We usually book room only but opted for the self catering unit as it was a very reasonable price. Very well appointed and spacious. We were provided with eggs from the hens scratching outside, as well as milk, bread and butter. Trips to the Fearn Peninsula gave us dolphin sightings and we stocked up on deli delights at the Storehouse of Foulis on the way.
The Old Schoolhouse Logie Easter
Logie Easter, Invergordon, Ross-shire, IV18 0PA
Google map: bit.ly/jNR0M7
Stavroulas Studios is a charming hotel located in Agii Apostoli near Platis Gialos beach and just 2.5km from Mykonos town.
The Enneahora - meaning nine villages – is an off-the-beaten-track domain in the lush green mountains of Western Crete. Trawling deep gorges, it’s easily reachable by local bus from the unassuming seaside town of Kastelli Kissamos – an ideal base for exploration of the region. Enjoy cool walks beneath ancient chestnut, plane and walnut trees; criss-crossing mountain streams and rare flora and fauna, including high-flying buzzards. Take inexpensive rooms in friendly Elos, main hamlet of the nine, to enjoy its shady square and unobtrusive tavernas serving freshly roasted dishes and local wines. Be tempted to stay on for the unique annual chestnut festival in October.
Koufonissi is a really small island south of Naxos. I went island hopping in 2003 and the island which I remember most favourably is this little gem.
Because of its small size it gave us a feeling to be in a different world. If you are looking for quietness and recreation then this is the place to go. The beaches on Koufonissi are tidy and nice. On the east coast you will also find small bays which really give the illusion of being alone on the island.
We stayed in a small studio close to Finikas beach which was perfect for the small budget we had then. If I ever return - and I hope that will happen one day - I would, however, try to get a place in the Windmill Villa, a refurbished windmill close to the sea.
Halki is a small island five miles west of Rhodes but very far away from the hectic tourist activities of the larger island. There really is nothing to do there which makes it perfect for a relaxing holiday. Until recently there were no cars at all on the island and even now there are very few and the lack of traffic is wonderful. The island is very dry and water has to be imported from Rhodes which helps to explain the lack of major developments. There is one pretty harbour town and two small beaches which are served by traditional tavernas. Once you have walked to the beach of your choice the water comes in many shades of blue and green and is crystal clear. The beaches are never overcrowded as the island cannot accommodate many tourists, Most visitors stay in small apartments or villas in the town or in the new Hiona Art hotel.
If you're heading to Laganas (which you should only do if you're young and want to party), then THIS is the place to stay. A few minutes from the main drag, but completely peaceful. No blaring music at the pool, simple but spacious rooms, fantastic bathrooms. The place is family run - they make you feel incredibly welcome (as long as you treat the hotel and the staff well). The food in the hotel was also great - almost didn't need to eat out at all! Highly recommended; a piece of paradise in a typical party destination.
Laganas Zakynthos PC: 29100, Greece
(+30) 26950 52419
There aren't that many nice campsites in the Champagne region (seems most visitors have a bigger budget than us!), but Campsite Sous le Clocher is a lovely peaceful spot by the river overlooking the town of Dormans. Just 5 minutes walk from the Boulangerie, lovely restaurants and a Saturday market in town.
D1 / rte de Vincelles, 51700 Dormans France
Google map: bit.ly/iqxVeG
A 16th Century hall which is seen as the birth place of Quakerism in the 17th century. The historic house can be visited, they offer B&B at very modest prices and there is a programme of Quaker events. A wonderful quiet place near to Ulverston and the southern Lakes which is of great significance to Quakers (Society of Friends)
Brackenborough Hall is a working 900-acre farm in the Lincolnshire Wolds. The old Coach House has been beautifully restored and made into three lovely apartments which are set in the middle of medieval parkland - and there's a herd of cows living in the park. It's perfect for families or groups: there's accommodation for up to 24 people. And the family that run the farm are very happy to show you round or let you help out. Lincolnshire is a beautiful place and the food - including local plum bread - is amazing, too.
A wonderful farm holiday for families with young children in the most beautiful location. Feed the animals every morning with Farmer Tim; ride on the gentle ponies; splash around in the indoor pool; relax with that day's papers and enjoy fresh coffee in the indoor play barn. The cottages are a comfortable home from home with little extras provided including black-out blinds, bed guards and cots. The perfect break!
Hotel with superb dining, built approx. 15th Century, it has a central position on the high street with ample parking. Makes an excellent base for touring the Cotswolds and the special deal for dinner and B&B is well worth while.
This is a great B&B that is extremely well priced. They are very welcoming hosts who provide a spacious, spotless room and amazing organic, fair trade breakfasts. We have been all around the UK and this was by far the best food. Comfortable bed with good pillows - all you need for a relaxing, comfortable stay in the Lakes District. We would highly recommend this B&B - simple but great!
Naxos has everything. A headland marked by a temple ruin greets you as your ferry arrives.(There is also a small airport.) The harbour lies directly below the Old Town (Kastro), a maze of narrow alleyways on a steep hill and, at its foot, the new town (Chora) with plenty of shops and tavernas and a lovely sandy beach just beyond.
No need to hire a car; the island can be explored by bus and on foot to reach various small archaeological sites. For a whole island of antiquity take the day trip to Delos (with Mykonos thrown in).
The able-bodied should stay in one of the small hotels such as Anixis in the picturesque Old Town: plenty of steps but no traffic, not even bicycles!
