It's a newish hotel with a lovely par three golf course. We got the room including breakfast for 50 euros which was great value. There's a leisure centre included and it was only 20 euros to play the par three nine-hole course twice. Easily the best course I played around Lisbon in January. It was so dry and the greens were brilliant.
Largo Aldeia dos Capuchos, 2825-017, Caparica
Google map: bit.ly/gmaP39
A smallish hotel near Restauradores. Very central. Clean, friendly and safe. We stayed for six nights. The doubles are cheaper than the twins. The car parking is 15 euro a day. If you're lucky you'll find free street parking about 1km away. The breakfast is basic although one day we got croissants at the buffet.
An old colonial house converted into a guest house in an absolutely beautiful setting. It is set in a peaceful part of Kandy very close to the station and other attractions. Extremely friendly hosts make your stay pleasant and peaceful. The price is very good for such a beautiful location and level of comfort. At night you can see bats the size of eagles and I even was fortunate enough to see wild boars roaming around the garden. The manager provides travel advice and helps to order tuk tuks at reasonable prices. I did the booking through Red Dot Tours and had excellent service from them and the manager of the cottage.
The Gualeguaychu carnival is supposed to be the second largest carnival in South America after Buenos Aires. It's a competition that runs Saturdays in January and February, with the final in March. We went in 2010 and had an amazing time. We booked accommodation well in advance and we were one of the only tourist there. There was a great vibe in town and there were people from all over Argentina. We stood near the front and we had a family standing next to us that came all the way from Uruguay. They said they come every year. The parade started around 7am and didn't finish until 2am, after which street parties continued all through the night. The town is 230km north of Buenos Aires. Afterwards we headed to a lovely Estancia, called San Ambrosio not far from Gualeguaychu for some ultra relaxation in a stunning setting with a lovely owner.
Titanic City is an excellent four-star rated hotel located in the centre of Istanbul in the popular city location of Taksim square.
The hotel is in an excellent location next to the array of shopping areas and in close vicinity to the historical sights of Istanbul.
The staff are friendly and hospitable and put us in touch with relevant sightseeing tours which allowed us to visit all the sights of Istanbul in only five days! It was well worth the money and we really enjoyed our stay.
Titanic City Hotel, Lamartin Cad No 47 | Taksim, Istanbul 34437, Turkey
+90 212 238 9090
Google map: bit.ly/eUbw4P
Many of us have been fortunate enough to take a trip to Thailand and tragic though it is after a few months of gallivanting around, sight-seeing and eating enough pad Thai to sink a long-tail, you can become a little uninspired on arrival to yet another beautiful beachut on yet another beautiful island. But when you arrive at Porn's bungalow you will feel a spark of magic and calmness surrounds it allowing you to explore the delights of Koh Chang without the boom boom of a techno sound system in earshot.
The bungalows owned and run by the Porn family are beautifully located on a golden beach where the water is almost like a lagoon allowing you to walk or snorkel until your hearts content. They are very affordable starting at just 500 bhat each and your hosts can't do enough to make your stay just perfect.
A recommendation to fill your time, should you get board of lying in a hammock reading your favourite book, is to relax with a turmeric face mask at the Bailan Herbal Sauna in Ao Bai Lan (086 252 4744 Opening time: Daily 4–8pm).
Dar Darma is a riad, a typical palace of Marrakech and it is located inside the old Medina. It is near the nice Medersa and the Museum of Marrakech, really a good place from where you can easily discover Marrakech. I loved the style of this riad and the sophisticated amtosphere! You can choose different kind of rooms and apartments, each with its own style. a great place indeed!
Cute rustic wooden cabins overlooking the beach on Perhentian Kecil, an island with no roads, no cars and no stress! The only traffic is a speedboat which drops off and picks up the few visitors straight onto the beach twice a day - that and the disco-coloured fish which teem round the bay. What's more, our own wooden cabin was around £15 a night - which left our meagre wallets just enough for the ridiculously fresh BBQ fish banquets each night on the beach. The huts also run a diving and snorkelling school. Perfect - still dream of it now when stuck in a florescently lit office in rainy Manchester.
