Everyone knows about the Vietcong complex at Cu Chi near Ho Chi Minh City, but less celebrated are these equally fascinating tunnels that lead on to the beach.
Moreover, they are a little taller and wider than Cu Chi, so somewhat less claustrophobic. A particular highlight is the 'hospital', little more than a cubby hole where women came to give birth.
Best bet is via the many tourist offices in Hue - wherever you go, you'll probably end up with a Sinh Cafe tour anyway so might as well book direct.
Kuelap is the remains of a fortified town built over the course of 600 years at an altitude of 3,000m. A lot of the original brickwork remains and it is fascinating to wander gently through these remains, especially after the massed hordes who visit Machu Picchu.
From Chiclayo, travel to Chacapoyas region and then you'll need to catch a tour going to the ruins. Well worth it.
Hire a car and drive the 45km coast road south from Alghero to Bosa.
Around every curve in the road there is a sandy cove or rocky inlet, blue-green water, cliffs and mountains.
It's hard to make any sort of progress along the road, as the water is just too inviting and the clifftop photo opportunities too many.
Bosa itself is an unspoilt town, overlooked by most tourists in favour of the nearby marina and beach. A ruined castle perches on top of a hill, from which cobbled streets and quiet squares tumble down to the river, lined with huge palms and elegant mansions.
Take the SP105 from Alghero.
There are many reasons for taking the trouble to queue and shuffle through the museum and to continue on to the Sistine Chapel. For although the droves of other people, some of whom have a scanty understanding of why they're there (I know, I asked them!), can make the visit pretty stressful, the sight of the Sistine Chapel and especially the work of Michelangelo is entirely worth it.
You won't believe your eyes - they really are glass. The Glass Flowers collection at the Harvard Museum of Natural History, Harvard University is a famous collection of highly realistic glass botanical models, made between 1887 and 1936 by a German father-son team. The museum also houses a stunning collection of mineral rocks.
Harvard Museum of Natural History, Harvard University, Cambridge, Massachusetts.
The island of Torcello, 45 minutes from Venice by Vaporetto, is where Venice began. A perfect antidote to palaces and high renaissance art.
This tiny windswept island in the marshes was the place where the first settlers, fleeing from Attila the Hun, found refuge and laid the foundations for the mighty Venetian republic. Incredibly it once had 20,000 inhabitants before malaria took hold. Now all that's left is a wonderful church with fantastic 11th century mosaics and a bell tower which gives stunning views over allotments, marshes and the distant towers and domes of Venice.
There's also a rather fine restaurant Al Ponte del Diavolo, serving (very) local rabbit and fine pasta with wild fennel sauce (on the day we went). A perfect place for a spring lunch and to reflect on the beginnings and end of the Venetian republic!
Take the Vaporetto (LN route) from Fondamente Nuove stop. Change at Burano for shuttle to Torcello.
Greenwich Observatory was built to look at the stars. But it's a fantastic place to look at London, too.
You look past the green lawns and Palladian architecture below, across the Thames, past the Dome and Canary Wharf, to the whole of north London spread out on its hills above the metropolis. Nowhere else do you get this feeling of the sheer scale of the city, and binding it all together, the sluggish grey ribbon of the river.
From Cutty Sark DLR station - it's an uphill walk so come motivated!
Originally Ireland's flagship youth hostel, it's a little tatty these days and definitely no frills. But it has loads of character and a fantastic view, and at 14 euros a night a perfect base to explore the area settled by St Columb in the 6th century, and the Slieve League - at 600m, Europe's highest sea cliffs.
In the town of Glencolumbcille, take the road beside the Glenhead tavern and it's 1.5km up the road on the left - 973 0130
It’s a long one. A very, very long one. Don’t worry though, if you’re lucky you’ll sleep through most of it. Make sure you bring plenty of things to do and a travel pillow. We drove through a maze of badly planned roads (which seem to get more and more complicated the further south you go) and into the bowels of a humongous ferry. Onboard you’ll be allowed off the coach (thank God!) so you can get breakfast at one of the overpriced shops on the steadily rising and falling boat. Be careful, it can be quite hard to stay upright when the floor constantly drops and then comes back up again. It takes a bit of getting used to, but you will eventually. The ferry journey should take about an hour or two.
