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.
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.
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.
A simple Southern soul sood restaurant on the edge of Centre City Charlotte, this place as been bringing generations of diners in for its favourites such as Skillet Fried Chicken, Collard Greens and Mac & Cheese.
One of the first integrated restaurants in the South, this place still packs them in for breakfast, lunch and dinner.
You could be sitting next to a construction worker, or the CEO of Bank of America, but everyone gets the same service, and some very true atmosphere.
Come early for lunch during the week or after church.
Don't miss the banana pudding.
914 S Clarkson Street
Charlotte, North Carolina
Two Blocks South of Bank of America Stadium off Morehead Street
Tel: 1-704 375 8855
After an energy-sapping morning soaking up the rays on Valdevaqueros beach - one of the best along the Costa de la Luz - try lunching at the minute hotel perched on the dunes behind a surf school and shop. Enjoy the typically Tarifan hippy-chic vibe, sitting at oversized wooden tables under generous shady bamboo cover and their delicious array of hearty, green salads and fresh fruit juices make a welcome break after a night of tapas indulgence.
Great views from the hotel, ask beforehand, and a quiet but excellent museum of art with some stunning paintings. Dine in the sqare, view the fountain and leave. A pleasant stay, half day tour and move on. Take a taxi from the railway station. Do not walk or you will regret the decision.
This is a very impressive building and equals the best in Italy although the museum does charge entrance. Take a train from Rome to Florence, 2 class, stop off at Orvieto station, take the Finucola and the bus picks you up at the top and takes you to the Duomo. There is a cheapish Enoteca to the left on the corner as you stand facing the Duomo. Orvieto is a very pleasnt place but touristy. Worth a visit as access is so easy. It is a day trip with evening meal if you wish.
This B&B is charmimg and on the web (phone as they speak English) but out of town where it is quieter. The breakfast is excellent and drinks during the day are very cheap. The rooms are remarkably good and there is a small pool. A great relaxation venue.
You could walk up the hill (an hour is fair and it is pleasant in the evening) but take a taxi down. Dine, sightsee and come back down for a quiet sleep. There are no taxis around for some reason so do not get stranded in town at night.
The restaurants are OK but not that impressive if you eat a great deal in Italy. This is a very pleasant but tourist saturated town made famous by a novel and romanticism. There is no fountain, OK!
Ring from the train as they will book a taxi (10 Euros). You cannot walk from the station to Cortona or the B&B.
A new trendy Edinburgh restaurant in the Bruntsfield area.
They do some great traditional Scottish food and have been awarded an AA rosette for food and service quality.
69 Bruntsfield Place, Edinburgh EH10 4HH
Tel : 0131 622 8163
If you're downtown in the Brickell area, check out Provence Grill. It is hard to find good food in Brickell, but this is an exception. Lunch was about $35 per person. Service was great.
After a few hours strolling around Lucca taking in the sights, nothing beats some proper gelati.
The best place is Caffe di Simo in Via Filungo, undoubtedly the best gelati I've ever had, in wonderful fin-de-siècle ambience and with excellent coffee too.
Pistachio was my favourite flavour.
Via Fillungo 58, Lucca
Telephone: 0583 496234
Vivaro is a new bar on the main Amalfi coast road as it passes through Praiano.
It opened at the beginning of June 2007 and specialises in Italian wines.
It is contemporary rather than traditional in design, more like a bar in Milan or Florence in looks but much friendlier.
The English-speaking owner Gennaro is very welcoming and enthusiastic in sharing his knowledge of regional wines, of which he has many examples.
The food is simple (panini, torte etc) but tasty. We popped in for one drink and ended up staying the whole evening and going back the next evening as well. We got talking to one of the regular customers, Sylvia, who, it turned out, had once worked in Ipswich. It is indeed a small world.
Via Capriglione, Praiano.
No train station.
Sita buses pass through Praiano.
A fabulous restaurant, which - despite its name - serves superb modern Spanish food.
Don't go during the Feria (roughly mid August), as you will be whizzed through because the staff want to join the festivities. At all other times the service is flawless and the food imaginative and well executed. Try the prawns in kataffi pastry with lettuce soup.
El Porton is the bullfighters' favourite tapas bar and an example of traditional Andalucian food, very macho but lovely staff. Try the prawns sizzling in garlic.
Tragabuches serves modern, high quality food with panache in a stylish setting. Expensive for Andalucia but worth it.
El Porton: Calle Pedro Romero 7
Tragabuches:Calle Jose Aparicio 1
Granada, Cordoba, Sevilla? Of course. But try Almeria, a city with friendly people, wide avenues, an impressive alcazaba, a fortified cathedral and a long beach.
And, if you don't know where to stay or eat, look no further than the Plaza de las Flores, a Torreluz hegemony. In this tiny square (no flowers I'm afraid) Torreluz gives its name to a four-star hotel, a two-star hotel (which we thought very good value for money, but try and get a room overlooking the square), a separate block of apartments, an upmarket restaurant, a very acceptable modern cafeteria where guests of the two-star hotel take their breakfasts (which were very good) and, best of all, a traditional bodega full of atmosphere and people, who spilled out onto the square, serving good value and good quality dishes. All you want in one square right in the centre of town.
Plaza de las Torres, near Puerta de Purchena, the main square, Almeria. Torreluz enterprises etc
On a recent trip to Thailand, I finally made my way north and on a visit to the night bazaar in Chiang Mai, I found a good English pub - the originally named Red Lion.
They had a great range of beers (Strongbow and Blackthorn Cider) and I was quite surprised that they had draught Kilkenny and Guinness. Despite that, I went for the local brew - Singha.
They had a big screen showing the Premiership and my team was on, so I was well happy. I love Thai food but after a week in Thailand I was ready for some old-fashioned English stodge. They had steaks, and the likes, but I tried the chicken pie and chips and I was not disappointed.
The staff were very friendly and the service was good. Well worth a visit.
A bit shabby on the outside, but go through to the non-smoking restaurant at the back.
Modern, interesting and tasteful decor, the menu not the largest but has a good choice and lovely vegetarian dishes. The best food we have eaten anywhere in the last year, great service and cool music. Excellent wine and all very cheap.
Our meal for two, two courses each, with one large wine and one soft drink came to £24.
ul. Jozefa 14
The Jewish quarter
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