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Tours & Cruises

Taking the Long, Slow Route in Costa Rica

August 25, 1996|KARIN DOMINELLO | TIMES STAFF WRITER

Spend two weeks crossing Costa Rica from the Caribbean to the Pacific by mountain bike, raft and foot.

Participants traverse rugged mountain ranges, deep valleys and rushing rivers along a network of trails, back roads and river routes, escorted by adventure guides experienced in outdoor wilderness and safety procedures. Instruction will be given throughout the tour, so outdoor expertise is not a prerequisite, although participants should be moderately fit.

A support vehicle will shadow the group across Costa Rica, carrying all equipment, tools and food required. Participants will carry only their day packs.

Accommodations will be in small family-run guest houses and in two-person tents at selected campsites. Trip equipment supplied in Costa Rica includes: 21-speed mountain bikes, self-bailing six-person rafts and camping gear.

For the Record
Los Angeles Times Sunday September 1, 1996 Home Edition Travel Part L Page 2 Travel Desk 1 inches; 32 words Type of Material: Correction
Tours & Cruises--Due to an editing error, an item on Nonstop Travel's Bavarian Christmas tour in the Aug. 25 column stated that air fare was not included. The price, $2,149 per person, includes round-trip air fare from Los Angeles.

There are four departures: Nov. 25 to Dec. 9, 1996; Feb. 17 to March 3, 1997; March 17 to March 31, 1997; and Nov. 17 to Dec. 1, 1997. Space is limited to 12 participants per trip.

Cost: $1,795 from San Jose, Costa Rica, and includes all equipment, accommodation, guides, support vehicle internal flight and most meals. International air fare is not included.

Contact: Trish Sare of International Adventure Travel; telephone (416) 927-7899.

Branson Showdown

Get into the holiday mood at the Branson Christmas Showcase, Nov. 21 to 26, on a tour to Branson, Mo. Participants will attend eight shows and take a sightseeing tour of the town. Lodging will be hosted by local people.

Cost: $1,000 per person, double occupancy, including round-trip air fare, airport transfers and baggage handling, 11 meals, show tickets and ground transportation while in Branson. Contact: Waneta Bereda, Seaviewpoint Travel, 28441 Highridge Road, Rolling Hills Estates, CA 90274; tel. (310) 541-7744 or (800) 728-3331.

Images of India

Visit India and Nepal on a tour that departs Nov. 5 and returns Nov. 25. Participants will visit Katmandu and Dhulikel for views of the Himalayan range. Then, after a tour of Dehli, guests visit the cities of Jaipur and Jodhpur, take a full-day Jeep safari to see wildlife, take an elephant ride, spend two nights at the Sariska Palace in Sariska Wildlife Sanctuary and take a train trip to the city of Gwalior. A highlight is a visit to the Taj Mahal.

Cost: $3,950 per person, double occupancy, including air fare from San Francisco or Los Angeles, hotel accommodations, most meals and all tips to guides. Hotels used are five-star or best available. All sightseeing and rickshaw or horse-cart rides is included with private guides. Contact: Unique Journeys, 71 Keystone Ave., Reno, NV; tel. (702) 323-0110.

Taste of Bordeaux

Avalon Tours and the Wine Club are sponsoring two seven-night tours of the Bordeaux wine region in France Sept. 21 to 29 and Oct. 19 to 27. Tour director Peter Smith has arranged private meals and wine-tastings at well-known wineries, such as Margaux, Mouton Rothschild, Latour and Haut-Brion, Montrose and Domaine de Chevalier. The visits are scheduled during the harvest, when many of these chateaux close their doors to the general public.

Guests will see grapes being picked, crushed and fermented, and will be the first to taste the 1996 vintage. Each chateau will also present older vintages to taste with commentary from representatives from the Wine Club and the winemakers themselves. A special Cognac tasting is also on the itinerary.

Participants will tour the historic city of Bordeaux, the 10th century walled village of St. Emilion, stately homes, churches and other historic monuments.

Cost: $2,995 per person, double occupancy, including ground transportation, hotels, wine-tastings and most meals. Contact: Avalon Tours; tel. (714) 673-7376.

Taste of Asia

V&T Tours is offering a tour to Asia to see Hong Kong and Bangkok and Chiang Mai, Thailand.

The tour departs Nov. 8 and returns Nov. 23.

Tours include a half-day tour of Hong Kong to Aberdeen, Stanley Market Place, Repulse Bay and Victoria Peak. In Bangkok, guests tour the Grand Palace and Temple of the Emerald Buddha with a morning tour on the second day to the Floating Market and Wat Arun (Temple of Dawn). For shoppers, Thai silk is found everywhere in Bangkok and can be purchased by the yard, in ready-made or tailored clothing. Thai crafts, including metal work, jewelry and embroidery are available in Bangkok and Chiang Mai.

In Chiang Mai, participants tour the Doi Suthep and Meo hill tribe villages.

Cost: $2,895 per person, double occupancy, including round-trip air fare from Los Angeles, hotels, ground transportation, daily breakfasts and some meals, and guided tours. Contact: V&T Tours, P.O. Box 205, Carson City, NV; tel. (800) 486-8798.

Paris in Stores

France Vacations is offering travelers an opportunity to shop in Paris where the locals shop on a five-night tour that will explore affordable shops for clothing and home furnishings in the City of Lights. Departure dates are Sept. 28, Nov. 9 and 16, and Dec. 7.

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