After this, you’ll be in France! Yay! And after another five hours of coach journeying you’ll be in Normandy! ………..yay. Make sure you bring sun cream, hats and sunglasses, because it’s very hot! The weather is fantastic there and you’ll get a real shock when you arrive from rainy old England.
There’s a lot to do in Normandy - we explored the gun batteries at Longue Sur Mer, saw the Bayeux Tapestry and cathedral, looked around three world war two cemeteries, visited two (yes two!) different museums and watched a cool 360 degree film on the 360 cinema in Arromanches.
The British cemetery is a nice understated but well-kept place, the German Cemetery is very small and cramped with at least two people to a grave and the American Cemetery is a massive and superbly decorated place, with immaculately laid-out gravestones, all facing America. It practically screams “We Won The War” at you. You’ll notice the difference right away.
Finally, the 360 cinema is an amazing thing to see. It’s literally all around you. It can make you feel a bit dizzy so make sure you don’t accidentally start leaning sideways when the camera starts to turn!
From Tom Billson (age 14).
chemin du calvaire
14117 Arromanches les Bains
Tel : +33 (0) 2 31 22 30 30
Normandy American Cemetery
14710 Colleville sur Mer
Built in the 12 and 13th centuries as status symbols by rich Bolognese merchant families, the city originally had over 100 of these towers but these are the tallest of the few which remain.
You can climb the Torre Asinelli, the taller of the two at about 100m, which has great views over the red roofs of the city and the hills beyond. The shorter Torre Garisenda, which had its top removed in the 1300s to stop it falling over, is closed to visitors as it has a more extreme lean of about 3m.
Piazza di Porta Ravegnana.
Open 9am-6pm, entrance fee €1,55.
Dundee has really changed for the better over the last couple of decades. It has transformed from a down at heel city to a bright, fun place to visit. There's lots to do and see for everyone, shops, museums, theatre and the beach and castle at Broughty Ferry.
You can read my guide to Dundee at
I know that most people get off the plane at Girona and head straight for Barcelona. However, if you are looking for somewhere that's not so busy for a couple of days, consider Girona. I really like it along the riverside with the painted houses. There are several museums, the medieval part of the city and a great choice of restaurants where you can have a set 3 course meal for around 12 euros.
I have some accommodation suggestions at:
The Castle of Counts was founded in the 12th century and after an interesting history that saw it converted to a cotton mill in the 19th century, has been restored more or less to its former glory. The armoury displays some startling weaponry but is surpassed by the exhibition of 'Instruments of Correction', a highly euphemistic name for the tools of torture seen here. Fascinating.
This absolutely magnificent building and grounds were once the home to the King of France and his Family. When you have a look at it you can quite litterally see why the impoverashed citizens of France had a revolution. It is grand beyond belief.
There are no two ways about it - a day here is not enough. Two days and maybe you will have seen most of it but by no means all. I will be returning again soon and perhaps will be able to catch one of the shows they put on outdoors in the garden over the summer months.
A worthwhile train trip away from the center of Paris to the station at Versailles. Easy to get to and easy to get into once you are there. I would recommend going to the tourist office that is near by the palace to get a pass. This means you will avoid any queues there are on the way in. Unfortunatly it doesn't give you much of a discount on the train and no discount on sandwiches but still very worth while. There was a rumour that you could pick up a day passport for the palace at train stations but I never managed to find them there.
A great day or two out for all the family.
On 6th August 1945, the US perpetrated the first ever hostile use of a nuclear weapon by dropping 'Little Boy' over the city at 8:15am. Over 200,000 people are believed to have died during, and in the months after, this attack.
Catch a ride by tram from outside the main station to the A-Bomb Dome which was one of the few buidlings left standing after the bomb. From here, you can walk across the river bridge then through the Peace Park, a selection of shrines and monuments to the event and those whose died.
Don't miss a visit to the A-Bomb museum (near to the 'clock' monument) which, whilst a sobering experience, is a 'must see'. Respectfully presented, it reduced me to tears, but I am glad I visited to pay my respects to all those innocent people who lost their lives.
