Run by the same chef as the more upmarket Chez Michel almost next door, this is the bare-table, stripped-down, half-price and totally delicious Paris bistro par excellence.
6 rue de Belzunce, a few 100 yards from the Gare du Nord; Tel: 01 48 78 28 80
Authentic south Indian vegetarian food served in a stylish cafeteria. A culinary adventure into steamed rice cakes, chutneys, spicy pulses and peppery vegetable dishes. Prices start from Rs 23.
Connaught Place; Tel: 2334 7755
A fun art hotel run by two Germans in the colonial San Telmo district. Each room is decorated with works by different artists. Its modern restaurant serves kitsch cocktails and there are art events, poetry readings and DJ parties on weekends. Prices range from $30 to $50 a night.
A great Brazilian invention is the restaurant where you pay by weight. There are hundreds of these throughout the city and many of them are really good: you go to the buffet, and pile up the plate with salads, barbecued meats and cooked dishes. At the end you weigh your plate – and pay for what you have served yourself. Its unlikely to be more than 20Br$, or £5 for a sizeable feast.
A terrific Ukrainian diner in the east village, which is open all night on Fridays and Saturdays. Fantastic broccoli and cheese pirogis and mushroom and barely soups; blintzes sure to ensure that you die happy from heart failure. And the best burgers in the city.
9th street and second avenue: Subway F, V to second avenue, R, W to 8th st, 6 to Astor Place; www.veselka.com/.
The most famous place for chips in Brussels in Place Jourdan. A basic portion costs €1.70/1.90. You can add an assortment of sources and meats.
1 Place Jourdan, Quartier Europeen; Tel: +32 02 230 540 56; Nearest metro: Schuman
It’s downtown and near the social centre of Dupont Circle, but it also on a quiet street and has preserved an old-world bookish feel that is rare in America. It has a pleasant lounge with an open fire in winters that feels like the common room of some old college, and a very decent restaurant. A room is about $100.
1739 N Street, NW, at Connecticut Avenue; Tel: 1-202 785 1277; Dupont Circle Metro; www.tabardinn.com/home.htm
Although high-end budget, it’s worth shelling out that little bit extra for this boutique hotel in the heart of ancient Athens. Its upper back rooms and bar terrace have an unrivalled view of the Acropolis and its ramparts. Recently renovated, the hotel is a stone’s throw away from the bars, cafes and restaurants of Plaka and trendy Psirri. Double room: €95 (low season); €145 (high season). Single room: €85 (low season); €115 (high season).
Traditional Greek taverna fare with the added advantage of being served hot (and not lukewarm, the fate of so many Greek dishes). Has an excellent array of casseroles and not to be missed fish soup – all viewable in the kitchen. Barrelled wine and bottled retsina also good. This is the taverna that true Athenians will go to. Average price of meal for one (with wine): €16.
Byzantino taverna, Kydathinaion Street, 18, Plaka; Tel: 210 332 7368; Open: 9am-2am Mon-Sat; Nearest metro: Akropoli/ Syntagma
Once a prison, now cheap accommodation in a great setting, within walking distance of a multitude of bars, restaurants and shops. Doubles start at R460.
Portswood Road, Victoria and Albert Waterfront; Tel: 27 21 406 1911; www.bwl.co.za/
Small, clean and friendly hostel near the main Termini rail station offering a range of accommodation from single rooms to dormitories for eight, with or without bathroom. Prices for a double room plus Italian breakfast range from €21 to €49 per person per night.
Via Marsala 80, 00185 Roma; Tel: 06 4959 887; www.popinhostel.com/
Cheap in Italy means pizza, but the pizza made in Rome, which traditionally has a thin base with crisp edges, can be disappointing. Pizza Re serves the spongier and altogether more appetising Neapolitan-style product. A straightforward pizza and a large beer costs €10.50.
Branches at Via di Ripetta 14 (06 3211 468) and Via Oslavia 39 (06 3721 173) share a website at www.pizza-re.it/
Never mind the dull food; if it’s colonial atmosphere you want, the Windsor has no equal. This former club for British officers is a living, working museum-piece.
19 Alfi Street (near Cinema Diana); Tel: 02 5915810, 5915277; www.windsorcairo.com/
Unsuitable for vegetarians and squeamish carnivores, Gomhouriya is THE place to eat pigeons. Cheap but spartan. Sample this favourite Egyptian delicacy in what al-Ahram’s restaurant reviewer described as a “Cold War ambiance”.
42 Falaki Street, near Bab el-Luc
At 14-19 euros the night, it is certainly cheap. Morisco style, chill-out, weekly parties and 24 hour opening make this a desireable spot in the centre. Two to 14 beds per room.
Calle Cañizares, 6; Tel: 91 369 28 07; Metro: Anton Martin; www.catshostel.com/
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