Agonda Beach is a three kilometre stretch of beautiful white sand and if you are in search of a relaxing escape watching the sun go down while lounging in a hammock, or a romantic getaway the Om Sai beach huts will not disappoint. The six, simple yet spacious huts are located in a secluded, picturesque area of the beach and the friendly staff ensure you have everything you need to enjoy your exotic Indian retreat. The busiest season is over the New Year period so book early if you are looking to welcome 2012 in style.
Ko Lipe is a tiny island in the Andaman sea and is one of the 51 islands of the Taratoa National Marine Park. It is a paradise to experience with long stretches of white sand that each morning are strewn with flowers - lifted by the night breeze from trees that fringe the sand. The Coco Bungalow beach huts are simple and perfect, and literally nestle in front of the sea. A real Robinson Crusoe experience. A simple mat on the floor is your comfy bed, but even the cheapest (only a few pounds) come with toilet and shower.
It is a family owned resort and feels intimate and safe. We were left to ourselves to get up with the sunrise and sit on our balcony and brew coffee (we'd brought a kettle and the tiny local shop supplied us with coffee and bananas for breakfast.) The rest of the day might be spent with dreamy long walks seeking shells along the beach, snorkelling in the clear, blue and lusciously warm waters, or trying to chat and play with the kids of the island. The Chao Ley are the indigenous inhabitants; a nomadic tribe that I watched for hours as they painstakingly and skillfully created long tail boats on the waters edge, under the shelter of Casuarina trees which flowed gently in the warm breeze.
Coco Bungalows, Sunrise Beach,
Thai Bhat 400-2200.
Access via speedboat/ferry from Pak Barra on mainland, southern Thailand. 1.5-2 hours. They run between November and May. Then longtail boat from ferry to the beach as there are no piers.
Google map: bit.ly/eijczG
Klong Nin is a quiet idyllic beach resort on Ko Lanta with the most beautiful sunset to be seen in Thailand. I stayed in unnamed beach huts with double bed and bathroom costing just $1 a night, including the use of a pool (the only problem was I occassionaly had to share with some of the local wildlife including a 3ft monitor lizard). Fresh fruit and breakfast banquets were also on offer in the resort beachfront restaurant. I doubt these prices can be found online but are easy to find once there. However they where right by the luxurious and 'green' Sri Lanta boutique resort. Surrounded by unspoiled tranquil beaches by day and fresh seafood restaurants by night. Also for a fun night out Ibark nightclub is a short stroll away - with an open air bar perched on a cliff top it's the perfect way to end the day either with a Singha beer in the lounge or dancing the night away to quality music with new friends.
Bottle beach is beautiful and just the right combination of isolated and yet convenient.
Beautiful white sands, palm trees, clear water that is perfect for swimming. It's only accessible by boat or dirt track (though I think a road is planned) which means that it's just hard enough to get to to put off the crowds who would flock here otherwise.
There are several bungalows/cafe/bar places right on the beach and even a resort now with a pool. This means you can have a choice of places to eat and chill out (although the menus are all pretty similar). However, to sleep, you should choose the bungalowss which are at the far right of the beach as you stand with the sea behind you. I think these were called 'Friendly bungaloew' or something like that. The staff are lovely and will make you feel like part of the family immediately. They have a number of long-term residents who are always on the look out for new people to play chess/backgammon/cards with. The internet is decent (intermittently when there is electricity), they do a book-swap, you can hire snorkels, and they will arrange taxis/boats and dispense travel advice quite happily. The huts themselves are also lovely - they back right onto the jungle and are so peaceful. Each one is different and they keep them immaculately clean.
