It's a hot summery day in Paris and all you want to do is soak up the sun and occasionally cool off. Oh, and experience what Parisians might be doing on a day like today. Oh, and you'll want somewhere tasty to refuel a litter later. And if you've got kids they need to enjoy it too. Well, try Piscine Josephine Baker, a swimming pool on a barge in the Seine. As if having a swimming pool on a barge in the Seine isn't cool enough, it also has a retractable roof to really make the most of summer days. And if that too isn't enough, the water for the pool comes from the Seine itself, is filtered for the pool, and then goes back into the Seine afterward. So it's really an eco pool!I wonder what Josephine would have made of it.
8 Quai François Mauriac 75013 Paris
+33(0)1 56 61 96 50
Google map: bit.ly/MfZIyb
This must be one of the very best mountain restaurants, high above the Passo Pordoi, in the great, majestic bulk of the Dolomites. Sass Pordoi is a very well visited mountain top restaurant, viewing station, and walking base for many reasons. First off it is convenient, easily accessed off the major pass of Passo Pordoi that connects the main resort centres of the region. Second, the journey up is by cable alone, one of the truly great cable car ascents. Third, you can walk for miles, take in the sun, or simply sit back and marvel at the glorious views. Fourth, you can simply marvel at the glorious views. Fifth, well, you get the idea. And, while you are there, you can enjoy proper mountain food. Hearty, nourishing, and with a healthy side plate of views. Oh, did I mention the views. So, a simple menu. Convenient drive for starters, followed by a great cable ascent for our fishiest course of the day, hearty fare with a side of glorious views for main, views for dessert, and maybe a chance to drink some views as you relax afterwards. Stunning.
For me, the best Christmas markets in the UK are the Manchester Christmas Markets. I would guess that most Christmas markets in this country have the same basic sort of stalls. Certainly those I've seen have had. After all, people want familiarity and their favourites.
So Manchester gets lots of stollen, glühwein, beer, and handicrafts. Many stalls come from our northern European neighbours, but the Manchester market is big enough to have a good selection of domestic stalls. Plus, the quality really benefits from the creativity that thrives in the conjoined cities of Manchester and Salford.
On some days the whole market atmosphere gets a further boost from a Farmers' market, selling delicious food from the region and beyond.
The real icing on the Manchester stollen though is the way that it really fits snugly into its Manchester glove. The city's architecture really helps here, being warm and red with enough size to be impressive, while remaining on a human scale that stops it becoming impersonal. Most importantly though, the markets benefit from the way Manchester's squares have been laid out, and the overall size of the city. Like its architecture, Manchester is just the right size, a place that can be walked with ease, where a section of the markets is never too far away, and where the human side is never lost to grey commercialism.
They are creative, they are warm, they fit hand in glove, they are the best Christmas Markets in the UK, they are the Manchester Christmas markets.
Squares across Manchester's main shopping area.
There are ferries on streams, there are ferries on rivers, but ferries on oceans, well they are something else. And may favourite is the ferry service of the Alaska Marine Highway along Alaska' Inside Passage.
The Passage is mesmerising, the longest such stretch of protected fjords, thick forest, and myriad islands in the world. And to sail it by ferry, with whales for company in the water, and locals to spend hours chatting with up on deck, stopping off at small settlements as you go, is simply the best way to experience southern Alaska in its rugged finery. If you are young enough you might even try braving nights in a sleeping bag up on deck.
Send your feedback or queries to email@example.com