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Retreat.guru zeros in on spiritual and wellness getaways, info

Forget about your latest overindulgence. There are yoga and wellness retreats all over the world that have better views than your local gym.

Name: Retreat.guru

What it does: This website lists 6,751 spiritual and wellness retreats, centers and teachers in 58 countries and 785 cities, including Bali, British Columbia, California, Colorado, Costa Rica and Peru.

What's hot: Although the retreat destinations are compelling — a seven-day women's surf and yoga vacation in Bali or a yoga getaway in the Sacred Valley of Peru — the site also allows you to discover teachers and destinations you might not have heard about. Scroll down to the "Hot Topics" section on the home page and find key categories such as Meditation, Travel Retreat, Yoga Teacher Training, Plant Medicine or Wellness Retreat.

What's not: There are teacher reviews, but I couldn't find reviews for retreats or centers. As a newbie to the retreat world, I wanted to read more about travelers' experiences. When you tap on a...

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Travel letters: Try a new holiday tradition: staying home

Stay home for the holidays

Regarding "It Might Be Too Late to Land Holiday Deal" by Catharine Hamm, Oct. 12: What amazes me about articles like this is, why does everyone have to go home every year for Thanksgiving and Christmas and maybe New Year's Eve? Why can't everyone tell Grandma they'll be staying home this year? Save yourself the hassle of spending two, three or more days in the airport, missed flights, snowed-in or canceled flights, all for some turkey? Skype Grandma and tell her you won't be coming home this year!

Charles P. Martin

Los Angeles

 

Irish roots

I was thrilled to read the article about the Beara Peninsula and surrounding towns ["Wild, and Wondrous" by Margo Pfeiff, Oct. 5]. My dad, Bert Power, was born in Castletownbere, Ireland. While I was growing up, he talked about his childhood and the beauty of the countryside almost every week. There was not another place like it.

As many other Irishmen who sought work when they immigrated, he came to Los Angeles and joined...

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Russia's North Caucasus region on the agenda at slide show in Pasadena

RUSSIA

Slide show

Bill Altaffer will discuss the little-known region of the North Caucasus and its people and cultures.

When, where: 7:30 p.m. Wednesday at Distant Lands, 20 S. Raymond Ave., Pasadena.

Admission, info: Free. RSVP to (626) 449-3220.

 

YOSEMITE

Movie

The Sierra Club will present Ken Burns' "Yosemite: A Gathering of Spirit" in celebration of the 50th anniversary of the Wilderness Act.

When, where: 7 p.m. Wednesday at the Peninsula Center Library, 701 Silver Spur Road, Rolling Hills Estates.

Admission, info: Free. Joyce White at (310) 383-5247

 

JOSHUA TREE

Field class

Learn the "big five" skills needed to safely explore the desert landscape of Joshua Tree.

When, where: 9 a.m.-4 p.m. Oct. 26 at the Oasis Visitor Center.

Admission, info: $70. (760) 367-5535

 

CUBA

Presentation

Dennis and Diana Trombley will talk "Rum, Rumba and the Revolution," the Cuba of the 1950s, and share their tour of Havana, Trinidad, Cienfuegos and Sancti Spiritus.

When, where: Noon Oct. 26 at El...

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Readers Recommend: Fine Italian dining in Edinburgh, Scotland

During our recent three days in Edinburgh, Scotland, we discovered a huge Italian influence, including restaurants. Our favorite dinner was at Divino Enoteca, an upscale establishment in a somewhat obscure location on a lower-level street. The wine and food were delicious, with perfectly sized portions and lovely presentation. I enjoyed the vegetarian lasagna.

Divino Enoteca, 5 Merchant St., Edinburgh; 011-44-131-225-1770, divinoedinburgh.com

Cheryl Kohr

Palos Verdes Estates

 

travel@latimes.com

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Jamaica bans travelers from West African nations over Ebola crisis

Jamaica has issued a travel ban against travelers from Guinea, Liberia and Sierra Leone because of the Ebola crisis, a government news service announced Thursday. It joins the island of St. Lucia, Guyana and Haiti in barring people from the three West African countries from entering the Caribbean nations.

Jamaica has been tweeting details about its policy, which includes denying entry to residents of the affected nations and anyone who has traveled there in the last 28 days. Additionally, Jamaican citizens and residents returning from the West African countries will be quarantined.

"The #travelban is a temporary measure necessary for the protection of human and animal health from #Ebola #EbolaResponse," says a tweet from the Jamaica Information Service.

St. Lucia earlier said it would deny entry to visitors from Guinea, Liberia and Sierra Leone. It also said visitors from Nigeria, which has taken strong steps to contain the Ebola outbreak, are required to obtain a visa and present a...

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San Bernardino Mountains are best pick for fall colors this weekend

The San Bernardino Mountains east of downtown Los Angeles are on the "Go now!" list for fall colors this weekend, according to CaliforniaFallColor.

As autumn colors shift to lower elevations, trees are reported at peak in Lake Gregory, Grass Valley Lake, Lake Arrowhead and Big Bear Lake.

CaliforniaFallColor says leaf peepers will find "black oak, Fremont cottonwood and pockets of aspen providing orange, buff, gold and yellow splashes of color among deep green pines."

Another spot to visit: the town of Oak Glen, east of Yucaipa. It's a small area with apple orchards whose leaves blend with California black walnut and oak trees.

If you visit, you can also go apple-picking in some of the orchards. For example Riley's Farm at 12261 S. Oak Glen Road reports on its website that picking will begin Saturday for Arkansas black, pink lady and Spitzenburg varieties. You can drive a 5-mile loop around the orchards too.

Those traveling north to the Eastern Sierra will find high-elevation color...

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