Category: Destinations

Liverpool’s Historical Pubs

The Roscoe Head (24 Roscoe Street) is an authentic English public house bursting with character which has survived the onslaught on the super pub chains. It’s a local city centre pub which remains unspoiled; with patrons from all walks of life – regulars like Zutons singer Dave McCabe and ‘The Wire’ playwright Jimmy McGovern make for some interesting backroom debates. Pop in on quiz night and you may well meet Billy Hatton, former band member …

Taste of Norway

There’s a quiet culinary uprising catching on in Norway; a new-found pride and a change in attitude towards food traditions. This has given rise to the production of local and organic produce which people in the know claim is the result of their climatic conditions and landscape. To find out what makes fjord food so distinctive, I sought the advice from food producers, chefs, artisan bakers and farmers.

From Cheese…

Following a brief ferry trip …

Austria’s Grand Park Hotel: Snow, Spa and Cuisine at Its Finest

If you are bored with the uniformity of five-star hotels and prefer personalized treatment, a daily gourmet food experience, sport followed by wellness to recover, you want to read on.
The 89-roomed Grand Park, with its understated elegance and obliging service staff, is Bad Hofgastein’s only five-star hotel. Its location is perfection, in the midst of the Alps, the gateway to world-class hiking and skiing. The hotel itself, Georgian in style, is located well for …

Grossarler Hof: Austria’s Winter Sports Hotel

Fifty-two miles south of Salzburg, surrounded by the imposing Austrian Alps, with their broad slopes and wide runs, is the piste-perfect ski resort of Grossarl – an idyllic winter sports mini break in a picture postcard setting.

The hotel to call home is the 4 star-superior Grossarler Hof, a member of the Small Luxury Hotels of the World group. They opened in 2009 and already have a host of awards and accolades.

Committed to nature

Flachau: Austria’s Ultimate Winter Sports Destination

In the 19th century, Flachau was Austria’s regional centre of iron smelting. Now though, it’s one of the largest ski resorts in Ski amadé with 270 lifts and 760km of slopes, snowboarding, tobogganing, tubing, cross-country and downhill skiing. The village has combined technology with top-class ski facilities and has modern lifts sweep skiers above manicured slopes, whisking them to the top of the mountain. Long quiet runs cater for everyone – from beginners, to connoisseurs, …

Austria’s Gastein Valley: Three Villages, One Valley

Considered the jewel of the Austrian Alps, the Gastein Valley lies an hour south of Salzburg, in the heart of the majestic Austrian Alps. Other than the fantastic thermal spa and panoramic views of the Hohe Tauern National Park, the mountains surrounding Gastein are what it’s all about.

From the west side of the valley, cable cars rise two miles to the summit of Stubnerkogel. From there, a variety of ski runs and several lifts …

Austria: Sensational Skiing

Austria’s Ski amadé is a sensory experience; a colourful explosion of blue sky, white snow and emerald green trees; interspersed with aromatic aromas of local cuisine and the silken taste of Austrian wine (their secret weapon!). It sharpens your senses – it’s chaotic, intoxicating, raw, in-your-face and utterly exciting.

Like the perfectly groomed pistes which give you access to viewpoints such as the Kraftorte recovery point, where nature comes into focus and opens up unexpected …

A Walk Through Sussex, England’s Wine Country

Now is the time for wine and nature lovers to rejoice; not only do Sussex vineyards produce beautiful wines, they also provide opportunities to sample, tour the vineyards and meet the Vintners.

Fizz On Foot, who offers guided walk and wine tasting tours, combine the great outdoors with walks through great British wine country. From a one-day buffet lunch and wine-tasting tour to a four-day, several vineyards trek, you’ll see the spectacular Sussex countryside as …

Alternate Route to Europe from the UK

EUROSTAR

Forget short-haul flights, delays and the rigorous security inspections that come with it – take the train instead! Train travel is not only environmentally friendly but pleasurable and remarkably quick too. It’s easier than flying and you get to see the country you’re traveling through.

Eurostar is the high-speed passenger train from London to Brussels and Paris via the undersea Channel Tunnel. Eurostar trains leave London St Pancras station almost every hour for the …

Europe Through the Windscreen (Part Two)

DEAL (COUNTY KENT) & BENTLEY

Like all of England, the rural landscape is manicured, clean and precise – the habits of an old and fastidious land where the great British tradition of an afternoon tea in a quirky worn-around-the-edges Tea Room is a prerequisite. Driving a Bentley Continental GT Speed (Conti Speed) through the rolling vastness of Kent’s achingly beautiful countryside, I head to Deal and the promise of finding one such remote temple to great …

Europe Through the Windscreen (Part One)

WALES & LOTUS

Wales is home to Tom Jones, Anthony Hopkins, Catherine Zeta Jones, the world’s oldest language and more castles per square mile than any other place on Earth. It’s an old and fastidious land of charmed, dreamy landscapes; farmhouses and snug villages tucked away amongst deep woodlands in the most inaccessible lush places.

At Heathrow Airport, Bespokes Car Hire handed me the keys to a Lotus Evora, a 3.5-litre V6 missile. With its …

A ‘Strangeland’ Musical Trail through East Sussex, England

Keane is an international super-group who herald from East Sussex. Bexhill, Hastings and Battle are the towns that will forever be remembered collectively as ‘Strangeland’, the name of the band’s fifth consecutive number-one album, which speaks of places that influenced their lives. Now, a local initiative together with Keane, share a geographical and emotional journey that helped shape the Strangeland album via an intuitive and well informed website that connects the lyrics with the actual …

Ireland Off-Season

Everyone wants to go to Ireland, and it seems that everyone wants to go in the summer. Now don’t get me wrong. There is much good to be said about the warm days of summer on the greenest of islands. However, fall, winter, and spring offer their own special charms, as well as being amazingly affordable times to travel. The scenery is still stunning, the people are still Irish (and maybe more so, relieved of the pressure …

Fighting Ethnocentrism by Going to Europe: Travel as a Political Act with Rick Steves

The name Rick Steves has become synonymous with savvy, frugal, no-nonsense travel. He’s established a veritable European travel empire, including dozens of guidebooks, tours, apps, travel products and even the beloved PBS series, complete with its own theme song. But in the case of Rick Steves, “empire” isn’t really the right word, not with his emphasis on meaningful cultural exchange and the publication of his award-winning manifesto, Travel as a Political Act. In a …