Mobile app spots last-minute rooms

By Kari Bodnarchuk
Globe Correspondent / February 13, 2011

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Whether you are stranded at Logan Airport or simply don’t feel like driving home from Boston after a late night, you can get a last-minute room at a bargain rate through a new mobile application, HotelTonight. Each day at noon, HotelTonight releases three featured hotel deals — hip, elegant, basic — in each of six cities: Boston, New York, Washington, Chicago, San Francisco, and Los Angeles. Once you download the free app (available to iPod, iPhone, and iPad users) and register, you can check details and photos of each hotel, and book a room up to 2 a.m. One recent deal featured a Copley Square Hotel room for $144 (normally $229). 800-208-2949,

Tibet’s sacred sites

On WildChina’s eight-day guided trip, Soul of Tibet, you will explore sacred monasteries and pilgrimage routes, meeting artisans and villagers along the way. You will visit Samye Monastery, believed to be Tibet’s first, and Tashi Lhunpo Monastery, founded by the first Dalai Lama. Then meet a Tibetan medicine specialist to learn how tradition plays a role in daily life, and explore the landscape of this western China region, including holy Yamdrok Tso Lake. Stay an extra three days and explore Mount Everest Base Camp. Dates for this personalized trip are flexible; rates start at $2,410. 888-902-8808,

Do a Tour de France route

You can view Alpe d’Huez and Croix de Fer on The Sports Network’s Tour de France coverage this summer. Or you can sign up for one of Discover France Adventures’ bike trips along these renowned mountain routes. You might cycle the same routes that some of the world’s top pros raced on hours earlier, and also meet several of them. The company offers nine VIP tours on moderate to challenging terrain in the Pyrenees and Alps, and several itineraries for non-cyclists. Trip dates for cyclists are July 9-16 and July 16-23. Prices start at $3,635, and include high-end lodging, cycling guides, support vans, and most meals. Three- and five-day tours give non-cyclists VIP access while they watch various Tour stages and finish-line sprints. 800-960-2221,