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Tours & Cruises

Crowds of Penguins to Cheer in Antarctica


Like to run in cold weather? Join the Antarctica Marathon, a race held last year for the first time and completed by 84 people. Marathon Tours & Travel, a Boston-based agency, is offering a trip to the second Antarctica marathon, scheduled for Feb. 9 to 23, when temperatures range from 25 to 40 degrees. Participants will stay eight nights on a research vessel, take wildlife excursions and hear lectures given by marine biologists and ornithologists.

Cost: from $4,126 per person, double occupancy, including round-trip air fare to Tierra del Fuego from Los Angeles, accommodations and some meals. The $50 race entry fee is extra. Contact: Marathon Tours & Travel, 108 Main St., Charlestown, MA 02129; telephone (617) 242- 7845.

Homework in London

El Camino College is offering a full semester study-abroad program in London, England, for the 1997 spring semester. Students will depart Feb. 19 for three months, live in furnished apartments and have unlimited transportation on the subway in the city. Participants will study such subjects as history of early Britain, English literature, effective speaking and oral interpretation of literature. The group will also take excursions to Stratford-upon-Avon, Bath and Kent.

Cost: $4,999 including classes, apartment, excursions and some meals. An information meeting will be held at 7 p.m. Nov. 15 in the Music Recital Hall on campus. Contact: Study Abroad Office, 16007 Crenshaw Blvd., Torrance, CA 90506; tel. (310) 660-3824.

Malta's History

Join an educational travel program to Rome and Malta on Dec. 21 to Jan. 5. The history tour will be guided by Arelene Wolinski, who teaches ancient history at Mesa College in San Diego. The tour's first four days are in Rome, where guests visit museums and attend the Christmas Eve Mass in St. Peter's Basilica. Then the group will fly to the island of Malta and spend eight days learning about the land of the Etruscans through ancient sites. An extension back to Rome is available.

Cost: $3,196 per person, double occupancy, including round-trip air fare, first-class hotels with most meals, all admissions and land travel. Contact: Friendship International Tours, 5950 Canoga Ave., Suite 500, Woodland Hills, CA 91367; tel. (800) 782-4597.

Bits of Asia

Great American Travel is offering a 19-day cruise/tour of Singapore, Malaysia, Thailand, Sri Lanka, India and Hong Kong. The tour departs April 2. The first stop is Singapore for sightseeing, and after a three-night stay, participants board the Marco Polo for a 12-day cruise.

Ports of call include Kuala Lumpur and Penang, Malaysia; Phuket, Thailand; Columbo, Sri Lanka; and Cochin and Bombay, India. Guests arrive by air in Delhi for a two-night stay before going by road to Agra for an overnight stay and visit to the Taj Mahal.

The tour ends with an overnight stay in Hong Kong, which includes a sunset cocktail cruise and a Chinese banquet at a floating restaurant.

Cost: from $3,545 per person, double occupancy, including round-trip air fare from Los Angeles, first-class hotels, most meals, transfers, sightseeing, taxes and service charges. Contact: Great American Travel, 1110 E. Missouri St., Suite 510, Phoenix, AZ 85014; tel. (800) 929-8638.

Mozart in Mexico

Listen to the works of Mozart played by pianists John Lill (Jan. 24) and Anne Marie McDermott (March 7) on a two-day trip to Ensenada. Guests leave from San Diego and stay at the New Port Beach Hotel in Puerto Nuevo and attend the twilight supper buffet and concert. Also, guests will shop and tour Ensenda and have lunch at the Cave of the Tigers.

Cost: $138 per person, double occupancy, including round-trip transportation from San Diego, one night hotel accommodations, lunch, dinner and concert tickets. Contact: Baja California Tours, 7734 Herschel Ave., Suite O, La Jolla, CA 92037; tel. (619) 454-7166.

Seal Watches

Visit the white coats, or baby harp seals, on five- or six-day trips to the Magdalen Islands off Eastern Canada. These trips, scheduled between Feb. 28 through March 20, coincide with the annual three-week period before the pups shed their white fur. This is the 10th anniversary of the Seal Watch program, which began when seal hunting was banned in Canada, and the International Fund for Animal Welfare and Natural Habitat Adventures provided an alternative income for the local population.

Travelers meet in Halifax, Nova Scotia, then fly to the French-speaking islands. From there, they fly by helicopter to the ice floes to photograph and perhaps pet baby seals. Throughout the trip, program leaders, naturalists and photographers give presentations on nature photography, seals and other wildlife. Other activities include snowshoeing, cross-country skiing, sledding, snowmobiling, visiting artisans' shops and studios, or just relaxing. Trips are suited for people of all ages and abilities.

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