Minorca Destination Guide (2024)

Table of Contents
Overview of Minorca Key Facts Travel Advisories Travel to Minorca Climate for Minorca Health Notes when travelling to Spain Safety Notes when travelling to Spain Customs in Spain Duty Free in Spain Doing Business in Spain Communication in Spain Tipping in Spain Passport/Visa Note Entry Requirements Travel Advisories Attractions in Minorca, Spain Mahon Naveta des Tudons Ferreries Events in Minorca, Spain Nightlife in Minorca, Spain Shopping in Minorca, Spain Dining in Minorca, Spain Airports in Minorca Menorca Airport (MAH)Menorca Airporthttp://www.aena.es Currency Kitzbuhel Sa Coma Ixia Rethymnon Santa Ponsa Mojacar Serre-Chevalier Kusadasi Hurghada Cala d'Or Klosters Javea Antalya Koh Samui St Francis Bay Lagos Lloret de Mar Costa Teguise Puerto Pollensa San Antonio Chamonix S'Illot Cerro Catedral Bansko Courmayeur Heavenly Las Lenas Tofino Pattaya Malia Molyvos Blue Bay Cozumel Fethiye Conil de la Frontera Sintra Playa del Carmen Playa del Cura Los Cristianos Marmaris Agios Nikolaos Les Arcs Sousse Kardamena Kefalos Val Thorens Cancun Courchevel Albufeira Altinkum La Paz Hammamet El Gouna Kas Steamboat Kuta Branson Mammoth Mountain Heraklion Los Gigantes Torremolinos Tossa de Mar Calis Lovina Crested Butte Davos Lech and Zurs Cala Millor Cascais Altea Saalbach La Plagne Lake Tahoe Pucon Soldeu Marbella Mazatlan Plettenberg Bay Sandanski Val dIsere Sun Valley Sugarloaf Sunny Beach Vilamoura Vallnord Koh Chang Side Dalyan Nessebar Koh Phi Phi Sao Miguel Izmir Tarifa Varna Hisaronu Pamporovo Fernie Alpine Resort Knysna Pas de la Casa Cortina d Ampezzo Telluride St Moritz Sidari Zermatt Jackson Hole Mountain Resort Ixtapa Puerto del Carmen Paguera Salou Playa la Arena Kavos Magaluf Benidorm Belle Mare Laganas Corralejo Megeve Moraira Tavira Playa del Ingles Puerto Rico Estoril Caleta de Fuste Belek Koh Tao Alcudia Sitges Tignes Whistler Blackcomb Flaine Bavaro Puerto Costa Maya Copper Mountain Roses Ocean City Sunday River Breckenridge Roquetas de Mar Kos Town Borovets Squaw Valley Taba Heights Cadiz Maspalomas Blanes Golden Sands Vail El Arenal Can Picafort Meribel Flic en Flac Puerto Mogan Faliraki Grand Baie Sharm el-Sheikh Big Sky Lake Louise Los Penitentes Icmeler Krabi Playa de las Americas Saddleback Verbier Calas de Mallorca Bodrum Puerto de la Cruz Gstaad Turunc Keystone Skanes Ayia Napa Alanya Morzine Palma Nova Oludeniz Hania Beaver Creek Los Cabos Puerto Vallarta Aspen Port El Kantaoui Puerto Santiago Kalkan Playa Blanca St Anton Koh Pha Ngan Protaras Acapulco Matagorda Aswan Limassol Coral Bay Paros Bandos Zakopane Garmisch-Partenkirchen Kuramathi Equator Village Dahab Golf del Sur Bretton Woods Sinaia Nissaki Banyan Tree Attitash Lindos Rhodes Town Cala San Vincente Cocoa Island Resort Mount Washington Koh Lanta Big Bear Samoens Baros Adra Nafplion Hakuba Huvafen Fushi Costa Ballena Paradise Island Kurumba Waterville Valley Shiga Kogen Punta Cana Kani Furano Arenal d'en Castell Las Caletillas News about FAQs References

Overview of Minorca

Minorca Destination Guide (1)

Despite its popularity as a beach holiday paradise,the Balearic Island of Minorca remains one of the loveliest, mostunspoilt islands in the Mediterranean. The local population supportthe control of resort development and the woodlands and fields ofits hilly rural interior remain largely untouched by the tourismtrade.

This is the result of a thriving local industry thatis less dependent on tourism for its survival than many of theother islands are. Minorca is therefore a great option fortravellers wanting a more authentic Spanish beach resort holiday.Minorca is only nine miles (15km) wide and about 32 miles (52km)long, and boasts stretches of varied beaches, from silver-sanded,gently curving bays to rugged, rocky inlets.

Aside from beaches and resorts, the island also hasplenty of interest for history buffs and culture connoisseurs, withseveral attractions to visit, including a world famous pipe organand several mysterious, prehistoric archaeological sites related tothe second millennium BC Talayot culture. The more recent historyof the island is a saga of British, French, and Spanish attempts atcontrol and colonisation, each of which have left their influenceon the local culture and architecture.

Small as it may be, Minorca has a reliable and safepublic transport system. Buses run from the Placa de s'Esplanada inMahon regularly throughout the town and between other towns such asFornells, Es Mercadal, Alaior, Ferreries, Ciutadella, and Cala enPorter. Taxis can also be hailed from the Placa de s'Esplanada inMahon. Rental car agencies can be found throughout the towns and atthe airport.

Key Facts

Spanish is the official language, but English is widelyunderstood in areas frequented by tourists. Catalan, Galician andBasque are spoken in the relevant areas.

The borderless region known as the Schengen area includes thefollowing countries: Austria, Belgium, Czech Republic, Denmark,Estonia, Finland, France, Germany, Greece, Hungary, Iceland, Italy,Latvia, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Malta, The Netherlands, Norway,Poland, Portugal, Slovakia, Slovenia, Spain, and Sweden. All thesecountries issue a standard Schengen visa that has a multiple entryoption, allowing the holder to travel freely within the borders ofall. Non-EU nationals must hold a return or onward ticket, allnecessary documents for onward travel and sufficient funds. It ishighly recommended that passports have at least six months'validity remaining after the intended date of departure from Spain.Immigration officials often apply different rules to those statedby travel agents and official sources.


Spain's official currency is the Euro (EUR). One Euro is dividedinto 100 cents. Money can be exchanged at bureaux de change andmajor hotels, but banks give the best rates. All major credit cardsare widely accepted at most hotels, restaurants, and shops. ATMsare widespread and are generally the cheapest and most convenientmethod of obtaining money.

Electrical current is 230 volts, 50Hz. European-styletwo-pin plugs are standard.

Travel Advisories

Travel to Minorca

Climate for Minorca

Minorca enjoys a Mediterranean climate, with mildwinters and hot, dry summers. Experiencing about 315 days ofsunshine a year, Minorca has a gorgeous climate for holidaymakers.July and August are by far the hottest months with temperaturesreaching over 86°F (30°C). Winter, between December and February,is mild and often sunny.

The wettest months are October, November, andDecember. The north wind known as the tramontanablows regularly in Minorca, bringing with itchangeable weather. The island's climate can be ratherunpredictable but the summer season, between June and September isconsistently dry and hot.

The peak summer months, between June and August, arethe most popular time to visit Minorca, but many argue that thebest time to visit the island is spring, in April and May, when thewild flowers and blossoms ensure the landscapes are at their bestand the weather is pleasantly warm. It is also less crowded and theprices tend to be lower (except over Easter). Many restaurants andsome hotels close over the winter months when the island emptiesout.

Health Notes when travelling to Spain

There are no health risks associated with travel to Spain, andno vaccination certificates are required for entry. Medicalfacilities are good in Spain, but comprehensive travel insurance isalways advised. Spain has a reciprocal health agreement with mostEU countries, providing emergency health care for EU travellers onthe same terms as Spanish nationals. After Brexit, the GlobalHealth Insurance Card (GHIC) replaced the European Health InsuranceCard (EHIC) for UK citizens. The GHIC allows UK citizens access tostate healthcare during visits to the EU. The GHIC is not valid inNorway, Iceland, Liechtenstein or Switzerland, nor is it analternative to travel insurance. EU travellers should take aEuropean Health Insurance Card (EHIC). Travellers should take anymedication they require along with them, in its original packagingand accompanied by a signed and dated letter from a doctordetailing what it is and why it is needed.

Safety Notes when travelling to Spain

Most visits to Spain are trouble-free, except for occasionalstreet crime, which is common in the big cities. Travellers areadvised to take precautions to avoid theft of passports, creditcards, travel documents and money. Crime is usually petty andviolent assault is rare. Visitors should be wary of strangersoffering or asking for help of any kind, as it is often adistraction for accomplices. There are also scams involving lettersfor outstanding traffic fines or Spanish lottery winnings. Iftravellers exercise all the normal precautions they should have atrouble-free holiday in Spain.

Customs in Spain

Smoking in public places is banned and stiff fines will beimposed for smoking in areas such as enclosed public spaces, areaswhere food is prepared and sold, public transport, non-smokingareas of bars and restaurants, and any places that cater forchildren. Drinking alcohol in the streets of Madrid and the streetsof the Canary and Balearic Islands is illegal.

Duty Free in Spain

Travellers form EU countries are allowed the following itemsduty free: 800 cigarettes or 400 cigarillos or 200 cigars or 1kgtobacco; 110 litres beer; 90 litres wine; and 10 litres spirit.Travellers from non-EU countries may have 200 cigarettes or 100cigarillos or 50 cigars or 250g tobacco; 1 litre spirits, 4 litreswine, and 16 litres beer.

Doing Business in Spain

The business culture in Spain is slowly shifting but,for now, it's entrenched in tradition and it can take some time forforeigners to gain a foothold in the Spanish working world. It isimportant never to undermine authority, with hierarchy central toSpain's business world. Managers often tend to make decisionswithout considering input from their colleagues.

A strong emphasis is placed on social status,character attributes, and personal pride. Success is often hingedupon being well-dressed, honourable, and dignified, while alsoexhibiting great social skills. Business meetings are generallyconducted face-to-face and can go on for long periods, as Spaniardsprefer long deliberations in order to avoid uncertainty incorporate dealings. Business meetings in Spain tend to tread a fineline between personal and formal.

Conducting business in Spain can entail navigationthrough a lot of red tape and bureaucracy. Spanish is the languageof business, but some of the larger multinationals conduct meetingsin both English and Spanish. Business hours are often quite varied,but generally open by 9am and close in the mid-evening with atwo-hour lunch break during the early afternoon.

Business attire is quite conservative with dark orlinen suits, with shirts and silk ties for men. Women should wearmodest dresses or tailored suits. Brand names or labels attractaffirmation from colleagues and associates.

After the conclusion of successful negotiations,gifts are appropriate. Gifts should be of high quality and, whenreceiving a gift, it should be opened in front of the giver.Business cards are important and should be bilingual. Meetings arebest scheduled for mid-morning, in which establishing a formal yetpersonable environment is important before beginning. Meetingsoften occur over lunches and dinners and may be characterised byseveral speakers.

Communication in Spain

The international access code for Spain is +34. WiFi is widelyavailable; travellers can purchase local SIM cards for unlockedphones.

Tipping in Spain

Hotel and restaurant bills usually include service charges, butadditional tips are welcomed for services rendered. In establishedrestaurants, tips of about 10 percent are expected. In Mallorca,value added tax is usually included in restaurant bills, designatedIVA, and may be mistaken for a service charge. Drivers of meteredtaxis expect small tips and it is customary to tip about 5 to 10percent for most services, including guides.

Passport/Visa Note

The borderless region known as the Schengen area includes thefollowing countries: Austria, Belgium, Czech Republic, Denmark,Estonia, Finland, France, Germany, Greece, Hungary, Iceland, Italy,Latvia, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Malta, The Netherlands, Norway,Poland, Portugal, Slovakia, Slovenia, Spain, and Sweden. All thesecountries issue a standard Schengen visa that has a multiple entryoption, allowing the holder to travel freely within the borders ofall. Non-EU nationals must hold a return or onward ticket, allnecessary documents for onward travel and sufficient funds. It ishighly recommended that passports have at least six months'validity remaining after the intended date of departure from Spain.Immigration officials often apply different rules to those statedby travel agents and official sources.

Entry Requirements

Entry requirements for Americans:

United States citizens require a passport valid for three monthsbeyond the period of intended stay. No visa is required for staysof up to 90 days within a 180 day period.

Entry requirements for Canadians:

Canadian citizens require a passport valid for at least threemonths beyond period of intended stay. No visa is required forstays of up to 90 days within a 180 day period.

Entry requirements for UK nationals:

United Kingdom citizens require a passport valid for at leastthree months beyond period of intended stay, with the exception ofpassports marked 'British Citizen', 'British Subject' (containing aCertificate of Entitlement to the Right of Abode issued by theUnited Kingdom), and 'British Overseas Territories Citizen' issuedby Gibraltar, which will be accepted if valid on arrival.

No visa is required for passports endorsed 'British Citizen','British Overseas Territories Citizen' issued by Gibraltar,Identity Cards issued by Gibraltar, and 'British Subject'(containing a Certificate of Entitlement to the Right of Abodeissued by the United Kingdom) for a maximum stay of 90 days. Allother British nationals are entitled to a maximum stay of 90 dayswithout a visa within a 180 day period.

Entry requirements for Australians:

Australian citizens require a passport valid for at least threemonths beyond period of intended stay. No visa is required forstays of up to 90 days within a 180 day period.

Entry requirements for Irish nationals:

Irish nationals require a valid passport, but a visa is notnecessary.

Entry requirements for New Zealanders:

New Zealand citizens require a passport valid for at least threemonths beyond period of intended stay. No visa is required forstays of up to 90 days within a 180 day period.

Entry requirements for South Africans:

South African citizens require a passport valid for at leastthree months beyond period of intended stay. A visa isrequired.

Travel Advisories

Attractions in Minorca, Spain

Minorca offers a few historic sightseeing opportunities, but themost noteworthy places worth visiting are the exquisite, unspoiltbeaches with soft, white sand and crystalline waters, and thefantastic old villages, which are attractions in themselves.

In Mahon,travellers can explore the waterfront, take a tour ofthe 3.5 mile-long (5.6km) natural harbour on a glass-bottom boat,visit the Xoriguer Gin Distillery and admire the beautifularchitecture. They can also head out to Fornells on the north coastfor the day to enjoy a lazy lunch and spot of shopping in thissleepy fishing village, and organise a scuba dive in the marinereserve while there.

Other places of interest include Arenal D'en Castell, apeaceful, pretty beach resort on the north coast, with a lovelybeach in a protected bay; Calan Porter (also called Cala'n Porter),one of the most popular and picturesque towns on Minorca, set in arugged cove; the 13th-century town of Ferreries, set in lush hills,which is the highest town on the island and is close to somehistorical remains, including a ruined Moorish castle; andCiutadella, a charming port city with a rich history. The Navetades Tudons, found on Minorca, are remarkable, prehistoricarchaeological sites that are thought to be ancient burial sitesand are definitely worth seeing.


Minorca Destination Guide (2)

Most visitors head straight for the string of restaurants andcafes lining the harbour of Mahon, Minorca's capital town. The townitself is sedate and conservative, featuring classic Georgiantownhouses (bearing testimony to the British occupation of bygonedays) and tall apartment blocks. Mahon does have some worthwhileattractions for those interested in making more of their holidaythan dashing off to the beach. The mansion house of Golden Farmoverlooks the harbour, and was once occupied by Admiral LordNelson. Also on the sightseeing list is the Xoriguer GinDistillery, where famed Minorcan gin is produced in an age-oldprocess. The celebrated organ (with more than 3,000 pipes) in thechurch of Esglesia de Santa Maria la Major is also a draw for somevisitors.

