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.
Cafe Panam is a small French Bistro and one of a kind in Chengdu. While it doesn't serve the local cuisine it is a hot spot for French speaking Chinese, and those who just want a nice glass of wine.
143 Kehua Bei Lu, 2nd Floor, next to the Good Wood Coffee House;
tel: Chloe, +86 13880271515 or David, +86 13438094591
Even if you only spend a few days in the "Venice of the North", I would still advise you to get on a boat and go out to the beautiful archipelago surrounding Stockholm.
The closer islands in the archipelago, such as Waxholm, Finnhamn and Fjäderholmarna, are only an hour or two away and are nice places to wander around for a couple of hours.
It's a lovely way to spend a nice day or half-day out, and if you go during summer, the archipelago is a great place for a summer picnic and swimming - that's what the locals do.
You can catch boats from the ferry terminals at Slussen and Strömkajen, below the Grand Hotell. www.stockholmtown.com/templates/substartpage____2409.aspx?epslanguage=EN; www.waxholmsbolaget.se/
Södermalm is the place to go in Stockholm for nightlife, bars and restaurants and the place to see some live music.
Columbus Hotell Tjarhovsgatan 11 is in an historic building 5 minutes walk from Medborgaplatsen T-bana has reasonably priced economic single, double and triple rooms in a 3rd floor annexe which used to be part of a youth hostel in the building as well as more expensive rooms on 1st and 2nd floors for a special treat. Traditional Swedish breakfast is included. Friendly staff, informal atmosphere (www.columbus.se/eng/info.htm)
Pelikan is a traditional Swedish ale-house and restaurant serving home-cooked Swedish specialities. A lot of atmosphere in this historic bar - made even nicer since the smoking ban which came into force last year.(www.pelikan.se/)
Check out Sodrafot cabaret (www.sodrafot.se/). They have a special series of cabaret events coming up on Thursdays in September and October (Teaterhuset Skarpnäcksgårdsväg Hus 10) featuring a band called Lill-Britt-Siv (www.lillbrittsiv.com) and other local cabaret artists. Check out their other events.
A great invention which you should always look for when you're getting hungry is 'dagens lunch' (literally lunch of the day) which is always good value and normally includes salad, a hot main course, bread, coffee and drinks for about 60-150kr depending on where you go. Usually served between 12-3pm.
Even if a restaurant seem to have pricey dinner/a la carte offerings there should be reasonable lunch options available. Worth it, definitely in the more posh places such as Operakällaren.
Skeppsholmen is a tiny island best reached by crossing Skeppsholmsbron, a bridge from the Blasieholmen district (where the Nationalmuseum is, which might be worth a visit - check what exhibitions are on). Skeppsholmen is good for a pleasant stroll, and to see the exhibits at the Moderna Museet, which is the Tate Modern of Stockholm. Skeppsholmen also is home to af Chapman, Sweden's most famous youth hostel, a huge ship that, with its masts rigged, is a famous Stockholm landmark.
The Cocker is a recently opened boutique hotel in San Telmo. It is located on Av. Juan de Garai between Defensa and Bolivar, one block from Parque Lezama (and the wonderful Bar Britanico - as seen in The Motorcycle Diaries!) It's perfectly placed for trips to the local antiques market in Plaza Dorego (2 blocks) and is truly in the heart of all that historic San Telmo has to offer (parilla, tango, bars, cafes). The hotel itself is beautiful - restored from a complete wreck by its two proprietors over the course of 18 months. It's stylish and modern but sensitive to the building's original character. We stayed in a room with a private roof terrace ($80 per night) which proved a fantastic place to spend a soothing evening drinking a Quilmes (or two!) listening to the heartbeat of city life. Aidan and Ian (the owners) were extremely helpful, arranging transport for us - even a trip to Uruguay! The name (in case you were wondering) stems from Rocco - their pet cocker spaniel.
458 Av. Juan de Garai, San Telmo
A real gem of a hotel with diamond staff too. Beautifully finished rooms offer an inviting and intimate experience. It's incredible value: a boutique hotel yet budget price.
15 rue le grimaldi, nice
Last August my partner and I stayed at Piccola Perla, a charming one-bedroomed apartment in St. Antonin, located roughly midway between St Mark's Square and Arsenale.
It was quiet, tastefully decorated and it was great to come back in the evening after a long day's sightseeing and put our feet up in the little courtyard, together with a drink of Prosecco. Being on a budget, some evenings we cooked our own meals, so it was good to be a couple of bridges away from one of only two supermarkets I have come across in Venice.
Recommended as a romantic getaway for a couple or an inexpensive spot for a small family (there was a sofabed in the living room).
www.ourveniceapartment.com - Tel. (UK) 01242 243693. Nearest Vaporetto: San Zaccaria.
A lovely Indian/Pakistani restaurant located next to the Poble Nou metro station. They specialise in Tandoori, but for spicy food lovers the good news is that their dishes are prepared as they would be in Ireland or the UK, and not made mild for the locals!
Prices are very reasonable, if not downright cheap.
Nearest metro: Poble Nou.
An excellent institution, which sometimes confuses European visitors. The acronym means "bring your own", i.e. alcohol when you dine at a restaurant.
Formerly almost ubiquitous, the practice is becoming less common - some say even dying out - no doubt to the pleasure of many Sydney restaurateurs.
It makes dining far more affordable than when you have to include the restaurant's alcohol mark-up, which is usually greater than on anything else you consume.
It also means you can occasionally splash out on a very nice bottle - of Hunter Valley Semillon, say - to accompany a spread of Sydney seafood without worrying about your starving bank account.
BYO is more common at medium range and casual restaurants.
Seven traghetto (ferry) points between the railway station and San Marco allow you to cross the Grand Canal without having to squeeze over the bridges. These decommissioned gondolas ply back and forth until dusk for 60c a trip. Venetians make the crossing standing up. Tourists sit down and worry about the rocking motion.
Look out for small yellow signs pointing down alleys leading to the Canal.
Small, reasonably priced and clean 1-star hotel (but deserves 2) in a very central location between the seaside and the railway station - and great value for money.
Recommended by lots of major guide books.
Kevin, the friendly British owner, has a blog with tips on visiting the Riviera on his website, which makes for an interesting read.
22 Rue de Russie, 06000 Nice. www.nicenotredame.com, email@example.com
Tel: 0033 (0)4 93 88 70 44
fax: 0033 (0)4 93 82 20 38.
Five minutes' walk from the train station and 10 from the seaside; just off the main shopping street (Avenue Jean Médecin).
The area covered by the local bus services run by Ligne D'Azur has been extended. Collect a free route map from the airport or elsewhere.
The seven-day passes are great value and allow journeys to such places as Vence, Eze and some distance inland.
An exceptionally beautiful small museum hovering above a lake in the Parc Floral Phoenix (bus 23 westbound stops almost directly outside).
There are sections covering Japan, China, India and Cambodia.
Exceptionally restful, light and airy.
Every day except Tuesday; €4.5.
405 Promenade des Anglais
Cheap and cheerful, if not exactly charming. Great location and nice rooms, this hostel stands out simply by being such in a city dominated by pricey hotels. The staff are friendly, but Oki-Doki perhaps takes its unique status for granted, often requiring guests to change rooms. But it really is just 10 minutes’ walk from the Old Town, less to the Palace of Culture and Science, and its in-house bar is good craic till the wee hours.
Take an ombra (a glass of wine) in a bar at mealtimes, and eat the delicious snacks on offer (whose special name I've forgotten) - all classic Italian antipasti. There are good cheap bars everywhere, each with their own ambience. Our favourite was facing onto the fish market.
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