HOLIDAY FUN IN THE BERKSHIRES
Join merry holiday events in the Berkshires during Stockbridge Main Street at Christmas, a weekend when the streets, shops and restaurants of the village will be decked out in festive wreaths and lights, and feature activities the whole family will enjoy, including live performances, tours of historic properties, holiday markets, Santa Claus, and more. (December 2-4, stockbridgechamber.org/visit/stockbridge-main-street-at-christmas). A 10-minute drive away, Lenox Winterland kicks off with a lighted tree in Lilac Park (December 2), followed by a weekend of events including a Jolly Poker Run and student art exhibit at the library (lenox. org/lenoxwinterland). A beautifully decorated Christmas tree greets you at Wheatleigh, a 5-star Forbes hotel set in 22 acres of lush parkland landscaped by Frederick Law Olmsted. Stay in Golden Age Italian style in one of the hotel’s 19 guest rooms and suites featuring high ceilings and museum-worthy artwork and antiques. The signature restaurant, The Portico by Jeffrey Thompson, offers multi-course menus of modern French gastronomy. Deluxe rooms from $1,355 per night (833-774-6752, wheatleigh.com).
ANCIENT ROCK ART AND AQUATIC SAFARIS
Those looking for a different kind of safari experience may want to consider Nxamaseri Island Lodge, Desert & Delta Safaris’ newest addition to its portfolio of nine luxury lodges in Botswana. The main feature of this eight-tent lodge is a trip to the Tsodilo Hills, a UNESCO World Heritage Site home to impressive collections of ancient African rock art, with over 4,500 paintings at 400 different sites . Located on a private island in Botswana’s Okavango Delta, the property also offers a “water safari” experience for avid anglers drawn to catching and releasing the region’s tiger fighting fish. The all-inclusive price includes all meals, local alcoholic beverages (excluding premium brands), park entrance fees, laundry, filtered drinking water, and scheduled safari activities including boat and walking safaris, fishing and mokoro (canoe) excursions and trips to the hills of Tsodilo. per vehicle. From January to March 2023, rates starting at $330 per night, per person (double occupancy); rates for a 6-night Fly-in Safari package with safari flights start at $3,958 per person (desertdelta.com/camps/nxamaseri-island-lodge).
Test your multisport endurance skills this winter at Tri Las Catalinas, a triathlon event hosted by the car-free beach town of Las Catalinas in Guanacaste, Costa Rica. (February 18) Returning after a two-year pandemic hiatus, the competition includes a 1,200-meter open water swim, a 25-kilometer mountain bike challenge and an 8.5-kilometer race that covers more than 42 kilometers of trails, beaches, and waterfront. Special hotel and accommodation offers for the triathlon weekend, in hotels and vacation homes, can be found on the website of Las Catalinas, a development of coastal beach with houses, shops, restaurants, small hotels and inns, squares, parks and leisure facilities. Not interested in competing? Visitors can still enjoy swimming, stand-up paddleboarding, kayaking, boogie boarding, and snorkeling at two gorgeous beaches, as well as hiking and biking through the 1,000+ acre rainforest at proximity. Accommodation from $250/night (www.lascatalinascr.com).
COOL SNOWSUITS KEEP KIDS WARM
For the coolest (and warmest) kids’ clothes on the ski slopes and other winter adventures, check out the Quest “Nemphis” snowsuit from Namuk, maker of outdoor clothing specifically designed for kids. Available in four colorful designs, the warm and waterproof winter coverall features an easy-to-use zipper – for easy bathroom visits – built-in suspenders, built-in trash pockets, hidden pacifier and dummy holder. keys, and YKK zippers. The high breathability allows moisture to easily escape, and the high waterproof rating ensures a constant feeling of warmth and dryness. Each piece is truly one of a kind as the prints are hand drawn and the cut sections vary. Sizes 2T to 8-9, $329 (https://us.namuk.com/collections/ski-clothing/products/quest-snow-overall-nemphis-blue-marin).
FEED FIDO IN THE MOMENT
Whether you’re hiking for the day or camping for a week, the new Great Basin Dog Bowl from Ruffwear makes traveling with your pup easier. The lightweight, collapsible food and water bowl comes in three sizes – small, medium and large – holding three to 10 cups. Durable, water-resistant shell fabric provides a stable structure, and reflective trims help spot the bowl in low-visibility conditions. Folds flat to fit in a pocket or backpack (slate blue, $29.95, https://ruffwear.com/products/great-basin-bowl).
Necee Regis can be contacted at [email protected]