Tiny village in the north of Skye, has an excellent youth hostel, but the best thing is to take the road over the hills to the east coast from there to see the Quiraing, spectacular almost lunar scenery and extraordinary views.
Northern peninsula of Skye.
A quiet private resort at Metung with many upper class town houses and cabins for couples and families. Set on the hill overlooking the lakeside at Metung, Mcmillans is walking distance (10 mins) from the town centre. Go and have a quiet comfortable weekend away. Highly recommended!
3 hours drive from Melbourne on the Gippsland lakes.
Excellent bed and breakfast. Really central, near the Duomo and Piazza Signoria. Only six small rooms but very clean and really cosy. Staff are helpful and recommended some great places to visit and good restaurants. You can choose between an en-suite, a private bathroom across the corridor or a shared bathroom.
Sitting high above Port Antonio - you'll need a decent car or a high level of tolerance for bumpy local taxis - Jamaica Heights enjoys superb views over the town and countryside. So it's the perfect place to watch huge rainclouds blow in from the sea and back out again, hear local sound systems gearing up for the weekend, and enjoy lazy days on your own. Owner Helmut Steiner is a fund of knowledge about the local area, so what this place lacks in creature comforts is readily compensated by its unique spirit and character.
Lovely coastal village in beautiful Portland Parish. Take the coast road out of Kingston and drive the long way round. Just a couple of beach bars and B&Bs (ask at the Chill Out bar for recommendations) and absolutely no all inclusive resorts. Just locals and the odd incomer (hippies who drifted in 30 years ago and never left...) Nearby is the great small town of Port Antonio with a thriving market. From there you can book river cruises and boat trips etc.
Most tourists to the Cape only stick with the tried and tested routes and experiences. !Khwa ttu is one of the very few GENUINE San Bushmen-led initiatives in southern Africa. It's set on stunning hillside overlooking the coast and Table Mountain and here you can meet the San, learn about hunting, gathering, tracking, take a trailer ride, see all of the amazing game and other animals, go on hikes, enjoy the restaurant or stay in their amazinginly peaceful accommodation (cottage or tents). There is a museum, art gallery, training centre, conference facilities and shop too.
I recommend it because I lived and worked with the San in southern Africa until recently and this is the BEST thing I have seen out there, that really, practically helps the San and teaches tourists about some of the real issues still alive in South Africa today...
What's more it's as cheap as chips if you are coming from Europe!
www.khwattu.org email - firstname.lastname@example.org
It's just 70 km drive north of Cape Town - takes 40 minutes and just a short drive from the historic village of Darling and the beautiful beaches of Yzerfontein.
In a recent visit to Greece, I stayed in the Phaedra Hotel on the island of Hydra. I would recommend it to anyone visiting the island. It has big, very clean, full of light rooms.The hotel is sheltered from the noise of the port and Hilda, the hotel owner offers warm hospitality with the best service I have experienced.
It was a joy to stay there!
Phaedra Hotel, Hydra 18040
Tel: 0030 22980 53330
This is a guesthouse in the Malay Quarter that is incredibly cheap yet has rooms that would not look out of place in a top 4 or 5 star boutique hotel.
The owner, Bruce, is a very interesting man and could not have been more helpful during our stay. The guesthouse is perfectly located for exploring central Cape Town, De Waterkant and the waterfront area. It is also just round the corner from Ginga, one of the top restaurants in Cape Town.
Jake's resort is often featured in round-ups of the best the island has to offer - and for a reason. Book into one of the theatrically-designed seafront cottages, where you can stargaze from the flat roof, shower alfresco or throw open the doors to watch the sea lap
against the cliffs from the comfort of your bed. No wonder it's popular with honeymooners.
Treasure Beach is around 15 miles from Black River.
Tulamben Wreck Divers and Paradise Palm Beach are much cheaper than the main ones that come up on the Internet, like Tauch Terminal, Mimbi and Emerald.
I have stayed there twice. The service is superb - friendly or unobtrusive where appropriate. The main parts of the hotel are overlooked by the pyramids and are evocative of an earlier, more leisurely time. The Indian restaurant is also superb. You can stay with at the Mena House Oberoi with Voyages Jules Verne.
Mena House Oberoi, Pyramid's Road, Giza.
Telephone: +20 2 377 3222 or 377 3444.
