The summer season will usher in leisurely hiking tours with North Wind Touring of Vermont. A choice of treks in New Hampshire, Vermont, North Carolina, Virginia. Hikers will follow forest trails/backroads. Stunning scenery, picnic lunches on the trail, candlelight dinners served at the various inns. North Wind is offering both weekend and five-day hikes (your luggage goes ahead in a van, so backpacks aren’t necessary). “Along the way we’ll take time to smell the flowers,” says Clif and Dae Todd of North Wind Touring. The Vermont trek follows old carriage paths, valley to valley, inn to inn. Two nights are spent at Dan and Susan Easley’s Lareau Farm Country Inn, a 150-year-old farmhouse alongside a river in central Vermont. Praised for its cozy rooms, blueberry pancakes. “You may never want to go home again,” say the Todds.
North Wind Touring, P.O. Box 46, Waitsfield, Vt. 05673. Telephone (802) 244-5726.
Inn Review is a newsletter devoted to B&Bs;, small hotels, country inns. Covers hundreds of accommodations in 46 states. The latest survey names the year’s 10 best new inns:
--Sterling Hotel, 1300 H St., Sacramento, Calif. 95814.
--Inn at Chapel Hill West, 1201 Chapel St., New Haven, Conn. 06511.
--Morrison-Clark Inn, Massachusetts & 11th St. N.W., Washington, D.C. 20001.
--The Towers, 101 N.W. Front St., Milford, Del. 19963.
--Checkerberry Inn, 62644 County Road 37, Goshen, Ind. 46526.
--Rosewood Manor, Highway 431, Box 127, Brittany, La. 70718.
--Millsaps Buie House, 628 N. State St., Jackson, Miss. 39202.
--Gallatin Gateway, Gallatin, Mont. 59730.
--Tranquil House Inn, Queen Elizabeth St., Manteo, N.C. 27954.
--Ravenscroft Inn, 533 Quincy St., Port Townsend, Wash. 98368.
Note: For a sample copy of Inn Review Newsletter, send $2 to Inn Review, P.O. Box 1789, Kankakee, Ill. 60901.
Chris Tucker of Resort Report is a member of a small, family-owned operation that “takes great pride in sending vacationers to places we think are special.” Provides ideas for singles/couples/families. Inn-to-inn bicycle tours, white-water rafting, following in the footsteps of early archeologists through Southwest Indian ruins. Tours take in national parks along with “10 of the best dude ranches in the West.” Dozens of activities, including fishing/scuba diving in Hawaii. Lists more than 300 accommodations in 11 Western states.
For a free copy of the 24-page catalogue, write Central Resort Reservations, P.O. Box 20, Sun Valley, Ida. 83353, or call toll-free (800) 635-4156.
Summer in Washington, D.C., is like booking a suite in a hothouse. Drips with humidity. Nevertheless, families flock there to take in the attractions (the White House, Smithsonian, etc.). Hotel space is being booked free by Washington DC Accommodations. Callers are assisted in the selection of accommodations according to price, location. Luxury, first-class, budget hotels. The operators of this service suggest calling a minimum of four weeks in advance, particularly now through September when big crowds will begin invading the capital.
Washington DC Accommodations, 1720 20th St. N.W., Washington, D.C. 20009. Call toll-free (800) 554-2220 between 9 a.m. and 5 p.m. EST, Monday through Friday.
Guaranteed rates of $89 at more than 30 four-star Pullman hotels will be offered this summer in Europe (Austria, Belgium, France, Germany, Italy, Luxembourg, the Netherlands, Spain, Switzerland). Represents discounts up to 50%. Three-star hotels for $69 will be available during summertime in France, Italy, Germany, the Netherlands, Portugual. Rates (including tax/service charges) are guaranteed in U.S. dollars.
See your travel agent or call Pullman/Mondotels toll-free at (800) 223-9862. In New York dial (212) 757-6500.
Peak season fares to Europe are taking off like the Challenger shuttle. A first-class seat LAX/London on a scheduled carrier costs about $2,900. And that’s one way! But relax. You can do the same flight with Go Voyages (a charter operator) for only $249 (the same price to Paris). Fewer frills, maybe, but a big saving. Jean-Michel Harzic of the French Government Tourist Office describes Go Voyages as “a reputable operator.” Serves other cities out of New York (Amsterdam, Athens, Brussels, Dusseldorf, Frankfurt, Hamburg, Madrid, Munich, Nice, Rome, Tel Aviv, Zurich). No restrictions, no advance booking required. No minimum/maximum stays, no penalty for flying to one city, exiting another. Departures guaranteed.
Go Voyages Inc., 1104 Highland Ave., No. 1, Manhattan Beach 90266. Call (213) 379-6339.
Connex is guaranteeing weekly summer rates on car rentals in U.S. dollars with unlimited mileage. Here are some of the prices: $75 in Luxembourg, $89 in Portugual, $98 in Britain, Belgium, Germany, Spain, $126 in Holland, $139 in Denmark, $147 in Austria/Switzerland, $154 in Greece, $157 in Italy. Other offers in Ireland, France, Israel, Sweden, Yugoslavia, Morocco, Cyprus, Egypt, Finland, Malta, Turkey. The company was cited last year by Consumer Reports newsletter for providing some of the lowest costs in a number of European nations.
Contact your travel agent or dial Connex toll-free at (800) 333-3949.
Backroads Bicycle Touring is putting together “Singles Only” spins through Northern California’s wine country and Bodega Bay (the setting for Alfred Hitchcock’s movie thriller, “The Birds”). The five-day wine country tour will take in Napa, Sonoma and Alexander valleys, as well as attractions along the Russian River. Departures are May 21, June 25, July 23, Aug. 20. The price for accommodations, meals: $898. Cost for the two-day Bodega Bay camping tour (May 26 and Aug. 25): $169.
For a free catalogue, write Backroads Bicycle Touring, 1516 5th Ave., Berkeley, Calif. 94701-1713, (415) 527-1555. Outside California, dial toll-free (800) 533-2573.
Antiquing in Britain
Gillian Dodds attends dozens of antique fairs in Britain, buys from hundreds of dealers. Her specialty: pleasing American travelers. Dodds insists her prices are the lowest in London. Promises to refund your money if you aren’t satisfied. Drop her a note and she’ll search out items on your list, deliver them to your hotel when you arrive. Dodds says travelers are under no obligation to buy. She made the switch to the antique business after working for a hotel near Portobello Road (one of London’s major antique neighborhoods).
Gillian Dodds, Forever Antiques, 7 Queen’s Court, Hampstead Way, Hampstead Gardens Suburb, London NW11 7TN.