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Los Angeles Times Travel | Sunday, January 28, 2007 Maggie Barnett: Tours & Cruises Tracking white rhinos, in a minivan GO on an African safari to the parks of Kenya with the staff of the Los Angeles Zoo. The 10-night tour, which begins May 25, visits the Samburu National Reserve, Lake Nakuru National Park, the private Congreve Conservancy and Masai Mara Wildlife Reserve in Kenya. Participants may see leopards, hippos, elephants, cheetahs, white rhinos and many of the 500 species of birds in eastern Africa. "Sometimes we get close. It just depends," said zoo representative Laura Stegman. Accommodations range from hotels to tented camps. Cost: $3,995 per person, double occupancy ($595 single surcharge), including airfare from Los Angeles, meals, lodging, transportation and entrance fees. Airport taxes are not included. Contact: Greater Los Angeles Zoo Assn., Los Angeles; (323) 644-4792. The tour is organized by Classic Escapes, Astoria, N.Y., http://www.classicescapes.com . GREECE An epicurean tour of Crete island DISCOVER the natural history and the food of Crete by touring its farms and ancient sites on a weeklong hiking trip that begins April 23. Tour participants will visit farms, historical sites and villages. The itinerary includes the Palace of Knossos in the Herakleion Prefecture of Crete, visits to organic olive groves, wineries and bakeries in central Crete, and hikes through the gorges and foothills of the island. Cost: Approximately $2,006 per person, double occupancy ($285 single surcharge), including accommodations, meals, wine in moderation, transportation in Crete and airport transfers. Airfare from Los Angeles is not included. Contact: Crete's Culinary Sanctuaries, San Francisco; (415) 835-9923, http://www.cookingincrete.com . CALIFORNIA Paddle out, see the migrating whales SPOT migrating whales off the coast of La Jolla on guided, three-hour kayaking tours. The weekend trips are offered at 9 a.m. and noon on Saturdays and Sundays through April. Participants need to be at least 10 years old and be able to swim, but kayaking experience is not required. The group will travel through La Jolla Ecological Reserve and along the coast within sight of the California gray whales traveling to the Pacific Northwest from their calving grounds in Baja, Mexico. Cost: $60 per person single kayak, $50 per person tandem kayak. Included are all equipment, instruction, wetsuits, guide and refreshments. Contact: Hike Bike Kayak, La Jolla; (866) 425-2925, http://www.hikebikekayak.com . TEXAS Clink glasses, raft downriver ENJOY fine wine and gourmet meals while rafting through the Chama River Canyon Wilderness in New Mexico. The two-night weekend river trips, scheduled May 18, June 26 and July 17, travel 25 miles downriver from Abiquiu (about 80 miles northwest of Taos, N.M.). Along the way, François Maeder — chef at the San Antonio restaurant Crumpets — will prepare dishes and pair wines from aperitifs to dessert. The group will be met downriver at Whirlpool Eddy for the drive back to Abiquiu. Cost: $860 per person, including meals, beverages, safety equipment, wetsuits or splash gear, certified river guide, medical emergency technician, transfers to and from the river and a tax- deductible contribution to Rio Grande Restoration. (www.riogranderestoration.com). Transportation to Abiquiu and sleepingbag rental fees ($10 per night) are not included. Contact: Far Flung Adventures; (800) 359-2627, http://www.farflung.com . PACIFIC NORTHWEST If intelligent chats float your boat CRUISE from San Francisco to Alaska on an 11-night voyage with special guests from public television and National Public Radio. The May 12 cruise, aboard the 700-passenger Seven Seas Mariner, will embark in San Francisco and visit Astoria, Ore.; Seattle; Prince Rupert, Canada; and Tracy Arm, Skagway, Juneau and Sitka, Alaska, returning along the Inside Passage to Vancouver, Canada. Special guests include Gwen Ifill, moderator of the PBS show "Washington Week"; Scott Simon, Peabody Award winner and correspondent; and Ric Burns, documentary filmmaker. Cost: $4,248 and up per person, double occupancy, including balcony accommodations, meals, wine with dinner, presentations and panel discussions. Port charges, taxes and transportation to San Francisco and return from Vancouver are not included. Contact: Alamo World Travel & Tours, Alamo, Calif.; (800) 848-8747, http://www.alamoworld.com -------------------------------------------------------------------------------- The Times is not responsible for changes in prices, dates or itineraries. Send information to Tours & Cruises, Los Angeles Times, 202 W. 1st St., Los Angeles, CA 90012 or write via e-mail to firstname.lastname@example.org.
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