Ludlow, and More

FIRST, regarding your story on Ludlow's gastronomic adventures ["A Star Trek in England," July 11], thanks for helping my husband and me relive our December 1999 visit where we were pampered at the Overton Grange Hotel (www.overtongrangehotel.com), an Edwardian mansion about a mile from Ludlow's center.

We arrived by train from London, and the hotel staff whisked us to Ludlow Castle before it closed at 4 p.m. Touring the 900-year-old ruins against ferocious winds at sunset ensured a voracious appetite for our sumptuous dinner at the Overton Grange.

Second, thanks for the tip about the "Turner, Whistler, Monet" show [On Exhibit, June 20] at the Art Gallery of Ontario in Toronto. On July 3, my mother and I combined an e-fare with your recommended Ticket King package at the plush Metropolitan Hotel, which was an easy walk to the gallery. Although we were only in Toronto for 24 hours, we owe the inspiration for this last-minute mother-daughter getaway to the Travel section.

Lee Rucker Keiser

Bethesda

THE MENTION of the hushed silence at the Ludlow restaurant reminded me of an occasion when my husband and I dined in a lovely old restaurant in the Yorkshire Dales. There, too, no discernible noise or conversation. Silence prevailed until my husband suddenly jumped up and with a loud smack dispatched a large spider coming down just above my head. The room erupted with clapping and a raucous "well done" and then silence returned.

Joyce Westell

Frederick

Parking at National, Cont'd

UNLESS THINGS have changed over the past six months, you may want to clarify your info on the park-and-fly hotel deals you mentioned for Reagan National [Coming and Going, July 4]. We booked a flight to Dallas on Thanksgiving for 6:30 a.m. Knowing parking at National would be at a premium and not wanting to leave home at 3 a.m., we looked into these deals. No hotel we contacted had a shuttle leaving before 6 a.m. Since we needed to be at the airport well before that, we could not use the program.

John and Mary Anne McGovern

Culpeper, Va.

Author Andrea Sachs responds:

Of the hotels mentioned in the column item, the Crowne Plaza's airport shuttle departs at 5:30 a.m. and the Holiday Inn's service begins at 4:45 a.m. All the others start after 6 a.m.

Cinque or Swim

REGARDING YOUR article on Italy's Cinque Terre ["Italy's Greatest Hit," June 27], I wanted to add that another way to explore the five villages is by boat. There is frequent excursion boat service in the spring and summer stopping in the little towns along the way. We took a day trip by boat along the Italian Riviera from Lerici to Porto Venere, Riomaggiore and Monterosso, stopping for lunch and sightseeing. Boat schedules are posted in hotels.

Ellen Berlow

Washington

THOUGH IT was almost unbearably hot in June 2003, we had a delightful week traveling down the Ligurian coast on our way to two weeks in Tuscany and then farther north.

We found the Ligurians to be most friendly and helpful -- I have some conversational Italian, but regardless, folks were almost always in good humor, eager to listen and to help out.

We had an adventure on the ferries -- which I would recommend, as the views are spectacular and there is a breeze. It could have been a nightmare, since I lost my wallet, but the ferry operators were extraordinary. We ended up taking another ferry boat (gratis) to La Spezia, where I retrieved my wallet -- intact. We took the train back to Santa Margarita, with specific instructions from our boat workers as to how to catch the train (via a very fast taxi ride).

Author Robert Camuto's descriptions of the villages brought back lovely memories, and we did find that there were plenty of Italians around, plus loads of the rest of us longing to be a part of that lovely scene that is Italy.

Angela Elkins

Washington

Write us: Washington Post Travel Section, 1150 15th St. NW, Washington, D.C. 20071. Fax: 202-912-3609. E-mail: travel@ washpost.com. Letters are edited for length and clarity.

The What's the Deal? column will return next week.