Bling Bling is a hostel in Krakow that we had the misfortune to book whilst in Warsaw. By the far the worst hostel I've ever stayed in - and there's been a few rough ones...The name might tempt you (a bit wacky, crazy) but don't be fooled. All I'll say is bed bugs and gloom. Right next door is a lovely, clean spacious hostel called Dizzy Daisy's. Go there for a good time in Krakow, but a MUST is the Jewish quarter. Very bohemian and friendly with a shocking history, but a truly beautiful place to spend an afternoon. Get away from the crowds.
Bling Bling: ul. Pędzichów 7;
Tel: 12 634 05 32
Dizzy Daisy’s: ul. Krakowska 7;
Tel: 12 292 22 11;
The hotel Wentzl is absolutely brilliant. Beautiful location and rooms and good service.
On the first floor they have a restaurant which I think is the best in Krakow. Ariel is also very good.
You don´t have to do much in Krakow. Just strolling round the streets is a pleasant experience.
I was there during Christmas time. They have a very nice Christmas market on the main square in December.
Famed for its Middle Eastern thali, the restaurant on the ground floor is generally packed - and for good reason. Despite the rather minimal decor, the waiters are turned out impeccably in smart bellhop outfits, and the food is very decently priced.
B1/107, Assi Ghat, Varanasi;
Siem Reap's premier restaurant. For a taste of what the colonial lifestyle might have been like before the guns started firing take a pew on the veranda in this old French villa . The menu is extensive, tasty and not that expensive, and Angelina Jolie can't be wrong about the cocktails (they even named one after her).
If you really like it, there's a guesthouse too.
No. 341, 50 m north-west of the Old Market, Svay Dangkom, Mondul I;
A great hotel with an outdoor swimming pool on the 7th floor and great views over the harbour. It’s on Hong Kong Island and above the amazing Pacific Place shopping mall. Really central and the staff were really helpful.
Pacific Place, 88 Queensway, Hong Kong Island;
tel: 852 2810 8366;
Nathan's Villa was one of the highlights of my voyage around Eastern Europe. Within walking distance of the sites, friendly staff, sociable and next door to a delicious Polish restaurant - it's easily the pick of Krakow's hostels.
We were a bit worried by the dodgy name, but these guys were great. The one bedroom apartment we rented was clean, cheap, spacious and centrally located with a 24 hour shop just down the road. It also had a washing machine - which is good because Poland is oddly lacking in laundromats. The owner of the company is English speaking and was happy to meet us at 11.00pm on a Wednesday night when our plane arrived.
Great new hotel in Chamonix with shop for kit rental, beer garden with it's own climbing wall and a cool bar and restaurant downstairs. Open year round with regular events/parties in the bar.
964 Routes Des Gaillands, on the South side of Chamonix by the lake and climbing wall. www.verthotel.com
Tel +33 0450 531 358
We booked a room through Leonardi Hotels online, only to find that "due to a mistake" there was no room at the inn when we got there. They taxied us off to a cheaper hotel farther out and we only received compensation from Easyjet and not the hotel chain after lengthy hassle.
The coolest place to stay in Ibiza. Art Deco building, super-stylish rooms and a decked pool area to lounge in with a cocktail bar close at hand. Utter bliss. Don't miss the Electric Cabaret Bar at night for some naughtier action.
c/Carlos Roman Ferrer
There are a few very luxurious, but not too expensive, agroturismos on the island. These family-run hotels, usually converted from old fincas, are much more stylish than the Italian versions — but still offer peaceful, rural locations and some have pools.
Tel 971 33 88 38, atzaro.com
Es Cucons, Santa Agnes
Tel 971 80 55 01, escucons.com
Can Pujolet, Santa Ines
Tel 971 80 51 70, ibizarural.com
Can Lluc, Santa Ines
Tel 971 19 86 73, canlluc.com
Can Planells, San Miguel
Tel 971 33 49 24, canplanells.com
I know San Antonio has a bit of a reputation, but this is completely unjustified. Yes, there is the West End and the clubs (hurrah!), but people must not forget chilled out bars like Mambos, Cafe Del Mar and Coastline, and the infamous, breathtaking sunset. No better place to spend a special occasion with a cocktail, watching the spectacular fire eaters who come out at night.
The San Antonio promenade is full of young teenagers, families and older people walking in the evening. Bar M and Orange Corner along this area are fab for lunch and people watching, Itaca does gorgeous caprhina cocktails and the beach is practically empty and peaceful, believe it or not.
There's an amazing Tex Mex restaurant and the Curry Club is one of the best curry places anywhere. Hotel Arenal is in a perfect location with huge rooms, an indoor and outdoor pool, air con and great staff (I should know, I was a rep there for 2 years, and I stayed there). So before you write it off, choose this all-rounder of a resort to spend a week. I guarantee it won't be your only visit.
This place is superb. In a prime waterfront location in the village of Orhaniye, this hotel/motel/restaurant/beach club has been run by the Dinc family for many years. I have been going there for the last 8 years.
Orhaniye is a peaceful, quiet, typically Turkish village in the equivalent of a national park that is almost completely undiscovered by mass tourism (Sunsail use it as a base but they are at sea 6 days out of 7).
Discuss your requirements with the Dinc family, they will pick you up and return you to Dalaman airport; this is about a two hour journey and you will go through Turkey's Blackpool - Marmaris - but rest assured Orhaniye is light years distant rather than just 30 minutes!
As of 2007 the family will be taking bookings directly.
Tel: 90 252 487 1074/1398
Fax: 90 252 487 1070
Located a couple of minutes from the station in the heart of Kaikoura's (quiet) main street, and a stone's throw from all the shops and cafes. Friendly staff and quaintly charming (it's been converted from an old-fashioned hotel), extensive (free) video library and wonderful bbq/seating area out the back with hammocks overlooking the ocean - a wonderful place to stay.
These are free publications with detailed listings of bars, restaurants, guesthouses, shops etc plus useful articles, maps and so forth. They are very handy for tourists and other newcomers to this rapidly changing city, where annually published guidebooks can be out of date almost as soon as they are published.
The guides are available at guesthouses, bars, restaurants and shops.
The only hostel that remains open on the North Shore of Hawaii is called Backpackers. It’s in a great location (you can walk to famous surfer beaches like Sunset, Pipeline, etc.), and they offer four different types of accommodation, all a stone’s throw away from the beach.
Bratislava-apartments.com offers a cheap but chic alternative to staying in a hotel and is a great way to experience Bratislava. The apartment we stayed in was well furnished and comfortable, complete with a fully equipped kitchen (great for rustling up some of the fantastic Slovakian fare purchased in local shops), washing machine, cable TV, DVD player and stereo plus internet access with laptop. There were only two of us but the apartment could easily sleep up to four people.
There may not have been a swimming pool or 24hr room service but we couldn’t have been made to feel more welcome; we were greeted on arrival to the apartment, the heating was already on (a bonus when temperatures reach -2) and basic food items such as bread and milk were provided.
At 68 euros (£47) per night the apartment was an inexpensive alternative to hotels. We're already placing our booking for next year!
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