Wild walk in Tibet French explorer, writer, anarchist and opera singer Alexandra David-Néel is probably best remembered as the first Western woman to visit Lhasa, in 1924, when Tibet was still closed to foreigners. Part of her arduous trek, made at the age of 55 while disguised as a monk and with her adopted son in tow, will be followed by Hong Kong-based adventure travel company Whistling Arrow in September. The 17-day excursion includes 12 days of trekking around the 6,740-metre-high Mount Kawa Karpo, which straddles the border between Yunnan province and Tibet. Following David-Néel's journey into Tibet for the first seven days, participants will continue along the pilgrimage route around the mountain and cross the majestic 4,800-metre Shola Pass. Starting and ending in Shangri-La, Yunnan, the adventure begins on September 16, and costs US$4,450 per person, which includes pretty much everything except flights (Shangri-La can be reached via Kunming from Hong Kong). For details, visit www.whistlingarrow.com. David-Néel's journey is recounted in My Journey to Lhasa, the latest edition of which has a foreword by the Dalai Lama.
Streamlined travel Sleek, polished-aluminium Airstream trailers have been carrying tourists across the United States since the 1930s. An icon of the open road in the US, they were less at home on the muddy trails of Africa, when, in 1959, company founder Wally Byam led 36 American families on a 19,000km journey from Cape Town to Cairo. With 36 Airstream trailers and passengers ranging in age from six to 85, the group took seven months to complete the journey, which was filmed for a documentary (search YouTube for "Airstream Africa"). Photos from the trip appear in a forthcoming book, Airstream: America's World Traveler, by Patrick Foster, which provides a heavily illustrated history of Airstream vehicles and their place in American culture. Modern travellers can enjoy the Airstream experience by renting a modern car and trailer from companies such as Airstream 2 Go or by staying in static vintage models in retro-style trailer parks around the United States. One popular park is The Shady Dell, in Arizona, where visitors are invited to "Experience the 1950s in full Technicolor". Kitsch accommodations on offer include a 1949 Airstream as well as trailers made by other companies in the 40s and 50s, such as a 1951 Royal Mansion and a cosy 1957 El Rey. Airstream: America's World Traveler is available for pre-order at Amazon.com.
Extend your stay Mandarin Oriental hotels around the world are offering a free third or fourth night's stay with the One More Night package until September 5. Offers of free third nights in Asia include hotels in Taipei (from NT$12,500/HK$2,975 a night), Guangzhou (from 1,700 yuan/HK$2,010) and Shanghai (from 1,900 yuan). Fourth free nights are available in Macau (from HK$2,188 a night), Jakarta (from US$190), Sanya (from 1,729 yuan), Singapore (from S$349/HK$1,960) and Tokyo (from 57,000 yen/HK$4,000). For details, visit any Mandarin Oriental website and click "Offers".
Deal of the week The Amazing Summer Package at the Amari Vogue Krabi resort in Thailand includes three nights' deluxe-room accommodation for two, round-trip airport transfers by car, kayak hire and 20 per cent off restaurant and spa prices. The deal starts at 13,776 baht (HK$3,000). The resort gets mostly "excellent" ratings at TripAdvisor. For reservations, go to www.amari.com/vogue. Hong Kong Airlines began non-stop flights to Krabi last November, although with early-morning departures at both ends, you might prefer to go via Bangkok on Thai Airways.