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Travel Q&A: Where to Find a Royal Dinner, How to Enter Prince Edward Island

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By K.C. Summers
Special to The Washington Post
Sunday, August 30, 2009

Q. For all those Americans like myself who will never be invited to a royal dinner at Windsor Palace: Is there any place that stages a royal dinner (for profit, of course) under the guise of pure escapism for the common man and woman?

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Milton Nelson, Arlington

A. Okay, it's not quite sitting down with Her Majesty, but here are some places where you can have a bit of a nosh amid royal splendor.

-- The Royal Yacht Britannia. On the British royal family's former yacht, now decommissioned and moored in Edinburgh, you can drop by for afternoon tea in the Royal Deck Tea Room, where Queen Elizabeth II once entertained world dignitaries. Admission is about $16. Info: 011-44-131-555-5566, http://www.royalyachtbritannia.co.uk.

-- Hampton Court Palace. Traditional Tudor dishes are served the first weekend of every month in King Henry VIII's former digs in Surrey. There's also a regular menu, with entrees starting at about $11. Admission is about $23. Details: 011-44-20-3166-6000, http://www.hrp.org.uk/hamptoncourtpalace.

-- Hever Castle. The childhood home of Anne Boleyn, about 30 miles from London in West Kent, is hosting a banquet Oct. 29 in the Tudor Suite Dining Hall. Bonus: a "psychic investigation" and a chance to roam the castle afterward. Cost of about $485 per person double includes overnight lodging and breakfast. Reservations: 011-441-732-861800, http://www.hevercastle.co.uk.

For more info on Britain's royal trappings: Visit Britain, 800-462-2748, http://www.visitbritain.us.

My wife and I plan a motor trip through New England and may want to go as far as Prince Edward Island. Will we need passports? If not, what other forms of ID might we need for passage into Canada and back?

George Taylor, Purcellville

To get into Canada by land, you'll need proof of U.S. citizenship as well as proof of identity. A passport, passport card or card from a "trusted traveler" program such as NEXUS is best, but officials will also accept a government-issued photo ID, such as a driver's license, along with a U.S. birth certificate, naturalization certificate or expired U.S. passport.

To return to the States by land, you'll need a passport, passport card or a Western Hemisphere Travel Initiative-compliant document, such as an enhanced driver's license or a trusted-traveler card.

Details: WHTI, http://www.getyouhome.gov.

Your Turn

Note to self: Avoid superlatives. In our Aug. 23 column, we said that Pittsburgh's Monongahela Incline is the steepest incline in the country; reader Sharon Sheldon begged to differ, saying that distinction belongs to the Inclined Plane in Johnstown, Pa. Judge for yourself: The Mon is 635 feet in length, with a 71.5 percent, or 35-degree, 35-minute, grade; Johnstown's incline is 896 feet in length, but with a 70.9, or 35-degree, 25-minute, grade. Several sources do say that Johnstown's incline is the steepest vehicular incline in the world.

A couple of readers had more tips for the couple driving to Michigan's Upper Peninsula (Aug. 23). Illyce MacDonald of Alexandria recommended the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in Cleveland; Cedar Point amusement park in Sandusky, Ohio; Tony Packo's Hungarian hot dog joint in Toledo; and the Henry Ford Museum in Dearborn, Mich., among other spots. And reader John Kost said to avoid the Pennsylvania and Ohio turnpikes in favor of interstates 68 and 79: "Far more scenic, faster speed limits, no tolls, more restaurant choices, and far fewer Pennsylvania state troopers."

Send queries by e-mail (travelqa@washpost.com) or U.S. mail (Travel Q&A, Washington Post Travel Section, 1150 15th St. NW, Washington, D.C. 20071). Please include your name and town.


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