Minorca Destination Guide (3)

Naveta des Tudons

Minorca Destination Guide (4)

Regarded as the cathedral of prehistoric monuments, the Navetades Tudons is the best-known archaeological site on Minorca. One ofnumerous navetas on the island, it is situated just outsideCiutadella on the road from Mahon and stands two stories high,shaped like the upturned bow of a ship. It is accepted that navetaswere funereal structures, but they remain surrounded by mystery andlegends. The Naveta des Tudons is Minorca's most remarkablemegalithic chamber tomb as it is the largest and the bestpreserved. The structure was used as a collective ossuary between1200 and 750 BC, and held the remains of more than 100 skeletons.The interior is not accessible to the public but it is still wellworth visiting the site.

Minorca Destination Guide (5)


Minorca Destination Guide (6)

Surrounded by rolling green hills, the 13th-century town ofFerreries lies nestled in the centre of Minorca next to theisland's second highest mountain. Travellers are attracted to thearea by the Castell de Santa Agueda, the ruin of a Moorish castlebuilt atop an ancient Roman stronghold. It exists as the last siteof resistance for Arab inhabitants when the island was conquered byKing Alfonso III of Aragon. The ruined fortress is accessed via anancient Roman road and there is a chapel dedicated to Saint Agathanext to the castle. Ferreries itself is a sleepy little place, witha character typical of the island. It's a great place to buy localproduce as the region is particularly celebrated for itscheeses.

Minorca Destination Guide (7)

Events in Minorca, Spain

Nightlife in Minorca, Spain

Unlike its Balearic neighbor, Ibiza, Minorca doesn'toffer wild parties, hectic nightlife, and nightclubs where partypeople can dance the night away. The nightlife in Minorca is laidback and centred round hotels, quiet bars, restaurants and theoccasional nightclub.

In the capital, Mahon, there are a few live musicbars, pubs, and tavernas where soaking up the views and atmospherewhile sipping on a co*cktail is rewarding, but even here the partyscene is chilled and relaxed.

Resort towns, such as Cala En Porter, offer visitorsthemed bars, but most of them close before midnight. Known for itslive bands and co*cktails, Akalarre Bar on the waterfront in Mahonis a popular haunt, while the Caves of Xoroi in Cala En Porter is amust for drinks or to enjoy the cave disco and breathtakingviews.

Minorca is ideal for holidaymakers wanting to combinea beach holiday with excursions to picturesque historic towns andoutings into the charming rural interior. Minorca is the leastlikely to impress young party animals. The island is well-equippedwith venues for the enjoyment of co*cktails, local live music, andthe occasional dance floor, but it is not considered a greatnightlife destination.

Shopping in Minorca, Spain

Most of the towns, and particularly the resorts, in Minorca arefull of the usual gift shops selling tourist tat, but in Mahonexciting shopping opportunities abound. Visitors should headtowards the centre of town where the cobblestoned streets are linedwith boutiques, clothing shops, jewellers, ice-cream parlours andshoe stores.

The popular tourist areas are also loaded with shops. Mahon alsohas a wonderful market every Sunday where anything from clothing tofresh food and produce can be bought. There is also good shoppingto be had in Ciutadella and Mao: Ses Voltes street is the place tohead in Ciutadella; and the area around Carrer Ses Moreres in Maois a good bet for designer gear. Both towns have artisan markets,in Mao on Friday evenings, and in Ciutadella on Friday, Saturdayand Sunday evenings.

Great souvenirs to bring home from Minorca include traditionalleather sandals called Albarques,leather goods, jewellery and theMinorcan gin, Xoriguer. Most shops open between 9am and 9pm,but close between 2pm and 5pm for siesta. Tourist shops aresometimes open during siesta hours.

Dining in Minorca, Spain

Airports in Minorca

Menorca Airport (MAH)
Menorca Airport

Location: Minorca The airport is located 3 miles (about 4.5km) southwest ofMahon.

Minorca Destination Guide (8)

Time: Local time is GMT +1 (GMT +2 from the last Sundayin March to the Saturday before the last Sunday inOctober).

Contacts: Tel: +34 902 404 704

Getting to the city: A bus runs every half-hour to Mahón's bus station for a fare ofabout €3. The bus station is the hub of services across theisland.

Car rental: Car rental companies include Avis, Budget, Hertz, HiperRent-a-Car and Solmar.

Airport Taxis: Taxis available outside the arrivals area.

Facilities: Facilities include ATMs, bureaux de change, restaurants andcafés, Internet access, and a pharmacy.

Parking: There is one car park for up to 195 vehicles. Parking at MenorcaAirport is free for the first 30 minutes.

Departure Tax: None.


Spain's official currency is the Euro (EUR). One Euro is dividedinto 100 cents. Money can be exchanged at bureaux de change andmajor hotels, but banks give the best rates. All major credit cardsare widely accepted at most hotels, restaurants, and shops. ATMsare widespread and are generally the cheapest and most convenientmethod of obtaining money.

Exchange rate for 1 EUR - Euro
0.00 BMD
Bermudan Dollar
1.00 USD
U.S. Dollar
0.87 GBP
U.K. Pound Sterling
143.38 JPY
Japanese Yen
1.32 CAD
Canadian Dollar
0.96 CHF
Swiss Franc
1.49 AUD
Australian Dollar
36.65 UAH
Ukrainian Hryvnia
475.34 KZT
Kazakhstani Tenge
1,507.02 LBP
Lebanese Pound
4.93 LYD
Libyan Dinar
6.88 BOB
Bolivian Boliviano
126.98 NPR
Nepalese Rupee
0.38 OMR
Omani Rial
3.67 QAR
Qatari Rial
1.41 SGD
Singapore Dollar
10.70 SEK
Swedish Krona
6.78 TTD
Trinidad Tobago Dollar
0.00 VEF
Venezuelan Bolivar
52.90 DOP
Dominican Peso
7.53 HRK
Croatian Kuna
20.03 MXN
Mexican Peso
655.66 XOF
West African CFA Franc
3.52 PGK
Papua New Guinean kina
1.00 BSD
Bahamian Dollar
2.24 FJD
Fiji Dollar
24.62 HNL
Honduran Lempira
140.42 DZD
Algerian Dinar
2,096.32 MMK
Myanma Kyat
13.00 BWP
Botswana Pula
3.87 PEN
Peruvian Nuevo Sol
921.20 CLP
Chilean Peso
404.44 AMD
Armenia Dram
24.53 CZK
Czech Koruna
19.31 MDL
Moldova Lei
138.73 ISK
Icelandic Krona
10,921.62 UZS
Uzbekistan Sum
3.44 ILS
Israeli New Sheqel
0.71 JOD
Jordanian Dinar
0.31 KWD
Kuwaiti Dinar
40.69 UYU
Uruguayan Peso
45.09 MUR
Mauritian Rupee
35.87 NIO
Nicaraguan Córdoba
10.13 NOK
Norwegian Krone
4.73 PLN
Polish Zloty
3.75 SAR
Saudi Riyal
363.92 LKR
Sri Lanka Rupee
36.71 THB
Thai Baht
3.67 AED
U.A.E Dirham
5.21 BRL
Brazilian Real
4.93 RON
Romanian New Leu
7.84 HKD
Hong Kong Dollar
656.83 XAF
Central African CFA Franc
23,518.80 VND
Vietnamese Dong
142.79 ARS
Argentine Peso
2.71 XCD
East Caribbean Dollar
7.78 GTQ
Guatemalan Quetzal
10.62 MAD
Moroccan Dirham
0.38 BHD
Bahrain Dinar
1.00 PAB
Panamanian Balboa
1.69 AZN
Azerbaijan Manat
4,413.27 COP
Colombian Peso
80.74 KGS
Kyrgyzstan Som
407.16 HUF
Hungarian Forint
10.23 TJS
Tajikistan Ruble
14,847.81 IDR
Indonesian Rupiah
19.40 EGP
Egyptian Pound
1,396.62 KRW
South Korean Won
6,965.59 PYG
Paraguayan Guaraní
4.52 MYR
Malaysian Ringgit
632.07 CRC
Costa Rican Colón
1.67 NZD
New Zealand Dollar
223.34 PKR
Pakistani Rupee
60.17 RUB
Russian Rouble
17.52 ZAR
South African Rand
3.21 TND
Tunisian Dinar
2.02 BBD
Barbadian Dollar
1.96 BGN
Bulgarian Lev
18.25 TRY
Turkish Lira
57.24 PHP
Philippine Peso
31.13 TWD
New Taiwan Dollar
427.92 NGN
Nigerian Naira
119.27 XPF
CFP Franc
10.03 GHS
Ghanaian Cedi
152.15 JMD
Jamaican Dollar
1.79 ANG
Neth. Antillean Guilder
1.40 BND
Brunei Dollar
117.26 RSD
Serbian Dinar
6.98 CNY
Chinese Yuan
7.44 DKK
Danish Krone
3.50 TMT
New Turkmenistan Manat
79.71 INR
Indian Rupee

Exchange Rate for
U.S. Dollar to Euro

1 USD = 1.00 EUR

Exchange Rate for
Canadian Dollar to Euro

1 CAD = 0.76 EUR

Exchange Rate for
U.K. Pound Sterling to Euro

1 GBP = 1.15 EUR

Exchange Rate for
Australian Dollar to Euro

1 AUD = 0.67 EUR

Exchange Rate for
New Zealand Dollar to Euro

1 NZD = 0.60 EUR

Exchange Rate for
South African Rand to Euro

1 ZAR = 0.06 EUR



Minorca Destination Guide (9)

Among Austrian ski resorts, Kitzbuhel is reputedlythe most commercial, glamorous, and expensive. The beautiful alpinetown dates back to the 9th century and has remained fairlyunspoilt. In the winter holiday season, visitors will hear thejingle of bells as a horse-drawn sleigh is pulled throughKitzbuhel's cobbled, traffic-free town centre. There is anextensive and varied skiing area offering excellent skiing andsnowboarding, both on and off-piste, but be visitors should beprepared for a lack of snow in places. Due to Kitzbuhel's lowaltitude, the lower slopes are rarely open. If the skiing doesn'ttire visitors out while on holiday in Kitzbuhel, the nightlifecertainly will. The atmosphere is bright, boisterous, and fun, andit doesn't stop till the not-quite-so-early hours. Kitzbuhel isalso Austria's winter entertainment capital and attracts performersfrom all over the continent throughout the holiday season. Gettingto Kitzbuhel is easy via Salzburg, Innsbruck or Munichairports.

Shopping in Kitzbuhel

Kitzbuhel is a shopper's paradise, with dozens of upmarket shopsdisplaying their appealing wares in the quaint Tyrolean villagestores. Ski shops dominate, but there are plenty of designerboutiques, jewellery stores, and souvenir shops in Kitzbuhel too.Prices are steep but discounts are sometimes offered to thosecarrying guest cards from Kitzbuhel hotels. Visitors can alsoenquire at their hotels about shopping excursions into Italy.

Dining in Kitzbuhel

Kitzbuhel has a wide choice of excellent restaurants, both onthe ski slopes and in the town. Some of the best restaurantsinclude the Neuwirt in the Schwarzer Adler, the Tenne Restaurant inHotel Zur and with its young and international crowd and fantasticItalian food. For those on more of a budget, the Centro Cafe BarRestaurant in the town centre is popular.

Activities in Kitzbuhel

Kitzbuhel is a lively ski resort with plenty of bars andnightclubs to suit all pockets and preferences. For many Brits andlocals alike, the evening begins early at the Londoner: the famousapres-ski bar renowned for its lethal co*cktails. Take Five is anightclub in the town square that stays open until dawn. Visitorswishing to try their luck on the tables will find the CasinoKitzbuhel at the Hotel Goldener Greif. New Year is a great time fora skiing trip to Kitzbuhel with one of the best fireworks displaysin the Alps. Nightlife in Kitzbuhel goes on very late, often notgetting busy until nearly 2am.

Things to be aware of in Kitzbuhel

With its sprawling layout and fragmented ski-area, Kitzbuhel isnot an ideal choice for families. The low altitude means that thelower slopes get slushy in warmer weather.

Skiing in Kitzbuhel

Kitzbuhel hosts The Hahnenkahm, one of the mosttreacherous and famous of all of the downhill ski races, and thepublicity has made it one of the world's most famous ski resorts.The Kitzbuhel ski pass includes the neighbouring but lesser knownholiday resorts of Kirchberg, Aurach, Jochberg, and Pass Thurn, andoffers one of the largest and most diverse ski areas in the Alps,with almost 100 miles (161km) of groomed slopes, a largecross-country ski area, and plenty of off-piste. Kitzbuhel'sproblem is snow reliability, as the holiday resort is under 800mand the highest skiing is at 2,000m, so skiing to a chalet or hoteldoor is rarely possible and the season is short. The resortattracts a large number of tourists from nearby countries, as wellas throngs of holiday skiers and ski bums from the UK andAustralia.

Sa Coma


Minorca Destination Guide (10)

The purpose-built holiday resort of Sa Coma lies in the heart ofMallorca's popular east coast, sandwiched between lively CalaMillor and the restaurant-strewn seafront of S'Illot. S'Illot canbe reached on foot, while a tourist tram connects to Cala Millorand its attractions. Sa Coma itself is largely frequented byBritish family groups on holiday, most opting for self-cateringaccommodation. The resort establishments cater particularly wellfor children, who make the most of the wide sandy beach with itsbroad shallow shelf of clear, blue water. The beach has EuropeanBlue Flag status for cleanliness, water quality and safety. Thebeach is fronted by a wide promenade lined with restaurants, barsand shops, many of them British owned. Another big plus for thechildren is the resort's proximity to the large safari-park at CalaMillor, where apes, gazelles, elephants and ostriches are among theanimals that roam in a simulated natural environment and can beviewed from a safari bus.

Shopping in Sa Coma

Self-catering holidaymakers will find a good selection of foodat the Caprabo hypermarket on the Avinguda de les Palmeres in SaComa. The resort and its neighbours have numerous shops andboutiques selling souvenirs and goods attractive to tourists. For atraditional market take the bus to the nearby town of Son Serveraon Friday mornings, or to Manacor on Monday mornings.

Dining in Sa Coma

Sa Coma offers a varied selection of good quality restaurantsfor holidaying visitors to enjoy, and just across the footbridge onthe S'Illot seafront even more options are available. HeartyBritish food is the popular staple served at JJs. BiBaBo café andmusic bar on the S'Illot front mixes the best of British with someSpanish dishes for families wanting the best of both worlds. Thetop restaurant in town for Spanish and local cuisine is Lago, butthis is expensive. A good alternative is the tapas bar next door,or Es Cuerot, which has excellent traditional food and a cellar orterrace venue to choose from. The frito mallorquin, lamb andvegetable stir-fry, is a speciality here.

Activities in Sa Coma

Being a family holiday resort, the nightlife in Sa Coma is notwild, entertainment being mainly hotel based. Neighbouring CalaMillor offers a more lively after-dark scene for those interested.One of the most popular evening spots nearby is Crazy Monkey, arelaxed Spanish-style co*cktail bar, in S'Illot, where 'happy hour'lasts from 8pm to 11pm and then again from midnight to 2am. Otherpopular spots include Chaplins and La Havana.

Things to be aware of in Sa Coma

Sa Coma is not a good choice for holidaymakers who are seekingbright lights and hectic nightlife, nor for those who findconcentrations of children annoying. The beach can become rathercrowded in the height of summer.



