Bike Tour Guide, Mark Weinberg Loves His Job!
Mark Weinberg is passionate: about people, about cycling and about Canada – his homeland. You can just hear it in his voice. As a Sojourn bike tour guide, he satisfies all three passions as he introduces Sojourn travelers to some of his favorite places.
Mark knows the landscape, history and culture of eastern Canada like the back of his hand. Born, raised, and still residing in Montreal, Mark is a self-appointed goodwill ambassador for his country, province and beloved city. A bilingual Anglophone in a predominantly French-speaking province, Mark empathizes with and seeks out confused American tourists in his home town.
Mark is particularly excited about Sojourn’s new bike trip: Ottawa to Montreal. “Pedaling into the city is wonderful,” he sighs. Montreal loves bicycles. There are more than 300 kilometers of bike routes and paths located on the island of Montreal alone and more than double that in the surrounding region. Bicyclists love Montreal. It is a terrific place to visit, people like Mark make it so.
When asked which is his favorite tour, he describes aspects of each, but claims “Vermont to Quebec City is my baby…pedaling into Quebec City is so beautiful.” This trip evolved out the Champlain 400 Celebration, a Quebec, Vermont and New York collaborative commemoration of Samuel de Champlain’s discovery of Lake Champlain in 1609.
Much of this trip is along Quebec’s La Route Verte, the Green Route, a biking network that connects 320 municipalities. Comprised of 4,036 kilometers (2,508 mi) of marked paths, paved shoulders and designated roadways cross-crossing every region of Québec, La Route Verte is the largest cycling network in the Americas.
Mark also guides the Niagara Wine Country Bike Tours. Known for world-famous wine and what Wine Spectator Magazine calls “bucolic” and “charming” countryside, the wine country is right up there on the list of fabulous bike tours – and is an easier trip that the other Canadian tours.
A former school administrator, in 2009 Mark was selected to ride his bike from Vancouver to Halifax as a participant in the Sears National Kids Cancer Ride. The ride visited pediatric oncology units across Canada to raise funds for children’s cancer charities.
Mark always wanted to guide bike trips. When he retired, he set out to do just that. He learned of Sojourn through a friend during a ski holiday and drove down to Vermont for an interview. “We talked for an hour and that was it!” he recalls. He has been leading trips with Sojourn for four years and loves every minute of it.