Shabusen Yakiniku House is an all-you-can-eat restaurant, with two central locations in Vancouver. It's got decent sushi, but the real experience is the Yakiniku (Korean BBQ) and Hot Pot options where you have a grill and/or a hot pot at your table and you cook your own food, be it meat, seafood or vegetables.
It's a tasty and fun experience. And it's only around £12 per person. It gets busy though, so either make reservations or be willing to wait a while (it's worth it!).
2993 Granville Street, Vancouver
Tel: (604) 737-6888
755 Burrard St, Vancouver
Tel: (604) 669-3883
Concerts by University of British Columbia School of Music at The Chan Centre.
Check out www.chancentre.com.
Local bands play free at the TD Plaza, Fridays at 6.00 in the summer. Also, on Canada Day (July 1st) there is music at the TD Plaza, and at Canada Place in two indoor stages and one outdoor. Also at this event there are activities for kids and dancing all day.
For more information check The Fox (radio) website: www.cfox.com.
Free open air jazz music over two weekends at the Jazz Festival in June (www.coastaljazz.ca).
Kitsilano Showboat - open air venue on Kits Beach every week in the summer.
St. Patrick's Day - free music all day at three outdoor stages and two indoor venues on Granville Street. The parade is on the Saturday closest to St. Patrick's Day. (www.celticfestvancouver.com/parade.html)
Vaisakhi - free music, dancing and food all day. More information can be found at www.channelm.ca/ce_index703.html.
Music and fireworks at The Festival of Light - from a barge in English Bay, with music simulcast on Rock 101 (www.rock101.com).
Richmond Nature Park is a natural peat bog that has been managed and has trails to show and shelter many native plants, birds and other animal species. There is a Nature House that is always staffed and has displays and information about native flora and fauna.
The bog has cranberries and blueberries growing freely and the Richmond area is a major supplier of cranberries to the world market.
There are frequent free talks by experts.
11851 Westminster Hwy. at No. 5 Rd;
Catch the 401, 403, 406 or 407 bus to Richmond exchange, then transfer to 405 bus.
tel: 604 718 6188
In the summer (May – September) several companies operate regular cruises on the river Vistula. You can choose from ½ hour cruises within the city boundaries, or a longer trip to Bielany or Tyniec and catch sights such as Wawel Castle, Manggha – Centre of Japanese Art and Technology, Skałka monastery and Kosciuszko Mound.
Żegluga Krakowska offers a round trip Wawel-Tyniec Abbey-Wawel on Saturdays, Sundays and public holidays. (Tickets 20 PLN; concessions 15 PLN) and one hour river trips every day through Krakow (Tickets 12 PLN; concessions 10 PLN).
Piotruś Pan and Sobieski Boats have cruises to Bielany (2 hours) and to Tyniec (3 hours), every day from 10 a.m. until dusk.
River Tram has trips along the river through Krakow and to Tyniec. (tickets: 8 PLN on weekdays and 10 PLN on Saturdays, Sundays and public holidays; concessions 6 and 8 PLN respectively)
Board the boats at the Czerwieński Embankment (opposite Wawel castle, between Dębnicki and Grunwaldzki bridges).
tel: 422 08 55 or 663 165 910; www.zegluga.krakow.pl;
Piotruś Pan and Sobieski Boats
tel: 626 81 40 or 452 23 04; www.ster.net.pl
tel: 0 506 107 037; www.tramwajwodny.pl
This is a charming hotel with a view of the vineyards of Sancerre. It is clean, comfortable and relatively cheap, but the best thing is the view. It is a short walk from the center of town, close to many restaurants and interesting little cobbled streets. They have a swimming pool and serve breakfast from 7 to 10:30. Lovely place if you're travelling through the country and want to spend some time in Sancerre and surrounding towns.
Chavignol, where the famous goat cheese comes from, is about 5 kilometres, if that, from there. There are wine producers and cheesemakers shops on the side of some of the roads, too.
This tenedor libre (all you can eat) restaurant is a fantastic place for an orgiastic eating experience, surrounded by noisy Mendocinos having a great night out - the best in town. Choose from literally hundreds of freshly cooked dishes, a brilliant grill, and wash it all down with a good wine from the heart of Argentina's wine country. Look out for the waiter called Antonio - he is a star - and go on your birthday (they'll even give you a present).
The Krakowska Karta Turystyczna, valid for two (45 PLN) or three (PLN65) days, entitles the holder to free travel on city buses and trams (including the bus route no 192 from/to Krakow's Balice international airport) and to free entry to 32 Krakow museums. Cardholders also receive discounts in certain restaurants and shops as well as when buying tickets for local trips and excursions.
You can buy the card at the airport, tourist information centres, travel agencies and hotels.
1 Polish Zlotych = approximately 0.18 Great British Pounds (April 2006)
See www.krakowcard.com/ for more details.
North of the island, great scenery, beaches and quiet (away from the noisier south). This is a great place to chill out, with very good restaurants. What more can I say?
In the island's north, about an hour's run from the airport;
Vasastaden - nice area for a wander around in. Lots of nice old buildings, nice little independent shops and good for going out. Observatorielunden above the Stockholm City Library is a nice park with great views.
