A free weekday only tour of a local brewery which includes lots of free samples at the end. Very popular so you need to book weeks in advance!
For tour reservations call:
If you're looking for a super cheap but clean place which has little character but is next to the train station in Delhi then this budget chain should do. It's a sort of an Indian Travelodge but concentrates on being cheap as far as I can see. The Metro is within a minutes walk as is the train station and if you can live with the small windows and the depressing view then it's just fine. I paid about £14 a night for a double bed on the fourth floor.
Very picturesque village at the confluence of two rivers. We stayed at an excellent good value four star B&B called Mairlys. We googled them from friends who stayed five weeks ago. Breakfast wassuperb. Spent Saturday climbing Snowdon via the Miners track. Leave your car at Penygwryd and walk to the YHA where the walk starts.
Five miles through fabulous terrain to the summit - icy, cold and clear. we could even see the Wicklow hills in Ireland, Dined that night at Bryn Tyrch Inn at Capel Curig where there was a male choir in residence. Great food and really good atmosphere. A mere two hours from Manchester but what a fabulous weekend.
16 Miles south of Conwy.
Three pubs in village.
Fabulous cafe and cake shop with all the usual Hungarian gooey cakes. Plus prices are half those of the well know cake shops. Always full with locals.
Szent Istvan Korut
(Between Vigszinhaz Theatre and Margit Island)
This is the house where Mozart spent his childhood. I really like it since I have read a lot about Mozart while at school. This is your chance to visit his old house which is now also a museum - and to brush up on your Mozart knowledge.
I've used Excelsior twice in the past and I'm very happy. I thought they were a tad steep but for about $700 in summer 2006, I got a two piece woollen suit, seven all cotton shirts, and five pairs of pants. The work was excellent, the shirts are holding up very well, and everyone loves the suit.
For what it's worth, I wanted a dark pinstriped suit, and they had lots of material to offer. B
115/1 Siamheritage opposite the Le Meridien. I guess they are the first tailor shop on the area and its always best to get suits at business districts.
I have done over 4000 km in Indian trains over the last six weeks. I have not had one single problem with the food bought from the official IRCTC stands or guys going around. Look out for people with uniform shirts.
Some of the food was actually excellent
The best discount card - don't go to Iceland without one. Voyager Card saves you up to 20% off many restaurants, bars, shops and hotels in the centre of Reykjavik. It pays for itself in a few hours or even a few minutes if you use it to book one of the partner hotels.
A great concept: fast soup!
Join the queue and choose from four soups of the day and ask for all the trimmings (cheese, chicken meatballs, herbs) and you get two rolls and an apple on your tray too.
Pull up a stool and warm yourself up - it's cheap too, despite the weak exchange rate.
We took one look at the restaurant prices in central Masaya and were heading back to the hotel when we found Mariskeria, a permanent kiosk in the Parque octobre 17. Their ceviche was A1 and the prawns a plancha were the best we'd eaten since being in Spain in the 70s. The proprietor let us try a concha negra for free as we'd never eaten it before... more like a clam than an oyster, but we'll include them on our menu next time we visit Masaya.
Parque de octobre 17
Boboi Beach are absolutely the best huts on Kartong beach, on the south coast of Gambia. The breakfast (including fresh papaya and natural peanut butter) is served on a long table overlooking the Atlantic Ocean, just from the right angle and in a small elevation. The sound of the waves crashing next to your hut at night is just magic...
The place is rustic and basic, far from the ugly resorts on the north and close to the interesting Kartong village. To complete an amazing stay, it also has tree-huts, where you can jump in for a siesta, and a TV room where no one of the locals and visitors alike miss the premiership.
A great oasis in the busy and fascinating medina, roof terrace with views over Bou Inania, great selection of snacks, meals, teas and coffees, cakes, and excellent lamb patties etc. Cheerful young local staff and an enthusiastic English patron. Restored courtyard house up a tiny alley by the waterclock, close to Bab Bou Jeloud Gate. Given the lack of eating places to occupy the gap between very cheap traditional cafes, and upmarket gourmet restaurants, this is a very welcome place any time of day. But the best thing is that the owner is determined to run a rare local cultural programme of arts and music with something on several evenings a week. And then there are the camel burgers, fresh from the camel butcher over the street...
off Tala Kebira under the water clock opposite the Bou Inania Medersa(a must visit)
I would like to share my best tips for train journeys for people who don't plan ahead. These were shaped from my travel experience riding seat-less in China with three friends as we criss-crossed our way down through the country using the busy train network. We travelled on a shoestring budget, and with no fixed agenda we often arrived at stations with only a loose idea of where we were heading. However, demand for seats and beds on these trains is huge and when there are literally millions of citizens using the network at anyone time, these spaces are booked days in advance... Surprisingly, my tip isn't to plan ahead, be sensible and book in advance - but top tips for surviving and enjoying an overnight train journey with no seat or bed to speak off. Following these tips allows you to get closer to the fascinating Chinese character and fully involve yourself to feel like a true and accepted local which is lost in 1st and 2nd class travel.
My first tip is to play the Chinese at their own game in order to get the best floor positions for your overnight journey. Your competing 3rd class companions will be travelling with half their kitchen larders strapped to their backs, which can include two or three 'cash and carry' style bags of rice or even sacks of chicken feet! So i would advise teaming up with a friend or fellow westerner, which combined with your likely height advantage and 20kg backpacks, you'll find yourselves with some kind of purchase on the crowds of surging travellers to get to your carriage first.
The second tip is on boarding and locating your floor space. With competition fierce, and the odds stacking against you, you will need to prepare for your mini sprint. Try and establish from platform gates, which end of the train your carriage is in; you don't want to find your self running in the opposite direction as you are then likely to be stood beside the toilet for the next 15 to 20 hours. So, once at the carriage doors, I would recommend boarding at the same time as your friend, guarding yourselves from the beating crowds to give you the opportunity to seek the best position, ideally not near the toilet or wash basin, but next to a guards door, which is likely to leave you some good leg room and uninterrupted sleep from people getting on and off through the night.
The third and final tip is spread yourself out, as selfish as it might sound, conceding early on or showing weakness will leave you sharing your pillow another guy who likes to chain smoke and cough up loosening flem from his lungs. This early initiative also gives you the flexibility of lying down and sitting up to read throughout your journey, as fidgeting to get comfortable will become your new best friend. Once you have your little enclave, you can pick and choose who you share your space with, and observe the fascinating culture and characters on board your train as people pass through and squat to chat to the unlikely westerners slumming it on floor.
These light-hearted tips are really just great memories and a product of clashing national psyches, for which I believe brings so much colour, character and adventure to a train journey and gets you right under the skin of a nation which is quite literally on the move.
Many thanks for reading my top tips for character rich 3rd class train travel in China.
The most scenic train journey ever taken had to be Ploce on the Croatian coast, east to Sarajevo. Riding the dated German train, rolling through tunnels in the mountain side by the river, the mind wanders to the recent scars of war. A magical journey, made all the more special on arriving in Sarajevo to the sights and sounds of the East.
There’s a forgotten train ride through the middle east that no-one mentions or goes on; it lasts from 8am on Sunday to 8pm Sunday and goes through two vast countries. This train departs Istanbul and arrives in Damascus and on-route it meanders its way through the interior of Turkey bordering mountain ranges and plains and going through medieval cities such as Konya and the rarely visited town of Antep. You then you enter Syria and immediately hit the mecca that is Aleppo, with its bustling streets and many souqs and then you travel through Syria and finally end up in the oldest continually habited city on Earth, in one of the greatest cities in the middle east, Damascus… and all of this for £50.
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