Sitting in the main plaza of Trujillo as the sun goes down with a cold beer is a little piece of heaven. The ancient stone of the 16th century palaces reflects the golden light, a stork flies over the tolling bell tower, slowly the plaza fills for the hour of the passeo. The whole town is a delight, wandering through the winding streets past the palaces and churches built with the riches brought back from Peru by conquistadors such as Pizzaro together with his Inca wife, their portraits carved on the Pizzaro Palace.
Secret gardens glimpsed through closed gates, jasmine spilling over high walls. Check out tips for Caceres, Merida and Extremadura for more ideas on exploring Extremadura.
Trujillo is 40kms from Caceres and the same distance to Montanchez
Casa Luque sits behind Nerja's church in a typically Spanish square just a minute's stroll from Balcón de Europa.
This gourmet Andalusian restaurant, with great contemporary flair, is a second generation family-run business.
The good news is that everything on the menu can be ordered as a tapa. Current dishes include chicken liver pâté with pacharán sauce, ham and wild mushroom croquettes, pork fillet with rioja wine caramel and duck magret with honey and kalamansi sauce. Wonderful wines a- plenty too.
Plaza Cavana 2
+ 34 952 521 004
For non-beach orientated things to do, the size and decoration of the Kom el-Shuqafa catacombs will remind you of a Spielberg film.
As for food, the Kadora (pronounced A-Dora) and the fish market offer some of the best seafood in Egypt.
A pleasant way to end a day's exploring is to take a calèch ride from near the Cecil Hotel, along the Western harbour, and then retrace your route on foot for a bite to eat at the fish market.
The Sunday market is a must. Get off the Metro at Gambetta and go straight, you're there. Otherwise walk from the centre across Place de Republique down rue Gambetta and get more of the atmosphere. If you walk take a break at Le Stout for a coffee and cognac - it is the café on the corner with a bike suspended in the window. Then twenty yards later you are in the flower market and behind that the covered market. In the covered market there are plenty of treats.
A Polish stall which does the best smoked filet mignon in the world although a bit expensive at 27 euros per kilo. We call it 'baby' at home because it is so tender.
There is also a cheese stand that is good value and massive - so they always cut more than you want.
The other side of the covered is the open market. A mix of farmers' and bulk buy, but both are good value. Olives beside endives. The spice stands used to be good but they have doubled their prices recently. There is also haberdashery and second hand clothes and a fine selection of elephant-shaped underpants.
There is plenty to eat - banks of roast chicken, ribs, Chinese noodles and pies (try the cheese maroilles on a pie or traditionally dunked in coffee). All the cafés on the square are fine but I prefer those on the street on the side of the covered market as they are where all the stall holders go. In front of the church it is more trendy, very people-watching and people who have not been to bed.
There is a great family restaurant on the square but I'm not telling as they refuse to be in guidebooks. It serves a fixed menu of what is fresh and cheap. Fantastic veal liver, fish and chips (French style, no batter) and if the kidneys don't appeal there is a tender rump steak as standard. All this with a starter and a cheese plate or a dessert for 25 euros. Find it!
The market is on Sunday morning from 7am to about 2pm depending on the weather. If it isn't raining it is packed - the Lillois don't mind the cold, only the rain. France is very kid-friendly, but don't take a pushchair as all your kid will see are bums and you get stuck in pram jams.
Lots of other stuff to see in Lille: museums, medieval buildings, general Flemish architecture. A very under-rated place to visit.
or walk through the town across Republique and down rue Gambetta
The Voorhuit is a Ghent institution. A Artdeco/socialist building, it has not lost its roots.
The huge café area plays host to multiple activities from quiet union meetings to cinema and concerts. Most of the latter are free. The French and Flemish press are available.
Sit down at any of the tables and you can be left alone or join in on the conversations. Nearly everyone talks English. The bar is good and very cheap and the food is wholesome. Homemade soup and bread for 2.60 euros which is great and pasta for about 8. Mostly fair trade and not bad for veggies.