We stayed for five days but I didn't want to leave and we had already met so many people on the beach that we felt like a little village.
Its very family-friendly if that is important to you although families were in the minority and most of the people here were chilling out as part of a longer backpacking trip or working holiday.
Bottle Beach (Haad Khuat), Koh Phangan
In a town replete with casas particulares it is hard to stand out in Vinales, but Casa Brunilda manages it handily. Aside from the nice room and outdoor sitting area, the main reason is the woman herself: Brunilda has a great sense of humour, loves to chat, and is the best cook in Cuba. Seriously. Each meal was a banquet, made all the more remarkable by the fact that it was all whipped up on stoves in the back garden. Insist on trying the bean soup...
Although these are more beach bungalows than beach huts, their price is very reasonable and compares to the price of beach huts elsewhere. They have 32 bungalows set in 67 acres of jungle right on the edge of the Andaman Sea. I have never felt so close to nature. We had a hornbill feeding it's young less than 10 metres from our balcony, we could see dolphins out at sea and we even had a morning visit from two monkeys who somehow got into our room! Treat yourself and stay in a 'luxury' beach hut.
P.O Box 199, Jalan Pantai Kok, Teluk Nibong, 07100, Langkawi, Kedah Darul Aman,
+604 952 0222
The best B&Bs are those that make you feel like you're in the comfort of your own home and Coed Cae certainly fits the bill. Situated in two acres of woodland overlooking the beautiful Mawddach estuary, the B&B is ideally located for those hoping to indulge in outdoor pursuits although equally perfect for those wishing to sit back and relax in a beautiful setting. Don't miss host Jackie's exquisite home cooked with a local and seasonal twist!
A blue room and a yellow room, both in delicate pastel shades and frilly lace soft furnishings. I think of the Yorkie bar advert, but with a twist, this is not for men!
The exotic cats bred in their own lavish home further emphasize how pampered guests are.
Primrose Farm’s neat and mature one acre garden invites a wander among the shrubs and trees of this former farm house just two miles from the coast at Walcott and five miles from Happisburgh in Norfolk.
The barn and stable have been converted into two guest rooms, a double and a twin. Both rooms utilise the inter-connecting shower room and the sitting/dining room full of books with a TV. The crown being the external patio, solid wood chairs and table for jam and toast in the morning sun.
Clean, welcoming, comfortable and excellent value, close to The Malting.
Breakfast is huge with so many choices you could have a different breakfast every day of a week-long stay or be spoilt for choice if popping overnight on the way up to Scotland or on the way down south.
There are also plenty of places to eat in the evenings and the pub at the end of the road has real ale and music.
Art gallery is about a 15 minute walk.
Could anyone recommend a better B&B in Snowdonia than this one? I doubt it! Emma and Menno are warm and welcoming hosts, the rooms are spotlessly clean and comfortable and the breakfast is totally delicious - a great choice of local fare ranging from the 'full Welsh', to the healthy options. The Dutch Pancake is a particular treat - Menno having brought all sorts of interesting recipes from his homeland.There isn't a lounge, but you will be welcome to sit in the cosy Tea Room in the evening, reading or playing a board game (if you don't want to watch TV in your room) - or just relaxing. Out of season they can provide you with an evening meal or you can walk a few steps to the local pub. No need to use the car once you have arrived, as Ty Mawr is ideally situated for walks, and of course, there is the Welsh Highland Railway station across the road. Perfect!
Harmshay Farm is a gorgeous B&B located not far from Axminster and Lyme Regis. Positioned on a beautiful working farm, you will find cosy beamed bedrooms, a very warm welcome and a fantastic breakfast come morning.
Wonderful luxury B&B in the centre of town. Super beds and bedding and bathrooms. Breakfasts excellent. Owners most helpful.
Very close to Hix Oyster House and Jurassic Seafood (latter excellent if you don't mind the scruffy decor)
Parking the one black spot - you have to use the public car park up the hill.
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