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Ixia's constant summer breezes temper its heat and provideexcellent conditions for windsurfing. Its shingle beach follows thecurve of the main road and is known to receive rough waves, meaningbathers should take care if they venture into the sea. Most hotelshave pools and deckchairs for guests who'd rather avoid the waves.Rhodes Town's clubs and pubs are only a few minutes away bytaxi.

Shopping in Ixia

Visitors will find groceries and souvenirs in Ixia. Those whotravel the short distance to markets in Rhodes or range further totraditional villages will find a more authentically Greek shoppingexperience.

Dining in Ixia

Ixia has loads of bars, cafes and restaurants, with menusranging from traditional Greek meals, to pizza or Chinese food.

Activities in Ixia

Rhodes Town and Faliraki have vibrant club scenes and are closeto Ixia.

Things to be aware of in Ixia

Ixia is dominated by foreign visitors and is tailored to theirneeds. Its 'touristy' character has advantages but some travellersmay feel the area lacks authentic Greek spirit and has beenover-commercialised.



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Travellers will appreciate the flower-bedecked balconies inRethymnon's old town, and the Turkish and Venetian influences inits architecture. Tourist development hasn't compromised theauthentic mood on the destination's streets or in its tavernas andsouvenir shops. One of Crete's longest sandy beaches lies to theeast and excursions are easily made to Hania, Heraklion or theMonastery of Arkadhi.

Shopping in Rethymnon

Rethymnon's many gift shops have a beautiful selection ofbaskets, woodcarvings, pottery and woven goods. Cretan embroideryat Haroula Spridaki and various items carved from olive wood at theaptly named Olive Wood Corner make especially good souvenirs.

Palaiopoleiou has genuine antiques and old textiles, whileshoppers interested in modern ceramics and Greek pottery should tryOmodamos. Many general stores and mini supermarkets are around toservice self-caterers.

Dining in Rethymnon

Rethymnon's inner harbour sports an array of restaurants andfish tavernas; pricing varies. Visitors will find someold-fashioned cafes around Rimondi Fountain.

Activities in Rethymnon

Rethymnon's nightlife ranges from noisy pubs and bars to morerelaxed establishments, where holidaymakers can listen to the seawhile sipping on their favourite drinks.

Things to be aware of in Rethymnon

Rethymnon doesn't have the ruins and archaeological sites manyholidaymakers expect in such an old city.

Santa Ponsa


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Santa Ponsa (or Santa Ponca) today bears little resemblance tothe fishing village it once was. Just under half an hour away fromPalma and about three miles (5km) south of Magaluf on the southwestcoast, Santa Ponsa is famous not only as a popular Mallorcanholiday resort, but also as the landing point of King Jaime I in1229 when he came to reclaim the island from the Moors. A stonecross at the resort's marina marks the event. As with mostMallorcan holiday resorts, Santa Ponsa is highly developed andtends to be lively and busy, with an active nightlife and excellentbeach culture. The eponymous Santa Ponsa is the principal beach,which is supplemented with imported sand, while the more shelteredCalo d'en Pellicer is slightly smaller and closer to the marineclub. The third, more exclusive beach is Castellot. The water atall three beaches is warm and clear, and offers safe swimming.Areas have been set aside for swimming so that there is no dangerfrom the many boats. A pedestrian promenade, with shade provided bypine trees, runs in front of the Santa Ponsa beach, and there arethe usual beachfront restaurants, bars, shops and cafés. Over theyears, Santa Ponsa has developed a Celtic flavour, with a number ofScottish and Irish themed pubs and bars, but it remains popularwith a range of visitors of different ages.

Shopping in Santa Ponsa

Santa Ponsa has a number of supermarkets (including one largeone), a good choice of souvenir shops, stalls, some designer goods,jewellery stores and other essential amenities such as banks forholiday visitors to make use of. A better shopping selection isavailable in Palma and the closest weekly market takes place onWednesdays in Andratx.

Dining in Santa Ponsa

There are a large number of different restaurants in SantaPonsa, offering visitors plenty of variety and options for allbudgets. Some restaurants and tapas bars offer traditional Spanishcuisine, and there is Indian, Chinese, Italian and more to sample.International staples such as burgers and pizzas are always easy tofind.

Activities in Santa Ponsa

There is a varied nightlife at the holiday resort of SantaPonsa, with karaoke bars, theme pubs, live music venues, andseveral clubs and discos. Although not on the same scale as Palmaor Magaluf, there is still a lot on offer besides hotelentertainment. Those intent on partying can always make the shorttrip to Palma, which boasts the best nightlife on the island.

Things to be aware of in Santa Ponsa

The beaches can get very crowded in season and parking can behard to come by. This is not the place to come for peace andquiet.



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Undoubtedly the most romantic and picturesque holiday beachresort town in southeastern Spain, the white-washed houses andcobbled streets of Mojacar are sprinkled atop a hill overlookingpristine sandy beaches, washed by the warm Mediterranean. Theunspoilt ancient Moorish fortress town of Mojacar has been afavourite with artists and writers for many years, and now attractsholidaymakers who fill up the hotels and villas which haveproliferated along the nearby stretch of beach, fortunately not yetto the detriment of the town's appearance or beguiling atmosphere.The village centre is honeycombed with narrow casbah-like cobbledalleyways, which hide many quaint surprises, such as a Romanfountain pumping fresh spring water and the unusual fortifiedchurch of Santa Maria. Mojacar is the picture-perfect location fora beach holiday in Spain.

Shopping in Mojacar

The Commercial Centre is a large mall complex in the centre oftown with every modern convenience. Adventurous and inquisitivetourists prepared to wander through the small alleyways of Mojacarwill be richly rewarded. Many of the narrow streets have hiddentreasures for dedicated shoppers, including small boutiques as wellas a variety of holiday souvenir shops.

Dining in Mojacar

Mojacar's restaurant scene consists of a varied selection ofinternational eateries that complement its excellent Spanish tapasbars and local seafood restaurants. Restaurante El Antler in CalleEnmedio has been getting great reviews for over 25 years. Childrenare always welcome in Mojacar restaurants. Famous local dishesinclude caldo de pescado (fish stew) and pelotas (meatballs wrappedin dark green cabbage leaves). Visit the nearby town of Garuccho tosample their locally caught red shrimp.

Activities in Mojacar

The area on Mojacar beach known as the Brit Strip has numerouspubs and British themed eateries. The best selection of Mojacarbars can be found along the sea front, which is lined with goodbeach bars, offering happy hours, free tapas and splendid beachviews. The larger hotels have lively bars and are worth visiting onweekends for those seeking a big night out.

Things to be aware of in Mojacar

This is a laid-back resort town with limited entertainmentoptions for those wanting to spend their holiday in the townitself. The old town is accessible only by steep and narrow roadsand is therefore unsuitable for people with mobility issues.



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Situated in the Hautes-Alpes, near the Italian border, Serre-Chevalier is one of the biggest ski resorts in Europe, comprising thirteen villages, including Briançon, Saint-Chaffrey-Chantemerle, La Salle les Alpes, and Monêtier les Bains. Serre-Chevalier is also beautiful and quite popular in the summer months, when travellers can enjoy a variety of outdoor activities like hiking and mountain biking. The scenery is spectacular, whatever the season, and it's easy to see why Serre-Chevalier is one of the most popular ski resorts in France.

Shopping in Serre-Chevalier

There isn't much in the way of shopping in Serre-Chevalier other than the usual tourist shops and ski equipment stores. There are supermarkets and basic amenities like a post office, bureau de change and ATMs available.

Dining in Serre-Chevalier

There are roughly 100 restaurants to choose from in Serre-Chevalier, ranging from fine dining to pizza and burgers.

Activities in Serre-Chevalier

Serre-Chevalier has a relaxed and low-key nightlife, with a number of bars and one or two discos in Villeneuve and Chantemerle. Like many ski resorts, there is a much livelier atmosphere in the winter ski season.

Things to be aware of in Serre-Chevalier

Despite its size, Serre-Chevalier has a relatively quiet nightlife, so those looking for a wild party may be disappointed.

Skiing in Serre-Chevalier

Serre-Chevalier is a very large resort, with more than 155 miles (250km) of connected pistes. There are a number of runs that will suit all levels of experience, with 23 green, 30 blue, 43 red and 15 black runs. There are an additional 28 miles (45km) of cross country trails. There is also a snowboard park in Monètier.



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Once a small fishing village, Kusadasi is now one of the mostpopular holiday resort towns on the southern Aegean Coast. Issituated amid splendid coastal scenery and several significantarchaeological sites, including the ruins of the ancient cityEphesus, which are just half an hour from the town. The beaches arethe main pull during the day, and after dark the town comes tolife, with vibrant bars and clubs setting an upbeat pace. Iftravellers are in search of old Turkey, they've got cobbledstreets, mosques, old-school tavernas and bustling bazaars.Kusadasi is a popular stop on Mediterranean cruises from Venice,Piraeus, or the Greek island of Samos. Ferries link the town withthe nearby Greek islands of Samos and Mykonos.

Shopping in Kusadasi

The Grand Bazaar in Kusadasi, near the harbour, is one ofTurkey's largest shopping treasure troves for holidaymakers torummage through, crammed with 1,000 or more stores and stalls openseven days a week from 9am until midnight. Bargaining for a varietyof attractive items, such as leather jackets, sandals, carpets, andhand-made jewellery, is a fun experience, usually accompanied by aglass of tea. Despite the traditional trading atmosphere, mostmerchants accept credit cards, travellers cheques, and even someforeign currency for purchases. Visitors should be prepared tobargain their way to a good price, however.

Dining in Kusadasi

All holidaymakers' budgets and tastes are amply catered foramong Kusadasi's dozens of restaurants, cafes, and lokantas (localbars). Most visitors opt for sampling Turkish cuisine or enjoyingthe sumptuous seafood on offer, but there are numerousalternatives, which range from curry and Chinese to burgers. Fortop-class Turkish specialities, the Konyali Restaurant, oppositethe marina, and the Erzincan, near the post office, are hard tobeat, while the Avlu Restaurant and Cafe is also decent andwell-priced. Kalyon is popular with expats for their western menu,which includes full English breakfasts.

Activities in Kusadasi

Nights in Kusadasi throb with action, particularly along thetown's pulsating Bar Street in the old town centre, lined with pubsand clubs. One of the hottest spots is the huge open air club,Ecstasy Bar, featuring top European DJs. Jimmy's Irish Bar at thestart of Bar Street is a favourite gathering place for youngBritish holidaymakers. Those looking for something more sedate willfind cabaret bars, Turkish folk taverns, or cosy jazz clubs tuckedaway.

Things to be aware of in Kusadasi

Kusadasi's beaches become extremely crowded during the height ofthe summer season. Touts outside restaurants and bars can beannoying.



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Hurghada, known locally as Ghardaga, has grown from a smallfishing village to an internationally renowned holiday resort townon the Red Sea coast of Egypt, famous for its underwater life anddiving and snorkelling opportunities. Popular as a European packageholiday destination, the town of Hurghada boasts first-class hotelsand all-inclusive resorts, as well as a highly vauntednightlife.

South of the town is the resort strip with hotels packed along a12-mile (20km) stretch of beach, while within the town there aremany bars, restaurants, shops and a variety of accommodation tosuit all types of budget. The town's central location on Egypt'scoast provides a gateway to prime diving sites throughout the RedSea.

Shopping in Hurghada

El Dahar, the old part of Hurghada town, has a traditionalEgyptian bazaar with a variety of shops selling tourist souvenirsand holidaymakers can splurge to their hearts' content. Bargainingis expected and prices will generally be better than in the resortvillage shops. The best buys are papyrus scrolls or traditional'shisha pipes'.

Dining in Hurghada

Hurghada has a variety of restaurants for those on holiday toenjoy, serving food from around the world including Indian, French,Thai, Mexican and Japanese. El Dahar (downtown) offers a widechoice of authentic Egyptian eateries, including street stalls andinexpensive restaurants. Fast food chains such as KFC, Pizza Hutand McDonalds are also available. Most local places don't servealcohol. Hotels all have their own restaurants, which serve up avariety of local and international cuisine.

Activities in Hurghada

With its growing reputation as a holiday party town 'parexcellence', Hurghada hosts a lively nightlife with numerous clubs,discos, pubs and trendy lounges, and a variety of entertainmentthat includes beach barbeques, karaoke evenings and foam parties.Popular places include Papas Beach Club and Calypso, while AlfLeila Wa Leila is famous for belly dancing and Arabic folklore.

Things to be aware of in Hurghada

The beach in Hurghada is made of dark red grainy sandinterspersed with rocks and boulders; sandals should be worn.Although the resort is considered safe there are areas of the Sinairegion that have become dangerous for foreigners, so visitors areadvised to be careful on excursions into the desert.

Cala d'Or


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Like most holiday resorts in Mallorca, Cala d'Or (Golden Cove)evolved from a local fishing village after its charms and idyllicsetting were 'discovered', in this instance by a group ofavant-garde artists who settled here in the 1930s. They built theirwhite, flat-roofed houses around the picturesque fishing harbour,and soon the word spread. Cala d'Or became a desirable spot to havea holiday home, or at least a relaxing seaside vacation. Theoriginal village and harbour was situated in one of the small rockycoves with sandy beaches, called calas, which abound on Mallorca's east coast. The resorthas now spread out to encompass several of these coves, all nowbeset with attractive hotels, apartment blocks and villas. It is avery chic resort, recommended for families because mostestablishments cater extremely well for children.

There are numerous adjacent smaller resorts and quaint villagesclustered around the calasall along the southeast coastline, connected by agood bus service, which means visitors can make excursions toexplore the delights of places like Cala Egos, Puerto Petro, CalaMondrago, Cala Figuera, Cala Santanyi and Cala Llombarts. The Calad'Or marina is the heart of the east coast resort area, attractingthe fashionable yachting set.

Shopping in Cala d'Or

Cala d'Or is known as the best shopping district on Mallorca;its main shopping street, Avinguda Tagomago, is filled with chicboutiques, leather shops and galleries that appeal to locals andholidaymakers alike. Designer clothes and shoes, in particular, areavailable at reasonable prices. Souvenir shopping is fun with awide variety of local crafts, traditional pottery and glass, andolive wood carvings available at several stores, and at the Sundaymorning flea market in Felanitx. Visitors can also find bargains indesigner sunglasses, jewellery and perfume. Those in self-cateringapartments who need sustenance will find all they require at theresort's biggest supermarket, Caprabo, near the resort entrance.The supermarket opens until 9pm every night (except Sundays, whenit closes at 2pm).

Dining in Cala d'Or

Cala d'Or's upmarket restaurants are mostly situated around themarina, which is usually abuzz with a lively international crowdenjoying a variety of cuisines. The centre of town offers fast foodoutlets, tapas bars, pizza parlours, burger joints and severalBritish pub 'n grub type establishments. Eateries that come highlyrecommended in Cala d'Or include Acuarius, Shangrila, RestauranteVicente and Casablanca.

Activities in Cala d'Or

Nightlife in Cala d'Or is tasteful and stylish, rather thanfrenetic, centred around the many co*cktail bars and discos. Don RonHeroes Bar is one of the places to go for a good night out in Calad'Or. The latest music rocks Linekers, and the most popularnightclubs in town are Disco Alfa and Farrahs Planet Ibiza.Hollywoods is the local karaoke bar, while the Dirty Duck pub isknown as the gay-friendly establishment.

