This incredible castle is perched on a rock high on the west coast of the island. Half the fun is the drive there, which takes you along a winding coastline with stunning views of Turkey, Halki and other small islands.
The landscape on the west is not commercial or developed, and you can stop in small villages like Embonas (famous for their wine) and Sianna (great for carpets) on the way.
Keep a look out for a caravan parked on the side of the road (before you get to Sianna) which looks as if its going to slide down the mountain. Stop here and have a coffee (or a suma) sit and contemplate the breathtaking view.
Just follow the road east from the airport - you dont have to turn off anywhere. It's about 2 hours from Rhodes Town.
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!
If you're fit and you have a whole day, and a friend (or a taxi) who can deliver you to the south end of the hills, the Malverns are one of the best single day walks you can have.
The hills lie in a single north-south bumpy ridge, like walking along a dragon's back. To the left, you can see to the Welsh border, and the Brecon Beacons; on the east, the low lying valley of the Severn. I've seen it flooded, the whole plain below reflecting silver in the light; or dusted with snow. You can see as far as the edge of the Cotswolds, and there's only the rounded, low Bredon Hill with its patchwork of hedges and fields between you and Oxfordshire.
Hollybush car park on the A438 (south end): Clock Tower car park, Great Malvern
You're going to have a stiff hike to get here, and that's one of the wonders of the place. Climb up beside the foaming waterfall of Cauldron Snout, and then you're trekking across a flat, forbidding moorland plateau. Nothing prepares you for what comes next.
High Cup Nick is like an axe blow cloven into the moorland. The land falls away below you; the Eden valley stretches out towards the horizon, a patchwork of green fields. To the side, basalt crags tower, like the spires of a primitive cathedral. Climb down into the Nick and the wind suddenly stops; you're poised above the world.
Best to start near Middleton in Teesdale or at Cow Green car park
This is a five minute crossing of the River Tyne between North and South Shields which presents a panorama of cranes on the banks of the mighty Tyne. They stand like giant preying mantis etched on the western sky, looking bereft. The ships which were once their prey are gone, now made in warmer climes where the workers can be paid less. The lovely wee ferry provides a glimpse, an echo, of more heroic times when a worker took pride in wages earned by real skills.
And to the east lies the North Sea, as cold and uninviting as it sounds. Yet still the trawlers venture out of the mouth of the Tyne in search of the mighty cod, and Norway beckons, inviting the Geordie to embark on a yet more arduous ferry journey to frigid fjords where they can languish on the latitude of an Arctic circle.
Take the metro from the centre of Newcastle to North Shields then follow the Pedestrian Ferry signs to the River Tyne. Upon disembarking take the metro from South Shields back to Newcastle. The Day Saver ticket on the metro covers the cost of the ferry.
Children love this adventure, and a great pint of ale can be had at the Alum pub by the ferry at South Shields.
The line between the High and Low lands is amazingly beautiful. You look down into a river valley with massive hills on either side. Green as I've only experienced in Scotland with a train going by on the ridge. Breathtaking.
On top of a hill at the edge of charming Borders town, Peebles, sits the snub-faced Venlaw Castle where one can play the lord or lady and enjoy good food, fine views and a bar well stocked with excellent whisky.
The two 'romantic' suites have been refurbished to a high standard and offer a cosy warmth. From here, the eager explorer can find many things to occupy the time or, failing the will-power to face quaint towns and block stone homes, can climb a little higher for quietly breathtaking views of the surrounding countryside.
Edinburgh Road, Peebles. EH45 8QG. www.venlaw.co.uk . Tel: 01721 720384.
Dwarfed by the surrounding views of Skiddaw, Helvellyn and Blencathra, Castlerigg still manages to maintain its dignity like an immobile Haley Joel Osmont against the awesome acting might of Bruce Willis. Despite its youth (just 5,000 years old on Monday), the stone circle is a place that just feels, well, wise. Get there early and ponder on the passage of people through time and you'll get an eerie feeling for the importance of this site. Get there late and you'll be jostling for photo opportunities with the Addams Family.
Just outside Keswick and along Castle Lane from the A591.
A lovely little cafe next to the top station of the water-powered Victorian cliff railway at Lynton with gorgeous views of the multicoloured sea-cliff face of Countisbury Hill and towards Wales across the Bristol Channel. A good espresso or cappuccino to go with peaceful enjoyment of natural beauty.
