Among tropical rainforest countries, Costa Rica has one of the most ambitious turtle conservation programs, but there is always a shortage of volunteers to assist in the fight against turtle egg poaching.

BikeHike Adventures (www.bikehike.com) offers eco-conscious travellers a chance to help researchers gather and relocate endangered turtle eggs to protect them. April and May is the peak poaching season, so during this time BikeHike has two Turtles and Trails Tours (priced from $2,299 US for land only).

The BikeHike nine-day adventure also includes multi-sport activities.

DOWNTON ABBEY

Truly serious fans of the period drama Downton Abbey, the Emmy Award-winning series on PBS, can discover the story of Highclere Castle, the real Downton Abbey.

A day trip to the filming location includes a personal greeting by the eighth Earl and Countess of Carnarvon under the soaring Gothic columns of the entrance, a tour of the house and lunch in the State Dining Room. Later you saddle up a 4×4 for an off-road trip to Beacon Hill where the 5th Earl of Carnarvon of King Tut fame is buried. Or you may explore the basement which houses Highclere’s Egyptology Exhibition.

The 5th Earl of Carnarvon funded Howard Carter’s Egyptian investigations, which led to the discovery of Tutankhamen’s tomb in 1922.

The visit ends with High Tea. It’s priced from about $12,000 for a maximum of four people. For a longer tour, see NoteWorthy Events (www. noteworthyevents.com).

CORRECTION

CIT Tours (www.cittours.ca) has a correction to its Galapagos Early Booking promotion. The offer applies to the M/Y Galapagos Voyager, not the M/Y Galapagos Journey. See a travel consultant for details.

BY RICK CROPP AND BARBARA BRAIDWOOD, SPECIAL TO THE PROVINCE

From The Province http://www.theprovince.com