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Fall 2008 | Remains of the Day

Fall 2008 | Remains of the Day

Luxe archaeological tours indulge your Indiana Jones fantasies without sending your fedora flying.

Israel and Jordan: Pride and Heritage, A Walk Through History
Hanns Ebensten Travel
305-294-8174
August 31 - September 8
gay men, lesbians, and friends
from $2,595

Explore King David?s Tomb in Jerusalem and Herod the Great?s citadel at Masada, constructed on the eastern edge of the Judean desert between 37 and 31 B.C. Hike by the Sea of Galilee and float in the Dead Sea, where the salt concentration surpasses typical sea water?s five to 10 times over. After experiencing the past and present of gay-friendly Israel, an optional three-night Jordan extension takes in the massive red-rock carved remains of Nabataean capital Petra, star of Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade.

Journey Into the Past: Greece, the Greek Isles, and Turkey?s Turquoise Coast
Archaeological Institute of America
800-748-6262
October 11 - 23
mostly straight
from $7,895

AIA tours cater to the most luxe-minded history buffs, offering private plane travel and chic cruises away from the large-ship hordes. On this trip, visit classical monuments in Athens before boarding the 17-cabin yacht Callisto with an underwater archaeology expert for island stops at Santorini and Rhodes and a trio of Turkish delights: cliffside Lycian capital Xanthos (excavated post?World War II), semi-submerged Simena (home to a famed necropolis), and Bodrum?s Museum of Underwater Archaeology. Then it?s a short flight to Istanbul, where Byzantine and Ottoman treasures?and an intriguing gay scene -- await in the 3,000-year-old city. Unearth more queer culture by adding Mykonos, the gayest Greek isle of all.

An Archaeological Study Tour: Ancient Japan
Archaeological Tours
866-740-5130
October 19 - November 5
mostly straight
from $8,985

Arrive early to explore Tokyo?s dynamic gay scene in Shinjuku Ni-chome, where at least 200 gay and lesbian establishments are said to pack the neighborhood?s narrow streets. Tour participants will then be introduced to the vastness of Japanese archaeology, from the Paleolithic period to medieval castles. Destinations include Fukuoka (home of Japan?s first Zen temple); the Yoshinogari excavation site, with more than 350 dwellings dating to 300 B.C.; Nara, the country?s first permanent capital (710 to 794); Chiran?s samurai gardens; and Kyoto?s commanding temples.

Vietnam and Cambodia: A Voyage to Indochina
Coda International Tours
888-677-2632
November 10?24
gay
from $4,895

Coda?s trip is the only truly upscale gay-marketed tour to these historically rich Southeast Asia destinations. Experience Hanoi?s wooden One Pillar Pagoda (built in 1049, originally on stilts over a pond); Ho Chi Minh?s mausoleum; the city of Hue?s French-style imperial citadel; Siem Reap?s sixth-century pagodas; and deep in the Cambodian jungle, the grand Khmer Empire temple, Angkor Wat. The tour also visits top restaurants, sails among the 3,000 islands in Ha Long Bay, carouses in chaotic Bangkok, and lounges at the posh hotel Raffles Grand Hotel D?Angkor.

Guatemala
Douglas Easton Travel
800-957-DOUG
December 13?20
gays, lesbians, friends
from $2,999

First-class accommodations and the company of up to a dozen like-minded gay adventurers set this Central American odyssey apart. Take in the monumental Mayan ruins of Tikal -- one of the largest excavation sites in the Americas, with more than 3,000 kinds of structures spread over 25 square miles -- and colonial city Antigua, with its famed Baroque architecture. The tour also visits volcano-flanked Lake Atitl?n, thought to be the deepest lake in Central America (1,049 feet).

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