Les Toiles Studio: Hi David ! In a few words what is Steed Tours and how did your love for 4×4 start? Why LR Defender?
David : Steed Tours is a tiny company, a family business, in the tourism business. I’m a motor-head; I’ve owned many vehicles, including several 4×4’s. My attraction to LR Defenders started the moment I recognised one, and their predecessors, as this boxy, severely upright, rectangular thing with very tall wheels.
Les Toiles Studio: What is Steed Tours offering? Can you explain the types of thematic tours you do? Which ones are the most popular?
David : We offer day tours which encompass the district of Gruyère, and often include forays into the cantons Vaud and Berne, in southwestern Switzerland. Themes we describe on our site are about places and things we like, such as mountain lakes, cheese and chocolate making, and so on. In fact, every tour is different, depending on the start and end destinations (sometimes different). Every tour is built around what the customers like and what is doable in a vehicle in the course of a day.
Les Toiles Studio: You have lived in many places before settling in Switzerland. Are you not missing your homeland USA? What is so special about Switzerland that keeps you here?
David : Europe has always held a special attraction to me. I’ve spent most of my adult live in four European countries, and the last ten in Switzerland. A gorgeous view of the mountains from my balcony, and a family of charming polyglots keep me here. We built a chalet and we have no plans to exchange what we have for anything else.
Les Toiles Studio: Can you tell us a bit more about your team? We know it is quite a unique group of people who share love for the Swiss landscapes and tourism.
David : My wife and I run the business. A friend and fellow Defender owner provides a second vehicle when we need it, and a number of friends from various walks of life are available to provide additional languages.
Les Toiles Studio: What is the best in cruising the Swiss landscapes in a Land Rover? Why is it that this car gives you so many positive emotions?
David : It’s a feeling. My wife and I have travelled to many corners of this planet. The sheer beauty of the grass and snow on the mountains is hard to describe, and easy on the senses to experience.
About the vehicle: you sit up high, you see the corners of the vehicle well, you know this isn’t the most sophisticated or expensive 4×4, but it is amazingly capable. Defender drivers typically strongly, depend on their vehicles for their profession, or they have an infatuation with them that frankly sounds a bit crazy. The wind and rain can blow through them, the joints don’t fit all that well, they all get rust at some point, but the fascination owners have with them goes beyond all that. There’s some kind of love and respect for these buckets of bolts and rubber, and I think it tends to grow over time.
So you combine this love of countryside with the pleasure of being able to get to difficult to reach places (always sanctioned, by the way) in a super fun vehicle, and it’s a tourist’s dream.
Ready to experience Steed Touring in LR Defender with David & his team?
Check out Steed Tours website to find out more.
Thank you David for sharing your great story with us!
Photographs courtesy of Steed Tours.