by Betty and Dick Wood, Seattle, WA

If you have ever thought of visiting Beirut or wanted to see the archaeological ruins of Baalbek, Tyre or Byblos, I would say this is the time to go. The price is right, there are almost no tourists and the local people are very friendly — everyone greets you with “Welcome” and can’t seem to do enough to help you enjoy this most delightful, beautiful country.

Repairing the damage

After many years of civil war (the fighting stopped...


by Carol O'Hara, Orangevale, CA

Only a few short years ago, any traveler who used a wheelchair would weigh the advantages of cruising against the disadvantages of each ship. Older liners often were difficult for those in chairs to navigate because of their construction. They had a lack of accessible staterooms plus narrow halls and raised lips between sections of the ship.

Not so, today. The newer ships are a dream come true for less-able souls who love to travel. Wheelchair-...


by Vern Lewis, Atlanta, GA

An extended trip to Southern Africa: that’s what my sister Patt and I took in January and February ’03. The highlight would be a 16-day rail tour that departed from Johannesburg and took us to a total of six countries.

We began with a week in Cape Town. Because of the extreme distance, we chose to fly first class on South African Airways — $9,250 each, round trip from Atlanta to Cape Town.

We stayed at the Protea Hotel President (4 Alexander...


by Randy Keck, part 2 of 2 on the Philippines

The second portion of my recent visit to the Philippines focused on the island of Cebu, specifically on the area around Cebu City and adjacent Mactan Island, both rich in terms of historical significance.

In 1521 the famous explorer Magellan met his end at a battle on Mactan Island after incurring the wrath of local chieftain Lapu-Lapu, who had no tolerance for the explorer’s exploitative practices. A monument on Mactan...


by Patricia Arrigoni, Fairfax, CA

From a treetop deep in the jungles of Peru, a tiny brown monkey stares down at me with curiosity. I aim my binoculars and stare back into his intense, dark eyes. We check each other out for a couple of minutes, then he is gone, swinging with ease to the next tree.

But there were more animals to discover on this May ’03 trip to Peru, like the saddle-back tamarin and the three-toed sloth, plus a selection of beautiful birds.



by Kaye Olson, DeWitt, MI

After traveling to 41 countries, my husband and I embarked on a self-designed journey that would surpass all the trips we had taken in our lifetime. Over several years we had searched for information regarding the death of my uncle, Staff Sergeant Lewis (Louie) Annear, during the WWII Normandy invasion of 1944. Our mission was firm. After a time lapse of 57 years, we would follow Louie’s footsteps from his D-Day disembarkment on Utah Beach till his death...


by Robert Juhre, Kettle Falls, WA

Travel in Botswana is limited to a few choices. You can book accommodations through one of many tour operators. Their camps are generally small, accommodating 12 to 15 people, and are remote but well appointed.

The food is gourmet, and the attention to guests’ personal care and comfort is outstanding. Visitors can see an abundance of wildlife in the immediate vicinity of most camps. However, these camps are expensive, ranging from $250 to over...


by Richard and Elizabeth Welch, Annandale, VA

My wife and I have taken several guided trips to various areas of Great Britain hoping to see as much of this very attractive country as possible. While we had obtained good overviews of many of its regions, Wales had been mostly ignored. Although we searched diligently, we had been unable to find any tour company that offered more than a quick passage through this country on the way to or from Ireland. Consequently, we decided to plan...