Travel News & Deals
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French boutique airline La Compagnie a smooth flight to Paris

My wife and daughter recently traveled to Paris and back on La Compagnie, a new all-business-class airline. It flies from Newark to Paris six days a week. It was more convenient because of the intimacy of the 74-passenger cabin, and the flight attendants were excellent. The check-in at both airports was hassle-free. The staying power of boutique airlines is always an issue; hope this one really catches on so we can continue to fly on it.

La Compagnie,


Marvin Taff

West Los Angeles

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Where Times readers are traveling in 2015

From what you've told us, you're going places in 2015, from domestic destinations such as Wind Cave National Park in South Dakota to international locales like the European Arctic.

Some are traveling to explore their family roots, including Roderick Martinez, who will visit the Wattisham Airfield Station Museum in England, which served as a United States Air Force base during WWII. His father was attached to the 434th Fighter Squadron. Some are celebrating anniversaries, like Bill and Lecy Fredo, who are going on an 11-day cruise on the Seine in France to mark 50 years of marriage.

If you don't have travel plans for 2015, you've got time to plan. Here are 2015 travel itineraries from Los Angeles Times readers to inspire you.

Key West, Fla.

Emily Merkey, Santa Barbara

Each year, Emily Merkey and her family travel to Key West to visit relatives. "The trip there and back is always disastrous, but our time with family in the Keys is indescribable," she said. She has fond memories of boat...

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Where T. Rex and horses roam: Ricardo Breceda's studio in Temecula

When you see galloping metal mustangs jumping over California Highway 79 in Temecula, stop the car and turn around. The horses are a startling roadside site that will lead you to the man who made them.

I pulled off the two-lane winding highway in late November while driving from Temecula to the Anza Borrego Desert. Earlier I had seen a stagecoach pulled by horses and a T. Rex with signs inviting all to come visit Ricardo Breceda's studio.

Enter the Vail Lake Resort RV Park (they give you an hour of free parking if you tell them you're visiting Breceda's studio) and follow the signs to see the metal menagerie the artist keeps here. In a quiet oak grove below the highway sits a warehouse surrounded by animals, real and imagined.

Marlins and dinosaurs share space with scorpions and bears; figures are mostly Old West types of cowboys, and Native Americans that seem to fit in the woodland setting. But you'll also find a polo player or a buxom mermaid.

Inside are small sculptures of...

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After its final flight Sunday, AirTran to become one with Southwest

AirTran Airways and Southwest Airlines will finally be one. The last AirTran flight scheduled for Sunday will retrace the route of the airline's first flight -- when it was known as ValuJet -- from Atlanta to Tampa, Fla.

AirTran Flight 1 (or Southwest Flight 5001) will leave Atlanta at 10:25 p.m. Eastern time and arrive in Tampa at 11:55 p.m. It's the same route that ValuJet flew when service began in 1993.

Southwest executives will mark the event with a few final words and a gate party will be held for all on the flight. It's full, with many longtime AirTran employees as crew members and passengers.

In Southern California, AirTran flights left Los Angeles on Nov. 1, according to Airways News.

Ticket counters and gates merged several months ago at Los Angeles International Airport. Ditto at Orange County's John Wayne Airport, where the side-by-side airlines in Terminal C had an easy transition to become one.

During the ValuJet years, the airline had two high-profile accidents. One...

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Airfare: Round trip from LAX to Malta on Turkish: $667

You can take a winter holiday in Malta, the island nation in the Mediterranean, for less with this round-trip airfare from LAX on Turkish Airlines: $667, which includes all taxes and fees.

It is subject to availability and is for travel Jan. 26-March 24. You must stay over a Saturday night and purchase your ticket by Jan. 19.

Info: Turkish Airlines, (800) 874-8875

Source: Airfarewatchdog

Follow us on Twitter at @latimestravel

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Myanmar and Thailand: Tour takes in-depth look at nature

Natural Habitat Adventures’ 13-day tour of Myanmar and Thailand offers an in-depth look at the countries’ little-known national parks and wildlife reserves.

Highlights include looking for rare wild langurs, or leaf monkeys, in Popa Mountain National Park in Myanmar, also known as Burma, and snorkeling in the Mergui Archipelago, where Burmese macaques, one of the world's few tool-using primates, live and breed. Also on the itinerary are highlights of Burmese culture, such as Yangon’s Shwedagon Pagoda and the temple spires of Bagan.

After boarding a luxury catamaran, guests will cruise the Andaman Sea to Thailand, where they will visit Khao Sok National Park, the world’s oldest rainforest and home to the rare Malayan tapir and Asiatic black bear.

Dates: Feb. 2-14, Feb. 23-March 7 and Nov. 30-Dec. 12, plus four dates in 2016

Price: From $8,895 per person, double occupancy ($2,295 single supplement), plus $1,275 for internal airfare. Includes accommodations, meals, airport transfers, land...

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