For the stay over there my favourite in an ex-convent called Geertje Henckens on Zwartezusterstraat in the centre of town. There are only two bedrooms so book. A breakfast to die for and the second day it gets better.
If it is full try Faja Lobi in Tarbotstraat, a little further from the centre but with a lovely garden and (if possible) an even better welcome from the gay couple that run the place. Both are about 60 euros for a couple.
Then take a wander. Everything is within 30mins walk but take one of the river tours if you haven't done any research. The Cathedral is a must.
For light refreshment I recommend The Pink Flamingo in Onderstraat as possibly the most kitsch bar in the world. I go at least twice a year with my wife to Ghent and we are never disappointed.
The thing about the chip shop is true - it is the best.
Specifically, I recommend the mussels at KB: I saw them hand-delivered the morning of the day I dined there. KB serves a heaping plateful for less than $10. These are the best mussels I've eaten in my life, and I take my food (too) seriously.
Trip report, photos: shallowmusings.typepad.com/travel_musings/
Here's the website with the address:
If you're walking from the town center to Hotel Liburna: it's halfway, on your right.
Family restaurant, serving wide range of Italian dishes. Great food, service and atmosphere at reasonable prices. Close to UN building and Grand Central station.
801 Second Avenue, New York, NY 10017, Tel 212 -878 - 9600, Fax 212 - 880 -9999
Nearest subway Grand Central Station
Rio de Janeiro is very famous for its bar culture. The words 'botequim' or 'boteco' designate small places with freezing beer, lots of people, bad food and very low prices. The genre of place became so strong that a new style of 'boteco' was created, it keeps the popular aura combined with a tiny sophistication. Devassa Bar in Leblon is an exemplar of the hip but cozy boteco, full of young and interesting people, Devassa has its own beer, in different versions: blond, red, black and Indian. I had the blond and found it very special. The menu is another chapter: many yummy finger foods, typical of Brazil. Go feel yourself a real carioca!
Av. General San Martin, 1241 - Leblon - Rio de Janeiro - RJ
Tel: (21) 2259-8271
Thanks indeed to the Two Hairy Bikers for their suggestion to try this fantastic restaurant. The food was gorgeous and the staff were obviously selected for their efficiency as much as their looks. We dined like kings and yet the meal came to about 100 euros, a bargain. I'd love to go back and try the steak & chips and some more wonderful Belgian beer. Try it, you will not be disappointed.
A great restaurant chain for tapas and larger raciones. They don't do just ham, as the name might suggest, but all sorts of food. Calamares, Tortilla and gambas al ajillo are excellent. Prices are very reasonable. You can eat at the counter or in the salon (waiter service is a little dearer). They have restaurants in Puerta del Sol and on the Gran Via. They also do excellent three-course menu for under 10 Euro.
La Puerta Del Sol
or La Gran Via
It is a little chip van that provides quality frites with mayonnaise. Just what is needed for a truly Belgian experience!
Vridajmarkt, near the massive socialist style building with a large window and clock.
Google map: tinyurl.com/ko8erz
Everything is to die for! And, as the owner, Arnaud Delmontel, is the winner of the best baguette challenge, he is the supplier of the Palais de l'Elysée. Here you can have the same bread as Nicolas Sarkozy!
39 rue des Martyrs
+33 1 48 78 29 33
Metro : Pigalle
Great cocktails served outdoors. The bar is located in the garden in front of the villa housing the French restaurant and action theatre.
It is located at 42 Waterloo Street (just off Bras Basah Rd, across from the arts museum).
A pub with a view, a great view across Melbourne's bay. A pub with decent food in the bistro, a TAB, a lounge bar and accommodation all within 15km of the CBD.
A pretty good local pub with one of the best outlooks in Melbourne.
Essentially a personal guide to the classic breakfast fry-up as it is served in the cafes and eateries of Liverpool/Merseyside plus some specially featured cafes from further afield. Sometimes things other than a full English will find their way into the blog - but there will be a good reason!
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