Originally Ireland's flagship youth hostel, it's a little tatty these days and definitely no frills. But it has loads of character and a fantastic view, and at 14 euros a night a perfect base to explore the area settled by St Columb in the 6th century, and the Slieve League - at 600m, Europe's highest sea cliffs.
In the town of Glencolumbcille, take the road beside the Glenhead tavern and it's 1.5km up the road on the left - 973 0130
This is a great Greek coffee shop, in the heart of Kremasti village. Thomas and Mikhlais will give you a really warm welcome. You can enjoy cocktails, a latte or traditional Greek coffee, they also serve freshly prepared snacks.
Come and play tavli (backgammon) or take a rest in the shade if you are travelling around. It's worth coming to see the mad murals they have painted on the walls inside.
The prices are cheap and children are very welcome.
It's on the left hand side as you come from Rhodes Town, after Melody Palace. Park at the side of the church and it's a 2 minute walk.
The Walk Inn is a bar/restaurant in the heart of the Old Town, a 5 minute walk from Socrates Street. It's set in a very pretty square and you can spend hours watching the world wander by.
There is a fantastic atmosphere, the food is all freshly prepared (pizzas and meze a speciality) children are very welcome and the prices are ridiculously reasonable.
There's no web site, but if you want directions call them on 22410 74293, and someone will come to meet you! How's that for service!
DIY Dining. Good for two people, better for more. I've heard several times that Koreans consider this the best place in town. This is as far as you could get from the touristy places, and it's about dining experience, not decor. Most of the customers will be Korean families, and the staff speak passable English. The prices are quite reasonable, especially if you share dishes.
Definitely go for the barbeque dishes. One order is enough to feed two or more people. They will promptly bring out a smoldering charcoal pot and grill, then bring you at least 20 little bowls of spicy vegetable side dishes, and a big plate of marinated meat, which you now have to cook on the provided grill. Between sampling all the bowls, and keeping track of what's cooking, you'll have plenty to keep you busy. Dining should always be this fun.
5247 N. Western Ave (773) 334-1589. Western or Foster busses, Brown line Western station is 15 min walk.
YH Plakias in the south of Crete is the number one party hostel in Europe. If you are single, eccentric, aged between 21 and 55 and like a chat, a shag and a drink, then this is the place for you.
The cult of YH Plakias has developed over decades as there are many "regulars" who come back year after year. Six marriages and five babies have resulted from relationships formed at the hostel. Chris the manager will make you very welcome. And all this at eight euros a night.
I am expecting a man shortage this year as I am coming back with five of my girlfriends so any eligible guys out there, hope to see you in May!
Mirthios 74060, Rethymno District, Crete, Greece. Tel. +30 28320 32118. The website is at yhplakias.com
nearest airport is Heraklion or Chania
Situated right next to the city and the bars, cafes and markets of Spitalfields and Brick Lane, the location is ideal. Tube station right next door also. Rooms are basic, but spotless, clean and comfortable. For £65/night at the weekend it's a bargain. Unusually for a hotel, the bar is buzzing and comfortable. The staff are so friendly. Definitely worth checking out.
Commercial Street, E1. Aldgate East tube station.
In the centre of China Town, this is where they sell loads of designer copies if you are into that. I got a Prada bag for $10. You must NOT accept the first price they offer, you need to haggle.
My bag started off at $30, I soon whittled her down. She wasn't happy but these people make a fortune. I also found fake Tiffany copies which were really good as I was wearing the genuine article and was able to compare.
Don't believe everything they tell you. I can only wear real silver and on various stalls they were telling me their jewellery was real silver and it wasn't, so you need to keep your wits about you. Great bargains to be had!
A Youth Hostel on West 83rd Street in a great neighbourhood. It cost me $20 a night to stay - as you would expect, it is basic but clean.
I had a private room with shared bathrooms which are kept clean. Rooms are warm and came with a TV, fridge, microwave and sink.
A stone's throw from central park and a couple of blocks from two different subways that take you to most central locations. There is also internet access and a games room downstairs if you feel like being sociable.
Friendly and helpful multilingual staff. I would give this place a go, you can't lose.
106 West 83rd Street
Kabak is the pefect antidote to the more commercial spots along the Turquoise coast. Wind your way south by dolmus to a secluded valley surrounded by mountains leading down to a beautiful beach and clear sea. Stay in tree houses or bring your own tent. We stayed at Kabak Natural Life which has organic food, lots of places to laze and a mule to carry your bags from the road to your tree house.
Get the dolmus from Olu Deniz or Fethiye to Kabak
The time-preserved hamlet of Datça is truly special as life goes on here as it has for centuries.
Beautifully restored honey-coloured limetstone houses built by the Greeks hide behind high garden walls. This is real Turkey and may it stay untouched by tourism for a long time to come.
An inconspicious route winds up the mountain from Datça harbour to the inland hamlet.
We had lunch at Plush last Thursday, our first visit. Friendly and welcoming staff, lovely food - fresh, well presented and full of flavour across all three courses - with a good bottle of Sauv Blanc.
All with prompt but unobtrusive service.
Seated by a tropical fish tank, which was entertaining. All for £50 - great value and well recommended.
10 York Place. Near Wellington Street and railway station.
0113 234 3344
Paulista Grill is heaven for those who like BBQ and hell for those with high cholesterol.
It is part of a Brazilian chain. They offer ample premises and private rooms and, of course, buffet style BBQ.
The buffet has different kinds of salads, rice, pasta and cuts of meats. Also includes dessert!
Less than £5 or USD$10 per person.
San Martin and Mariscal Lopez
For a good lunch downtown try the traditional Lido Bar, traditional fish soup, villarroy de pollo (breaded chicken and mash potatoes), croqueta (breaded mince beef) and empanadas.
Opposite the Panteon Nacional in Palma and Chile, downtown Asuncion.
It is a great place to grab a snack at really affordable prices. It offers Paraguayan style burguers (steaks not mince meat), pizzas and pasta.
Combos at £1.50 or USD$3.
Mariscal Lopez and Salasquin
Palma between 14 de Mayo and 15 de Agosto and all main shopping centres.
It's only a simple cafe in the Grand Bazaar, but the tables on the "street" provide a lovely, inexpensive spot to sit and watch the world go by. You'll find it at a junction just north of the musical instrument section, not far off the goldsellers' street.
It's not on the menu, but if you ask for the steak special in the restaurant at the Ellis Island (one block off the strip behind Ballys) you get a choice of soup or salad followed by a 10oz steak cooked to perfection with a choice of fries, baked potato, mashed potato and gravy or rice for $4.95. It's far and away the best value meal in town!
Once you come over the border from Cambodia stay in this little border town. It is quite sleepy and they do not get many tourists stopping here. But everyone is really friendly and it is really cheap to stay. Then get the train to Bangkok. There are two trains a day - one early morning and one at lunchtime. The train takes 5 1/4 hours and is only 48BHT (approx 70p) and it connects with the skytrain in Bangkok at Phaya Thai.
This is an amazing place run by an amazing man. It is not really more than a shack so don't expect a posh museum. But it is a really interesting place to visit and chat to the children who live here.
Along the back streets about 2 km out of Siem Reap. Get a tuk-tuk driver to take you as it is really difficult to explain.
Best record shop in Maharashtra. Bhangra, Kannada, Marathi, Hindi soundtracks, hindi films, jazz (magic selection, average price 4 GBP), up to date contemporary western. The place is a treasure. Amazing service, great compilations - these people really know their music. Family owned. Makes you wonder why most radio stations are terrible.
Kala Ghoda just up the road from Regal cinema.
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