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 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
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
A spotlessly clean, reasonably priced hotel in the town centre. Nothing is too much trouble for the owners or staff.
It is well sited for exploration of northern Nicaragua by bus and, being in town, means you are not hostage to some over priced so called eco lodge or hotel miles from anywhere and can take full advantage of local restaurants and food stands.
Great little town with superb Sandinista memorial.
Frente Supermercado Matagalpa
tel 00 505 772 3140
Southeast 82nd Avenue can be a pain to navigate (many stop lights, insane traffic) but it is worth the trouble for the Asian restaurants, from Chinese to Vietnamese, that populate the strip. However, one of my favorite Asian spots is Xuyen Bakery, where you can grab a heavenly Vietnamese sandwich for two bucks and a scrumptious apple turnover for a buck.
This tiny establishment, which is easy to drive right past, is on Foster Road, between 52nd and 82nd Avenues.
ast Burnside is home to my favorite southern style restaurant, The Screen Door. I always get the NC style pulled pork with some greens and hushpuppies, but everything else is excellent. They also feature local organic salads.
For seafood, I recommend Jake's Famous Crawfish on SW Stark. Oyster lovers will enjoy the Kumamoto Oysters fresh from Netarts Bay. The crawfish boil features creatures caught in Lake Billy Chinook, south of Portland on the Warm Springs Reservation. Anything with Dungeness crab is going to be tasty and the fresh fish is mouthwatering. The prices are moderate here.
On SW Stark401 SW 12th Ave.
Portland, Oregon 97205
1-888-344-6861 toll free
It's a stylish cafe/bar/cake shop in the centre of Bologna and at around 6pm they put out a mouth-wateringly delicious free buffet. It starts with tempting canapes, and after a bit they bring out warm things. The drinks are not cheap (it was 6 euro for a glass of wine) but as you can eat all you want for the price it is brilliant. It is also fascinating watching the bar staff prepare and serve cocktails with aplomb, and watching the other customers.
Piazza Galvani (web = caffezanarini.com)
Cantina Bentivoglio in Via Mascerella is a wine bar that serves brilliant food. The pork in balsamic vinegar sauce is meltingly tender, and the beef in red wine on polenta - so delicious. I finished off with lemon sorbet with "wodka" (the English translations in the back of the menu provide a few laughs). Plan to eat at 9 or 9.30 and you get to listen to live jazz - makes for a great evening!
Via Mascarella (round the back of the Palazzo Bentivoglio)- look up "Cantina Bentivoglio" on the net for more details
Italian chain that allows you to see what dishes are being prepared before you choose food. Always full of locals rather than tourists. Great opportunity to get a hang of Italian food habits. Padua Brek is slightly better if you're travelling.
Main square outside opera amphitheatre
Lovely little place, located between Kaeo and Mangonui. Run by Lyndsey and football fanatic Stefano, on their fifth-generation Northland family farm. Dorms, singles and doubles with a warm homely feel.
After a trek over the farm to historic Kauri dams where you can bathe in natural rockpools or a day at the beach in beautiful and remote Doubtless Bay, treat yourself to one of Stefano's legendary homemade pizzas - yum yum.
A cut above any other hostel I've ever stayed in - a real gem.
Kahoe Farms Hostel, RD 2 Kaeo, New Zealand. Tel: (09) 4051 804
A great restaurant just off the beaten tourist track. It's hard to pick a winner where there are so many places to choose from. Booking recommended, open every day. Hotel too.
15 Place Saint Jacques, 76200, Dieppe
Telephone +33 02 32 14 61 10
A picturesque medieval walled town of white houses and narrow cobbled streets where the famous chestnut festival is held at the begining of November.
The streets are lined with stalls selling genuine Portuguese handcrafts, artists demonstrating their traditional skills, various street artists and folk music.
Join in the fun with a glass of local wine and of course chestnuts and delicious chestnut cakes.
Consistently excellent Nepalese restaurant. In an unfashionable part of Manchester, but better than the majority of those in the famous 'Curry Mile' in Rusholme and those in nearby Didsbury.
Good vegetarian selection.
45 Palatine Road, Northenden, Manchester, M22 4FY
Wine buffs with a penchant for South Africa will need little introduction to Saxenberg, and this highly rated vineyard offers tastings and slightly reduced prices on its excellent wines. But the main reason for visiting is its excellent restaurant, the Guinea Fowl. Seriously impressive cooking is coupled with not-too-formal service. Three of us had 'the works' for a birthday lunch and somehow the bill came to less than 1,000 rand. In the summer it is hard to beat lunch on the terrace, with hazy views of the back of Table Mountain. It's also one of the closest vineyards to Cape Town and only 15 minutes by car to the main airport.
Its a emporium of everything ladies love. From unusual lingerie and nick nacks, to the most divine home made cup cakes ever. We had a decadent afternoon tea served in the cafe which was absolutely five-star.
15 William Street, at the West End. Lots of lovely speciality shop in the street too
In the rural loveliness of the Shotley Peninsula is a marvellous find - the Queens Head. A delightful local with gorgeous views and fantastic, locally sourced gastro pub fare. The best wild mushroom risotto I've tasted outiside Italy, delectable fish pie and a Sunday lunch at criminally cheap prices. An hour and 45 minutes from London, with beautiful walks/bird watching or just gazing at the landscape this is an undiscovered gem.
Queens Head, Erwarton, Ipswich Suffolk, IP9 1LN 01473 787550
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