Things to be aware of in Cala d'Or

Cala d'Or is definitely a family-oriented holiday resort, notreally catering for the 18 to 30 single set, particularly those whoenjoy a wild nightlife. The music bars and discos are usually quietby 2am. The main resort beaches can become enormously crowded,particularly during July and August, and holiday-makers have to beup and about early if they hope to secure a sunbed for the day.




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Situated about six miles (10km) from the busy Swiss ski resortof Davos, in the heart of the Graubunden region south-east ofZurich, the small, traditional and quiet village of Klosters sharesthe expansive Parsenn ski area with the larger resort, but offers amore exclusive and romantic holiday setting.

Klosters, its two pretty neighbourhoods filled with picturesquechalets, also has its own ski area, the Madrisa, ensuring theresort offers skiing for all abilities in a discreetly charmingAlpine setting, away from the madding crowd of the tourist massmarket. Exclusivity is expensive, however, and Klosters has becomeknown as the holiday haunt of the rich and famous, and isparticularly favoured by the British Royal family as a wintersports getaway with first-class off-piste skiing.

Shopping in Klosters

Klosters is permeated with small speciality stores, with sportsoutlets predominating, though there are also some boutiques and artgalleries. Those who want to become really involved in a shoppingexpedition prefer to take the short trip to neighbouring Davos,which has more than 100 stores, art galleries and boutiques sellingall manner of goods from souvenir cow bells to designer clothing.The shops in Davos are centred along the two main streets aroundthe Davos Platz.

Dining in Klosters

For its size the little village of Klosters has an abundance ofrestaurants, both on and off the slopes. The atmospheric ChesaGrischuna has been an institution in the town since 1938, itshistory as enthralling as the quality of its cuisine. Anotherdining treat is the Walserhof Hotel's Michelin-starred restaurant,where famed Swiss chef Beat Bolliger conjures up imaginativedelights using mainly local produce. Other excellent hotelrestaurants open to non-residents in Klosters are The Alpina andAlte Post. Booking is essential at most restaurants, and vistorsshould expect to pay a high price at the best places. For deliciouspizzas, travellers should try Al Berto. Klosters is also famed forits wonderful mountain restaurants, known as Schwendis, which arerustic timber Alpine huts, most with terraces to take advantage ofsunny days.

Activities in Klosters

Apres-ski on a Klosters holiday is merry but low-key. As theskiers and snowboarders come down from the slopes they gather atthe Schwendis (mountain chalet bars) or a few favourite spots suchas Gaudi's for a warming glass of beer or schnapps. co*cktails andbefore-dinner drinks are sipped in hotel bars. The Piano Bar atChesa Grischuna is the most stylish. The late-night club inKlosters is the Casa Antica, with a disco on the ground floor, andclassy co*cktail bars on the two upper floors.

Things to be aware of in Klosters

Klosters' attraction to many is also a drawback to some, whoconsider it to be too swanky and rather expensive. The nightlife isalso relatively limited, as many guests entertain in their chalets.The ski area itself, while wide and varied, is spread out over anumber of separate areas.

Skiing in Klosters

Combined with the Davos area, Klosters is part of the Rega PassSki Area, and offers skiers direct access to 190 miles (307km) ofdownhill piste, the 97 individual pistes served by 52 ski lifts.The Parsenn is the best-known area and is reached by the Gotschnacable car. The longest run in the area is over seven miles (12km).The resort is renowned for its powder snow, the altitude ensuringcoverage throughout the season, and offers skiing to suit all agesand stages. Snowboarders are catered for with two terrain parks andone halfpipe.



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Reflecting the tranquil ambience of Valencia coupled with thesun-and-fun atmosphere of Spain's popular Costa Blanca coast, Javeais a pretty holiday resort town set between the capes of SanAntonio and La Nao, about 50 miles (80km) northeast of Alicante.Fronted by the bright blue Mediterranean Sea, and backed by theconical Mount Montgo, the narrow streets of the historic towncentre are filled with wrought iron balconies and stone porticoes,while the surrounding developments have been carefully controlledto ensure no high-rise modern concrete buildings impose on theserenity of the landscape.

The old town is situated a mile or so inland because itsinhabitants feared the incursions of pirates in days of yore. Thewaterfront of Javea centres around the working fishing port ofAduanas de Mar and the adjacent busy marina. The promenade is linedwith good seafood restaurants, boutiques and pavement cafes. Themost popular beach, Arenal, is a long, sandy stretch with safebathing, and it is just one of the many sandy bays and coves to beenjoyed along the coastline.

Several times a year Javea lets its hair down with a livelyfiesta. The best known, and most enjoyed by visitors, is the 'Moorsand Christians' celebration, when locals re-enact the Moorishlandings on the coast and the recapture of the peninsula byChristian defenders. During the second half of July the town isenveloped in an orgy of feasting, street parades, dancing, musicand fireworks.

Shopping in Javea

The port area offers some interesting boutique shoppingopportunities for holidaymakers, while along Arenal Beachholidaymakers are well catered for with kiosks and shops sellingall the trappings from sunscreen to souvenirs. In Javea's old townthere is a daily indoor covered market, mostly stocking freshproduce, and on Thursdays the weekly outdoor market on the Place dela Constitution is an entertaining experience, with streetperformers spicing up the variety of wares on offer on hundreds ofstalls. Browse for all manner of things from fresh fish to leathersandals, toys and juicy Valencia oranges and 'churros' (similar todonuts). The sprawling suburban area around Javea, which connectsto other resorts along the Costa Blanca, is well supplied withshopping malls and modern supermarkets. Smaller shops tend to closefor siesta from around 2pm to 5pm, but stay open late in theevenings. Larger chain stores and supermarkets remain open all dayuntil late at night.

Dining in Javea

The holiday destination of Javea offers some fantastic eateriesincluding Karma Lounge Restaurant, Pizzeria Pepa, RestauranteMasena and La Boheme. The port area of Javea is a popular diningspot, with a host of restaurants offering a variety of cuisinessituated along the waterfront, where it is possible to enjoyanything from pizza to paella with a view of the harbour or beach.The old town is less well supplied with restaurants, but those thatdo inhabit its narrow streets are cheaper than the more touristyareas. The area fronting Arenal Beach is where most touristscongregate to dine out, and the choice is vast, ranging from BurgerKing to Chinese food. The majority of establishments cater for alltastes, offering an international selection on their menus.

Activities in Javea

Holiday visitors in pursuit of a hectic holiday nightlife maywell be disappointed with Javea, where activity after dark islimited to the strumming of Spanish guitars in a few restaurantsand bars, or the odd flamenco show, even during the height of thesummer season. A few British bars offer football, pool tables andsometimes karaoke nights. There are one or two discreetdiscotheques open during summer in the Arenal area. For arollicking night out visitors will have to travel to the larger,more frenetic resorts nearby, particularly Benidorm.

Things to be aware of in Javea

Javea is a sedate resort with limited nightlife andentertainment options.



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Antalya is the main city on the Mediterranean coast and one ofthe most popular holiday spots, with an attractive harbour settingand the picturesque old quarter of Kaleici enclosed within ancientRoman walls. Dominating the town is Antalya's symbol, the YivliMinaret (Grooved Minaret) dating back to the 3rd century. Thesuperb Archaeological Museum, housing one of the top collections inthe country, is not to be missed.

Known as the Turkish Riviera, a holiday on the Antalya shorelineoffers secluded coves, ancient cities and harbours, seaside towns,sparkling seas, and soaring cliffs. The city provides an excellentbase for exploring the small towns nearby, as well as caves,waterfalls, and Roman ruins, including Perge and the mountain-topremains of Termessos.

A 30-minute drive east of Antalya is Aspendos, which boasts thefinest example of a Roman theatre in the world. Built in the 2ndcentury AD, it is remarkably intact. In addition to the vast numberof archaeological wonders, the area also has a wealth of outdooractivities. Antalya, lying at the foot of the Taurus Mountainrange, is host to numerous sporting events throughout the year,including international beach volleyball, triathlons, and canoeingcompetitions.

Shopping in Antalya

Shopping in Antalya can be an exhausting but exhilaratingexperience, with everything up for grabs from the famous local jamsand jellies, made from a variety of fruits and vegetables, toantique jewellery, kilims, prayer rugs, leather ware, cottonclothing, traditional pottery, and wood carvings. Haggling isexpected and bargains can be had. The best shopping is in theKaleici district near the city walls, along winding side streets inthe old quarter and along the avenues of Ataturk, Cumhuriyet, andIsiklar. Shopping is not only entertaining in Antalya but offersplenty of picturesque photo opportunities too. There are alsoseveral large modern shopping malls around the old town, one of thelargest and most popular being Migros. Visitors should be wary ofthose who try to sell them antiques, as it is illegal to exportsuch items.

Dining in Antalya

Although most tourists will head for one of the numerousrestaurants in the Kaleici (old town) when on holiday in Antalya,the more adventurous gourmets would be better advised (for qualityas well as price) to steer off the beaten track and try one of therestaurants favoured by locals. Although, the Kaleici restaurantsare certainly atmospheric, with some even built into the ancientRoman walls. A good bet for Turkish food in Antalya, offering adelightful courtyard planted with lemon trees, is Restaurant KirkMerdiven. Other recommendations are the Coco Bar, renowned for thetastiest lamb shish kebabs; Kismet Balikcisi, the local's choicefor top seafood dishes; and the Develi Restaurant, where travellersmay be forgiven for thinking the starter is the main meal as theywade through copious delicious Turkish specialities.

Activities in Antalya

Antalya pulses after dark with what is undeniably the Turkisheast coast's liveliest nightlife, centred on a wide variety ofclubs and bars. Most bars double as discos, and most of the hotelsoffer floor shows, usually with belly-dancing, that are open tonon-guests. Club 29 in Kaleici is among the hottest spots forall-night dancing, but those who just want a quiet, cool drinkgravitate to the waterfront bars to catch a sea breeze, or relax atone of the city's nargile (water pipe) bars.

Things to be aware of in Antalya

As in most Turkish holiday resort towns, touts for Antalya'sshops, stalls, restaurants, and bars can be bothersome.

Koh Samui


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A sun lover's holiday paradise, Koh Samui ('the coconut island')is Thailand's third largest island resort and no longer thefootloose and fancy-free backpacker's secret hideaway it once was.Koh Samui now rivals phu*ket as one of Thailand's most popularholiday destinations, with regular flights arriving at its ownairport and disgorging keen holidaymakers. There are a range ofaccommodation options, from modest beach bungalows to luxuryholiday resort hotels. The island still retains its laid-backatmosphere, though, with friendly locals, good food and somenot-too-commercial local attractions, such as a crocodile farm andbutterfly garden, to keep visitors entertained. Night time is partytime, with open-air discos and music bars throbbing in thedarkness.

Shopping in Koh Samui

There are three main areas for shopping on Koh Samui: Nathon,Chaweng and Lamai, but all towns on the island offer shopping.Nathon is the main shopping centre, and the town where the ferriesarrive. Goods from all over Thailand are available, as well astraditional souvenirs such as silk scarves. Chaweng and Nathon areexcellent places to have clothes made by local tailors, whileChaweng and Lamai are the towns to find good quality western-styleshops. Most towns have night and day markets, always intriguingregardless of whether one buys anything or not.

Dining in Koh Samui

Koh Samui is highly regarded for its superb and abundant diningoptions, from excellent Thai cuisine to seafood, and a growingnumber of restaurants around the island offer a wide variety ofinternational food and other specialities. Many restaurants havebegun serving customers right on the beach for a truly scenic andtropical experience. Chaweng Beach has a large concentration ofgood international restaurants, while many of the best Thairestaurants are found in Lamai.

Activities in Koh Samui

The nightlife on Koh Samui is rated among some of the best inThailand and has discos, cabaret shows, clubs and pubs, many ofwhich are open till sunrise, and are located mainly in Chaweng andLamai. Chaweng is the most popular area for nightlife, featuringeverything from outdoor music bands to stylish nightclubs. Lamaicaters for a slightly older crowd, but also has numerous musicvenues and bars. The top discos on the island are the Green Mangoand Reggae Pub (Chaweng), and the Swing Bar (Lamai). There are alsoopportunities to watch classical Thai dancing, mud wrestling andThai boxing. Beach parties with fireworks displays also occurregularly.

Things to be aware of in Koh Samui

Koh Samui's popularity as a holiday destination has resulted inovercrowding, and some might say an over-abundance of bars andstreet sellers.

St Francis Bay


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St Francis Bay is a picturesque holiday village lying at the gateway to the Garden Route, one of South Africa's premier holiday destinations and an hour's drive from the city of Port Elizabeth. The bay was first sighted in 1575 by a Portuguese sailor who named the area St Francis after the Patron Saint of Sailors. The climate is temperate with warm summers and mild winters.

The Kromme River borders the one side of St Francis Bay, and is navigable for six miles (10km) upstream from the river mouth. The river and river mouth are popular with fishermen, boaters, canoeists, windsurfers, kite surfers and marine creatures which shelter in its waters. Linked to the river is a magnificent marina lined with white, thatched homes, some of which offer bed and breakfast accommodation. Canal cruises at sunset are popular here or else one can enjoy drinks or a meal at a restaurant overlooking the canals.

Port St Francis, a small harbour resort village, lies in a sheltered nook of the bay and provides a colourful setting and safe anchorage for calamari boats, pleasure craft, and ocean going yachts.

Cape St Francis, a rustic fishing village, sits adjacent to St Francis Bay. Cape St Francis is popular for surfing at Seal Point, its beautiful long stretch of beach, and the historic lighthouse built in 1878. Walking trails wind along the rocky coast, through the Irma Booysen Floral Reserve, and along the Cape St Francis Point, linking it to the village of St Francis Bay.

Shopping in St Francis Bay

The village has several small shops and art galleries that will cater to almost all your needs and ensure that you find some souvenirs to take back home. There are at least two fair sized supermarkets which will provide all your basic requirements. In high season most of the shops are open seven days a week.

Dining in St Francis Bay

St Francis Bay has a wide variety of restaurants and coffee shops that offer a reasonable selection of meals. Most restaurants in South Africa have a reputation for good food at affordable prices and St Francis Bay is no different. Most of the restaurants focus on seafood, with local calamari being a menu highlight.

Activities in St Francis Bay

Eating out is popular and the restaurants and bars offer an opportunity to sample the large range of South African wines, which are very affordable in comparison with other countries. Nearby Jeffrey's Bay provides a much bigger range of nightlife options for those truly determined to party. During the December summer holiday season St Francis hosts a few big outdoor live music events and parties which are very popular with youngsters.

Things to be aware of in St Francis Bay

Outside of the peak summer season, St Francis doesn't have much of a nightlife. St Francis can be windy, so a windbreaker is essential.



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Today Lagos is one of the Algarve's most popular holidaydestinations and there are hotels in Lagos catering for all needs.This once ancient port city boasts some of the area's best beacheswithin walking distance from most of the hotels in Lagos. Arguablythe most splendid beach is Meia Praia to the east of town, wheresome of the best apartments in Lagos are to be found.

The southern peninsula features some sheltered cove beaches,many of which are close to some of the best hotels in Lagos. Praiade Dona Ana is very picturesque but usually overcrowded in summer.There is much to do other than relaxing on the beaches or in thehotels in Lagos, such as a visit to the old town which has afascinating history dating back to the Carthaginians. During thegreat Portuguese age of discovery the port became a caravelshipyard and was the jumping-off point for many a voyage to theEast. Although much of the town was destroyed in the earthquake of1755, there are still some ruins of interest remaining among themany restaurants, bars and hotels in Lagos.

Cheap holidays in Lagos have something for the whole family andhotels in Lagos can be booked through major travel agencies. Selfcatering apartments in Lagos may often be the cheapest option.

