Get out of the backpackers rut and use some imagination when it comes to places to stay! Farming is a great choice to see some of the hidden gems of NZ. You make great new friends, learn new skills and gain a sense of achievement.
Become a member of Farm Helpers in New Zealand or WOOFFing for lists of farmers who are willing to take on backpackers (both skilled and unskilled in farming) to stay at their farms for 3-4hrs work a day in return for a bed and food.
It's quick and for 2 euro a simple way to view the city from the river. On a sunny day the Rhine park is a good place to walk and get out of the crowds around the Dom.
On the river bank. Just walk towards the Rhine from the Hbf.
For a fantastically unique and cheap (from €9 one way) ferry hop around Sicily’s beautiful, charming and untouched Aegadian islands you can’t beat the Favignana, Levanzo and Marettimo trio, leaving from the port of Trapani, northwest Sicily.
The round trip is a couple of hours and there are enough ferries to allow you to sample all the islands in a single day, but equally there is accommodation on all the islands if you wish to extend your visit.
The tiny island of Levanzo hosts the cave of the Genoese with its pre-historic paintings. Favignana is known for its butterflies, grottoes, beaches, bays and tuna fishing – and don’t miss the local restaurant speciality of spaghetti and tuna botargo at the La Bettola restaurant in the port. The final island on the route is Marettimo, with its whitewashed, colourfully shuttered homes, ports filled with fishing boats and unbelievably blue water.
This is a typical Spanish tapas bar and restaurant in a Spanish populated area of town. You receive a tapas with every drink and there is an extensive menu. There is limited seating outside for drinks or to dine.
The locals frequent this bar for lunch, dinner and to watch the live football matches. A very friendly atmosphere and interesting to experience.
19 Calle Herrera Oria,
The first Sunday of the month is free, as everybody knows. Therefore, to avoid the crowds, the best time to go is on the day before - everyone's waiting for the free entry the next day!
We went on the Saturday and had the place to ourselves, apart from the usual crowd that is always gathered around the Mona Lisa. We went again on the Sunday and it was hideously busy. We didn't have to queue though: a nice security guard spotted our pushchair and let us jump the queue! It's a surprisingly child-friendly place, and of course the advantage of the free Sunday is that you can take the kids (they are always free on any day) and you haven't wasted the cost of your ticket if their behaviour is such that you have to leave after five minutes.
I use Prague-Stay.com when visitors come to Prague. The agents are really professional and friendly, the apartments are cool, located in the center and are much more reasonable than a hotel. One friend of mine stayed at the Franciscan Garden Apartments and his apartment was just amazing-it was all windows and had awesome views of Old Town and this massive Gothic church. I really suggest you have a look at their selection of apartments.
Take the slow boat to Buyukada island. It takes about one and a half hours and only costs about four pounds each way. It is a lovely way to escape the scorching heat of Istanbul as the boat is open and breezy. You can watch the people getting on and off the boat and the tea sellers coming around- buy a cup it is refreshing and cheap.The boat stops at two islands before reaching Buyukada so you can enjoy the scenery. Buyukada is a great place for a day trip or overnight stay. You can buy an infinite variety of ice-creams, drink coffee by the port and watch the boats and people, or have a kebab. If you are feeling energetic hire a bicycle; but if you want to relax hire a horse drawn carriage taxi; then tour the island. You will be impressed by all the authentically restored wooden mansions. If you decide to spend a night, you have to stay in the iconic 1900's Hotel Splendid. Don't be surprised if you bump into Hercule Poirot in the elegantly faded drawing room.
Kadakoi ferry, Istanbul
I love Sir Toby's for the atmosphere - it is a super cool hostel with great staff, clean rooms, cool garden for lounging, reading and drinking a beer, cellar pub for mingling with other guests, eclectic furniture and so much more. I loved my stay and recommend it to anyone heading to Prague.
