Collette Vacations unveils itineraries for 2002

PAWTUCKET, R.I. -- Strolling the French Quarter, getting a taste of Cajun country and surveying the scene in the state capital are among the highlights of Collette Vacations 2002 itineraries to Louisiana.

New for next year is a nine-night itinerary that combines a seven-night cruise with a two-night land stay in New Orleans.

The Jambalaya and Jazz Steamboatin' Adventures offers departures from March through December.

The cruise is aboard either the Mississippi Queen or the Delta Queen and departs from New Orleans.

New to the 2002 Collette Vacations lineup is a Jambalaya and Jazz Steamboatin' Adventures itinerary that features a seven-day cruise aboard either the Delta Queen, above, or the Mississippi Queen. Stops on the itinerary include Oak Alley Plantation and the town of St. Francisville for visits to Greenwood Plantation and Myrtles Plantation, which legend claims is haunted.

The ship then heads to Natchez and Vicksburg, Miss., for two days before returning to Louisiana with a call at Baton Rouge.

While in the state capital, clients can venture into a nearby French settlement, take a sightseeing tour around town or visit the botanical gardens and the swamp nature center.

The cruise heads back to New Orleans for its conclusion.

Rates start at $2,099 per person, double, with accommodations in an inside stateroom and 24 meals.

The first two days of the trip are spent in New Orleans with accommodations at either the Hotel St. Marie or the Prince Conti, both located in the French Quarter.

The operator also offers a seven-night New Orleans and Deep South trip that kicks off in New Orleans.

While in the Crescent City, participants take a paddle-wheel cruise on the Mississippi River, tour a cemetery and dine at the New Orleans School of Cooking and the Court of Two Sisters.

The program then heads to St. Francisville for a tour of Rosedown Plantation and its gardens.

Clients spend two days in Mississippi exploring Natchez and Vicksburg before returning to Louisiana.

The final leg of the tour includes a stint in Cajun country with a local guide.

On tap are an excursion to Lafayette, considered the hub city of Louisiana's Cajun country, and a cruise along the bayous.

Clients also stop at the Jean Lafitte Cultural Center and the Acadian Village before wrapping up the tour back in New Orleans.

Departures take place from April through December.

In Louisiana, accommodations are at the New Orleans Marriott and the Hotel Acadiana in Lafayette.

Land-only prices start at $1,079 per person, double, and include 12 meals.

Collette also has a tour that focuses on New Orleans exclusively.

The New Orleans Getaway explores the French Quarter and the Garden District.

Also included is a luncheon jazz cruise on the Mississippi River.

Accommodations are at either the Ramada Inn on Bourbon Street or Hotel St. Marie, both in the French Quarter.

Departures take place from April through November.

Rates start at $559 per person, double, and include seven meals.

Collette's Music Cities Tour starts in New Orleans before heading to Memphis; Branson, Mo., and Nashville.

Departures operate from April to October with land-only rates starting at $1,559.

For additional information, call Collette Vacations at (800) 340-5158.

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