Shopping in Lagos

Besides an ongoing flea market that sprawls through the streets,Lagos boasts numerous fascinating shops and boutiques, especiallyin the pedestrianised old city. Browsing is as pleasurable asbuying in the well-stocked shops that are bristling with attractivelocal wares, from wickerwork to filigree jewellery, copperware andleather goods to wine and pastries.

Dining in Lagos

Eating out is part of the pleasure of a holiday onthe Algarve, and Lagos offers the best choice of establishments inwhich to indulge. Seafood lovers will be ecstatic, but no one, evenvegetarians, will be disappointed or go hungry. A good choice wouldbe to visit the marina, where restaurants serve waterfrontbreakfasts, lunches and dinners seven days a week. For creativeinternational cuisine, visit some of the establishments in town,which cater to almost everyone, including vegetarians. Trulygourmet local specialities like pork chops with figs, savouryshrimp, and succulent shellfish are enjoyed at upper class spotsall around Lagos, with many having big wine cellars to boast aswell.

Activities in Lagos

The centre of Lagos comes alive in the evenings withbuskers and street entertainers, and the nightlife in Lagos cancompete with any holiday resort in the Algarve, with severalenergetic dance clubs and character-filled bars strewn through themain part of town. Most establishments have live music, darts, pooltables and Sky TV sports channels, and stay open late until 2 or4am.

Things to be aware of in Lagos

There is not a lot for children to do in Lagos but there is azoo and an excellent water park not too far away.

Lloret de Mar


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The historic buildings may have given way to high-rise hotels,and fishing to foam parties, in this former Catalonian tradingport, but the region's fiery spirit is still evident, which is whyLloret de Mar is regarded as the liveliest holiday spot on theCosta Brava. As a resort, the town caters mainly for the 18 to 30age group but is also popular with families with older children.There are seemingly hundreds of British bars, discos and clubs tochoose from, and the days are packed with programmes of beachfrolics and fun. The resort has five rough sandy beaches, a massivewater park, an aquatic zoo and a theme park. For a taste of thereal Spain visitors can revel in the local cuisine or gather in thetown's Placa de la Vila on Saturday evenings to join in when localsdance the traditional Catalonian Sardana dance.

Shopping in Lloret de Mar

There are a multitude of shops and markets to choose from inLloret de Mar, and plenty of time for holidaymakers to browse,provided they can bear to leave the beach. The main shoppingenclaves, from malls to small kiosks, are centred in the streetsbehind the waterfront. Wares tend to be touristy items, fromsouvenirs to bathing suits, and prices are generally reasonablealthough quality may be lacking. Some of the smaller shops close inthe early afternoon hours and on Sundays, but in general visitorscan shop happily from around 9am until late at night any day of theweek during the busy summer season. The traditional local market isheld every Tuesday on the Carrer dels Mestres, and there is amunicipal market every weekday in the Carrer Senia del Rabic andCarrer Verge de Loreto.

Dining in Lloret de Mar

There is a wide variety of cuisine available in a plethora ofrestaurants and fast-food outlets at Lloret de Mar, from the bestof British to traditional tapas, at very reasonable prices andgenerally good quality. Favourites with holiday-makers arestrawberries and cream, Sangria (fruited sparkling wine) anddelicious dishes of paella (seafood risotto). Many of the localrestaurants in the old town offer a 'menu of the day' dealincluding two courses, dessert, bread and even wine for a fewEuros. There are also Tex-Mex, Chinese and various other flavoursto indulge in.

Activities in Lloret de Mar

The nightlife in the holiday resort of Lloret de Mar isexhilarating, with its hundreds of bars and 30-odd nightclubspulsating all night, particularly along the Avinguda Just Marles IVilarrodona strip of the old town. Night owls who stroll along herein the late evening are accosted by touts offering free tickets anddrinks vouchers for the clubs, and partying here can be as cheap asit is lively. Among the more popular clubs and pubs are Bumpers,renowned for its Caribbean co*cktails and glass dance floor; Moby's,where karaoke is the popular entertainment; and Tropics, thebiggest and best nightclub in town where guest DJs rock the nightwith a mix of house, rock and trance music enhanced with laserlights and foam. Families opt for friendly 'home-style' pubs in thesuburb of Fenals, where kids are entertained and the favouriteEnglish soap operas are screened.

Things to be aware of in Lloret de Mar

The beach is comparatively small and becomes very over-crowdedin the height of the season.

Costa Teguise


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The smallest and most recently developed of the island's threemain holiday resorts, Costa Teguise is situated on the southeastcorner of Lanzarote and is a haven for families and sun-seekers.Although it is a purpose built resort, Costa Teguise manages tohave a nice community feel to it, with lots of little squaresaround which the bars and restaurants are located. The resort ismore low-key than some but still offers plenty to do with a widevariety of shops and restaurants catering to all tastes, and ofcourse lovely beaches for holidaymakers to relax on. Playa de lasCucharas is probably the best of the three beaches, withuninterrupted views and crystal clear blue waters. Playa Bastian isanother idyllic spot to enjoy the sub-tropical sunshine.

Shopping in Costa Teguise

Costa Teguise has a variety of shops around the resort and inthe La Cucharas Shopping Complex, selling all the usual tourist tatfor holiday makers, as well as offering a few electrical duty-freestores. The busy Sunday market at Teguise is well worth a visit,selling a variety of locally produced goods from pottery totablecloths along with the inevitable 'I've been to Lanzarote't-shirts. Although visitors should be able to find souvenirs andanything they may need on holiday, Costa Teguise is not suited tobig shopping sprees.

Dining in Costa Teguise

There is a good range of restaurants in Costa Teguise cateringfor all tastes and pockets. For dining out, visitors should tryCoffee and Cream Bistro Bar, Vesubio Restaurant, RestaurantMontmatre or El Bocadito, which specialises in traditional Spanishtapas. Besides a number of local establishments, there are plentyof Italian, Indian, Thai, Chinese and seafood restaurants. ForBritish visitors longing for home, there are several fish and chipshops that offer traditional cod and freshly made chips, and otherplaces that serve up English breakfasts and screen Premier Leaguefootball on big screen TVs.

Activities in Costa Teguise

The nightlife in Costa Teguise is not legendary. Party animalsgenerally take a taxi to Puerto del Carmen, a larger holiday resortten miles (16km) to the west. Costa Teguise's Mo vita Disco Bar isits best-known party venue and there are some nice bars around themarketplace to start the evening off. Travellers can try theFiddler's Bar and the Sunburnt Arms, or Hennessy's Irish Bar ifthey're craving a refreshing pint of Guinness. For somethingdifferent, they can try Legends Bar, which provides entertainmentsuch as a hypnotist or an Abba tribute band. There is also a casinoin the Hotel Oasis.

Things to be aware of in Costa Teguise

It is possible to get good bargains in the electrical duty-freestores when on holiday in Costa Teguise, but visitors shouldremember that they can't take purchases back to the shop once theyhave left the island. They should check everything works and thatall batteries, cables and plugs are included; that they receive aEuropean guarantee, not an Asian one; and that all electrical itemshave a CE stamp. While water is safe for cleaning teeth and washingfood, it is very high in mineral content and can cause bad stomachproblems. Bottled water should be used for drinking.

Puerto Pollensa


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The sedate holiday resort of Puerto Pollensa stretches along abeautiful, sheltered, horseshoe-shaped bay lined with sandybeaches, set against the backdrop of the Boquer mountain range onthe north coast of Mallorca. The resort has grown up around thescenic fishing port that serves the picturesque ancient Roman townof Pollensa, situated a few miles inland. Far quieter and more laidback than the exuberant resorts of Magalluf and Palma Nova, PuertoPollensa and its near neighbour, the tranquil resort of Cala SanVicente, attracts families and couples. Holidaymakers generallytake inclusive packages at the resort's family hotels, or rentsophisticated villas on the port's celebrated Pine Walk promenade.Cafes, restaurants and tourist shops line the promenade along withsome elegant hotels, overlooking the wide sandy beach and the bay,dotted with the colourful sails of yachts. Those willing to makethe effort to be up for sunrise are rewarded with a mesmerisingsight as gentle waves lap the shore in the dawn light.

Shopping in Puerto Pollensa

While Puerto Pollensa may not be a shopping paradise as such, itis very adequately supplied with shops and boutiques catering tothe tourist trade and holidaymakers should enjoy a spot of souvenirshopping. It is the local markets, mainly, that delight shoppers inMallorca, and one of the liveliest and biggest takes place everySunday in the church square in the Pollensa old town. Stalls extenddown the side streets, filled with a variety of goods from freshfruits and vegetables to local crafts and carvings, leather goods,ceramics and lace. Market day in Puerto Pollensa itself isWednesdays, when stalls are set up in the Church Square. The portis connected to the old town by a regular and frequent busservice.

Dining in Puerto Pollensa

Clivia, Giardino, Ca'n Costa and Little Italy come highlyrecommended for holidaymakers dining out in Puerto Pollensa. Theresort is known to have some of the best seafood restaurants onMallorca. While this is undoubtedly so, there is also a wideselection of restaurants catering to all tastes, including Britishpub food, pizza, Chinese, local tapas and even a Kashmirirestaurant.

Activities in Puerto Pollensa

Like everything else in Puerto Pollensa, the scene after darkremains laid-back and quiet, with tourists and locals alike takingtime for the traditional 'paseo' or stroll from the marina alongthe Pine Walk, as far as the elegant Illa D'Or hotel. Afterlingering over a delicious dinner most are content to watch theworld go by from a pavement café or bar. There is entertainmentoffered by most of the hotels, but the main resort of PuertoPollensa is not designed for the young clubbing set. Those wantinga party should travel to the nightclubs in neighbouring Alcudia, afew miles to the south. The old town and resort host plenty offestivals, when things get lively, like in January when bonfiresare lit in honour of St Anthony, and in July when the patron saintis honoured with parades, concerts and plenty of dancing in thestreets. In February an annual carnival is held, and during thesecond week of November celebrations centre on the annual tradefair.

Things to be aware of in Puerto Pollensa

Negatives about Puerto Pollensa are expressed only by those whogo anticipating bright lights and wild nightlife. The resort isquiet and the beaches uncrowded, even in the height of the season;most visitors are families with young children or older couples.Entertainment in most hotels is geared primarily towards children.Restaurants can be very pricey.

San Antonio


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Situated on the west coast, ten miles (16km) from the airportand the capital Ibiza, San Antonio is the largest and liveliestholiday resort on the island. Known as 'San An' to the thousands ofBritish clubbers who descend here each summer, the resort's propername is Sant Antoni de Portmany. San Antonio's wide bay is linedwith bars, restaurants and apartment blocks catering mainly foryoung British and European holidaymakers. There are a few smallsandy beaches in the resort, and the spectacular beaches of CalaConta, Cala Bassa and Cala Tarida are a short ferry ride away. Thebeaches of San Antonio are ideal for swimming, with shallow andsafe water. July and August are the best months to visit for thoselooking to experience the buzzing nightlife in San An (arguably thebest party resort on the best party island in Spain), while themonths of May and June, and September and October are most popularwith families, couples and older visitors, who prefer to avoid thefashionable hubbub of the peak summer months.

Shopping in San Antonio

There is a selection of shops in and around San Antonio cateringfor holidaymakers, from the inevitable bucket and spade stores todesigner boutiques. Good buys include the local porcelain andleather goods. The local supermarkets are great and stock all thewell-known brands (particularly British brands); alcohol andcigarettes are particularly cheap. Ibiza Town is the best place tofind the latest fashion accessories; the shops don't close untilwell after midnight during the high season and in the evenings theport area takes on the ambience of a hippy market of street vendorsand stalls.

Dining in San Antonio

The resort has a huge variety of restaurants and fast foodjoints. San Antonio has three areas: 'The West End', which ispacked with lots of small bars, fast food restaurants and pavementcafes; the more upmarket 'Sunset Strip', where the betterrestaurants are found; and 'The Bay', which has an eclectic mix ofbars, restaurants, clubs and hotels. Some restaurants offer goodlocal Spanish fare and excellent locally caught seafood but themajority cater for more British tastes with international staplessuch as hamburgers and chips, full English breakfasts and Sundayroasts. Chinese, Indian and Italian food is also readilyavailable.

Activities in San Antonio

San An is a joy for party animals! Cafe Del Mar is San Antonio'smost celebrated social venue and a must for all visitors andholidaymakers looking for a good night out. Ibiza is synonymouswith clubbing and the nightclubs in and around San Antonio attractsthe best DJs from around the world. A great place to start off theevening is in one of the bars along the Sunset Strip. Privilege issaid to be the world's largest club, located on the long straightroad to the Ibiza Town.

Things to be aware of in San Antonio

San Antonio's beaches aren't great, but the spectacular beachesof Cala Conta, Cala Bassa and Cala Tarida are easy to get to. TheWest End is very noisy and at night is packed with sales reps and'looky-looky' men trying to sell watches, jewellery, sun glassesand drugs. Those looking for a less hectic evening should stick tothe San Antonio Bay end of town. The big clubs can beexpensive.



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The world-famous ski resort of Chamonix sits in the shadow ofMont Blanc and offers some of the most challenging and extensiveskiing in Europe. The town is in the centre of a string of villagesspread out along a valley cutting deep through the Alps. Thevillage of Argentiere is six miles (10km) up the valley, beneaththe renowned Grands-Montets slopes, and Les Houches is a smallvillage a few miles below. The huge variety of piste and off-pisteskiing in Chamonix attracts ski bums and weekend skiers (the townis only 50 minutes drive from Geneva) and this is reflected in thesportive atmosphere in the bars and restaurants. In the summer,Chamonix is a mecca for mountaineers.

Shopping in Chamonix

Chamonix is a year-round holiday destination and offers a rangeof shops aimed at skiers, snowboarders and mountain climbers. Thereare plenty of supermarkets and delicatessens for those on aself-caterering holiday.

Dining in Chamonix

Chamonix is alive with restaurants, ranging from first-classFrench restaurants to Indian, Chinese, Italian and Japaneseeateries and holidaymakers will not be disappointed. Both ChezConstant and Le Panier des 4 Saisons offer delicious traditionalmenus in cosy settings. For some French-Asian food fusion, tryeither Le Cap Horn or Munchie. Poco Loco is famous for it'sburgers. Argentiere has some good local restaurants but much lesschoice than Chamonix. There are some fine restaurants on the slopestoo, including Le 3842, one of the highest restaurants in Europe.Tables at the more popular restaurants should be booked in advance,particularly over Christmas, New Year and Easter weeks.

Activities in Chamonix

Chamonix is known for its ski-hard-party-hard atmosphere and thenightlife won't disappoint. There are a selection of bars near thestation in Chamonix, on Avenue Michel Croz, offering beer,co*cktails and live music. Elevation 1904 and La Folie Douce inChamonix, and the Office Bar in Argentiere are popular choices forapres-ski drinks. Amnesia is the biggest club in Chamonix, withresident and guest DJs performing every night until 4am. There is acasino for those wishing to try their luck on the tables.

Things to be aware of in Chamonix

The ski areas in Chamonix do not inter-connect and the base liftstations are far apart, so a car is essential in Chamonix unlessvisitors are happy to wait for the erratic shuttle buses. Thebeginner slopes are separated from the main skiing areas makinglunch meetings hard to organise. Chamonix has its own microclimateand the weather can be bad when neighbouring resorts are fine. Ifit is clouded over, it's worth checking out the weather inCourmayeur in Italy, a short trip away through the Mont Blanctunnel.

