Himalayan celebrationA16-day trip from Himalaya Trekking...


March 19, 1995|By Suzanna Stephens

Himalayan celebration

A16-day trip from Himalaya Trekking and Wilderness Expeditions focuses on the grand Paro Festival celebrating Tantric Buddhism in Bhutan, a small monarchy wedged between the high mountain peaks of the Himalayas and the jungles of India. Only a few thousand tourists are allowed to visit the country each year.

Tour participants will explore historic fortresses, monasteries and temples by private vehicle as well as attend the ancient religious festival. The tour begins April 4 with a four-night stay and tours in Katmandu, Nepal; from there participants will fly to Bhutan for 12 days. Cost is $2,700 per person, including all lodging, breakfasts in Katmandu, all meals in Bhutan, land transportation, airfare to and from Katmandu and services of English-speaking local guides. Flights from the United States can be made through Himalaya Trekking. Call (800) 777-8735.

Vaccination alert

Travelers leaving the United States for developing countries may have a hard time finding gamma globulin shots at the moment. The shortage, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and the manufacturers, is the result of demands by the military for use in the Middle East, Somalia and Haiti.

The CDC recommends gamma globulin or vaccination for travelers to all countries except Australia, Canada, Japan, New Zealand and Western Europe -- for anybody going off the usual tourist itinerary.

Gamma globulin, also known as immune globulin, is made from human blood plasma and provides antibody protection against hepatitis A, a viral inflammation of the liver. But the good news is that a new hepatitis A vaccine recently has been licensed by the Food and Drug Administration. Barbara Reynolds of the CDC says this vaccine should alleviate the gamma globulin shortage. The hepatitis A vaccine provides 20 years of protection against the disease as opposed to six months of protection provided by gamma globulin.

The CDC advises that anyone unable to obtain the vaccine should take extra precautions, such as drinking only bottled drinks and avoiding uncooked food, especially fresh vegetables and raw shellfish.

For additional information about hepatitis A prevention, consult your physician or call the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention's Health Information for International Travelers at (404) 332-4559.

Vacation in Australia

In Australia's Whitsunday Islands, between the northeastern coast of Queensland and the Great Barrier Reef, Hayman resort offers a romantic honeymoon haven or an escape for any traveler. Surrounded by secluded beaches and tropical gardens, guests can take advantage of a full range of land and water activities such as windsurfing, sailing, water-skiing, scuba diving, fishing and tennis.

After March 31, Hayman offers the Great Affordables package for approximately $1,242 per couple, which includes either king or twin-bed accommodations for three nights, buffet breakfast daily, service and tax, use of tennis courts, the daily newspaper, all non-motorized water sports, champagne, limousine transfers to and from Hayman's marina, tax and service. Extra nights cost about $445 and include buffet breakfasts and state taxes. For further information about the Hayman resort, write to Hayman, Great Barrier Reef, North Queensland, 4801, Australia; or call the

Leading Hotels of the World at (800) 223-6800.

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