Reached via cable-car, this mountain at the edge of Tirana gives an attractive break from the bustle (and traffic) of the city. There are some restaurants and amenities up here but it’s mainly about the view along the route and the scenery atop the mountain. Costs about 500 Lek for the trip.
Singapore Botanical Gardens: Singapore is very built up and exciting but this is good for a chill out and escape for a bit if you have the time!
Just outside the city centre - can take a taxi or walk there - if it is a nice day and clouds not too daunting of a thundery shower then the walk is good! Lots of maps show the gardens but are different to many others in the world, are quiet, relaxing and near to some good cafes! Good chill out place in a bustling city!
One of the amazing things about New York is that the city is so iconic, yes it's the old cliché - we've all been there 100 times before in films and movies. The best way to appreciate the city is from a high vantage point, so if you've got an hour or so spare, then a trip up to the Top Of The Rock is great. At the top of the Rockafeller Centre you get the most stunning view of the city, without the madness and crowds and tacky tourist nature of the Empire State Building and fantastically you also get an amazing view of that most iconic building in Manhattan. You reserve your time to go up, meaning it's never too crowded, and after the most amazing lift ride to the roof (I won't spoil the surprise) you're treated to jaw-dropping views, with only full-length glass walls stopping you from falling off. You can stay up for as long as you want, and really get a sense of the city. It never fails to inspire me, and make me feel thankful that I get to travel to New York on business. If you want a similar view without doing the tourist thing, enjoy a meal or drink at the Rainbow Rooms which is just below the Top Of The Rock part of the building. A quick trip to the skies to sample that movie set view will bring you back down to work with a bump, but make you appreciate that you're in the Big Apple, one of the most exciting cities in the world.
www.topoftherocknyc.com30 Rockafella Plaza (Crossing 5th and 6th Ave)
It's a restaurant in Rio, where you can order good native food from northern Brazil and eat looking at Rodrigo de Freitas's Lagoon. I recommend it because there you can feel closer to nature and have a fantastic view while you are eating. Pai d'égua e arrombado was one of the plates I ate! Delicious!
Avenida Epitácio Pessoa, S/N Qiosque 20 - Parque do Cantagalo - Lagoa
(55) (21) 2227-0837
Heading to the top of the Hill of the Muses (Museion) offers a great perspective on the Acropolis, Athens’ most famous landmark. There are no large structures between the two hills and fewer coach trips around so it’s the ideal spot to appreciate the sight from a distance – and snap a photo or two.
Dim sum is to Hong Kong as fish and chips (or perhaps a chicken korma) is to the UK. However, with countless restaurants in Hong Kong, where you do start? My recommendation would be at the dim sum restaurant (Lung King Heen) at the Four Seasons, Hong Kong. The dim sum served is of a different standard, each with its own twist on traditional classics. This delicous food is complimented with outstanding views of the harbour and impeccable service.
Situated on the first floor of the Four Seasons hotel. Make a reservation beforehand. Ask for a window view.
As a former student of the local university, I had been many times to the cathedral but being up on the roof showed me a lot of things I didn't know about the cathedral.
They will take you to the cathedral stone roofs (don't wear high heels!), where you get great views of the old city.
€10 for 30-45 minutes, everyday 10am to 2 pm, 4pm-8pm. Booking recommended (especially in summer), entry via Pazo de Xelmirez, Praza do Obraodiro.
It's a luxury B&B on the Tuscan/Umbrian borders. Has great rooms with views and is only 40 minutes' drive from Perugia airport, near lots of medieval towns.
The hamlet of Lugnano between Citta di castello and Umbertide
I had some free time to go to Lantau, an island off Hong Kong, which is reachable by road and rail.
This is actually most people's arrival point, as Hong Kong's new airport was built on an artificial piece of land that was added to accommodate the huge structure.
The island is home to some amazing little fishing villages (Tai O), where locals go at weekends to buy their dried fish, as well as Big Buddha, the biggest outdoor buddha in the world. Next to the Big Buddha temple, is a monastery, where its possible to eat some fantastic vegetarian food, with beautifully decorated and ornate surroundings.
A great afternoon out, and the chance to be outside of the polluted areas like Hong Kong Island and Kowloon.
The ruins of the Roman amphitheatre and Lugnudum are worth a look as it's one of the most intact amphitheatres in France and offers superb views over Lyon.