Skiing in Chamonix

Chamonix and Argentiere are renowned worldwide for their widevariety of challenging skiing, but there are also plenty of optionsfor beginners, particularly at Le Tour at the top end of thevalley. There are nursery slopes nearer town at La Vormaine, LesChosalets and Les Planards. Intermediates and advanced skiers canenjoy up to 300 miles (500km) of slopes available with the fulllift pass, ranging from Le Brevent and La Flegere to LesGrands-Montets. Les Grands-Montets is the major attraction foradvanced skiers with some massive mogul fields and endlessoff-piste skiing. The Vallée Blanche is probably the best-known skitrail in the Alps, a 13-mile (21km) glacier running along the Merde Glace back to Chamonix. It's often closed due to bad weather,but is an wonderful adventure for competent skiers. Skiers shouldtake a guide and be prepared for bad weather.



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The Spanish holiday destination of S'Illot is on the east coatof Mallorca and combines the larger resort town of Sa Coma and thesmaller village of Cala Moreya, not far from Cala Millor and PortoCristo. Cala Moreya is separated from Sa Coma by a small freshwater lagoon and is within easy walking distance. Cala Moreya wasoriginally a tiny fishing village and fishermen still pull in theirboats each evening and haul them up a ramp at the end of the smallbeach. The village has retained its charm and visitors on holidayin the S'Illot area have the option of enjoying the peace andtranquillity of Cala Moreya, or the livelier aspects of its moreupmarket neighbour. Both towns have excellent beaches, though SaComa beach is much larger, and there are a number of goodrestaurants (as well as fast food outlets), bars and shops toexplore. S'Illot is popular with English families and couplesseeking a quiet holiday resort, with the perfect balance ofrelaxation and excitement on offer.

Shopping in S'Illot

The town centre in S'Illot offers some shopping opportunities,but apart from a few souvenir and gift stores the resort's shopsmainly just deal in essentials. Several supermarkets provide allthat self-caterers may need. Visitors will find more shoppingvariety in nearby areas such as Sa Coma. There is a sprawlingMonday morning market a short drive away at Manacor, with manystalls radiating out from the central church.

Dining in S'Illot

S'Illot has some great restaurants to enjoy while on holiday,the best of which include Bar Restaurante Espas, Can Ronpes, LagoRestaurante and Playa Azul. BiBaBo café and music bar on thewaterfront mixes the best of British with some Spanish dishes forfamilies wanting the best of both worlds.

Activities in S'Illot

S'Illot has little in the way of nightlife. Most community barsand restaurants, though lively and fun, close early, and there areno real nightclubs. Most nightlife is centred around hotel bars,and those looking for a wilder experience should travel to nearbyCala Millor, which is five minutes away be car or taxi, and has amore energetic party scene. The most popular nighttimeentertainment venue in S'Illot is probably the Crazy Monkey.

Things to be aware of in S'Illot

S'Illot is not a true resort; it is a traditional fishingvillage that has only recently begun to adapt to the growing demandfor tourism on Mallorca. There can be a lack of infrastructure,including spotty public transport. The town has a limited nightlifethat is mainly restricted to hotel bars.

Cerro Catedral


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One of Argentina's most notable ski resorts, Cerro Catedral islocated in the Nahuel Huapí National Park in Patagonia, just eightmiles (13 km) from the picturesque city of Bariloche in themajestic Andes Mountain Range. The stunning resort offersbreathtaking views over the Nahuel Huapi Lake and the gateway cityof Bariloche, famous for its trekking, climbing, chocolate andnatural pristine beauty.

No other Argentinean ski area rivals Bariloche in nightlife,dining out or entertainment. With 600 hectares (1,482 acres) ofskiable snow area, 57 runs of varying difficulties and 27chairlifts, Cerro Catedral offers some of the best skiingfacilities in South America. Bariloche features a great airport,making getting to Cerro Catedral a quick and easy process, which isperfect for families travelling with kids.

Shopping in Cerro Catedral

Travellers should head to Las Terrazas, the largest shoppingcentre in Cerro Catedral, which boasts around 50 shops that selleverything from ski wear and sporting goods to jewellery andfashionable clothing. The Amancay Paseo Plaza is also a good placeto pick up a few souvenirs, while those wanting a little morevariety should take the bus, which runs every 30 minutes, intoBariloche for a shopping experience that is second to none.Visitors should be sure to swing past a few of the chocolate storeswhile in Bariloche, as it's considered the chocolate capital ofArgentina.

Dining in Cerro Catedral

There are a few restaurants and coffee shops around CerroCatedral and the Amancay Paseo Plaza houses a large restaurant, butfoodies looking for a larger variety of dining out options shouldhead into Bariloche, where everything from fast food outlets tonouveau cuisine eateries can be found. Visitors should try FamiliaWeiss, a popular eatery serving a little bit of everything and evenfeaturing a children's menu, while Cerveceria Blest features agreat dinner accompanied by local beers.

Activities in Cerro Catedral

Lively holidaymakers have come to the right place as CerroCatedral and nearby Bariloche offer plenty in the way of nightlifeto suit all ages and tastes. Most of the apres-ski is centredaround Bariloche, but this is easily reached from the base of CerroCatedral. Visitors should head to the central plaza in Barilochefor a few drinks, where they'll find plenty of English-speakingtourists, or watch the sun set over the mountains and enjoy some ofthe local brew. Party animals can dance the night away on one ofsix storeys of dance floors at Grisu, while big spenders can puttheir poker face on for a night of gambling at the Club HotelCatedral.

Things to be aware of in Cerro Catedral

Being the most popular and famous ski area in South America,Bariloche can become extremely crowded during the wintermonths.



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Tucked into the foothills of the Pirin Mountains in Bulgaria, the ski resort town of Bansko is charming and historic against its stunning alpine backdrop. Bansko's alpine skiing, hiking, and rock climbing opportunities are extensive, and its culture and history, stretching back to the 10th century, is rich and vibrant with traditional taverna-style cuisine and colourful folklore. The traditional stone and wooden buildings are an integral part of its charm and character and many relics and monuments survive from its past. While Bansko is well-known for its Alpine skiing, the town is also conveniently near the resort of Shiligarnika, which boasts Bulgaria's best downhill skiing.

Shopping in Bansko

Holidaymakers shopping in Bansko will find plenty of souvenirs in the form of local crafts, especially embroidered goods. Many shops focus on skiing equipment, but on Sundays there is a market that offers fresh produce and a variety of locally-made goods.

Dining in Bansko

Bansko is not short on cosy eateries, with dozens of taverns in the town serving up hearty traditional Bulgarian cuisine, and holidaymakers will not go hungry. Restaurants and pubs selling international staples are also readily available.

Activities in Bansko

The nightlife in Bansko is not as wild as in some of Bulgaria's other popular holiday resorts, like Borovets and Pamporovo. This small, old-fashioned town takes its tone from the quiet locals, who prefer to while away the evenings in the large selection of low-ceilinged taverns and pubs before a roaring fire. Most offer entertainment in the form of local musicians or folk orchestras, particularly during the winter ski season. There are some low-key discotheques offering dancing, frequented by the local youth as well as visiting foreigners.

Things to be aware of in Bansko

Bansko is quiet and not suited to 'party animals'. Expert skiiers may not find enough challenge on the skiing slopes, which are best suited to beginners and intermediates.

Skiing in Bansko

Skiing in Bansko is particularly well-suited to beginners and intermediates. The slopes of Todorin Vruh are best for novices, with gentle slopes and long runs from the chair lift. The slopes also give access to some good off-piste skiing and snowboarding. Intermediates can take the triple chair lift to the top of the peak and try one of the downhill runs. Expert skiers can go to the nearby resort of Shiligarnika for more challenging slopes. There are skiing and snowboarding classes available for adults and children. Snow conditions in Bansko are good and there are seldom queues even in the height of the season. In recent years a lot of money has gone into improving and replacing ski lifts at Bansko, vastly improving the amenities. Bansko has the best snow record and the longest ski season (December to May) of all Bulgarian ski resorts, and is one of the best-value ski destinations in Europe.



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Located below Mont Blanc on the Italianside of the mountain in the Aosta Valley, the atmospheric skiresort of Courmayeur is full of grand old buildings, narrow cobbledstreets and plenty of traditional Italian village charm. Thescenery is spectacular, as the resort is surrounded by fourteenmountain peaks at the junction of Italy, France andSwitzerland.

The village was once known as a spa townand base for climbing, but became recognised as a ski resort withthe opening of the Mont Blanc Tunnel, which provides easy accessfrom Chamonix and Geneva International Airport. The town'sproximity to both Geneva and Turin's airports makes it a populardestination for weekenders. A transfer from Geneva takes just overan hour and Turin is 1 hour 45 minutes away. Milan is a little overtwo-hours' drive away.

Shopping in Courmayeur

The shopping in Courmayeur is centred onthe pedestrianised Via Roma, which is lined with stylish boutiques,cafes, restaurants and delicatessens, as well as many ski andmountain shops. The streets are alive with immaculately dressedItalians, many who come to Courmayeur to party and shop rather thanski.

Dining in Courmayeur

Like most Italian ski resorts, eveningsbegin with the passeggiata, a stroll down the main street before alate dinner. The holiday destination of Courmayeur has numerousrestaurants, cafes, pizzerias and trattorias to suit all tastes andbudgets, and eating out is almost as popular as time spent on theslopes. Most establishments are fairly informal and relaxed, butthere are upmarket fine-dining options for more romantic andexclusive dining.

Activities in Courmayeur

Visitors on holiday will find that the après-ski in Courmayeuris a drawn out, rather laid back affair with fire-warmed barsspilling out onto the main street. The bars are numerous, includingcozy traditional pubs, lively bars with dance floors and themenights, as well as stylish venues for the morefashion-conscious.

Things to be aware of in Courmayeur

On weekends, there can be a long wait atthe main cable car in Courmayeur. To avoid the queues, visitorsshould head to the nearby Dolonne gondola or the cable-car up thevalley at Entrèves. The weather in Courmayeur is sunnier thannearby Chamonix, meaning the slopes can get slushy in theafternoons.

Skiing in Courmayeur

By European standards, the ski area inCourmayeur is small, though is does include 63 miles (100km) of itsown pistes and short but numerous runs that cater to mainlyintermediate and beginner skiers, and snowboarders.

Access is provided to the other resorts inthe Aosta Valley, and a combined area of almost 497 miles (800km)of runs and 32 miles (51km) of cross-country trails is available.Chamonix is just across the border and is lift-linked to one of theresort's ski areas, offering a wide range of skiing options andoff-piste routes on both sides of the border.

Courmayeur offers skiing and boarding forall standards, but the groomed slopes are best suited forintermediates, while advanced skiers will find plenty of off-pisteopportunities and high mountain ski areas.

There are two main ski areas at Courmayeur.Checrouit-Val Veny, directly above the resort, is mostly suited tointermediates and beginners, although the nursery slopes lower downare limited and can be crowded. Absolute beginners can also ski atDolonne in the village. The most famous run is the 13-mile (20km)descent of the Vallée Blanche from Helbronner Point at 11,053ft(3,369m) down to Chamonix, which is daunting and demanding, but canbe undertaken by intermediate skiers and snowboarders.

The skiing from Cresta Youla at 8,700ft(2,652m) is excellent, but higher up at Cresta Arp the terrain isfor experts only and should be undertaken with a guide. The secondski area is Mont Blanc and is for advanced skiers and boarders; aguide should accompany skiers on the high mountain terrain and theglacier. Snow is reliable and there are widespread snowmakingfacilities.



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Heavenly is the largest ski resort in California and a popularholiday destination, with some 4,800 acres of terrain stretchinginto the state of Nevada. At over 10,000 feet (3,048m) it is alsothe highest resort in Tahoe, where it is situated overlooking thebeautiful Lake Tahoe. Heavenly was bought by Vail Resorts (whichincludes Keystone, Breckenridge, Beaver Creek and Northstar); andselect passes can include access to these other resorts (they areall in Colorado). Many skiers recommend trying Heavenly at leastonce, for its sheer size, and the breathtaking views it has tooffer. Due to its proximity to the South Shore and Bay Area,Heavenly also receives many Californian day visitors who appreciatethe convenience of a great ski resort on their doorstep.

Shopping in Heavenly

With a number of top brand outlets, such as Patagonia, Burton,and North Face, there is enough variety for every ski andsnowboarding holiday requirement. There are plenty of factorystores including several top brands. The South Shore has a numberof shops selling everything needed for a ski holiday.

Dining in Heavenly

There is a massive choice of restaurants on the South Shore,offering everything from pizza and pasta, steaks and grills,Mexican, and more. Evan's American Gourmet Cafe is one of the mostpopular serving a variety of Californian cuisine. Friday's Stationhas magnificent views, a fabulous wine selection and great service.For seafood head to the Naked Fish, for mouth-watering burgers,including buffalo, elk or salmon burgers, visit the Sky Deck BurgerBar. The casinos mostly have great value restaurants andall-you-can-eat buffets. There are also plenty of mountainrestaurants, offering anything from hot dogs and salads to burgersand pizzas.

Activities in Heavenly

Heavenly Village, in South Lake Tahoe, has a very lively apresski scene, centred on the pedestrian plaza around the base of thegondola where there are plenty of lively bars with DJs and livebands. The resort comes to life during the spring, whentemperatures soar and the Californian sunshine takes hold. Thenightlife is centred around the huge casinos in the Statelinesuburb on Nevada territory, which mostly include restaurants, barsand nightclubs. Travellers should note that the minimum legal ageto buy or consume alcohol in both California and Nevada is 21.

Things to be aware of in Heavenly

Heavenly can get quite crowded and lift lines tend to be longover Christmas, the Spring Break period and weekends. The lifts tothe upper lifts can close in high winds and the roads accessingLake Tahoe are often closed in snowstorms. With all the casinos,some visitors find Heavenly a little brash but the apres ski sceneis what draws many skiers to the resort.

Skiing in Heavenly

Heavenly boasts 350 inches (889cm) of snow a year and one of thelargest snowmaking systems in North America. The size of Heavenly'sterrain means it will have a lot to offer all levels of skiers. TheCalifornia side is preferred by beginners and intermediate skiersand riders, whereas the slopes on the Nevada side are far moreinteresting. The most advanced skiers will want to head to the fareastern end of this sprawling resort where they'll find fewerpeople and an extreme skier's playground including fantastic steepruns in the Mott and Killebrew Canyons. The parks at Heavenly havesomething for beginners and advanced tricksters and is the home ofthe South Shore Soldiers Camp every spring.

Las Lenas


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The biggest ski resort in Argentina, Las Lenas is nestled highin a valley south of Mendoza City. Possibly the most famous skiresort in South America, the resort opened in 1983 and attractsthrill-seeking skiers and daredevils to its extreme runs. Las Lenasis renowned for its beauty as well as its challenge, and skiphotography is popular at the resort.

Its isolated location means the nearest towns, San Rafael andMalargue, are several hours' drive away. The village of Las Lenasis mostly self-contained, with a number of shops, bars, restaurantsand a few hotels, while the nightlife is nearly as famous as theskiing!

Shopping in Las Lenas

The shopping in Las Lenas is concentrated in La Piramideshopping centre, which has stores providing basics such as skiingequipment, clothing and film, as well as delicious Patagonianchocolate, which is a popular souvenir from Argentina.

Dining in Las Lenas

The resort is small and isolated, so most of the restaurants inLas Lenas are located in the hotels. Escorpio has an excellentrestaurant serving French and Mediterranean cuisine, while Piscis'two eateries specialise in pizza and Italian food.

