Third-generation chocolate makers in Marseille. This family-run business produces chocolate made from unlikely ingredients such as onion and lavender, as well as pralines (well it is France!) and traditional barres Marseillaises (dark chocolate covered in fruit such as oranges).
A very small shop but apparently is world famous amongst chocolatiers. Well worth a visit. Black and white pictures of previous generations line the walls.
49 rue du Petit – Puits close to Rue du Panier.
Gorgeous old town, pedestrian friendly and good to explore. Quality shops, markets and restaurants/cafes; good beer and delicious ice creams.
Efficient buses and trains follow the coast to Split and Dubrovnik, while ferries are fun. Airport easily reached.
A highly recommended holiday destination with good sunshine, crystal clear seas, friendly and hospitable people and nearly everyone speaks English.
Instead of ketchup, the Belgians eat their chips (or fries for the Americans) with lashings of mayonnaise. Slightly odd perhaps – but a trip to Bruges has converted me!
‘Frites’ stalls around the city centre do them cheap, along with meatballs and sausages for a good snack.
Across the road, waffle stands and bakeries sell dessert dripping with chocolate and cream. What more to say except 'yum'.
A very cool district of Barcelona, El Raval, stretches away just to the west of the Ramblas.
Not quite Barcelona's seamy underbelly, but in a decidedly chi-chi town, the next best thing.
In keeping with its working-class roots, there are still plenty of scruffy neighbourhood bars amidst the proliferating clothes shops, hip bars and restaurants.
From Placa Catalunya (north) to La Rambla (east); Ronda Sant Antoni (west) to Ronda Sant Pau (south)
As someone who has lived a long time in Valencia I think I can give a decent review on all bike rental places in Valencia to enjoy the wonderful Turia park.
At first, there was only one choice to rent bikes in Valencia and that was Orange bikes but nothing ever stays the same for long. Of the four main rental services Valencia Bikes is the most expensive but great for very large groups over 20 but be prepared to pay a lot.
Next, we move on to Do You Bike, who have decent bikes but do be choosy as some of them are lousy plus they are five euros more at the weekend. Orange's bikes have a wide range of bikes at a decent price but charge a whopping €250 deposit so make sure you check the bike over before you go or get bit where it hurts.
The newest is Soul Cycles run by a Dutch girl. Their bikes are different all together with an emphasis on fun and comfort such as City & Beach cruisers or the choppers for the easy riders out there - the same prices as pretty much everyone and cheaper at the weekends than some others. To say bikes are dangerous in the Turia is ludicrous as it is 11 kms of flat block-paved path suitable for all types of transport from roller bladers and skaters to MTBs and little folding bikes.
To sum it up, if you want a good MTB for long-distance jaunts into the interior go to Orange Bikes, if you want fun and comfort and some extra information or a chat go to Soul Cycle and then Do You Bike for availability as they have a large amount of bikes but they are pretty much a get them in and out kind of affair. All in all, there is something out there for all tastes.
On a friendliness scale: 1. Soul Cycles 2. Do You Bike 3. Orange Bikes 4. Valencia Bikes. Just my two cents' worth!
The co-op on Rue du Commerce has sensibly-priced souvenirs for the tourist and of course the obligatory Swiss chocolate. It's also a great place to buy lunch.
Rue du Commerce - a 30 min walk from Cornavin train station
The Bauhaus Archiv is a must see for any design/architecture fan. The collection is limited but of quality. They have a great range of Bauhaus posters on sale starting from five euros (a bargain) and the shop is full of gorgeous items classic and contemporary.
The cafe's good too - lots of healthy choices.
Bauhaus-Archiv / Museum of Design
D - 10785 Berlin
Wednesdays to Mondays, 10am - 5pm.
Usually the museum is closed on Tuesdays. On public holidays which fall on a Tuesday, 10am - 5pm
Bus 100 from the Zoo stops just along the street.
