gave us in sunny Carmel last Friday. Everyone had a great time, stopping at the vineyard, by far a favorite. So interesting!!! You really made our trip all the more fun. Thank you for being flexible on the tail end regarding the dinner reservation. What a fun afternoon! Thank you so much!!!!" Karen Symon (10/2/15)


"Caroline and I want to thank you for your interesting and educational tour of various growing fields in the Salinas Valley. We now have much better knowledge of the vegetables we see growing around us and the process they undergo from planting to table. We appreciate your willingness and ability to respond to our questions and needs, making it a very customized tour. You can be sure we'll recommend Ag Venture Tours to our friends!" Joe Youmans (9/30/15)


"Happy New Year 2013! We came from France to visit the amazing "Salad Bowl of the World" and we were really astonished! Thank you Evan for making us discover this beautiful agricultural landscape. You'll be welcome to see us in Alsace to taste some of our white wine!" Benjamin Lammert and Marie Casenave-Pere, Alsace, France (1/18/13)

 

"This is my second tour and it was great! I liked it so much the first time I brought my mother with me this time." Patricia, Pacific Grove (11/24/12)

 

"Best tour in the World - "you are what you eat" - thanks for showing us where all our food comes from - where California began!" U.S. Congressman Sam Farr (10/23/12)

 

 

 

 

 

Ag Venture Tours & Consulting

P.O. Box 2634

Monterey, CA 93942

831-761-8463 Phone

831-761-5461 Fax

TCP 22683 S

evan@agventuretours.com

grapes

 

Copyright 1999-2017 -- All Rights Reserved

 

OUR FAVORITE LINKS:

Bernardus Winery The Farm Pessagno Winery
Hyatt Regency Monterey Manzoni Vineyard Folktale Winery
Talbott Vineyard Earthbound Farm Parsonage Vineyard Pezzini Farms
Cima Collina Taste Morgan Joullian The Quail & Olive
Monterey Wines