Feel free to put on a play as we did! Free entry.
The Roman amphitheatre is a 20 min walk up the hill from Cathédrale St Jean and a 10 min walk from the funicular station at Minimes
Fourvière hill is where the Romans set up Lugnudum (their name for Lyon) and contains the treasures of Cathédrale St Jean, Basillique Notre Dame de Fourvière, Place St Jean, Rue St Jean and a Roman amphitheatre.
Just take the funicular from the bottom of Fourvière hill up to Basillique Notre or walk up from Cathédrale St Jean and lose yourself in the alleyways and squares of old Lyon.
Fourvière hill lies on the left bank of the Saone river opposite Presqu'ile. From Place Bellecour just follow the signs for Fourvière.
For a comprehensive tour of Geneva I recommend this route:
From Cornavin train station, go down Rue du Mont Blanc and cross the river Rhône via the Pont Mont Blanc, stopping to admire superb views of Lake Geneva, St Peter's Cathedral, Ile Rousseau and Pont des Bergues.
Once across Pont Mont Blanc, walk alongside the Rhône river via the embankment to see Port St Gervais and enter the shopping district of Geneva.
Walk along Rue de la Conféderation, Rue de la Croix d'or and Rue du Rhône.
Turn off Rue de la Conféderation at Place Madelaine and walk up into the old city to Place Bourg Four (good cheap cafés here) and climb Rue de l'Hôtel de Ville to look at the murals depicting the history of Geneva and the cannons.
Enter Cours St Pierre and visit St Peter's Cathedral. Then descend back to the shopping district and head to the Jardin Anglais to see the famous Jet d'eau and flower clock.
Walk alongside Lake Geneva (Rive Gauche) - for children there is a beach on this side of the lake.
Go through the Jardin Anglais, go across Pont Mont Blanc and walk alongside lake Geneva (Rive Droite) stopping to admire views of Mont Blanc across the lake and see the Brunswick monument.
Return to Cornavin train station via Les Paquis district (to the west of Quai Wilson). Go up Rue de Lausanne and follow signs to Cornavin train station.
St Peter's Cathedral can be seen from everywhere in Geneva and is the symbol of the old city of Geneva.
Its interior is truly impressive and for 3 CHF you can climb the 157 steps up to the tower for stunning views (tip: if you can't or don't want to climb up to the tower than the same view can be seen on a poster just next to the entrance). The exterior of the cathedral is a curious mismatch of building styles too with a Romanized façade (columns).
Cours St Pierre - a 30 min walk from Cornavin train station
They run the funniest little business in town! The Iconic Fiat 500 is finally available to hire.
I have always pointed them out to my husband and sighed longingly at their charm, (there is something almost 'expensive accessory must-have' about them, like the latest pair of Marc Jacobs).
This trip to Tuscany we got behind the wheel and did a convoy tour in one! Absolutely hilarious!
"Again again again!" I wanted to squeal like an over-indulged child as we said goodbye to Paola (our little red head-turner) at the end of the glorious trip.
Over a hundred islands, sunny weather (the locals call it 'The Winterless North'), and a generally relaxed disposition make the Bay of Islands a perfect place to visit.
Reliable winds, safe anchorages, and stunning viewpoints mean that any sailing trip is going to be amazing. There's quite a few old seadogs living in their boats in the Bay, taking people out for a day or a few days - the best way to see the islands.
Fantastic area. Beautiful scenery, great little villages, pubs and shops. We stayed in a couple of cottages we found on the Lovetoescape portal - loads to choose from. Why holiday abroad when the exchange rate is bad, home has so much to offer.
You can't go to Annecy and not see its most famous sight - its lake, it's framed by towering mountains on the south side and green hills on the Annecy side, there are plenty of boats which go around the lake but it's far better to walk and take as many photos as you can.
You can't miss Lake Annecy - just follow 'Le Lac' signs from the train station
A fantastic luxury lodge at reasonable price, on a deserted private beach with white sand and blue sea. Food is amazing and the pool, bar and restaurant areas are great. Huts you stay in are beautifully furnished with breathtaking views of sea and sand. It's quite new I think, so not many people have been there yet - now's the time to go! Also went swimming with whale sharks (awe inspiring!) and picnicked on desert islands.
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