A pub overlooking Peckham Rye. It's an old-style bar which has been given a bit of a makeover. However, they've got it just right in not changing too much. It's spacious enough with solid wooden tables at dining hight and a fire in winter.
The main bar is now non-smoking but there's a space out back for the chokers and in summer they open a huge beer garden.
Best of all is the food. Great varied menu featuring mezes, Thai/Chinese food, burgers, salads and roasts.
There's also a decent range of wines.
It's not that cheap but it's worth it for a treat or just to get a seat.
Rye Lane, Peckham, South London.
Five Minutes walk up from Peckham Rye Train station.
The writer Schiller is a local celebrity and this restaurant and beer garden commemorates him in an attractive way by serving good quality food and drink at reasonable prices.
The tables outside are crowded from about seven o'clock on, but there seems always to be room, and the atmosphere is welcoming and cheerful.
Schillerplatz, Loschwitz; about 15 mins out of the city centre, on Tram 6 or 12 from Postplatz (Dresden), or bus 85.
Dresden has the largest fleet of paddle steamers in the world. They are moored on the Elbe below the Old City, and offer cruises lasting from an hour, down to the Blue Wonder bridge at Loschwitz and back, or to Meissen, to a week (to Magdeburg, among other places).
Food and drink are served (at very reasonable prices), and some trips are feature Dixieland jazz bands.
Dresden quayside, below the Altstadt (old city centre).
Fares range from around £10 (for the hour trip) upwards.
Tickets bookable in advance from the box office on the quay.
This Cuban bar & restaurant promises the best Mojito in London - my boyfriend says they're ALMOST as good as his own, which is a great recommendation!
The food is satisfying and good value - great tapas including smoky patatas bravas and gorgeous melting sweetcorn fritters. Perfect to share. Mains such as steak won't break the bank, and are delivered to the table quickly even on a Friday night.
The cocktails are no more expensive than other bars but the atmosphere is much more laid-back.
This is not a "see and be seen" bar, more a place you can relax and have fun with friends, lose some inhibitions and cackle wholeheartedly while the attentive staff look after you.
Kensington Court, off High Street Kensington
020 7938 4147
Nearest Tube : High Street Kensignton
A great initiative to train young people up as chefs, waiters and bakers.
The restaurant serves French-accented Indochine cuisine in a lovely garden courtyard.
Seemed popular with diplomats when we were there.
Food is excellent and we felt very very full when we left, but very virtuous as we had helped people just by eating!
They also have a cafe and bakery called Baguette et Chocolat
www.hoasuaschool.com/index.php228a Ha Hoi (it is down a couple of side streets so you may need to look carefully for the signposts - or bring a map).
Tel: 4 942 4448
Baguette et Chocolat:
11 Pho Cha Ca
Tel: 04 923 1500
A great tapas bar/store on the edge of Elvira (so it is convenient for late nights). A deli by day, you can sample local wines by the glass, each with free tapas- carefully made by the young team.
Order a tabla mixta and you won't need to eat any more, all night! If you want foodie souvenirs they also sell a wide range of local specialities, fresh and dried as well as wines and liqueurs. It is a surprisingly buzzy and friendly place and very popular with locals.
Calle Elvira 150
Tel: 958 270 245
I like everything about Tavi - the town itself is beautiful with pretty streets, an enormous park which the children love and a river running through it.
There is a lovely indoor market selling everything from homemade pencils to olives but the real draw for us is the small, but perfectly formed, farmers' market which is held in front of the town hall on Saturdays.
I bought the most delicious bag of home-grown organic salad from one of the stalls (stall owner was also the grower) which we had for lunch with homemade bread and tangy sheep's milk cheese also from the market.
There is a wonderful cheese shop around the corner for a larger range of cheeses too.
And the man on the bread stall is gorgeous.
Hidden away from the seagulls and sound lies a little courtyard where virginia creeper meet sparrows and butterflies - Libra Court, the cheeky jewel on Sidmouth's crown.
If you fancy a wander around artist studios, a nibble on chunky farmhouse bread, or just to sit and watch the buzz do its buzzing, hop off the seafront, go straight on down the highstreet, take a right, then nip left.
Life has a rather colourful palette in Libra Court.
