Yueba Buena Gardens are situated opposite the Museum of Modern Art. After a little culture you can while away a couple of hours in these very tranquil gardens. Our two-year-old loved the waterfalls. Make sure you go across the bridge to the children's play area. It is sunk into the ground with really imaginative playgrounds, free equipment to play with and a wonderful puppet shop.
Opposite MOMA and above the Moscone Convention Center, covering two square city blocks bounded by Mission, Folsom, Third and Fourth Streets;
A perfect lazy day out. Start off with a long picnic down by the lake, followed by a drenching in the water maze (bring spare clothes) and a run around the adventure playground. Finish off with a walk around the castle getting the kids to check for secret doors and passages. In the summer, jousting sessions are an added bonus....
Three miles from Edenbridge off the B2026 between Sevenoaks and East Grinstead in the village of Hever.
30 miles from London, exit the M25 at junctions 5 or 6 and follow the Brown tourist signs.
Trains take about 30 mins from London Victoria.
The amazing 170m tall viewing tower in Portsmouth has fantastic panoramic views over the harbour and out towards the Isle of Wight. It also has Europe's largest glass floor on its first viewing deck ,which kids and adults alike can't get enough of... so long as you've got the nerve to take the first step on it!
Located on the fab development of Gunwharf Quays with is bustling bars and restaurants with plenty of outdoor seating in the summer and great shops to keep mums quiet too!
Spinnaker Tower, Gunwharf Quays, Portsmouth, PO1
A warren of underground streets and houses hidden beneath Edinburgh's Royal Mile. Costumed guides take you around this amazing site, revealing the stories of the former residents. Very eerie and supposedly very haunted. Great for adults and older kids alike.
Mary King's Close, off the Royal Mile;
Bookings: 08702 430 160;
Classic Sichuan (and Chongqing, where hot pot is even spicier) food. Large bowl of soup/sauce in the middle of the table, perched on a gas hob/burner. Most often the metal bowl has a barrier vertically across the middle, so that a red, spicier soup is in one half, and a white, less spicy soup is in the other. Fans of the spicy half and the less spicy half can dine together, and of course you can mix and match.
Your group orders food, which is brought to you so you can decide what to put into the bubbling soup. Sliced pork and beef, vegetables, doufu, and mushrooms are all standard fare, and you can also get kidneys, liver and many other body parts for the soup. A very sociable way of eating.
Some places do a 'buffet' deal where you pay one price per person (rather than paying for the food you order), and you stroll up to the buffet table to get the food bits - good for your first hot pot, and this overcomes ordering problems. The buffet deals are pricier, but usually include beer and red wine and soft drinks.
Hot pot (huo guo) restaurants are on almost every vaguely lively street. One town we were in had seven hot pot restaurants.
More detailed guide on www.randomstuff.biz in the Eat section of Chengdu.
The best secret cafe of the island is on Campos beach. Excellent sandwiches, salads and pasta, well groomed cocktails, and the must have - enormous cheesecake pieces (surely the best I've ever tasted).
After your swim, relax by playing backgammon or reading a book listening to nice world music. Before you leave, don't forget to buy a trendy George's Place souvenir t-shirt!
On the far left of Campos beach, 5.5 km from the port of Skala. When you get to the beach, You have to walk through the sand to reach it; tel. 22470 31881
A genuine family-run Italian restaurant down Preston Street, just off Western Road, with a great menu ranging from the de rigeur pasta through to excellent meat and fish dishes, all made with fresh ingredients and served with the best owner/maitre d around - the Italian owner Angelo! By far the best restaurant in Brighton.
29 Preston Street, Brighton;
tel: 01273 328 775
Lebanese restaurant. Gorgeous food - mezes, grills etc (must try fatoush). Great value, especially the set menu. Very friendly. Family run and therefore very welcoming toward young children. Top off your food with a hubba bubba pipe. Everyone we take loves it and takes their friends too.
44 Preston Street, Brighton;
tel: 01273 734 810
As in olden days, you can sit outside in the park and read and listen to the orators in the forecourt or inside, where the reading room takes you back to early last century. Quaint and quiet and a great place to while away a few hours. I recommend the tour to discover the history and facilities offered by the institution.
328 Swanston Street, Melbourne,
corner of Swanston and La Trobe Streets;
The world’s biggest theatre screen showing the world’s largest 3D movies. Amazing and mind boggling. I am having trouble describing the sensation of watching an IMAX movie, you have to see it for yourself.