The 'Hidden Urban Project' is a new addition to the alternative shopping market. Usually housed inside bars, the project provides a relaxed atmosphere that shoppers can enjoy. A pint whilst you shop? I'm recommending it because this should be the future of shopping.
28-30, Oldham Street , Manchester,M1 1JN
A great place to stock up on bargain souveniers and gifts before heading home. You can find anything from origami paper, crockery and toys not to mention all manner of household goods
They're everywhere. There's a nine story one in Funibashi on the outskirts of Tokyo.
You will find everything under the sun - antiques, pets, plants, clothes, books, food. Get there before the proposed plans to raze it and build another air-conditioned shopping centre become a reality.
Take the skytrain to Chatuchak station. Market open on weekends only.
The old town is a beautiful reminder of the 2000 year history of Lagos. Although most of it was destroyed in the tsunami and earthquake of 1755, there are still old buildings from the 16th century and the governor's castle.
There is a marina for boats from all over the world, dolphin watching by experts, coastal cave exploring in small boats with guides, and some of the best golf courses in Portugal nearby.
Shopping is a delight, with leather goods on every street corner and craft stalls, manned by the friendliest people anywhere.
Fabulous array of fresh food of every kind, also wine and other drinks, something for everyone. Definitely the place to shop if self catering, but some very good cheap vegetarian hot food outlets associated with the market. On a budget, or want to treat yourself, this is the place! The place buzzes, and is particularly atmospheric after dark. A little art nouveau as well! Open till 8.30pm, closed Sundays.
La Rambla 91 Nearest metro: Liceu
Forget those designer boutiques and get on the metro to head to the Place d'Aligre for a fascinating market full of clothes, antiques and world goods (particularly great for African crafts).
There really is something more enjoyable about grabbing a bargain at the market than flashing the credit card down the Champs Elysees!
A colourful and unique mix of stalls selling good crafts (not tat) from local people and excellent fruit, the area is famous for its orchards and veg, much of which is organic. The many alternative lifestylers make it a very chilled-out shopping experience.
Great place to buy gifts that you won't find anywhere else.
Off Trafalgar Street, Nelson city centre, South Island
If, like me, you want on occasion to feel like a true Parisian and don't have an aversion to early mornings then why not try the Bastille open market on a Sunday morning.
The range of fresh fish, bread, vegetables, cheeses and wine is truly mouth watering and all at very reasonable prices. Your euro here goes a long way towards sampling the very best of French food.
The market is huge and the atmosphere intoxicating in terms of a real Parisian experience and can't be recommended highly enough to the discerning visitor.
While away an afternoon on pretty Newbury Street for chic Boston shopping - you'll find everything from Chanel and Marc Jacobs to Urban Outfitters. There are plenty of restaurants and coffee shops to break your journey.
Is it the best second hand record store in the world? Probably not, but it is easily the best in Toronto. Jazz, soul, funk, hip hop, Brazilian, boogie, Blue Note originals, Salsoul 12s. The lot.
607 Queen Street West
Start the day by heading to De Bakkerswinkel bakery on 69 Warmoesstraat for a delightful breakfast. Their filled rolls, fresh from the oven are divine.
Work off breakfast by exploring the canals, visiting the floating Singel flower market and buying tulip bulbs for green-fingered friends and family. Take in some culture at the Van Gogh museum; alternatively, if the sun is shining, head south for a picnic in Vondelpark.
Spend the evening relaxing over delicious food and wine at Morlang (Keizersgracht 451); on a warm evening, sit on the terrace outside, overlooking one of Amsterdam’s tranquil canals.
Turn right when you leave the rail station in Amsterdam. The area is full of lots of little shops selling a wide variety of interesting things.
There is also a small local supermarket, so you can buy food that doesn't cost a small fortune. Keep your eyes open for the local coffee chain Bagels & Beans - they sell a good-sized, reasonably-priced cup of coffee.
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