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Rundown for the week of June 12, 1999

Q&A I: Why Travel?
Rudy talks to listeners about what inspires them to travel.

Frances Mayes Interview
Several years ago, Frances Mayes took a risk and pursued a dream. Against the advice of her family, she gave up her life savings to buy a dilapidated villa in Tuscany. Frances and her partner Ed renovated their new home and she wrote a #1 best-seller, Under the Tuscan Sun about the experience. Her love affair with Italy continues in her latest book, Bella Tuscany: The Sweet Life in Italy.

Gone Fishin' in Yellowstone
Just say "Montana" and an angler's eyes light up. Some of the most legendary trout fishing in America lies in the part of that state that surrounds our oldest national park, Yellowstone. After hanging a "Gone Fishin" sign on his office door, Hal Cannon headed for Montana on the Open Road to try his luck on the first week of fly fishing season.

Deal of the Week
Remember how Americans stopped traveling in '91 when the Gulf War hit? It's happening again, though to a lesser extent because the conflict in Yugoslavia scared tourists away from countries such as Greece and Italy. Which means bargains for travelers who realize there's little reason not to cruise the Greek Isles or drop in on Istanbul or the southern coast of Turkey.

Bookings are down, and so are prices. Crystal Cruises says it's offering savings of more than 60 per cent on September sailings to the French and Italian Riviera, Greek Isles, Spain, and Malta. A major tour operator called American Tourist says its two-week tour of Turkey including hotels, guides, and many meals works out to $97 per night. That's not per person, that's per couple. And that includes airfare! The point isn't WHICH tour company or cruise line you shop; it's that NOW is the time to shop. Like Asia after the currency crisis hit almost two years ago, a whole part of the world is on sale. Call a travel agent or check the travel sections of major newspapers for offers. Consider mainly Greece, Turkey, the eastern coast of Italy, and Eastern European countries including Hungary and the Czech Republic. Go. Enjoy. And save.

Q&A II: General Questions
Rudy takes listeners' general questions about travel. He mentions:

Cheap Vacations from Chicago

  • Visit Washington, D.C. with some cheap airfares. United, Northwest and American have a $134 rate from O'Hare to Dulles. Southwest (800-I-FLY-SWA) also has low fares, but only to BWI airport. In D.C. visit the National Mall and Kennedy Center. Antiquing can be done on Saturdays at the Eastern Market and Sundays at the Georgetown Flea Market.
  • ATA offers a $158 airfare to Philadelphia through June 30. Pro Air's lowest fare is $198, round trip; call 800-477-6247. Visit the Philadelphia Museum of Art and Rodin Museum. Great restaurants abound on South Street.
  • Holland, Michigan, a two and a half hour drive from Chicago, is a popular summer resort area. Cobblestone streets are lined with tulips, wooden clog factories and a Dutch windmill. Holland State Park encompasses beautiful, high-duned beaches ideal for swimming, boating and fishing. A great time to visit is during the Tulip Festival, from May 11-20, 2000. Call the chamber of commerce, 616-392-2389


  • Caesar's Paradise Stream. The two-night all-inclusive rate in a "Cleopatra Suite" is $828. Breakfast and dinner are included in both days, plus use of the facilities of four resorts owned by Caesar's Hotels. Call 800-233-4141.
  • Rooms at the Pocono Gardens Resort have heart-shaped jacuzzis, private pools and saunas. The two-night all-inclusive rate is $665. Breakfast and dinner are included as well as resort amenities and entertainment. Call 800-441-4410.

Renting Camping Equipment

  • REI is one of the most extensive suppliers of equipment. They offer backpacks, sleeping bags, stoves, tents, kayaks and even snowshoes for serious back country walking. If you pony up the $15 lifetime membership fee, you then receive an annual dividend (10 percent of your purchases for the year). From New York call 800-677-4734.

Until recently, my image of Scotland came from movies like Braveheart, which portray a land of magnificent scenery... romantic past .. kilts... bagpipes. But then a year and a half ago, I made a stop in Glasgow and found a cosmopolitan city with sophisticated restaurants and upscale shopping. That made me wonder what the rest of Scotland is really like. So I asked a native, Adam Fowler to see if an American guide book could get it right.

Barry Glassner Interview
Rudy talks with Barry Glassner, author of a new book, "The Culture of Fear: Why Americans Worry About the Wrong Things" and asks him, why are Americans afraid to visit Greece or cruise the Adriatic when the conflict is hundreds of miles away in Yugoslavia?

At the Washington Jefferson Hotel in New York, Cosimo Cavallaro cheesed an entire room. He tells us he did it to express his joy for life.

Next Week on The Savvy Traveler
We follow a thousand year-old path the faithful have trudged across northern Spain...

"The square was full of musicians and dancers, and of course Pilgrims lying on backpacks gazing up at cathedral. A scene not so very different from Middle Ages."

One man fulfills his lifelong dream to make the pilgrimage to Santiago de Compostela And if you missed Custer's last stand the first time around, don't worry...you'll get another chance.

Hal: "Mr Custer, how'd it go today?" Actor: "Today was one of the better battles...the Indians died real good. It was pretty real up there."

Re-enacting history at Little Big Horn ... and in honor of Father's Day, your calls about lessons you learned from Dad on the road. That and more so please come along for the ride during next week's edition of The Savvy Traveler.

Cassette Copies
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The Savvy Traveler Newsletter
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