Poolbeg Lighthouse is located at the end of the South Bull Wall and is a great place to go for a bracing walk. The wall sticks out into the bay and you can get a 360 degree view of Dublin bay and the mountains. It feels like you're on an island and sometimes you can be really lucky and see a seal. Plus there are loads of sea birds and even a tiny unspoilt beach. It’s a real escape from the city.
South Bull Wall is located in Ringsend/Irishtown, in the heart of the industrial centre of Dublin. The easiest way to get there is by travelling down the quays on the southside. The nearest landmark is the powerstation with its red and white striped towers.
This grand old public park, on the outskirts of Dublin's southern suburbs is a great way of escaping the mayhem, walking off that hangover and acts as a gateway to the beautiful Dublin and Wicklow hills. A wander through the Victorian grounds, forest, Saturday market and model railway for kids is extremely rewarding.
For one of the outstanding views of Dublin, follow the yellow marker posts for about an hour on a climb into the nearby woods. This view (on the Wicklow walkway) looks north taking in Dublin city, the bay and environs.
For even more stunning scenery follow the track for another hour up the hill and the city disappears to reveal open Irish hillsides and rolling forests. If you’re lucky, you will see some native deer and mountain goats.
Take the 48A bus from Dame Street (city centre near O'Connell Street) for 1/2 an hour, the last stop is Marley Park. To get to the viewing points follow the yellow markers in the main carpark. A map and information are also provided. For more details on the Wicklow way see www.wicklowway.com
TTo clear your head the morning after a night on the Guinness, hop on the Dart to Dun Laoghaire and take a stroll down one of its two piers. The east pier is a mile long and the west even longer. You will be rewarded with a breathtaking view over the Irish Sea.
On sunny days when the sea is a deep azure and the sky scattered with gauzy clouds you'll share the pier with families and lovers and little boys fishing. On colder winter days, when the water is iron grey, and the cumulus clouds and watery sun do battle over the roof tops and church steeples, the only sounds will be the rushing wind and the clanging of harboured boats. You might pass other pink-nosed hardy souls or even spot a few seals watching you silently from the choppy waves.
Nothing like it for a hangover.
DART to Dun Laoghaire station
Less energetic than walking up Killiney Hill: take the Dart to Killiney and then walk back along the coast road to Dalkey. The views over the bay are lovely. Further along, look out for Coliemore Harbour and Dalkey Island. Finish off with drinks or food in Dalkey, before taking the Dart back into town.
Dart to Killiney
Sunday flower market, good for buying fresh flowers and plants, but also great just to walk about. Plenty of cafes and shops to poke about in too, and within walking distance of Brick Lane (for a curry) or Kingsland Road (for Vietnamese).
Columbia Road, Hackney E2
The best advice when it comes to this street is to plunge in, go with the flow and enjoy the constant weird and wonderful activities taking place around you. Let yourself be carried past shoe shiners, cheap pensions, human statues (performers), and people of all types. Let your senses be assailed by the squawking of caged birds, the perfumed air of flower stalls, the chatter of gossips and the shrieks of the fruit markets.
Arguably the best people-watching place in the world. Federico Garcia Lorca said that it was the only street in the world he hoped would never end. It was originally just a path beside a stream that was running through the centre of the old city to Spain’s most famous street. If Plaça Catalunya is the communications hub, Las Ramblas is the emotional hub of Barcelona.
Metro: Plaça Catalunya
Arbat Ulitsa (Arbat St) is a pedestrian only stretch of road just east of the Kremlin. It is lined with shops and restaurants as well as souvenir kiosks. The sellers are not in your face and haggling is a must. Most of it is pretty camp, but some is quite nice. Make sure you are looking for Arbat St and not Novy Arbat St, which is a bit dull and lifeless.
Get off the metro at Arbatskaya and look for the statue of Gogol. Walk past the statue and you're pretty much there
Lovely for a walk - especially in spring. Littered with cafes and restaurants, you can sit for a drink or just soak up the sun.
Take a book or munch on a Gianduiotto di passeggio from the Da Nico gelateria in the summer.
Wistful in winter: take a midnight walk in the freezing cold and take in the sound of the Giudecca Canal.
Go to the water bus (vaporetto) stop Zattere, or walk up from the Accademia stop; www.actv.it/english/home.php
Tervuren Park is a tram ride from the city centre. Walk around the lakes or wander along the trails in the woods. You can get to the Africa museum and its formal grounds from the park or go into Tervuren centre and sample the patisseries and shops.
Take the No 44 'Tervuren' tram from Montgomery metro. The park and museum are just opposite the tram stop
This hidden gem is considered by many to be one of Europe's finest memorial gardens. It was designed by the great English architect Sir Edwin Lutyens. It's dedicated to the Irish dead of the first world war. It is beautifully maintained, a real little oasis by the River Liffey, across from Phoenix Park.