Lynton and Lynmouth Cliff Railway, Exmoor National Park, Devon EX35
Restaurant in a converted oil mill with much-coveted terrace overlooking the sea (the views are beautiful but, more importantly for Italians, it's outside so you can smoke). The main attraction is the lobster, clams, sea bass, cuttlefish and just about anything else that can be removed from water with a net, pot or hook. But it's also a great place to come to watch people make idiots of themselves: get a table in the atmospheric stone-walled interior (much more room, aircon), order a prosecco and watch as the beautiful people attempt to beg, threaten or bribe their way on to the terrace. We saw cash, fags and what looked like an offer of sex, but the maitre d' stood firm: no prenotazione, no prime preening spot.
Via Bordonaro 96
A beautiful tiny island off the west coast of Scotland famous for its slate exports of the 1800's. No cars, good pub, friendly locals, fabulous wildlife and THE most breathtaking scenery and skies on the planet. Just south of Oban, Argyllshire and a few minutes ferry ride from Seal Island. Go there, find peace within and come back feeling the most wealthy of travellers. Heaven can't surely be as good as Easdale!
Beautiful old town that's perfect for mooching around and seeing the sights. Grab a limoncello or three at one of a strip of waterside bars as the sun sets and go for a stroll amongst the locals. Clear your head the next day by exploring the ancient ampitheatre at the edge of town (catch a bus from the central station).
South-east Sicily. Rent a car for max flexibility when touring the island.
Christchurch has a certain line in unusual transportation/dining experiences that has to be unique. Not only can you eat while riding around town on an old tram, but you can also do so in a gondola. Okay, I exaggerate – the Summit Cafe where you dine is at the top of the gondola – but it’s close.
You can of course use the gondola to go up to the ridge of the Port Hills at any time during the day, and the views over the city, or down the other side to Lyttelton Harbour, are superb. And hiring a bike there to speed back down is a thrill, albeit a mild one by NZ standards. But getting up there just before dusk, in time to see the sun set across the plains and the city lights come on, well, it’s romantic enough to bring a tear to an All Black’s eye. And the food is worth staying for too.
Telephone: (63-3) 3840707
Location: Top of the Gondola.
A restaurant perched high above Taormina (take a taxi there and back). Breathtaking views over the Gulf of Naxos and Etna. Excellent local food and wine. Romance on a plate.
Salita Castello, 98030 Castelmola
Tel: 0942 28180
A fantastic, reasonably-priced hotel in the city's best district. Opposite the Hilton, the location is brilliant - just five minutes by bus to the main square, the hotel is opposite the main church and viewpoint.
The 'Castle District' is quiet, high up on the Buda hilly side of the city, so you get great views - especially at night. Hotel Burg has clean rooms (with free minibar!) and English-speaking staff. Best of all, the prices were very reasonable.
Castle District, Buda.
If you are going on a day out, head for the hills and the stunning Hotel Elafos on Profitis Ilias Mountain. The drive there is beautiful through little villages and olive groves. The hotel is completely unique, set deep in the woods and a great location for walkers.
Orginially built as a HQ for Mussolini it has been restored by local craftsmen and offers a complete change from the beach.
You can have lunch (food is excellent), stay the night or even get married here - there's even a childrens play area. It's relaxing, peaceful and well worth the visit.
The drive is about an hour from Rhodes Town or Lindos.
An agriturismo and working vineyard on the slopes of Mount Etna with comfortable, stylish rooms. Run by the noble family of the Baron Scammacca del Murgo - the hosts are full of character!
The estate produces very drinkable red and sparkling wines - tastings and tours available - and you can really taste the volcanic minerals in the red wine.
As a volcanic and somewhat arid little island, you could be forgiven for thinking that Lanzarote offers little for walkers and trekkers.
But having just returned - and enjoyed a hike around the green and verdant Valley of 1,000 Palms in the north of the island, I'm now a complete convert.
This is also one of the highest points on the island so the views here are truly incredible.
So if you´re heading to Lanzarote - pack your walking boots and head in the direction of Haria. You won´t be disappointed.
Or take an organised walk via the website below.
I love Morbegno! I have been there twice - mainly for walking holidays. Stayed at the family-run Hotel Trieste in the old town.
It's a comfortable, reasonably priced hotel with a lovely private garden at the back. Also had some very good meals at the Hotel Margna, which is in the centre of town. The food is amazing - nothing like what you get in other areas of Italy and there are some great local wines.
What I like about Morbegno is that it's big enough to meander around looking at the shops and old buildings but is also small enough that you feel you get to know people. And there is such amazing countryside all around it - in a few minutes you are climbing high up amongst first vineyards and then mountain pastures - it is breathtakingly beautiful.
If you want to venture further afield there are good train and bus links and Milan is an easy trip on the train. So, if you want a taste of real Italy, visit the Valtellina and especially Morbegno.
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