We'll start at San Diego's scenic coast, head east into the beautiful California desert, and then circle back to San Diego via the Los Angeles basin.  We'll explore some amazing State and National Parks.......See Below.


Day 1 -- Thurs., Mar. 6.   Arrive San Diego for next 4 nights.  Waterfront Lodging on exquisite Coronado Island, viewing the beautiful San Diego waterfront. 

Day 2 -- Fri., Mar. 7.  Free day to explore with itineraries TBA.  Coronado Island is famous for shoreline walking, jogging, biking, or people watching.

Day 3 -- Sat., Mar. 8   Coastal explorations to nearby La Jolla where seals and sea lions are in residence, then on to Point Loma, an amazing headland,lighthouse, and museum overlooking the Pacific.

Day 4 -- Sunday, Mar. 9.   The world-class San Diego Zoo and Balboa Park museums are our destination. 

Days  5, 6, 7,  -- Monday, Mar. 10 - Wednesday, Mar. 12.   The next 3 nights will be in Borrego Springs, at the Borrego Springs Inn, surrounded by the magnificent desert landscape of Anza-Borrego State Park (which is the size of Rhode Island!).  Lots of great explorations over the next two days…. Slot canyons, palm tree oases, steep mountains, badlands, and a unique anticline…..all record amazing geology stories preserved in stone.  You will be impressed.

Day 8  -- Thursday, Mar. 13.  It's a short jaunt to Palm Springs for next two nights.  The road borders the Salton Sea and the San Andreas fault is underground here, too.  We'll take the Mt. San Jacinto mountain tram ride to this high altitude view over the desert mountains.  Thursday is "Farmers Market" night along Palm Springs' main street.  You have to see this!

Day 9 -- Friday, Mar. 14 .     Today we head to Joshua Tree National Park with walks and views of amazing mountains of eroding granite.  Yes, there's lots of weirdly shaped Joshua trees, too.

Days 10 - 12 --  Saturday, Mar. 57 - Monday, Mar. 17.   Our destination:  the Queen Mary!  We will have excellent rooms on this historic ship berthed in Long Beach.  What a treat to relive the grand days of cruising without leaving port.  We will have a sumptuous Sunday Brunch in the Grand Ballroom.  From this convenient base, we will explore Catalina Island, the scenic Palos Verdes Peninsula, and the interesting city of Long Beach with its world class Aquarium of the Pacific.

Day 13, Tuesday, Mar. 18.  Today we head back to San Diego, with lunch at the oldest building in California: the San Juan Capistrano Mission.  Arrange your return plane flight for the evening  OR (and this is highly recommended) spend an optional night in San Diego and depart on Day 14, Wed. Mar. 19.


COST   -- approximately $2400 per person, double occupancy.  Please note: our tours have excellent lodgings and are typically at least 30% less than "big" tour companies.  Look below for what you get!

Details:  Tour price includes hotels and rental vehicles, tour guide, pre and post-trip meetings, guidebook, and video record of trip.  You will have to sign a tour liability waiver.  We have volunteer tour-member drivers for our rental vehicles, usually 7 passenger mini-vans with 4 passengers.  We arrange the maximum liability coverage for the rental vehicles.  Not included are:  Airfares, food, entrance fees, parking fees, vehicle gas.  The group will split the cost for gas and parking.

Your Tour Leader:  Prof. Richard Little began leading geology-oriented vacation-field trips in 1981 after the eruption of Mt. St. Helens, as a way to have small groups see and appreciate the great wonders of our Earth.  Over the past 30 years he and his wife, Suzanne, have planned and guided “Fantastic Landscape Tours” from Alaska and Hawaii to Yellowstone and the Caribbean.  Dick has BA and MA degrees from Clark and the Univ. of So. California in Los Angeles, and has taught geology and oceanography at Greenfield Community College since 1969.  He is the author of two books and two videos about Connecticut Valley geology, and has been elected to the Mass. Science Educators Hall of Fame.  Suzanne is a retired social worker and former educator, with a love of landscapes and flowers.

TO RESERVE YOUR SPACE(S)     Send $100 per person deposit to