Libra Court, Fore Street, Sidmouth, Devon
A lovely inn/hotel nestled in the above hamlet, a few hundred yards from the edge of Dartmoor proper. The food is exquisite, service friendly and fantastic, with a beautifully tranquil beer garden to soothe those aching legs after a hike on the moor.
I got up early one morning in April and walked through the woods below the hotel which were stunning in the light of early dawn. And sitting atop Hay Tor at 7am is simply breathtaking.
Vierhuizen: miles of cycle paths radiating from a comfortable camp site, and six small towns in range.
See bird hides, eat seafood, view art galleries, a tea factory, ex-pirates' houses, windmills, old churches, wild flowers, calm canals and a national park island, Schiermonnikoog, where no cars are welcome and the North Sea beaches stretch for miles. The best food in Holland at campsite Herberg.
Bert Jan and Saskia Harens
9975 VR Vierhuizen
De Marne, Netherlands.
Groningen is the nearest railhead.
This beach is not quite as famous as Croyd but very close to it. It's a fantastic beach for longboarding, has a hire shop on the beach, a great little cafe for lunch snacks which is open even in the depths of winter and a cool cafe bar for a well deserved drink after the surf.
Also the hotel at the top of the hill is beautiful and well worth a stop over.
A relaxed and friendly bistro run by a husband and wife team.
The food is tasty, coastal fair and the ambience is delightful. Additional plus is there is only one sitting making it ideal for an evening meal with family and friends.
A perfect place to spend the day. Enjoy eggs and chips or proper tea at one of the three beach cafes, walk up along the cliffs towards Seaton and beyond.
Take a boat trip, go mackerel fishing (on a mackerel pleasure trip as the sign used to have it) or buy fresh fish down on the beach. Get drowsy and happy in the cliff top garden of the Anchor Inn.
Go second hand book shopping in a hidden garage book shop (look for the sign on the pavement near the top of Fore Street), stock up on surf gear at Jimmy Green's or pick up some well-priced art at the Steam Gallery.
In the summer there's a regatta, but I've always preferred it a little out of high season, when you can enjoy the peace that fills this little town.
Jimmy Green's Surf 'n' Sail, Lower Fore Street, Beer, EX12 3JH
Tel: 01297 625125
Anchor Inn, Beer, Devon, EX12 3ET
Tel: 01297 20386
Steam Gallery At Beer, Fore St, Beer, Devon, EX12 3JH
Tel: 01297 625144
Friendly and comfortable Scottish family-run hotel. Very relaxing for a weekend away.
On the doorstep of The Isle of Arran, great golf courses and other attractions.
Very nice restaurant and bar, and the rooms were very clean and comfortable too.
31 Ardrossan Road, Seamill, Ayrshire, KA239NA
West Kilbride Station
This is just a very special place - a beautifully and tastefully restored manor house in extensive gardens.
It is delightfully quiet and restful with lovely bedrooms. Meals are served in a splendid beamed dining room. Excellent ingredients simply prepared (including yummy home-made jam and cake at breakfast).
Just lovely and near the splendid northern coast.
Troezel Vras, 22610 Kerbors, Brittany.
Perfectly understated and calmly organised, The Samling remains intimate even on its busiest days. Where larger luxury hotels are loudly decked with people, The Samling seems to swallow its guests into every nook and cranny of a carefully managed estate.
Once in its grasp, this estate holds you close and loses you to subtly changing views and timeless simplicity. There you can sit frozen, forgetting what it was drove you through The Samling's gates until eventually you stir and shift towards the dining room and where the best food is served by the best people.
The hotel also has some tenuous link to Wordsworth but frankly, who cares?
Just off the road to Waterhead and Ambleside.
Viet Grill offers a very special menu packed with dishes from the streets of Hanoi to the newest fusion-inspired dishes found only at the country's top restaurants.
Providing the very best of Vietnam's modern cooking, Viet Grill is dedicated to using only the freshest herbs and ingredients. Their unique grill allows them to offer an even wider selection of exquisite dishes.
The wine list available at Viet Grill, and sister restaurant, Cay Tre, is constantly evolving. Every bottle has been hand picked by wine critic Malcolm Gluck, expertly selected to pair with the menu's delicate, fragrant flavours. Specific matches are recommended and, with 10 wines now available by the glass, you can sample each dish with a wine that's been chosen to really make it sing.
58 Kingsland Road
London E2 8DP
Tel: 020 7739 6686
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