Small but perfectly formed idyllic cottage, tucked away down a private lane on a small working organic farm, amidst the Somerset levels. The owners Jane and Simon are warm hosts who will provide home cooked meals if you have had a long journey. With a wealth of local knowledge this is an excellent base for cycling and walking as the cottage is just off the Parrett trail, close to the quirky town of Langport. Ideally situated for birdwatching on the levels, the cottage is great for both relaxing holidays wandering the farm and trying the myriad of produce they grow or exploring further afield as there are many National Trust properties within 30 minutes. Book during the last two weeks of September to visit Somerset Art Weeks when over 200 artists have their studios open to the public, Its fantastic!
Park lane, Langport, Somerset, TA10 0NF
Google map: bit.ly/eOJPEh
Taunton, Yeovil Penn Mill and Yeovil Junction are nearest train stations.
Yeovil - Taunton Bus 54 stops at end of private lane
Set in the rolling Devonshire hills on the edge of Exmoor, North Hayne Farm is the perfect place for a family to unwind. The cottages are beautifully converted farm buildings set around a pretty communal courtyard. A cream tea is laid out in your cottage awaiting your arrival and a hot tub, on your individual patio, is ready to go as soon as you've unpacked your cossie. Children and adults alike are able to feed the farm animals morning and night, and if you're lucky you might find an egg. Children are rewarded for their hard work by donkey rides everyday and a certificate and photo at the end of their stay(which always comes far to quickly).
It took us three days to travel to Hydra from Glasgow by train through London, France and Italy, then on to Greece by ferry and finally the hydrofoil from Piraeus to Hydra. Arriving in the silent dark, Hyrda was like a glittering gift. No cars, narrow and steep steps leading high into the island, donkeys, delicious feta saganaki and gyros everyday, peaceful, blue swimming spots, freshly caught squid and our gorgeously charming Kiaffa Cottage where Tracy Emin had stayed before us! Leonard Cohen wrote Bird on the Wire here in the 60's too. A gem of a place, thanks to the old guy in a pub who told us we had to go there above any other place in the world!
Kiaffa Cottage - where we stayed - www.showeb.net/hydra
+61 (0)44 958 3486
The Granary, Rowton Grange, is ideal for a comfortable self-catering break – my partner and I have stayed there both for weekends and for a couple of weeks. Every window looks out on the beautiful wooded hills of south Shropshire, and the Granary and its garden are a great place to relax.
The Granary was where I first came across an Indian Runner, a duck that’s a very different shape from my idea of a duck. I named it Edwin, but it turned out I was wrong – apparently only female ducks lay eggs, and so does Edwin, so it should be Edwina! As a townie, I found the sight of a minutes-old calf quite a shock (and was relieved I hadn’t been required to help with the birth). And I also learned that pigs aren’t always pink: the Saddlebacks have their own colouring and personality. There are also several horses, and arable farming – though I still can’t tell my wheat from my barley.
The owners – a farmer, a vet and their four children – are brilliant at making guests feel welcome. They’re all friendly and good company, without being pushy. The visitors’ book shows that our enthusiasm is shared by many, and the same guests’ names appear time after time – we’re clearly not the only ones to find the Granary worth several visits.
Tesorito is an oasis in a busy city. It only has two guest rooms, so you need to book in advance. Besides their own room, guests have the use of a living room, dining room and leafy patio, all painted in bright colors and decorated with exquisite taste by the hostess. Breakfast is absolutely delicious and served with freshly squeezed orange juice every day. Tired of TV? Turn on the stereo, there is a large variety of CDs. The young host (fluent in four languages) and young hostess are both discreet and welcoming. The location is great, a block away from Santa Fe Street, where you will find a subway station and the 152 bus than crosses the city. Santa Fe is also a great shopping street, and boasts a bookstore that has been rated the second most amazing bookstore in the world. Only problem is the lack of good restaurants nearby. But, no worry, for only $5.00, you can take a taxi to Palermo Viejo, where good restaurants abound, and where an evening stroll is wonderful.
Sometimes, where you stay triggers the same wonderful memories as what you see or do. This is the case for the Secret Garden. Iguazu Falls are awesome, but returning to the Secret Garden is really special. Only three rooms at the end of a tropical garden. These rooms are simple, but large, cheerful and comfortable. A small bridge through the garden takes you to the breakfast area on the other side: two large round tables where a delicious breakfast with fresh fruits is served every day. At 7:00pm, the tables are transformed into a magic area where drinks and tasty finger food are served, thus you get to know your host and the other guests. Not surprisingly, the guests often end up going out to dinner together and have a great time. John is the magician who created this little paradise and who is just as fascinating as his surroundings. He will help you with everything you need, serve the only drinkable "mate" I ever drank, and tell you just enough stories to make you yearn to hear more.
Los Lapachos 623, Puerto Iguazu, Misiones, Argentina
tel.+54 3757 423099
This ship was built in 1955 in the Viana shipyard and for many years served as a hospital ship to Portuguese fishermen on the cod banks Newfoundland. But in 1984 it was taken out of service and spent several years languishing in Lisbon harbour. In 1997 it was sold for scrap, but fortunately she was rescued in 1998 by the community of Viana and is now moored in the town's harbour, the property of the Gil Eannes Foundation. Repair work is ongoing but it is already open to the public for a very reasonable sum - a fascinating part of Portugal's maritime past. There is also a youth hostel in part of the hull.
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