A nice walk is to start at Karlbergs Station, or the St Eriksplan tube stop nearby, and head down to the water, and follow Norr Mälarstrand along the north side of the Riddarfjärden canal. You'll pass through a park called Rålambshovsparken and eventually end up at the City Hall (with its three golden crowns), where the Nobel Prize dinner and ceremony takes place every December. Climb up it if you want, or head off to Gamla Stan for more.
Good places for going out around here are Tranan on Karlbergsvägen (just by Odenplan tube) which is a good hang-out place. Nice food and good music during the day, and a great bar at night.
Storstad on Odengatan (also Odenplan tube) is also a good bar, with good food for lunch and dinner. La Habana on Sveavägen (Odenplan/Rådmansgatan tube) is excellent for mojitos and all things Cuban and is a pretty good place to spend an evening. Paladar de Cuba is another cool Caribbean offering closeby, on Tegnergatan (also Rådmansgatan tube).
St Eriksplan/Odenplan tube
Some British visitors to Australia are put off indulging in one of its greatest attractions, swimming in the sea, for exaggerated fear of the beasties lurking therein.
A supervised dive at the Oceanworld aquarium in Manly might prove an antidote to such an aversion. The big sharks here, the Grey Nurses, are, like the rest of the swimming displays - among them enormous, velvety black rays and constantly curious little Dog Sharks - too well fed to consider nibbling on you. But even were that not the case, the jaws of the Grey Nurses are, despite their fearsome appearance, quite the wrong shape to make lunch of one of your body parts.
Sharks should probably fear humans at least as much as the reverse: many of them, such as the Grey Nurses, have become endangered due to fishing and other human activities. You can also simply view the aquarium animals through the glass.
West Esplanade, Manly
+61 2 9949 7950
We enjoyed the children's museum at the Schonbrunn Palace - even our terminally bored 12-year old thought it was cool - dressing up opportunities and lots of things to touch (and smell!). Lunch in the cafe was good, too - vegetarian options and the "Hapsburger" for the kids.
On a snowy day, the palm house was wonderfully warm.
13, Schönbrunner Schlossstrasse;
Vast and stimulating museum about the world of technology, housed in a beautiful 19th-century building. There is a brilliant section (the "Mini") for small children.
Mariahilferstrasse 212; tel: 899 98, U-Bahn Schönbrunn; www.tmw.at
If you have young kids, they'll love this park, with little train, zoo, trampolines, the best ever adventure playground and acres of trees. The view from the 250m-high tower is amazing, including the bungee jumpers.
Metro U1 Alte Donau
Reforma is one of the places that you have to visit if you come to Mexico City. It is one of the main avenues in the city.
If you are going to vist Reforma you should spend a whole morning. It has expositions on both sides on the street. On one side, the cow parade and on the other photographs with different themes that are changed every month. Right now the theme for the photos is water. Past themes include the ocean, churches and Mexico in the 1800s.
The cow parade has many different decorated cows all along the street. After walking all along both sides of the street you should walk across the street to Polanco, walk around the park and go to one of the restaurants near by.
A brilliant hands-on museum charting the history of musical instruments. There’s an interesting range of traditional Swedish instruments, alongside an array of harps, guitars and drums that you’re encouraged to pluck, strum and bang and just generally make a noise. There’s even a karaoke basement where you can dress up in wigs and belt out a few Abba numbers.
tel: 8 519 554 90;
nearest station is Östermalmstorg
When you get tired of Amsterdam's endless artwork attractions, head for the Tropenmuseum for a surprising alternative. It wasn't just the Brits that were busy conquering the four corners of the globe back in the olden days - the Dutch were at it too and here is assembled a vast collection of artefacts from their colonies and other exotic locations around the world. On the ground floor right now there's a beautifully conceived interactive exhibit on Hinduism to explore; and for the kids, the museum has a special junior section with games and activities.
Linnaeusstraat 2 Amsterdam;
From Central Station: bus 22, tram 9.
From Muiderpoort station: trams 14, 3 and 6;
From the Dam: trams 9 and 14;
From Leidseplein: trams 10 and 7;
tel: +31 20 568 8215;
A small older-style hotel with some character, the hotel was rebuilt after it was flattened in the first world war. Its location on the north side of the Ypres town square makes it centrally located for visits to the Cloth Hall or the nightly Menin Gate ceremony.
The food is very good; there is a restaurant and brasserie and they also stock a lot of different Belgian beers which you enjoy in the beer garden out front. A good clean budget style hotel for the stay in Ypres (no car parking though, you park in the street behind).
Hotel Gasthof t’Zweerd
Grote Markt 2
B - 8900, Ieper;
tel: 32 (0)57 200475;
fax; 32 (0)57 217896;
A new exhibition has opened in the Stadthalle. It shows us how the world is experienced by blind people every day. By entering an absolutely dark room with usual every-day equipment, you "see" through the eyes of a blind person. It's amazing how important all our other sins are, when we can't rely on our eyes anymore.
Telefon (+43 1) 98 100/0
underground station: U6 Burggasse/Stadthalle
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