Stay at the Coffee Estate Inn: the owners are a little difficult, but they run a top-notch operation (fresh coffee, homemade breads, flower arrangements, amazing view, etc).
Eat at the Panamonte Inn in the fireplace room: nice ambience, the people watching is decent, and they serve great food for the money.
Drive to Cerro Punto and walk the trails in La Amistad National Park.
A working farm between Tiverton and Barnstaple - really lovely family site for relaxing. If you're a walker, it's a good spot for walking the moors or equally for local walks.
West Middlewick Farm, Nomansland, Tiverton Devon Ex16 8NP, www.westmiddlewick.co.uk , 01884 861235
Running away from the Piazza Garibaldi down to the Piazza del Mercato are Naples' markets. In keeping with the city's general atmosphere, they're a noisy, chaotic affair (with more than a whiff of the mafia about them by all accounts!).
Watching the fish market at Porta Nolana - and every other specimen of market stall imaginable scattered across the area - is an essential Naples experience in and of itself.
To the west/southwest of Piazza Garibaldi
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.
An area on the northern coast of Spain which is like a step back in time. Fishing villages, walking through hills, beautiful valleys, prehistoric sites, romantic churches and Santiago walking routes. Rural and coastal. Activities, horseriding, canoeing trekking cycling etc. Many country houses and apartments to enjoy both countryside and coast.
Pieria mountains are roughly in the middle of the Greek mainland and just beside Mount Olympus - the well known mount of gods from mythology. They are beautiful and green.
A hotel which has a great view of Mount Olympus is the Semeli Resort. It's small but cosy and is beside the forests. Great walking opportunities, birdwatching, mountain biking, skiing - when there's snow.
In 20 minutes' drive you can visit Dion, Vergina in one-hour drive, Thessaloniki with a vast collection of Byzantine churches and ruins, museums and the beach is 20 minutes' drive. I love this area - beautiful mountains, small villages with simple but genuine life. It is worth visiting.
It is astonishing to come across acharming and friendly inn off a highway between Lechlade and Burford and have the most memorable pub lunch of chicken liver and brandy pate and a yellowfin tuna nicoise that didn't taste of dishwater, and all on a Monday after visiting William Morris's house at Kelmscott (which was closed, so we needed cheering up, and got it). The most beautiful village of old houses made of sublime Cotswold Stone - walks, woollen mills, beautiful things to buy, heaven - we will stay here next time- Tadeus Pfeifer, Basel
Filkins, Oxfordshire - website
Great alternative trek to Machu Picchu and it takes in it all. Just book when you get there, you can usually go next day. Oh, and please don't take any notice of the Guardian's advertised £3.95 price (do they earn commision from this agent?). It costs around £120 pounds, all meals included with camping.
Any agent in Plaza de Armas
This is a great little hotel in a superb location for both (snow-sure) skiing in winter and outdoor activities the rest of the year. Amazing views in all directions. Good home-cooked food and very reasonable prices. They've got a lovely big garden and sunny terrace where you can relax/read/gaze at the stunning mountains across the valley. It's easy to reach from Salzburg, Linz or Graz airports.
We've been there in winter and also on walking holidays in summer and can't decide which we liked better. The village (Bad Mitterndorf) is really unspoilt by tourism - no package tours go there and the atmosphere is really Austrian. It's on the edge of the Austrian Lake District - great for swimming in the hot summers! We just keep on going back for more. Oh, and they've got mountain bikes that guests can use free of charge, too.
These two privately owned self-catering lodges are in a private estate right on the shores of Loch Lomond at Rowardennan. Stunning area beneath Ben Lomond with wonderful walking and, if you climb the Ben, you are rewarded with magnificent views.
Rowardennan Hotel is very handy too. Great for launching your own boats which can be moored on guest moorings (for a fee). Jetty and shallow beaches.
Environmental education charity offering eco holidays that include training in ecology/traditional skills plus guided walks via woodlands, hills, bogs and lakes.
Also enjoyable local culture with traditional music, dancing, arts and drama.
Scariff, County Clare, Ireland.
nearest station Birdhill
Casa Tío Juan is a self-catering rental house that sleeps up to 12. It's a traditional village house in the centre of Hoyos del Espino in the heart of the Sierra de Gredos. We had a great time there and will definitely be returning! Great mountains, stunning scenery and so much to do. The village has bars and restaurants, shops, a bank - everything that you could want within a few minutes walk. By car you can vistit Ávila, Toledo, Salamanca. The Sierra de Gredos is an undiscovered gem. Go before everyone else does!
