Great veggie cafe: relaxed atmosphere and child friendly, good value and tasty menu choices. The best of British Columbia's wholefood/veggie cooking is here. Particularly loved the yam dip...
2301 Main Street
This is the perfect place to stop off on the way home after a night out. It's open all night, and at 6am on a Sunday morning it was rammed with people enjoying churros con chocolate (cups of hot chocolate with fried doughnut-like strips). Mmm … delicious.
Plaza San Gines (nearest metro station is Sol)
Stunningly beautiful decor and fabulous music. Come and have just the one drink, unless you're loaded, and take in this Parisian beauty. And buy a cd on the way out. La Suite is highly recommended.
239 rue St-Honore
Telephone: (00 33 1) 4244 5000
Famous for the monastery built by Philip II, a building as austere and powerful as its patron, San Lorenzo offers plenty to the visitor. The monastery tour is essential; you'll see a vast basilica with some fine art (the Cellini Crucifixion in particular), the 'panteon' where most of Spanish royalty lies rotting away, King Philip's bedroom overlooking the high altar, and a fine art collection.
After all this, a bit of relaxation is needed. Try Cafetín Croché for posh cocktails in Art Nouveau environment, or Café Babel for something more arty and bohemian.
Train from Atocha or Chamartín stations to El Escorial, then station bus to monastery. Buses 661 or 664 from the Moncloa bus station.
Lagkegehuset is a fantastic bakery in Christianshavn, 10 minutes walk from the centre. This part of town is really much nicer that the touristy centre, so if you want a feel of the real Copenhagen, go there.
The breads-cakes are extremely good and they use mainly organic ingredients. The stone-oven-baked ciabatta is soft, even after five days. The staff are friendly and they serve coffee which you can drink seated on bar-stools facing the canal through the big, opening windows.
Torvegade 45, Copenhagen; tel +45 3257 3607;
www.lagkagehuset.dk/ (only in Danish)
An old theatre converted to a bohemian style cafe, this South-Peninsula haunt is well-known to locals. The atmosphere is lively, friendly and irreverent, but the real treat is the food. Sumptuous cooked breakfasts, delicious baked breads and pastries, as well as fresh Cape seafoods from the harbour across the road and beyond.
Main Road, Kalk Bay Phone: +27 (21) 788-6396
For coffee lovers out there, it doesn't get any better than Vida for fabulous real espresso and lovely Portuguese pastries. The Kloof Street location is frequented by model types - a bit pretentious but good for people watching.
Local chain - Kloof Street, city bowl, Waterfront.
It is a very cool cafe. People can have a drink there and listen to music or poetry. There is also a huge outside terrace with a stage where concerts take place. It's very cosy and the staff are nice.
Hard to believe, but the latest craze in Brazil is coffee bars, due to the fact that until the mid-90s, all the good stuff was exported leaving the dregs for the locals. Luckily, the charge has been led by discerning locals rather than Starbucks.
Santo Grão is actually run by a Kiwi who married into a traditional producer's family but with the zeal of the newly converted he has opened a large café which organises tastings and also sells bulk coffee - try the coffees from Minas which are smoother than traditional Paulista ones, notably Cerrado Mineiro, but make sure they grind it properly.
Oscar Freire, 413
Old style taverna in the once run down but newly trendy area of Exarchia. Don't expect sophistication, this is simple traditional Greek food chosen by the time-honoured method of pointing at it behind the counter.
Do expect however, a complete cross section of Greek society - from business men in suits to students to society kids from nearby Kolonaki - wonderful food, and a sense of the "real" Athens. A word of warning though, make sure you visit the toilet before you go as they too are of an authentic Greek nature.
Expect to pay no more than 10 euro a head for salad, main course and a beer.
Nearest metro: Panepistimio
Situated in a peaceful, quite courtyard very close to Divan Yolu, Yerebatan Sarayi and Aya Sofya this is a perfect place to stop for lunch or a drink.
The medresseh itself houses workshops and exhibition rooms highlighting traditional Turkish crafts such as calligraphy, ceramics, jewellery and so on which you can look round either before or after your meal.
The food was well prepared and very tasty and our kick-boxing, friendly and attentive waiter was great!
The menu reflects more of a cafe than a restaurant feel with dishes such as lamb meatballs served with chilli and spaghetti and scrambled eggs with tomatoes and chilli
Caferiye Sokak., Sogukkuyu Cikmazi No 1
Quite easy to miss but is signposted from Caferiye Sokak
Excellent cafe near Sylvia Hotel. Take a walk around Stanley Park early morning and then catch breakfast in Hilary's. The most excellent bagel breakfasts to start the day with.
1184 Denman St (near Sylvia Hotel);
As its name suggests, this cafe specialises mainly in Belgian beers, but it also has a respectable number of Dutch ones for you to sample as well. If you can't find something you fancy in its list of 10 draught beers and nearly 200 bottled ones you probably don't like beer. Good food with imaginative vegetarian options in the dagschotel (daily menu). A great place to relax.
Oudegracht 196.Telephone 030 231 2666
Courage is a little cafe just up the road from the world famous Circus Hostel. It's cramped and dark with a fantastic atmosphere and even better beer. The menu is ridiculously low budget, firm favourites of mine are the steak with roast vegetables and ice und heiss - ice cream with hot summer berries. A real find.
Just off Rose Luxemborg Platz
A square in Prenzlauer Berg district just north of the perhaps better known Kollwitzplatz. The square is dotted with bars and cafes which continue off along Raumer-, Lychener-, and Dunckerstraße (where I live as it happens). It's a great summer hang out. Plus there's a youth hostel on the North side of the square.
Nearest stations are Schoenhauser Allee and Prenzlauer Alle (both S-Bahn), and Eberswalder Straße (U-Bahn)
Coffee served in massive bowls, cakes the size of your head and all in a cosy little bar hidden in a leafy courtyard in a very pretty part of the town. I was only in Berlin for five days but made time every day for a trip to this cafe.
Sophienstr. 21 10178 Berlin (www.barcomis.de)
Most of the museums in Copenhagen are closed on Mondays - go to Roskilde. Visit the medieval cathedral with its royal tombs and wonderful ironwork, then walk down the hill from its west end to the fascinating viking ship museum. It's a group of skeletal wrecks, reassembled after being brought up from where they were sunk to block access, with good interpretive displays, modern full-size rebuilds done by traditional (take a tree trunk and an axe) methods, and, in summer, the chance to take an oar on a short trip out in one of the replicas.
Lots of hands-on activities for children too. It's on the water's edge, with a cafe, and there are more conventional boat trips for those who never fancied being a viking crew member.
Half an hour by train from Copenhagen. There are lots of trains as it is within the local transport net: can use the zone 10 punch strips.
A cafe that is cuddly and hip at the same time. Stellar coffee, ground on the premises, plus a huge variety of fantastic pastries and cakes and in unforced, friendly atmosphere. Ground coffee can be bought to take away too.
Bergmanstrasse, Kreuzberg. U-Bahn: Gneisenaustr
A complex of cultural museums/institutions and more, very close to the sprawling shopping street Mariahilferstr. Some nice bars and bookshops and interesting little knick-knack places in this popular place. Check out the old computer-games store there, nostalgia ahoy!
Museumsquartier, Underground same name
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