On January the 15th, or the nearest full moon on the lunar calendar. Thousands of people take a stroll up Hwawangsan and burn some very flammable reeds.
I'm not too sure why they do this, may be some, thing ridiculous to do with spirits. You could probably Google it if you really want to know. I'm happier in ignorance.
It's worth seeing, young and old flock from south Korea to do so.
The surrounding town is about as interesting as a mute standup, but it has a wonderful BBQ restaurant at the bottom of the mountain, owned by a Korean gent who spent many years in Boston and will provide free alcohol at the chance to brush up on his English.
Get a bus from Daegu to Changnyeong, takes about 45 mins. I think the bus is from Daegu's west terminal, can't really remember.
A taxi would cost around 45000 won.
Visit english.visitkorea.or.kr/enu/TR/TR_EN_5_1_3_1_1.jsp for bus timetables
Another 'Old Town' favourite; Dan and Louis' is where to go when you want to try some local seafood in Portland.
Do not be fooled by the name - D&L's is a family-friendly restaurant with a diverse menu that features some of the freshest local ingredients. The clam chowder is classic and the Cioppino is a particular favourite, but if you are an oyster afficianado, you cannot miss out on the dozen varieties of oysters offered here.
The decor is classic Pacific Northwest fish house: every inch of wall space is covered with marine-related memorabilia, much of it collected over the restaurant's 100 year history.
For adults, there is a separate bar in back and make sure you ask about 'the hole' - a glass-covered look into almost bottomless pit - right below the bar.
208 SW Ankeny St, Portland, OR
The Portland Saturday Market is a gregarious mix of public fair, marketplace and food festival.
Located in the heart of 'old town' Portland, right on the downtown 'Max' lightrail, the market is a literal maze of hand-crafted and locally made wares, artwork, jewellery, clothing and more. Live music from diverse local bands and a food court that offers a taste of just about everywhere - American, Thai, Spanish, Greek - including local brews.
Street performers - mimes, living 'statues,' jugglers and magicians stroll the market, but they are not the only entertainment - just watching the diversity of the crowd is one of the major attractions of the market.
Located right off of Portland's Waterfront Park, visiting the Saturday Market is one of the best ways to see Portlanders in their natural element - and not worry about blending in.
Since driving and parking downtown is something of a nightmare, the best way to get around to and from the market will be on Portland's 'Max' lightrail train - it runs from Portland Airport through downtown and will only set you back about $5 for a day pass. The downtown area itself is part of Portland's 'fareless' square, so if you are only riding for a brief distance - its all free.
The market can be used as a jumping off point to explore more of downtown since it is central to the Waterfront and Chinatown - and just a short train ride to Pioneer Courthouse Square.
The Laurelthirst Pub is just that - a favorite of the locals for food, drink and great music - though just enough off the beaten track to be missed by the tourist crowd - and that is a shame.
The food, while hardly high-end cuisine, is still quite good and reasonably priced; local brews and wines are featured as well as cocktails - but what sets the Laurelthirst apart and makes it so popular is the music.
Blues, jango, rockabilly, jazz - the Laurelthirst has been serving up diversity and eccentricity for the past 20 years with local favorites like the Kung Pao Chickens, Jackstraw and the Tree Frogs, among many others.
The Laurelthirst is small and generally quite cramped on a nightly basis - but do not let this deter you. If you want an 'authentic' Portland experience - from the locals point of view - this is where to begin.
The best part? No cover charges - the music is free.
2958 NE Glisan, Portland, OR (corner of 30th and Glisan)
The best bar/nightclub in town! Yes, it is a little far from the centre, but it isn't called the Grail for nothing; top tunes, champagne, light-up dancefloor, unusually high amounts of decent seating, free clockroom and the all-important stripper poles make it the perfect place to party hard apres-ski style!
Surprisingly good vegetarian falafel place on Las Ramblas. Grab a falafel, fill it to the hilt with one or more of the supplied toppings, and watch the world go by on a sunny day.
On a street corner to the right (when walking down Las Ramblas from Plaça de Catalunya), just before the main entrance to Mercat de la Boqueria.
Quite simply, this is an extraordinary place housed inside a medieval tower started by a Californian multimedia artist who's lived for more than 20 years in Europe and his Polish chef who spent five years in London learning to make a wide variety of exotic dishes and his own inventive masterpieces. Together they offer the best burritos in the city, authentic tasting Thai soups, Tikka Masala, Tajin Couscous and delicious fusion dishes such as salmon with sausage and parmesan chicken. They also play global music that is rarely heard anywhere else.
ul. Krainskiego 14
tel: +48 664 982 983
I have several tips for 'Brevs'! We stayed in Chalet Chardon which I highly recommend - the atmosphere is really friendly, everyone eats together and the bar underneath (The Underground) makes for much late night chalet bonding ... for better or worse! There's an amazing bit of off piste at the top of Grand Huit chairlift - trek up the steep slope opposite and over the other side is pristine powdery magic. And if that isn't enough at the bottom of the piste leading into Les Breviere there's an amazing mulled wine stall - a few euros gets you a mug full and a fast track to après ski table dancing! Oh and one last thing - if you are like me and not the best at the coordination thing, bum pads come in handy!
Chalet chardon - www.chaletchardons.com/skiing-resort.html
The Underground bar is below Chardon.
Mulled wine - from outside L'Armailly restaurant.
Bum pads - available in most good ski shops such as Snow and Rock.
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)
I have never in my life had such a great view eating dinner like I had at this restaurant, located on the 65th floor of the State tower on Silom Rd. Just the view is worth the trip to this restaurant. The service was poor for such a high end place, not rude, but just not attentive given the fame that this restaurant has gathered in the world since it's opening. The food has everything you could think of, fresh seafood, great steaks, and a dessert table to die for.
A live band with a soul singer was a pleasant touch as we ate and afterwards she came down and introduced herself and spoke to us for a couple of minutes. Afterwards stick around and have drinks at the ultra cool bar, drinks run from 200 bahts (about $5 US dollars) to 20,000 bahts about $500 US dollars for Cristal Champagne. If it wasn't for the poor table serivce this place would get a 10 out of 10 but I'll give it nine out of 10.
Address: 1055/111 State Tower Bangkok, Silom Road
hone: (02) 6249555
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
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