A walk on the wild side

Zambia offers on-foot safaris and luxury digs for visitors

The Smart Traveler

December 24, 2006

GO ON A SAFARI IN KENYA OR SOUTH Africa and you'll likely encounter rows of buses filled with tourists armed with shiny zoom lenses all aiming at the same sleeping lion. It's a different world in Zambia, and not only because its game reserves are unspoiled by mass tourism. This is the home of Africa's best walking safaris, and instead of driving for hours in search of the big five (cape buffalo, elephant, leopard, lion and rhino), you explore the bush on foot.

CITY WALKS: AMSTERDAM; CITY WALKS: BOSTON

Chronicle Books / $14.95 each

These are not books but boxed sets of 50 cards. Each card, only slightly larger in dimensions than a passport, maps out a particular walk on one side, with facts and pertinent points of interest described on the other. The cards are easy to read and printed in pleasingly soft blues and oranges on durable card stock.

TONI SALAMA

HOTELS

Loews bans trans fats

Loews Hotels has announced a chain-wide ban of trans fats, including food served in its restaurants, meeting facilities and through room service. The ban follows New York City's decision to ban all restaurants from using artificial trans fats. City health officials created the new requirements Dec. 5. Loews, which has 18 hotels and resorts, is pledging that all of its fried foods will be free of trans fats by Feb. 1. All remaining food products will be free of trans fats by June 1.

ASSOCIATED PRESS

GEAR & GADGETS

The folks at Graco Children's Products are seeing double with their new DuoGlider LXI stroller. Designed for twins or any two children younger than 4 years old and weighing less than 40 pounds, the stroller's front and rear seats recline and are compatible with the company's infant car seats. Extra support is provided by an infant head support for each seat. The rear seat is slightly elevated so the occupant has almost as good a view as the kid in front. There's a built-in large storage basket 2 / 3 cup holder and removable front and rear trays. Removable canopies with tinted sun visors and one-hand, fold-down design increase comfort and convenience for the riders and their "chauffeur." DuoGlider LXI Stroller in a variety of patterns is about $200. Graco; 800-345-4109 or gracobaby.com.

JUDI DASH

SURVEY

Top 10 'gay-friendly' destinations

San Francisco was named the top "gay-friendly" destination in a new survey of gay travelers conducted by the Travel Industry Association. Following San Francisco in the list's top 10 were Key West, Fla.; New York City; Fire Island, which is part of Long Island in New York; Provincetown, Mass.; Los Angeles; Miami-South Beach, Fla.; Las Vegas; New Orleans; and Palm Springs-Palm Desert, Calif. A place where "they can hold their partner's hand in public" without fear of harassment was an example of something that more than half of gay men and women look for when they are choosing a destination, according to the survey.

ASSOCIATED PRESS

SPAS

Detox stays are next big thing

The top spa trends next year, as predicted by the spa information and research company Spa Finder Inc., are less about relaxation than rehabilitation. Gone are the days of the simple massage. Now, according to the spa-ficionados, intensive "detox spas," offering therapies to purge the body of "emotional baggage" and treatments such as sweatings to rid it of toxins, are gaining popularity. A simple facial is also passe as the popularity of medical wellness spas increases, offering a range of treatments and "cutting edge medical procedures" in Thailand, South Africa and India.

NEW YORK TIMES NEWS SERVICE

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