Rathdowne Street, Carlton Gardens, Carlton South;
tel: (03) 9663 5454;
Laid-back air, quiet grace. A special seafront playground with good cafes (but 18TL for 3 coffees), Laleli shop (olives, oil & soap), patisserie, and as you walk down the coastal road towards Ortakoy, mussels stuffed with rice and a good fish shop called Adem Baba with Ottoman houses in the area.
Taxi from Besiktas. Or bus from Eminonu.
The best £2.50 you can spend in Brighton. This is the ride at the end of the pier, and it's hilarious and scary all at once. You sit in a giant, lurid coloured mouse, and it feels like you're about to fly off into the sea at any moment. Then it whips and spins you around endlessly; hence the 'crazy' I suppose. Wicked fun.
Real women, real food, real camping.
Europe's oldest feminist women's camp, founded in the 1970s, hosts an English-speaking International week each year: in 2006 this is August 5-12. Predominantly lesbian, up to 80 women from Europe and beyond meet for a week of workshops, watersports and outdoor life. The camp is between cornfields and the sea on a small island off Lolland, Denmark. All ages, from late teens to 60+ - the average age is 40-something. Paradise for kids (girls of all ages, boys up to 12). Honesty bar, fancy-dress parties, sauna on the beach, stargazing. Reconnect with feminism, recharge your soul, change your life.
Communal cooking (including for vegans and vegetarians), and communal cleaning and camp management.
Prebooking essential: cost £160 per week, food and camping included, for adult women: lower costs for young women (under 21), students, unwaged.
Cheap flights to Copenhagen with SAS and Easyjet: Saturday bus to camp (bookable in advance) from Copenhagen.
Full details on the homepage www.kvindelejren.dk
Dining at the upstairs restaurant at the Middle Brighton Baths is a quality experience, with MBB splashed on the glassware and tableware. Our lunch experience was a terrific way to spend a Sunday afternoon on a fine, clear but cool winters day. The food is fab, the service and attention from the young staff terrific and the view... even better. Sunday lunch is a'la carte or a fixed price affair (3 courses and a glass of wine for $30) there were quite a few families there.
For something less ritzy try the downstairs cafe where you can eat inside or outside on the balcony overlooking the baths.
251 The Esplanade, Brighton;
tel: 9539 7008 (upstairs restaurant); 9539 7004 (downstairs café)
The latest in new festivals in the West Country, Dorset's Sound Music Festival brings top headline acts such as CAPDOWN and Claire Toomey, as well as live youth bands all day. With urban and street dance demos, music workshops, a kidz field, climbing wall and graffiti project, there will be something for everyone. A great start to the school holidays, and it's alcohol free.
Sound Music Festival, Off Cranes Drive, The Fuzzy Bit, Verwood, Dorset;
July 22, from 1-10pm (kids programme until 6.30);
Tickets: £10 in advance;
email: TCooper@eastdorset.gov.uk for more details;
On arrival at the train station in Jaipur we got the usual pitch from the scooter taxi driver - give him is due he took us to our original hotel to compare, but there was no contest once we saw what we got at Shahpura House in comparison. Great place to stay.
Situated on a hill in one of the nicest parts of London is the Royal Observatory. I like it because of the view across the Thames (fantastic and free); it’s not jammed in like lots of things in London (the Aussie in me wants big spaces) and for something different, you can stand in both halves of the world at the same time . How so? By straddling the line at 0 degrees longitude at the Observatory ( which means, you stand in two hemispheres at once).
The National Maritime Museum is close by (at the bottom of the hill, on the edge of the park) and is also worth a look, as is the Queen’s House. The Observatory is part of the Greenwich World Heritage site.
Greenwich Park, London;
Access from Greenwich station is best (carparking is limited);
Royal Observatory and National Maritime Museum: www.rog.nmm.ac.uk
Greenwich Park: www.royalparks.gov.uk/parks/greenwich_park/
This small restaurant in Zurich-Wipkingen offers delicious Asian dishes. It feels like being at home, with personalised service from your own chef. Anthony Carlos, from the Philippines, offers serious a Asian menu with homemade specialties. Check as well the monthly events. Recommended for lovers of gourmet, but you will need to make reservations, as the place is small (max. 25 seats).
Nordstrasse 199, near Zurich-Wipkingen train station, and about 5 minutes from the main train station (Zurich HB), or you can catch bus no. 46;
tel: 043 539 76 79;
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