Activities in Las Lenas

Las Lenas is nearly as famous for its buzzing nightlife as itsskiing. There are a number of bars, pubs, nightclubs and discos intown, while the Casino Las Lenas is also quite a draw.

Things to be aware of in Las Lenas

Las Lenas is isolated and not easy or cheap to reach. The expertand intermediate slopes become unavailable in bad weather, whichcan last for two to three days at a time.

Skiing in Las Lenas

Advanced skiers will be in paradise at Las Lenas. There are manyextreme slopes towards the top of the peaks, and a total absence oftrees leaves plenty of room for creative detours. There are plentyof intermediate and beginner runs as well lower down. It should benoted that all but the beginner slopes shut down completely whenthe snow and wind picks up. There are several skiing andsnowboarding schools that offer great family and kids' classes.



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Once a fishing and logging town on thePacific Rim of Vancouver Island, Tofino is swiftly becoming apopular holiday destination for travellers from all over the globe.Tucked away at the entrance of the Clayoquot Sound, the area ishome to the Pacific Rim National Park, gorgeous beaches, swathes ofancient forests, hot springs and Long Beach, the premier surfingspot in Canada.

Tofino is home to only about 2,000 localswho enjoy year-round access to its mild climate and resplendentnatural beauty. The area boasts plenty of activities for visitors,including kayaking, whale watching, surfing and fishing.

Accessible by air or sea, Hot Springs Coveis open year round and visitors can have a soak in its naturallyhot rock pools. Other popular sights include the 800-year-old EikCedar; the Tofino Botanical Gardens with acres of forest, shorelineand gardens; and the Whale Centre Maritime Museum housingfascinating artefacts.

The Wickaninnish Interpretive Centre,containing interesting information about the region and theNuu-chah-nulth First Nations (the area's original inhabitants), iswell worth a visit. Tofino offers visitors the perfect combinationof a range of activities, as well as a chance to relax and puttheir feet up surrounded by unparalleled beauty.

Shopping in Tofino

There are plenty of shops for holidaymakers in Tofino, with manyspecialising in First Nations art and crafts.

Dining in Tofino

Holidaymakers can find a number of restaurant styles in Tofino,ranging from pizza, sushi, regional produce, organic foods, tofresh seafood, deli-style offerings, classic Italian, andNuu-Chah-Nulth First Nations cuisine. There are also a number ofcatering services available.

Activities in Tofino

Tofino is not celebrated for its nightlife, with only a handfulof bars and pubs and not much of a nightclub scene.

Things to be aware of in Tofino

The lack of an energetic nightlife may disappoint somevisitors.



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Pattaya, situated about 62 miles (100km) south of Bangkok, wasonce just a quiet coastal fishing town. Today it teems withholidaymakers, both local and foreign, and is packed with hotels,shops, restaurants and bars. The tourism boom came with the VietnamWar, when Pattaya was chosen as a popular venue for American GIs toenjoy some 'R&R'. The town has developed something of areputation for sex tourism, an image it is trying to shake off,although most of the night-time entertainment is centred aroundspicy cabarets, massage parlours, go-go bars, and beer-bars withgirls for hire. The town, however, has a multitude of otherattractions on offer, from its rather crowded and well-used beachesto some first-class restaurants, hundreds of recreationalactivities, bazaar-type markets, and excursions to nearby morepeaceful spots and offshore islands.

Shopping in Pattaya

Holidaymakers will find that shopping in Pattaya is fun andinteresting, and that there are many bargains to be had, as is thecase in most major centres in Thailand. The main shopping area isin the south around the large seaside hotels. Congregated here is aselection of jewellery stores, tailors, boutiques selling silk andcotton goods, and handcraft shops. The largest shopping complex ison North Pattaya Road, designed like a traditional night market andhome to a bazaar, handcraft centre, and several bars andrestaurants to complement the shops.

Dining in Pattaya

Whether their tastes run to English fry-ups or enchiladas,holidaymakers will find it in Pattaya, where a range of eateriesfrom street vendors to top-notch gourmet restaurants cover aninternational gamut of cuisines. Not only is the choice vast, butthe budget range is too. For a pittance it is possible to dine onchicken fried rice or noodles from a streetside stall or, for a fewhundred baht, visitors can go really upscale and dine inair-conditioned luxury at an elegant hotel restaurant, like the ThePeak on the top floor of the Dusit Resort Pattaya. An unusual butfun spot is Cabbages and Condoms, a colourful restaurant servingvegetables grown from its own garden. Those intent on sticking tolocal cuisine will find plenty of mouth-watering Thai optionseverywhere they look; the fresh seafood is particularly good and isoften available straight from a seawater tank.

Activities in Pattaya

Holidaymakers will note that much of Pattaya's nightliferevolves around the notorious local sex-oriented industry,particularly along famed Walking Street in the party zone betweenSoi 14 and Soi 16 in south Pattaya. This area is closed to trafficat night, and buzzes with dozens of beer-bars, go-go clubs, discos,Thai boxing matches and massage parlours, lit with brilliant neon.Around the beach road the scene is almost as hectic. Extravagantand flamboyant cabarets and drag shows are extremely popular allover the city. Gay-only bars are centred on an area known as BoyzTown. Those looking for some more traditional evening entertainmentcan kick up their heels at an Irish pub, such as Kilkenny's, orsoak up some jazz at the Hopf Brew House on Beach Road.

Things to be aware of in Pattaya

Pattaya is not the ideal destination for families, as it has areputation for sex tourism and many older male travellers come heresearching for prostitutes and go-go girls.



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Malia offers fun, sunny days and steamy nights of partying.Situated on the north coast of Crete, its shops, cafes, hotels,kiosks and tavernas stay busy during peak season, and bright lightsand pumping music are a nightly presence in its cosmopolitan clubsand pubs. Other attractions include a few glorious miles of sandybeach, Krasi village's wooded slopes and rushing streams, and the2000 BC ruins of Malia Palace.

Shopping in Malia

This is resort shopping at its finest. Visitors can purchaseflip-flops, sunscreen, jewellery and leather goods, as well asceramics, embroidery and other handcrafts. The local wines andcheeses are very good.

Dining in Malia

Visitors can enjoy anything from traditional Greek food to aquick pasta or take-out burger.

Activities in Malia

Malia's nightlife has a reputation for being one of theMediterranean's hottest for young clubbers, and is on a par withIbiza and Mallorca. The main strip along the beach is thick withtouts luring visitors into their establishments, promising freeadmission and a variety of drinks offers.

Things to be aware of in Malia

Although Malia has a long, wide stretch of beach, it becomesheavily crowded during the peak holiday season. The resort'spopularity among young party goers means it isn't the best optionfor a family holiday.



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Molyvos is Lesvos Island's most popular and picturesque holidayresort, where a pretty harbour and red-roofed houses offerholidaymakers a serene and laid-back atmosphere. The town'sarchaeological museum shows a history that pre-dates the ClassicalAge. Visitors typically enjoy snorkelling and sunbathing orstrolling along the market's quaint, cobbled streets. Many end theday with sundowners and a delicious Greek dinner on thewaterfront.

Shopping in Molyvos

Holidaymakers usually enjoy Molyvos' market. Set alongcobble-stoned alleys, it's a good place to buy local crafts andproduce.

Dining in Molyvos

Molyvos has many traditional tavernas around the harbour andmarket areas. As it's a fishing village, seafood is naturally thepride of most local menus.

Activities in Molyvos

Though Molyvos isn't top-of-mind among party goers, it does havesome clubs and lively bars. The open-air cinema is worth attendingand performances at the Castle are always a must.

Things to be aware of in Molyvos

Some holidaymakers have been disappointed to find pebblesinstead of sand on Molyvos' beach. Also, summer weekends can see alot of motorbike traffic, which can be unpleasantly noisy.

Blue Bay


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The relatively undeveloped south coast of Mauritius boasts beautiful, wild mountainous landscapes and the lack of sandy beaches has protected the region from too many resorts. The area around Blue Bay is the exception to this and here travellers can find stunning white beaches and a number of huge luxury hotels which have opened over the years. Often called one of the best beaches in the world, the white sand of Blue Bay contrasts with its brilliant turquoise water. Blue Bay (also called Bel Ombre) is probably the most popular beach in Mauritius, and can get crowded on weekends when the locals from Mahebourg come in droves, though week days are pleasantly quiet. Blue Bay is renowned for its colourful coral reefs, and snorkelling and scuba diving are popular activities. Non-swimmers can enjoy the view from a glass-bottomed boat on the way to the Islets of Mauritius, also known as the Ile de Deux Cocos. Land-based activities include tennis and volleyball; and Blue Bay has some excellent restaurants. The south of Mauritius is the most traditional and unspoiled region of the island and a delight to explore.

Shopping in Blue Bay

Apart from the usual hotel shops and local stores, visitors to Blue Bay can go shopping in the nearby town of Mahebourg which has a wonderful traditional market. Local merchants sell fresh fish, fruit and vegetables, spices, clothes and arts and crafts.

Dining in Blue Bay

Blue Bay is a melting pot of cultures and cuisines and the restaurant scene has benefitted massively from this diversity. French, Indian, Chinese, and African restaurants can be found near the beach and the various hotels provide numerous fabulous dining opportunities.

Activities in Blue Bay

Many of the big hotels provide their own clubs and bars for evening entertainment, but Blue Bay's main nightlife venue is the C Beach Club which regularly features international DJs on Friday and Saturday nights between October and June. This nightclub, right on the beach, is a favourite with locals and tourists and often stays open until 4am in season.



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The island of Cozumel is Mexico's largest island and a very popular destination with holidaymakers. It's located 12 miles (19km) off the Caribbean coast of the Yucatan Peninsula, opposite the resort Playa del Carmen. Cozumel has exceptional coral gardens and spectacular reef drop-offs offering legendary snorkelling and the best diving in Mexico; in fact, it frequently ranks as one of the top five dive destinations in the world. The west coast of the island is where the majority of development has taken place and where the town of San Miguel is situated. Due to the island's popularity with wealthy day visitors from the passing cruise ships, the town is packed with pricey shops, restaurants and bars, as well as dozens of dive shops. Cozumel is a favourite holiday destination for divers and non-divers alike, offering some great beaches, crystal clear water and plenty of sunshine. Its ease of access to the mainland also makes day excursions to some of the popular Mayan sites, like Chichén Itzá, possible.

Shopping in Cozumel

San Miguel is a duty-free zone, and there are hundreds of stores selling most things imaginable and certainly anything tourists might desire. The cruise ship passenger terminal at Punta Langosta Pier has a variety of shops, but these are among the island's most expensive, catering to day-visitors with little time and lots of money. Prices decrease the further away from the docks one ventures. The waterfront shopping zone stretches to La Plaza behind which there is a craft market. For groceries, there are a few food stores, as well as the Cozumel Market on Adolfo Rosado Salas where holidaymakers can buy fresh seafood, spices and fruit and vegetables. In the markets travellers should be prepared to bargain, but some wonderful arts and crafts can be found.

Dining in Cozumel

Cozumel offers food of every kind from authentic Mexican, to international and fast food franchises. Holidaymakers will not be disappointed. Casa Denis is one of the oldest and most popular restaurants in town, featuring a variety of traditional Mexican cuisine, and La Choza Restaurant and Casa Mission are other authentic Mexican food favourites. For seafood try La Conchita del Caribe, or Guido's for Italian. Fresh and tasty fusion food can be had at New Especias Restaurant. For an unassuming local experience try Del Sur Argentina Empanadas, which offers a delectable range of sweet and savoury empanadas including a bacon and plum option which is surprisingly wonderful.

Activities in Cozumel

Although there is a wide variety of night time entertainment for holidaymakers to enjoy, things tend to begin and end earlier in Cozumel compared to the rest of the famous Mexican beach resorts, and those expecting a night scene comparable to Cancun or Acapulco may be disappointed. The most popular disco venue is Neptuno, while Carlos´n Charlie's is also very popular. No Name Cigar Bar is also a popular night spot and is located close to Hotel Barracuda. Those who prefer a resort which doesn't host hordes of young party animals will prefer Cozumel's slightly more sedate and stylish nightlife, although this is not the case over Spring Break (March) when US teenagers descend on the island.

Things to be aware of in Cozumel

Cozumel is a cruise ship destination, and is popular with wealthy day visitors, which has driven the prices of shops, restaurants and bars to among the highest on the Yucatan Peninsula. The island becomes swamped daily by cruise visitors from passing ships and San Miguel can be quite crowded.



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The small port town and holiday retreat of Fethiyeoccupies the site of the ancient city Telmessos, and has animpressive ancient theatre and numerous Lycian rock tombs. Situatedat the head of a pretty island-strewn bay, Fethiye is a popularholiday destination on the stretch of the Mediterranean known asthe Turquoise Coast.

The town absorbs the tourist traffic and stillretains a sense of its old-fashioned rural character, with herds ofgoats and sheep blocking the roads on market days and the smell ofherbs and spices in the air. Around Fethiye are numerous unspoiledrocky coves and beaches, crystalline seas, offshore islands,cliffs, and pine-covered mountains affording as much holidayrelaxation or activity as one chooses.

Shopping in Fethiye

The Tuesday bazaar is the biggest in the area and is a must forbargain hunters. In the town centre there are craft shops makingeverything from carpets and kilims to lace and leather goods. Thegold shopping presents opportunities for good deals. Visitorsshould be prepared to haggle, but be wary of touts who try to sellthem antiques, which are illegal to export.

Dining in Fethiye

There is a good selection of restaurants on the harbour frontand in the narrow streets of the old town, and there is an emphasison local cuisine, though visitors will find plenty of English-styleeateries as well. Cafe Genis is a great spot for people-watching.There are several good wine houses that offer a selection of localvarietals.

Activities in Fethiye

Much of the nightlife in Fethiye is hosted by resorts andhotels. The Paspatir old town has a number of bars and clubsranging from traditional Turkish music to live cabaret and discos,while the Belcegiz Beach promenade has a few loud clubs. There arealso two cinemas in town.

Things to be aware of in Fethiye

A lack of signs in the city makes it difficult to find points ofinterest.

Conil de la Frontera


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Conil de la Frontera offers holidaymakers traditional Andalusian flavour, with cobbled streets, the whirl of flamenco dancing, authentic tapas bars and of course, glorious beaches. Popular with Spanish tourists, the resort is relatively quiet most of the year but comes alive in summer when it bustles with activity. There are also Moorish ruins to explore (though these are tucked away in the side streets and can be hard to find), chic shops to browse in, and plenty of excellent seafood restaurants to try. A number of activities are on offer in Conil de la Frontera for holidaymakers to enjoy, including diving, surfing, tennis, golf and of course, sun tanning and swimming. The town also has a lively nightlife, with a good selection of bars and cafés, and there are numerous fiestas throughout the year to enjoy. Conil de la Frontera is the perfect resort for those seeking an authentic Spanish experience, and remains largely undiscovered by the package tourist, for now.

Shopping in Conil de la Frontera

There are a number of popular shops in Conil de la Frontera, including some chic fashion boutiques, souvenir shops, and supermarkets. If you don't find what you want in the village, the San Fernando mall is a short drive away in the direction of Cadiz.

Dining in Conil de la Frontera

There are many good tapas bars in town, along with pizzerias and seafood restaurants. Tuna is a local speciality, as it is caught nearby. Holidaymakers should visit the best restaurants in Conil de la Frontera, which include Casa Francisco, Restaurant El Olivo, La Fontanilla and the fantastic pizzeria La Gaviota.