South Circular Road, Islandbridge. It's about 10 minutes walk from Heuston Station (Intercity rail and Luas stop)
One of the nicest walks in easy reach of Dublin. Get the Dart train to Howth village (about 25 minutes from the city centre), turn left and walk past the harbour (also a lovely walk and has a great restaurant called Aqua).Keep following the coast and you will find yourself on a wide unpaved path that runs along the southern part of Howth Head. Get ready for a bracing walk with fantastic views over Dublin Bay on a nice day. If you keep walking for two to three hours you eventually arrive in Sutton. Keep walking along the coast and you will end up at the Marine Hotel. You can get back to Dublin from the Sutton Dart station.
Howth Head, north Dublin
Toronto Island is a must see and it is basically free, an oasis in the middle of the city. The island is a like a large peaceful park with beaches (there's a nude beach, gay beach as well as regular beaches), rollerblading, biking and walking paths, and even an amusement park and free petting zoo for children.
Ferries leave every 15 minutes from Bay St and Queens Quay at Harbourfront, just south of Union Station. There's plenty of parking too. www.toronto.ca/parks/island/index.htm
Get a certain distance out on the Via Appia, the tomb of Caecilia Metella or the Circus of Romulus perhaps, and walk back in, taking in the odd catacomb or church on the way, ending up at Porta Ostiense by the Pyramid of Cestius - what I call the Quo Vadis experience!
Down the hill from the city centre towards the river is the quarter known as Podil which, roughly translated, means ‘skirt’. Historically, this was the tradesmen’s quarter and is now where you’ll get the best impression of what the rest of the city used to look like. There are one or two nice churches here and the architecture is much gentler than the Soviet sweep of the streets above. This is now becoming a desirable residential area, if you can afford it, being far handier for the city than the tower blocks across the river.
The Podil quarter can most easily be reached by using the funicular behind St Mikhayil’s monastery.
This part of Rome is much quieter and on a smaller scale than much of the main part of the city. It's on the west side of the Tiber and south of the Vatican and has many small restaurants and boutiques - a few too many perhaps. It's a little reminiscent of Florence and the narrow cobbled streets still contain many picturesque old houses.
If you are bored with the hum drum that is wally world take the time on a Sunday to discover Spitalfields Market. Home to London's student fashion designers you may discover the new Stella McCarthy... Or come across the perfect retro furniture in the many 2nd hand shops.
Here you'll also find the most authentic Spanish Tapas, hams hanging from the ceiling and saw dust on the floor, bar in London.
Via a short walk through the bustling Brick Lane you will come across Columbia Road Flower market. An oasis amongst Tower Hamlets, it is great fun to get tangled up amongst the tree ferns and orchids. Possibly a perfect Sunday for those that love London.
Start at the Angel tube and walk north-ish around Barnsbury, where Tony Blair used to live, or along Upper Street to Highbury Field. Check out Lonsdale Square off Liverpool Road and Canonbury Square to the east of Upper Street. Beautiful and very real residential London - not too rough and not too polished.
N1, N7, N5
Angel tube station is on the Northern line. Highbury and Islington tube station is on the Victoria line.
You can spend a whole afternoon walking between Higbury and Islington and Angel tube stations. There are so many gorgeous boutiques and cafes. My recommendations for places to eat are Le Mercury (number 140a) for gorgeous French home cooking where all main courses are less than £7 and all starters are around £3.50 and the wonderful delicatessen Ottolenghi (number 287) which has the most mouthwatering window display with mounds of chocolate and raspberry meringues!
Then there's the shopping. Upper Street is perfect for Christmas present shopping as so many of its shops are crammed with "ooh, she'd love one of those" trinkets. There's After Noah at number 121 selling vintage telephones and wall clocks alongside unique pieces of jewellery and children's toys. Oliver Bonas at 147-148 has more of the same with a small selection of pretty outfits. Aria at 295-297 has some scrummy handbags and its interiors shop opposite sells furniture fit for a penthouse apartment.
On Sundays there is also a small but very good Farmers' Market behind the Town Hall and the independent cinema The Screen on the Green (number 83) is a great place to catch the latest arty flick.
This hill, which your Angkor Wat guide will know, and be able to take you to, is the perfect way to round off a trip to this amazing temple comlex, by watching the sun set over the whole Angkor Site. The climb is hard going, but well worth it, although you can ride an elephant to the top for about $15. There are loads of people there, but this adds to the atmosphere, rather than ruining it. There is usually someone selling cold beers as well, and it would be rude not to!
Your guide will take you.
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