Delnicka 24, 170 00 Praha 7
+420 246 032 610
Vltavska Metro Station (red line)
It might be a former prison, but the idyllic setting of Langholmen's now pretty posh hostel is a far remove from any institution we'd ever heard of. Staying in the (extensively upgraded) original cells (which sleep up to 4 people) was not only clean and comfortable, but positively deluxe compared to other hostels we'd stayed in across Europe, even coming complete with free wireless web access in all the rooms. Located bang in the heart of Stockholm, we were on top of all the sights and restaurants, though we spent plenty of time on the beach right outside the hostel entrance and exploring the 'jogging' trail. Probably the most unusual and delightful hostel experience ever, and certainly cheap for such accommodation in Scandinavia.
www.langholmen.com From Arlanda airport, take the coach or train then subway to Horsnstull, along Langholmsgatan, turn left before the bridge at Hogalidsgatan, then right at the traffic lights, over the bridge and on to the island of Langholmen, +46 8 720 8500
A friend and I were looking for budget accommodation in Prague and stumbled upon 'Miss Sophies'. We booked a twin room for £50 per night which we considered a bargain for such a clean, modern hostel in a great location.
It was everything we needed, with friendly English speaking staff, comfy beds, fantastic modern bathroom and a communal kitchen and lounge in the basement where you could chat and eat with other guests.
120 00 Prague 2
I can honestly say Borges Design hostel is one of the best hostels I have ever stayed in. It is located in Palermo Soho, the trendiest area of Buenos Aires which is home to a host of boutiques and bustling bars.
After nine months travelling around 11 countries, the hostel was a welcome retreat from other hostels which had looked great on the photos but in reality were run down and dirty.
The communal areas were clean and tidy and the double rooms were spacious and comfy. The breakfast offered a variety which is a rarity in Argentina where most hostels offer a stale bread roll.
The hostel offers excellent value for money and I would recommend the hostel to anyone planning a trip to Buenos Aires.
Absolutely fantastic tapas in this place on the Shore in Edinburgh. Genuinely Spanish taste as well as being child friendly. Great value.
19 Shore Place Edinburgh EH6 6SW
Mon - Sat:
12:00 - 01:00
12:30 - 23:00
Compared to other hostels around the world I would definitely rate Circus as a boutique hostel. You can choose between dorm style or private rooms. Dorm beds cost from 15€ and are fun if you go with a group (note: no hen or stag parties allowed).
Last time I rented a private room with ensuite bathroom and it was cleaner and bigger than the last expensive hotel room I was in. Rates were about 38€ per night for the private room.
The staff are ever so friendly and speak lots of languages including perfect English. They also have lots of money saving tips for you including a weekend metro card that gets you and a friend unlimited travel on the S and U Bahn.
The hostel is in Mitte which is in central Berlin and therefore not too far from most sights and easy walking distance to funky areas such as Prenzlauer Berg.
Oh, and they do a great all-you-can-eat buffet breakfast for only 5€!
10119 Berlin, Germany
+49 30 28391433
U Bahn: Rosenthaler Platz (very close)
Great beach only 10 minutes by bus from the centre of Cagliari.
Beach does get packed on Sundays but even then we were able to hire sun loungers and umbrellas.
Beach is five miles long so if you want it less packed you just have to walk a little bit.
There are cafes/bars surrounding the beach area so you'll want for nothing here.
Seen as one of best city beaches in the Med.
We got off at first stop at beach (Gorgona).
Yellow bus PQ or PF from Piazza Matteotti at west end of Via Roma on waterfront.
Buses go very regularly to / from beach with fares at €1 each way. Tickets can be bought from a kiosk at bus station or from most newsagent kiosks.
Very nice and satisfying trattoria in the heart of Cagliari. Judging by the crowds queuing later on in the evening, it's a very popular venue as well.
We sat outside eating and drinking, watching the people pass up and down the street.
Wine was cracking value - €5 for a litre of very drinkable table wine.
Via Sardegna 60 (parallel to Via Roma)
A cool, funky bar which will accept you like a friend, whether you are an aristocrat or an alcoholic (or maybe both!). One of the cheaper bars in Barcelona, it may look a little rough and intimidating from the outside, but inside is a small oasis of calm, where people sit around discussing the days events, catching up with the papers, or simply whiling away a few hours, not doing much at all.
The surrounding area around Placa George Orwell is a little on the 'ghetto' side but on the numerous occasions I have been there I have never felt threatened, or uneasy.
Serves good, cheap food as well.
Carrer d'Arai (Placa George Orwell)
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