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Fly where and when the sun never sets


My husband and I would like to visit the Antarctic but not by ship. How can this be done?

Adventure Network International operates tours to Antarctica both for experienced climbers and for those going just to see, not climb. The flights run from Oct. 31 through Jan. 15, during which time the sun never sets.

Leaving from Punta Arenas, Chile, passengers take a 2,000-mile flight to the company's base camp on Antarctica at Patriot Hills, at the end of the Ellsworth Mountains.

Among the programs that originate at Patriot Hills, which can house 50 visitors, are a five-hour flight to the South Pole, where visitors spend several hours, and a photo safari of four to six days to the emperor penguin colony at the Dawson-Lambton Glacier -- neither of which is physically taxing. The ascent of the 16,000-foot Vinson Massif is, of course, another story. Participants are transported aboard a plane that can land either on wheels and on skis.

For the less active traveler, there is also the Heart of Antarctica option, which offers, but does not require, walks, overnight camping trips, cross-country skiing, snowmobiling and lessons in navigation.

Because of the vicissitudes of the weather, visitors should expect delays and are advised not to make any important commitments close to their date of return. A delay of two or three days in leaving Chile for Antarctica, for example, is not unusual.

Among the the popular trips are those to the Vinson Massif ($25,750), the South Pole ($21,000), Heart of Antarctica ($10,750) and Emperor Penguin ($21,000). These rates do not include airfare to Punta Arenas, to which most passengers fly from Santiago; nor do they include food, lodging and excursions in Punta Arenas.

All participants are required to have a medical form completed by their doctor.

For more information, write to A.N.I., Canon House, 27 London End, Beaconsfield, Buckinghamshire, HP9 2HN, England; telephone (44) 1494 671808, fax (44) 1494 671725.

My wife and I will be spending the fall in Paris. First, however, we want to spend a month or so in the Pyrenees. Do you know a reasonably priced storage place in Paris, preferably not too far from Orly, where we might leave our things for three or four weeks?

The terrorist attacks of last summer have left the storage facilities at Charles de Gaulle and Orly airports closed. That leaves you to choose from private companies around Paris.

A.P.R.P. is in Orly at 4 Chemin Chaudronniers, only 20 minutes from the airport; (33-1), fax (33-1) It charges $21.20 a month for a space of 141 cubic feet, and $42 a month for 283 cubic feet. The company requires a reimbursable deposit of three months' storage fee, a one-time processing fee of $64 and insurance of 0.25 percent of the declared value of stored items. All charges, including insurance, are taxed at the rate of 20.6 percent. So if you rent a 141-cubic-foot space and TC are planning to rent for a month or less, you are looking at more than $100 a month, exclusive of insurance. Hours: Monday to Friday 7 a.m. to 6: 30 p.m., Saturday 9: 30 a.m. to 3: 30 p.m.

Ababox has three locations, one of which is in the suburb of Gentilly en route from Orly into Paris. It is at 119 Avenue Paul Vaillant Couturier; (33-1) The charges for storage, which include the 20.6 percent tax, are $84 a month for a space of 71 cubic feet and $133 a month for 141 cubic feet. Insurance, which is not required, is calculated at a rate of $10 for every $10,000 of declared value.

Branches are open Monday through Saturday 7 a.m. to 8 p.m. The other Ababox locations are near Charles de Gaulle Airport in Roissy, at 170 Rue du Landy, St.-Denis, (33-1), and at 24 Rue Berthollet, Arcueil, (33-1)

Should you decide that you'll need the space for only three weeks rather than four, you'll have to pay for a full month anyway; these companies do not prorate their charges.

Both A.P.R.P. and Ababox recommend that you telephone ahead to reserve space.

Pub Date: 7/21/96

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