About two miles west of Ilfracombe - as the crow flies - lies this small gem of a seaside village. It's set in a very deep 'combe' or valley and is one of those places where you genuinely feel as though you've stepped back in time. The village can be reached by road where you can experience the vertiginous descent through narrow lanes or by footpath across the cliffs from Ifracombe with wonderful sea views.
Once there you can enjoy a variety of pleasures - visiting the Fuschia tea gardens or the Grampus pub, taking one of several excellent walks, or just enjoying the wonderful little rocky cove and beach which for many is the highlight that really provides Lee with its charm.
From Ilfracombe take the B3231 passing through Slade valley and Lincombe then descend into Lee.
The Sierra de Gredos, which forms part of Spain's Sistema Central, is approximately 140 kms in length running from Cerro de Guisando in the east to the Sierra de Bejar in the west, and boasts glacial cirques, mountain rivers and falls, and peaks reaching nearly 2600m.
Every season has something to offer in Gredos – from winter snow and ice, through the verdant and flower-rich spring to the pleasant temperatures of summer and the beautiful colours of autumn.
For those who like to be active, the Sierra offers walking for all abilities, climbing and scrambling on both rock and ice, cycling, mountain biking, paragliding, horse riding and both cross country and extreme skiing.
For others, there are rivers to swim in, historical sites and cities to visit and many beautiful natural spaces rich with an abundance of wildlife and nature to discover and explore.
As well as the more obvious Dylan Thomas connections, there are a number of beautiful walks around the village.
If you visit St Martin's Church, cross the footbridge into the new graveyard, where Dylan Thomas is buried, walk up to the top, and go through the gate into the lane. Turn to the right, and follow the track, this takes you into the village, by the entrance to Glan Y Mor, at the beginning of the cliff walk to the Boathouse. Lovely views of the village, and peace and quiet.
If you walk out to the boathouse, continue walking along the path on the cliffs above it. This path will take you on through some woods (slightly spoilt by the access road to the yacht club) which have bluebells and a romantic ruin, lots of wildlife!
You come out into fields, and can continue walking, up above the estuary, and towards St Clear's. You can circle back round to St Martin's, or retrace your steps. Take an OS map!
Another nice walk is from the car park at the Grist (village square). Rather than go beneath the castle, walk the other way, towards the sewage plant (it's only small, and looks just like a stone wall). Just before it, take the path going up. It's a climb, but worth it for the views at the top, of Laugharne, and the other way, of the Burrows, and across to Worms Head and Pembrey. Lots of birds and flowers too!
Finally, the bakery. Just round the corner from Browns Hotel, in Victoria Street. Excellent bread and pasties/pies, but the best thing of all, the butter buns. Get there before ten, as they always sell out, delicious warm, take them on your walk!
There is an hourly bus service from Carmarthen, if you are driving, take the A40 to St Clears, and follow the signs for the boathouse. Parking at St Martins Church, and off the Grist (tidal!).
David is an experienced walking leader and expert history and wildlife guide with great personality. Offering day walks, tours and holidays from Yunquera, hidden in the unspoilt Sierra de las Nieves, close to Ronda and only an hour from Malaga airport, yet it seems a different world to the Costa del Sol. Fantastic value - David walks and guides for the joy not for profit. Check out the website...
1hr Malaga Airport.
Take a walking trip led by a local Sami reindeer herder, through a stunning national park landscape with reindeers as your travelling companions. Learn about the importance of reindeer to the local people and see some of the most beautiful landscape Sweden has to offer.
Take the wonderful night train from Stockholm to remind you how train travel ought to be.
Alternatively arrange your own outdoor activities in this beautiful area.
Alcossebre is a lovely town with three lovely beaches (all blue flag) and lots of quality restaurants that cater for those wanting romance, family or tapas-style food. Although Brits are finally discovering the town and the surrounding area, Alcossbre still retains its Spanish roots.
It is ideally located to discover the wonderful Costa Del Azahar - the larger holiday resorts, Peniscola and Benicassim are about 20 mins drive away. You can relax, play golf, scuba dive and cycle to your hearts content.
Costa Del Azahar (approx 70km north of Valencia, 65km south of Reus)
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