On two occasions visiting the Amalfi coast I was lucky enough to have a local guide at my disposal.
Based in Ravello (but covering all of the Amalfi Coast and further afield), Angela speaks fluent English and Itallian. Her inside knowledge of the coast and its attractions really brought the area to life.
A couple of great websites giving free walks and downloadbale ordnance survey maps for walkers in Scotland. Both also contain accommodation guides for their respective areas.
Walks on Skye (www.skyewalk.co.uk) has almost 80 walks on the most spectacular of Scotland's islands.
Kintail & Lochalsh walks (kintail.walkhighlands.co.uk) is its sister site and offers similar information about the adjacent mainland.
This is the official Colombian tourism website. It does have an English version. I specially recommend our national natural parks. In fact, The Guardian has chosen the beaches at Tayrona Park as the world's second best. You'll also find useful tips for your Colombia trip.
This is a wiki about Cardiff, which gives info on places to eat and drink as well as things to do and see.
Maintained (but not exclusively) by the capital's residents, so you might find something that's not included in your average guide.
If you are interested in spending your holidays in the heart of a peaceful and natural environment, visit the island of Alonissos is order to enjoy an unforgettable experience. See alonissos.atspace.com for a useful travel guide.
It is an up to date round-up of things to do in the evening in the BS8 area of Bristol (Clifton, Whiteladies Road, the triangle etc). It lists quiz nights, live music and anything else happening in the area.
Totally customized private tour of New York City. Very personal and personable guide. Before you arrive, they work out an itinerary with you by email. Then, their guide takes you all around. It is much cheaper than you might think. Depending on the number of people in your family or group, it may actually be the best tour bargin in New York.
Riga is a fantastic city and I'm delighted that more and more people (besides myself) are finally discovering it.
There are a lot of stag groups but thankfully more and more 'civilised' people are also coming and discovering more than just bars and girls. A good all-round guide that I've found helpful in the past is www.riga-life.com. And the sites I'd recommend especially in Riga are Jurmala, Dome Cathedral and Academy of Science.
There is a fantasic amount of interesting history around Shakespeare, brothels, bear bating pits and pubs along this stretch of river. I recently downloaded an audio guide for my mp3 player from a website at www.podguides.co.uk. Really good intersting walk recorded by a proper Blue Badge guide.
GuideVietnam is a very useful travel site which includes information on getting to Vietnam, getting around the country, health and safety, visa and passport information, weather, currency, cuisine and dining, a cultural and social profile, language, maps, books, a Vietnam airlines guide, and a list of travel "dos and don'ts."
I have recently returned from Beijing after spending ten amazing days exploring some of what China has to offer the visitor.
I always make my own travel plans and on this occasion I was glad that I hired my own guide for my stay.
I felt a pity on the many groups of people who were following their tour guide, they seemed to be rushing through the attractions, no doubt to get to their coach and go to their next destination. Of course, group travel suits some people, but I believe more people would have a better experience exploring with their own guide.
By having your own guide you can take your time exploring the various sites, dining in local restaurants and you can plan how you spend your time.
I always try to see the real places wherever I visit, not the areas which seem to cater for the tourists.
Use your guide and get off the beaten track, explore, explore and explore.
Incidently, my guide saved me a lot of money on admission prices to many attractions and evening shows.
Search the web for details of how to contact the guide I used on my vacation.
A good Government-licensed guide should cost you £15-£25 per day.
We spent 2 days with Nicole Sarda, a private, licensed guide seeing the D-Day beaches and Caen. At 300 Euros + tip per day, our group of 4 was able to see a week's worth of sites in 2 days. She knows where to go, the unmarked roads, the places to eat and gives the history of each place. She even recommended a hotel where we stayed which is a 15th Century Manoir and not in any tour book. Great personality. Completely fluent in English and French. Lived 15 years in the States. We will hire her again.
Tangier is nothing like I had imagined (it's much better) and so very different from anything I'd ever seen before. We hired Baba, a private guide which meant we didn't have to travel around in a big pack. Baba drove us to the usual tourist spots: Cap Spartel, the Caves of Hercules, past the rich homes & palaces, through the modern part of the city. Then we headed to the Medina on foot. Fantastic! It was the highlight of our trip. He asked us if we wanted to ride a camel (yes), if we wanted to see a snake charmer (no), if we wanted to visit a herbalist (no), and he insisted on holding my packages so I could concentrate on taking pictures! No sales pressure, no sales pitches. (If we wanted to, fine; if not, we moved on.)
Tangier is fabulous - right out of a movie. All you can really do is walk around, but what a walk! Be prepared for the constant (and I mean constant!) hawkers of "treasures" that one normally has to go to Chinatown to get.
We took a ferry from Tarifa, Spain to Tangier, Morocco. Ferry information can be found at www.frs.es/eng/
From Algeciras to Tangier at 09:00 am. Fast catamaran takes around 70 minutes crossing. The return is at 02:30 pm.
Also there are ferries that operate between Algeciras and Tangier. They run every hour approximately from 7 am to 10 pm each way.
There is a safe parking place inside both ports Algeciras and Tarifa. It is Safe to leave the car for the day there.
Hey, surfing the net I have found this useful travel guide that gives tons of tips to the independent travellers! Furthermore, I think it is a good source of information because you can deal with hotel's official sites, avoiding paying commission to intermediaries.
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