This wonderful restaurant and hotel is a big old house where they source the food locally with fish from Ballycotton, superb beef from Cloyne, vegetables from their own gardens and cheese from local indepedent cheesemakers. If you have the time do visit Ballymaloe Cookery School. Their cookbook is well worth buying.
Ballymaloe House and Ballymaloe Cookery School, Shanagarry, Midleton, Co Cork.
Tel: +353 (0) 21 464 6785.
Ballymaloe is about 20 miles east of Cork.
If you're treating yourself, the Mena House Oberoi has got to be the swankiest hotel in Egypt. Built in the shadow of the pyramids, it has a great pool and the best Indian restaurant I've encountered outside India. It's truly stunning. And having your breakfast looking out at the pyramids is something else. The rooms aren't anywhere near as luxurious as the Al Moudira in Luxor but it's an amazing place. And wandering up to the pyramids after breakfast (as soon as they open) means beating the throngs.
Mena House Oberoi, Pyramids Road, Giza,
Tel : 00 20 2 377 3222, 377 3444
The old Islamic quarter, known as Darb al-Ahmar, is great for a stroll through markets and stalls that feel like they haven't changed in five hundred years. Restoration work has been carried out on a series of mosques in this area which are architecturally stunning. I was lucky enough to be given an impromptu tour at night around one of them and the open roof revealed the stars. The Nile Hilton, not far from the Egyptian Museum (which is a must) has a rooftop bar which is definitely worth a visit for a drink overlooking the Nile at sunset. You don't have to be a hotel guest - just get in the lift and head to the top. One drink might be enough for some as it is not cheap but definitely worth the view.
Nile Hilton, 1113 Corniche El Nil, Cairo 12344.
Tel : 00 20 2 578 0444/ or 578 0666.
Situated in a boring and slightly scruffy building, this place is a real find. The three-star Longchamps Hotel is on one of the upper floors and, with two large terraces, is one of the most relaxing places in Cairo. Its decor could be described as a mix of elegant, Bohemian and ethnic. But what most people find surprising is the food. Menus are simple but dishes are invariably delicious to the point of being memorable. If you are looking for somewhere inexpensive, quiet, clean and pleasant to stay in Cairo, this is it.
Hotel Longchamps, 21 Ismail Mohamed Street, Zamalek. 3409644
Tel : 00 20 2 735 2311/12.
This is a little gem! It's all about windsurfing, yoga, kitesurfing but in a fantastically relaxed and friendly environment that is off the beaten track and feels like you have really escaped.
Even though I was on my own, it was really easy to fit in and great to try something as full on as kitesurfing on a huge natural lagoon area, but then get into yoga as well. It's close enough to Cairo to get to see the pyramids which are really awesome. Moonbeach itself is a 3 star kind of hotel, or there is a new, bigger very nice 4 star Green hotel beside the kite lagoons. There are flight options every day and it felt like a very tailor made holiday - without the price tag!
Moonbeach is in Ras Sudr which is halfway between Cairo and Sharm el Sheikh
Tel: 44 1580 753824
Nice clean hotel, very central, a couple of minutes from the station. Good breakfast, clean comfortable rooms and nice staff. There is a good Italian restaurant a couple of seconds away.
Schiller Strasse, opposite the side entrance to the Hauptbahnhof.
A lovely fishing village near Inverewe Gdns, also has an ATM, rare in this area! And a fish and chip shop selling locally caught fish. A good selection of shops for a small village, and incredible beach nearby. Nice youth hostel called Carn Dearg.
On the coast road.
It's not even close to a 3 star hotel but the people who work there are really friendly and gave us such great advice. They even advised us on places to stay in Dahab and Luxor. Great food and a very safe, cheap place to stay near the Egyptian Museum.
Sharia Mahmoud, Bassiouni 26
This hostel was great! Would recommend it to any traveller who is looking for a fun time in Prague. We stayed in a 6-bed dorm, everything was clean and there was one cupboard for each person to lock their stuff up in. Showers were clean (although in peak times not exactly hot, but still bearable), toilets also clean and common room area spotless (if a bit smoky at times).
Best of all, the staff were really relaxed - no packing up the breakfast at 5 past 10, it just kind of sat there until everyone had had their fill. There's also safety deposit boxes at reception and a cage to put your luggage in after you've checked out. Five minute walk to old town square, supermarket round the corner (you can also cook at the hostel) and clubs, bars etc all within easy walking distance.
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