Tucked under the Westway at the ordinary end of Portobello Road, this Lebanese cafe/bar is charming, unpretentious and impeccably run. Eat souvlaki from terracotta plates (supplied by the Spanish supermarket across the road) - then move on to cheap cocktails while listening to funky eastern beats. The exposed brickwork and low tables might come over all Hoxton, but the pretension factor is low - and so are the prices.
299 Portobello Road, London W10 5TD. Nearest station: Ladbroke Grove
Great 'gastro-pub' - but not the usual dump done up with church chairs, this place is a preserved gem. The ceilings and details inside are worth the trip alone. Also has good beers, food and the crowd is decent too - the area itself has a few other good pubs/restaurants and a great theatre/cinema across the road, not the Kilburn of years ago!
Kilburn High Road, 5 mins walk right out of Kilburn tube or 2 mins from Brondesbury Silverlink.
In the old city and Kazimierz you will find many pubs and clubs, where you can spend the whole night (there is not any time limits for parties ;). Get your friends and forget about your problems - you will spend the best time of your life in those cheap, very often free places.
The old city in the city center and district called Kazimierz (on the south of the old city).
Wonderful wine and tapas bar that is small enough to get to know the owners well and who may even treat you to a glass of cava gratis! The tapas are amazing and the design of the bar is intimate yet light and airy unlike many tapas bars. Very reasonably priced (for a student!).
Chueca, Calle Pelayo 24
Metro: Chueca. Turn left off Plaza Chueca and Pelayo runs parallel.
One of the hubs of nightlife in Venice. There's some great bars - Cafe Rosso, Duchamp, and the Orange bar on the square itself, and Cafe Noir and Cafe Blu just round the corner, the latter which has great live music. But it's not all about the nightlife, in the daytime Campo Santa Margherita is a lovely place to sit and relax, watch people go by, feed the sparrows, and grab a slice of delicious pizza from Pizza al Volo.
Campo Santa Margherita, Dorsoduro
A lovely little chilled out and sociable bar/pub close to King's Cross station. Great music, comfy sofas, very cosy and a nice place to relax. Always lots going on including a book exchange and regular live music.
52 York Way, King's Cross, London, N1 9AB
This was one of my favourite bars whilst a student at King's College. It is more commonly known (and easily pronounced) as 'the Polish Bar', in fact it says so in big letters on the window! It is very small and serves Polish beer and a huge variety of top quality flavoured vodka (an idea Revolution seems to have nicked). The size and back-street location make it feel like a secret, invitation-only society for connoisseurs, and a lot more welcoming than similar 'cool' bars. I actually feel quite guilty for revealing it!
Nearest Tube: Holborn.
It is in a narrow back street behind Holborn station. It's hard to find but I think the easiest way is to take the first right off High Holborn, around Pret a Manger then follow the lane around, bearing right.
Bar that serves food upstairs, with a restaurant for more refined dining downstairs. Excellent fresh seafood as well as a wide range of other meals made with locally sourced produce, friendly helpfull staff. Good value upstairs, worth the extra for the more special but unintimidating experience downstairs. The name is a Scots word meaning to wander.
Gibson street, round the corner from Kelvin bridge underground (exit on the right instead of taking the elevator to Gt Western road, follow the river as it flows towards the bridge that carries Gibson street over it, turn R after taking the stairs up to the bridge).
New bar in trendy Jesmond district of Newcastle, underneath the Quaker Meeting House. Looks like your aunty betty's living room in the 1970s! Got to visit this surreal drinking den!
Close to Jesmond metro station
Make sure after you have mooched around Spitalfields and Brick Lane on a Sunday that you take the time to have a few drinks around Dray Walk, just off Brick Lane under the Truman Brewery. In the summer it is always buzzing and is a great place to people watch (or be watched).
There are open air BBQs at 1001 and gorgeous cocktails at the Big Chill. In winter it is quieter but still worth the effort. Just remember to wear your trendiest garments because the fashion stakes are set pretty high!
Theatre ship with bed and breakfast facilities and bar. Totally unexpected cross cultural place to stay. Tone Holmen, one of the owners, is a great cook and speaks perfect English and Spanish, the ambience is terrific and the price of a bed for the night is reasonable for Oslo. The beer isn't very expensive either. The fjord is usually calm and it's a delightful experience to sit and look out over the sea while enjoying a cool lager and listening to some Afro-Caribbean music. Very near the main shopping centre, kindly hosts and lovely views.
For live music, check www.livemusicvancouver.com
The best hostel in the city (during the summer) is the Jericho Beach Hostel. They organize all sorts of bar-crawls, vollyball and the usual BS. Plus it's a giant dorm right on the beach.
However, if you're coming here anywhere outside of summer, stay here www.samesun.com/vancouver_hostel.html or check out the Cambie Hostel/Bar. Both Hostels have good bars with cheap $6-10 pitchers of beer, full of ex-pats, and opportunities to go into the interior/Banff ect. The Cambie is a rowdy dive of a bar, so expect picnic tables, and lot's of beer being tossed everywhere by 19-23yr olds.
There are a few smaller hotels around Robson St. for about $90CAD a night. There's a million luxury hotels such as the Opus Hotel, and Hotel Vancouver (google for info).
For restaurants, you can either score $0.99 sushi on Davie St or check this www.straight.com/content.cfm?id=12744 (Best of Vancouver).
Contrary to popular belief, it's not 100% legal here. However use common sense and you'll be fine. There are a few cafes around town, and an actual store operating called 'Vancouver Connection'. Read this magazine: www.cannabisculture.com/ and ask around the forum.
Get on the skytrain and get off on Broadway St. Make your way down commercial drive towards the water and you'll come across a billion artist-run centres/cafes/bars galore.
If you really want to do something awesome, look for vacation cabins along Shushwap Lake, Christina Lake, or the millions of other cabins. Rent a boat and party till the sun comes up on the beach in Osoyoos or whatever. Not cheap :(
Finally, if you want to check out local punk/metal bands, meet awesome people and drink the cheapest booze on the planet go here www.thecobalt.net
See above for all addresses.
It is worth walking to Vinohrady to eat or go for a drink - there are a number of great bars and restaurants that aren't as crowded by tourists. They're also a lot cheaper than bars or restaurants in Staromestske or Wenceslas square.
From Wenceslas square go toward the museum, then bear right. or get the trams/tube to nam. miru or IP Pavlova.
It's a typical bar in La Habana Vieja (Old Havana), where the first daiquiri was made, years ago. The daiquiri is a delicious drink made of rum, lemon juice and tons of ice!
Obispo No.557 esq. a Monserrate, Habana Vieja, Ciudad de La Habana, Cuba;
tel: (53-7) 867 1300
This is the heart of Boston's North End, once the Italian enclave in the region. The street is lined with cafes, bakeries and several styles of Italian restaurants - most with open air seating during the summer. Great for people watching, it connects the Financial District to Boston's harbor. A nice small park connects Hanover St to the Old North Church.
Access by Goverment Center T (subway) station.
As the name suggests, it is a club, but also has a bar and meal facilities. The main thing is the 15th century vault where there are concerts on a tiny stage. I heard Lubos Andrst Blues Band in April, and it was simply divine. It is right in the centre of Prague, right behind the Old Town Square. Brilliant night out with good Czech beer and brilliant music.
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