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Morocco, Machu Picchu, and Cinque Terre

SmarterTravel

This week’s Deal Detective column is what we like to call a “lightning round.” Our super sleuth is taking on several questions at once. As always, look for a new case each Thursday in SmarterTravel.com’s Deal Alert newsletter.

Dear Deal Detective:

Any cheapie flights or tours to Morocco?

—Jane W.

Dear Jane,

Friendly Planet has put its eight-day, five-city Discover Morocco trips on sale. Prices range from $1,749 to $1,849 per person based on double occupancy for May, July, and October departures. These prices represent a savings of up to $300 per person or $600 per couple. Included in the package: International airfare between New York and Casablanca; airport transfers; hotel accommodations; sightseeing time in Casablanca, Fes, Marrakech, Rabat, Meknes; and some meals. Book by April 18.

Next?

Dear Deal Detective:

Thanks for your Machu Picchu suggestions, which I found most helpful. Could you also supply similar info on Cinque Terre hiking between the coastal fishing villages with accommodation and timing?

—Norma B.

I’m thrilled you asked about Italy’s Cinque Terre, one of my favorite destinations. It just so happens that we’ve recently written about the region’s best hiking, biking, and kayaking options in one of our Adventure Travel Special Reports. Give it a read—I think you’ll find a lot of useful information.

Next!

Dear Deal Detective:

I am a fairly fit 69-year-old female who desperately wants to see Machu Picchu. I am considering the LAN package you wrote about a few weeks ago. Please let me know if this trip is physically possible for somebody my age.

—Tessie C.

Thanks for writing. While I have no reason to believe you would have difficulty with the LAN Vacations trip, I suggest you contact the provider directly if you have any concerns. My understanding, however, is that it’s more of a sightseeing trip than an “active” one—so I wouldn’t expect it to be physically demanding.

That said, you might want to consider a seniors-only trip to the same destination. We’ve previously covered such trips in our senior travel section. Although the specific deals listed in that story are now outdated, I encourage you to check out the tour providers listed there for their current prices, as you may find a good deal that fits your exact interests.

Whew! That wraps up our lightning round. Now, on to a few more reader questions that give you the opportunity to …

Become a Deal Detective

Below are two interesting questions about travel for people with disabilities. I confess I’m no expert on the subject, so I (and these readers) would greatly appreciate your assistance. Please email me your suggestions and I’ll publish the most helpful ones in an upcoming column. You will, of course, get full credit for your efforts, and as always I’ll never share your email address with anyone. Please let me know if you don’t want your full name used.

Reader Frank G. says, “I am planning to travel to Egypt in July 2008 with my family and have approximately a week to see the Valley of the Kings, Aswan, Luxor, etc. My daughter is in a wheelchair so would you have any suggestions as to a good tour company which is not very pricey? Thanks for your help.”

Heidi D. writes, “Our family is trying to plan a reunion cruise to the Panama Canal—going in part way and out again with the most ports-of-call. My mother is newly disabled and in a wheelchair. There are also two children ages five and nine going along. Most importantly, we are looking for the best ship/cruise line for the disabled family member. Many of the family members are vegetarian as well, so food options are also important. Our total number on the trip will be 10-plus people depending on cost. What is the best time of year to go? What is the best ship for our needs? Thank you.”

Have a question for the Deal Detective? Please send your request using the “Submit your own comment” box below. Be aware that due to the volume of requests I receive, I cannot personally respond to every email. The more compelling your question, the better the chance you’ll be selected for an upcoming case.

All prices, dates, and booking details listed here were valid at the time of publication. Some information may have changed since that time.

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