Make sure you explore other things too; take a walk up the many residential streets on the hills behind the centre, for spectacular views across the city and the bay beyond. If you're in the area a little longer, be sure to go to Miya-Jima Island and see the famous Itsukushima Shrine.
Travel to Hiroshima is easiest and fastest by Shinkansen (bullet train) which runs frequently from Tokyo, Kyoto and Osaka and in the other direction from Hakata/Fukuoka.
People go to Agra for the Taj Mahal. But do not forget to go to Fatehpur Sikri. An ill-fated city built by Emporer Akbar, it was discarded as soon as it was built, because of lack of water. Amazing architecture. Good views.
Near Agra, Uttar Pradesh
Harrods, a magnet for the tourists. Whatever you think of the store itself, the Food Halls are a wonder in themselves and not to be missed! They are historically Listed in their own right, due to the wonderful decorative wall tiles.
The selection of food and wines are among the best in London, and not always as expensive as you might think. And make sure you visit the wet fish section, truly spectacular!
Harrods Ltd, SW1
Nearest tube, Knightsbridge (Piccadilly Line).
Two museums, right next door to each other, and a great way to occupy all of the family.
The Natural History Museum is wonderful before you enter it, a beautiful example of Victorian extravagance. Plenty to see and do, especially the dinosaurs; be warned though, the animatronic T Rex is very real and great for scaring small children! There's a decent little coffee shop, although it was a bit disturbing eating chocolate cake sat next to Chi Chi the Panda!
The Science Museum is more modern, although the exhibits go back some way. All kids will love the 'Launchpad' area in the basement, all hands on, noisy, messy and great fun. The Deep Blue Cafe does a decent lunch as well.
Both museums have regular exhibitions as well, although these will have an entry charge; usually well worth it though. There is also an Imax Cinema in the Science Museum, any of the underwater or outer space movies are good value.
If you want a two-hour-long, food/beer-sozzled route to see a Manchester City game, as well as a chance to feed some geese, this is my dream route to my seat in the East Stand lower tier from Piccadilly Square: from Piccadilly, with your back to 1960s megalith, Piccadilly Plaza, you head up Tib Street to the YADGAR curry house. If you're veggie, you can get rice and three curries for £3.00 - same price as a pint in some of the Northern Quarter bars. £3.90 and you get lamb or chicken toppings too. Best tarka dhal in Manchester.
After that, you could go further up Tib Street and drink in Centro and then have another pint in the Copper Kettle, a pub whose restoration ran out of money - look at the ceiling on one side of the pub, and then the other. One side was restored, the other remains as it was when the building was almost derelict. However, if you choose to hit Great Ancoats Street at this stage, all there is from there is street and no canal. Instead, after Yadgar, I suggest you go back towards Piccadilly and locate the Mother Mac pub, on a side street off Oldham Street. This, I imagine, will remain like something out of Victorian times even long into another era in which Manchester aspires to make its eastern central section resemble a damper, rainier New York.
From Mother Mac's, you could stock up on samosas at Marhaba, one of the other remaining low-price curry houses in the city centre, or maybe buy some bread and head towards the canal - there's an entrance on to the towpath on Ducie Street, which is the road bearing left as you reach the ramp leading towards Piccadilly Station. Once on the canal, the geese are very 'people-friendly' - in other words, mind your fingers.
Continuing up the canal, you'll reach steps at Great Ancoats Street. Following crowds towards the ground, my final stop is the Bank Of England pub. It's not just a no-frills pub - it's a no-stitching-at-all pub. The toilets are signposted by a male and female pointing figure silhouette shapes, but the male silhouette says 'women' on it and the female one 'male' - everyone turns the wrong direction the first time, like one of those psychological tests where they write 'blue' on a red-coloured board. Once you've survived this delightful obstacle course, remember, you've still got a football match to watch, and the return leg into town afterwards to negotiate. As is often said of Manchester City, it's the 90 minutes in the middle that ruins the experience.
Between Manchester Piccadilly and Sportcity.
Send your feedback or queries to email@example.com