Activities in Conil de la Frontera

Conil de la Frontera has a bustling nightlife compared to some other Spanish resort towns. There are many bars, clubs and cafes in the centre of town that stay open late, including popular venues like Club La Luna, Cafe La Habana and Bar Palo Palo. Other clubs offering pumping beats that offer a decent night out or that will keep you on the dance floor until the early hours include Pub Levante, Disco Carpa Keops, Pubs Makoki and Disco Pub La Villa. Traditional Spanish house turned bar, La Mulata, is great for those looking for something different and La Tertulia is also a hip and happening spot.

Things to be aware of in Conil de la Frontera

Strong winds can occasionally disrupt beach activities.



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The picturesque resort town of Sintra, 18 miles (29km)north-west of Lisbon, lies at the heart of one of Portugal's mostappealing holiday regions, abounding with natural beauty,historical and cultural attractions and plenty of leisureopportunities. Sintra itself, characterised by lush greenery,bright splashes of flowers and elaborate 'wedding cake' palaces,was described as a 'glorious Eden' by classic poet Lord Byron.

No wonder it was once chosen by royalty and nobility as theplace to build their summer holiday retreats and, in more moderntimes, has been accorded the status of a UNESCO World HeritageSite.

Sintra is actually an amalgamation of three villages, sprawlingdown a steep granite hillside, so the layout is a little confusingfor visitors on holiday. The huge Palacio Nacional, with its tall,conical chimneys serves as a landmark in the centre of Sintra, andmakes a good starting point for walking tours of the keyattractions of this fascinating fairy-tale town, captured byChristian Crusaders from the Moors in 1147.

A fun way to see the town and surrounds is aboard the historic100-year-old Sintra Tram, which connects Estefanea to Praia dasMacas. It is open for rides for the public on Friday, Saturday andSunday for a couple of Euros.

Shopping in Sintra

Shopping in Sintra becomes a tour of traditional Portuguese folkart and crafts. Do not expect a frenetic spending spree in glitzymodern malls. Sintra's shops are tucked away in narrow cobblestonestreets, waiting to be ferreted out by those who appreciate fineholiday souvenirs, like hand-painted ceramics, lace, beaten copperand bronze, embroidered linen and jewellery. Goods come from allover the country, including the Azores. Prices can be steep, butmost merchants are open to a little bargaining. Best place to shopis the Praca da Republica and Sao Pedro Square. Those who areseeking modern designer clothing and houseware will have to travelout of town to the huge Cascais Shopping Centre, the area's largestshopping mall.

Dining in Sintra

The best Sintra restaurants tend to keep their offerings local,often with international overtones. Some delicious specialities ofthe region to look out for are Negrais suckling pig, Merces pork,roast kid, bass and shellfish of all sorts. Then there are thepastries, particularly Sintra queijadas, which are likemini-cheesecakes, made to an age-old recipe. Cream cakes and localjams complete the temptations, all of which should be accompaniedby some excellent Portuguese wines.

Activities in Sintra

Sintra is certainly not a party town, but as one appreciativevisitor remarked: 'When there are so many marvels to enjoy duringthe day, who needs nightlife?' Evenings tend to be spent sedately,wining and dining. There are, of course, several bars in the town,some of which occasionally offer live music and can work up quite abuzz. The liveliest bars and cafes are on the Rua das Padarias, RuaFonte da Pipa and Rua da Ferraria. Late night owls should enjoy theAdega das Caves bodega, which is open until the wee hours on thePraca da Republica, drawing an international crowd.

Things to be aware of in Sintra

Sintra has little to offer the young clubbing and party set,being more of a sightseeing or beach holiday destination. Its closeproximity to Lisbon means that it is often crowded at weekends insummer.


Playa del Carmen


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Playa del Carmen has one of the prettiest beaches on the coast and, despite its growing popularity, it has a small-town, laid-back feel to it which is part of the appeal. The offshore reef offers some spectacular diving, and less than an hour away by boat is the island of Cozumel, with some of the best diving in Mexico. There are numerous dive centres offering reef and cave diving in the limestone caverns along the coast. The small commercial town centre is packed with souvenir shops, trendy bars and cafes, restaurants, designer clothes shops and hotels, and has a vibrant nightlife that caters for the smaller beach settlements nearby so holidaymakers can enjoy the best of both worlds. It can get very overcrowded with day-trippers from Cancun, as well as cruise ship passengers. South of town, the expanding Playacar development caters mainly for package tourists, its beach packed with sunbathers and deckchairs, and lined with hotel complexes. There is also an 18-hole golf course.

Shopping in Playa del Carmen

Comfortable footwear is vital for holidaymakers intent on a shopping spree in Playa del Carmen, where everything you need in the dozens of enticing shops can be easily accessed on foot. The place to tog yourself out in designer-wear, from head to toe, is 5th Avenue, and to complement the look there are plenty of speciality stores to browse around for jewellery, Mayan-inspired arts and crafts, handbags and the like. Souvenirs range from tacky ashtrays to bright and beautiful sarongs, Mexican blankets and sombreros, and even genuine Cuban cigars from La Casa del Habano (US citizens may not purchase these). Playa del Carmen boasts a Wal-Mart on 30th Avenue, and several American style supermarkets like Chedraui on the corner of Juarez and Highway 307, and Super San Francisco on 30th Avenue. There are also numerous mini-marts selling essentials for holidaymakers, and plenty of pharmacies. The resort's main shopping malls are Plaza Pelicano on 10th Avenue and the Paseo del Carmen close to the ferry pier.

Dining in Playa del Carmen

No one need go hungry in Playa del Carmen because wherever you are in this holiday resort, there will be a great restaurant a stone's throw away. Cuisine ranges from traditional Mexican through all the international favourites, including sushi and vegetarian establishments. For a top Mexican taste treat steer a little off the beaten track behind 5th Avenue and look out for a small taqueria where it is possible to pick up a tempting taco or two for a pittance. Street vendors in the main square (Zocalo) are also a good budget option, especially for fresh fruit and tasty tamales. When it comes to restaurant dining it is difficult to make recommendations from the dozens of good establishments available, but some of the more popular eateries are The Blue Lobster, its speciality obviously the eponymous crustacean; and Season Bistro, which serves upscale Mexican with an international twist.

Activities in Playa del Carmen

Whether it is dancing cheek-to-cheek under the stars, sipping margaritas on a rooftop, soaking up some live jazz, people-watching from a street side bar, learning to salsa, or downing shots and raving it up on a flashing dance-floor, holiday visitors will find that Playa del Carmen after dark has something to fit the bill. One of the most popular hotspots is the huge Palazzo. You can find live music at Kitxen if the club scene is not your style. Numerous open-air bars are in operation until the early hours. Some offer live music or DJs and dancing as the night wears on; others serve up drinks under the stars or palapa (woven palm frond) roofs.

Things to be aware of in Playa del Carmen

There are plenty of topless and nude beaches around Playa del Carmen and families travelling with young children should take this into account.

Playa del Cura


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Situated on the southwest coast of Gran Canaria, about an hour'sdrive from the airport at Las Palmas, is the small, quiet holidayresort of Playa Del Cura, built on the cliff sides lining thecoast. This low-key family resort is just two miles (3km) fromlively, hectic Puerto Rico, the island's well-known holiday andnightlife resort, but Playa del Cura remains popular as a peacefulplace to stay while granting easy access to the bright lights andamenities of its more flamboyant neighbour. Playa del Cura is onthe main coastal bus route so travelling to other resorts is easy,and taxis are cheap and plentiful. The holiday resort has twosmall, pretty cove beaches, Cura and Tauro, at the base of thecliffs, both covered with dark volcanic sand and pebbles, andstrewn with sunbeds so that visitors can make the most of some ofthe best weather in Gran Canaria. A short distance away is thepopular stretch of the Amadores beach. The rocky coastline, andvalley extending inland, provides opportunities for those keen onwalking excursions. There is a small commercial centre equippedwith enough stores, bars and restaurants to provide for all holidayrequirements.

Shopping in Playa del Cura

The commercial centre of Playa Del Cura is a few hundred yardsfrom the beach, its anchor store being a large Spar supermarketwith an in-store bakery which stocks all requirements forvacationers. There are also a few gift and souvenir stores. Formore serious shopping, however, visitors can take a bus or taxi tonearby Puerto Rico where it is possible to buy literally anythingand everything at three huge shopping malls, including the soughtafter duty-free electrical goods, photographic equipment andperfumes.

Dining in Playa del Cura

Playa del Cura offers a fairly good choice of restaurants,mostly situated in the commercial centre. There are seafoodrestaurants with excellent fish dishes, as well as other foodstyles on offer. Bistro 22 is perhaps the best known restaurant inPlaya del Cura, and the Guantanamo Canarian restaurant is alsopopular.

Activities in Playa del Cura

Those in search of all-night clubbing and pubbing will have totake the 10-minute bus or taxi drive across to Puerto Rico tosatisfy their craving, but those looking for more relaxed eveningswill be well catered for in one of Playa del Cura's bars. There areseveral fun pubs, such as Pio Pio on Tauro beach, which offers openhouse jam sessions on Sunday evenings, or the Irish bar, OldBrouge, and its counterpart Welsh bar, Fleur de Lys, both on theupper level of the commercial centre. Several of the larger hotelsoffer their own entertainment, which is open to non-guests.

Things to be aware of in Playa del Cura

As Playa del Cura is built on steep cliffs, it is not suited tothe elderly or those with difficulty walking. Families withteenagers may find entertainment is limited for this age group.Swimmers should be wary of the strong currents off both of Playadel Cura's beaches.


Los Cristianos


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The popular holiday resort of Los Cristianos lies in a shelteredbay in the southwest corner of the island of Tenerife, merging intothe more glitzy purpose-built resort of Playa de las Americas. LosCristianos has burgeoned into a modern package-tour resort from itsorigins as a sleepy Canarian fishing village, but has managed toretain some of its traditional feel, despite the plethora of modernhotels, shopping centres and apartment blocks. The focal point ofthe resort is its working harbour, fronted by a square surroundedwith restaurants, and sandy beaches encircling a crescent-shapedbay backed by a long, wide promenade that stretches to neighbouringPlaya de las Americas. The old town centre stretches from the portup to the main shopping street in a grid-like pattern ofpedestrianised streets, still inhabited by many local people. Theresort's best beach is man-made, the Playa de las Vistas, coveredin sand imported from the Sahara. Being just a few minutes away bycheap taxi from las Americas resort allows holidaymakers in LosCristianos to enjoy a more sedate stay, while still able to accessthe bright lights and entertainment facilities of the moreboisterous neighbour, especially when it comes to nightlife.

Shopping in Los Cristianos

One of the joys of holidaying in Tenerife is indulging induty-free (or low-duty) shopping, and Los Cristianos and surroundsboasts a multitude of shops where it is easy to spend liberally onperfumes, tobacco, electrical goods, cameras and designer clothing.Handcrafts and cultured pearls are also popular buys for souvenirhunters, but these are best sought in reputable stores rather thanfrom seafront hawkers. Local supermarkets stock familiar Britishbrands, particularly those in the large San Eugene Centre. Atourist street market is held in Los Cristianos every Sunday nearthe Hotel Arona Gran, where most of the merchandise consists ofcheap and cheerful Spanish tourist souvenirs, but there is fun tobe had in haggling.

Dining in Los Cristianos

Los Cristianos has several top-rated eateries for holidaymakers,its trendiest being Piccolo, Bar El Cine, Plan B and Chill Out. LosCristianos cannot be beaten for the quality and variety of eatingestablishments available throughout the day and night, from theubiquitous English breakfast through midday fast-food snacks, todinner from China, India, Mexico or anywhere else one cares tomention. There are also more traditional Spanish eateries and tapasbars.

Activities in Los Cristianos

Los Cristianos is very well supplied with fun pubs, some discosand a few nightclubs, but holidaymakers will notice that thenightlife here is nowhere near as wild and exciting as it is nextdoor in Playa de las Americas. Taxis are plentiful and availableround the clock, however, so there is no problem popping off tojoin in the unadulterated partying in nearby lively spots likeVeronicas and The Patch, which are usually jumping and pumpinguntil 6am or so. Those who prefer a more sedate evening will behappy to sit back and unwind at a waterfront bar in Los Cristianos,watching the world go by and perhaps enjoying some live music.

Things to be aware of in Los Cristianos

Older visitors might have problems walking up the steephills.





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One of the larger holiday resorts, Marmaris is probably the mostEuropean of the Turkish resort towns on the Mediterranean coast andis a bustling cosmopolitan tourist centre in the summer months.Marmaris also marks the start of the Turquoise Coast along theMediterranean Sea. Built around an extensive natural bay at thefoot of forested mountain slopes, the town is the best base forsome of the finest sailing in the Mediterranean. Its modern marinacaters for private yachts and holiday cruise business. According tolegend, the town got its name when, not finding the castle he hadcommissioned on the hill to his liking, Suleyman the Magnificentmuttered 'mimarias'('hang the architect').

Shopping in Marmaris

To enjoy shopping in Marmaris, holiday visitors need to be cluedup and prepared. Vendors can be annoying, particularly in thebazaars, while there are a large number of fake designer goods onsale and many counterfeit products are of surprisingly goodquality. Prices are low and haggling is expected, except in thelarger stores. It's possible to knock about 30 percent off theasking price. Bearing all this in mind, Marmaris can be a shopper'sdelight, particularly for items such as leather, ceramics,jewellery, and carpets. Best value goods are to be found in theCarsi Market in the Ottoman Castle, where 200-odd shops and a fleamarket are open seven days a week. The Thursday market is acolourful experience where locals sell fruit, vegetables, fabric,and clothing. Netsel Marina is a good place to find originaldesigner clothing. 'Cam Bali' is a locally produced pine-scentedhoney and is a popular souvenir. Duty free goods are also onoffer.

Dining in Marmaris

Whether travellers want to go international, or try local fareat a lokanta (Turkish restaurant), Marmaris' hundreds of diningestablishments will have something to suit any holidaymakers'appetite and any pocket. Travellers will find fish 'n chips, goodChinese, satisfying German, or the ubiquitous Italian. Visitorsshould not balk at sampling Turkish cuisine, particularly, populardoner kebabs and seafood meze platters.

Activities in Marmaris

Marmaris' wild nights are centred on Bar Street around thewaterfront, packed with nearly one hundred nightclubs and bars thatrock until about 4am, attracting hundreds of holidaymakers.Although the atmosphere is fun, travellers should be aware that theprice of drinks in Bar Street is significantly higher than otherparts of town. Many restaurants stay open all night to cater forearly morning revellers.

Things to be aware of in Marmaris

Touts for everything from restaurants to excursions and souvenirstalls can be annoying in Marmaris. Many have also reported onvarious tourist rip-offs, and visitors should be alert. The summermonths can be incredibly crowded, swelling the town population fromaround 28,000 to nearly 250,000.

Agios Nikolaos


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Shaking off its reputation for package-tour karaoke evenings andtouristy clubs, this resort is rapidly transforming into a charminggetaway for couples and families. These days, Agios Nikolaos (orAyios Nikolaos) is a cosmopolitan destination with top-classharbour-side cafe-bars and restaurants.

Ideal for couples of all ages, Agios Nikolaos is an excellentbase from which to explore the eastern part of Crete. The townitself doesn't boast any major historical or archaeological sites,but it does have one major curiosity: the harbour area's deep pool.Called Lake Voulismeni, it has many tales and legends attached toit, and was once believed to be bottomless. The lake is verybeautiful and attracts visitors from all over the world, with itsdramatic red cliffs.

Agios Nikolaos also has a fine Archaeological Museum, worthvisiting for its growing collection of Minoan artefacts. The museumhouses finds from the cemetery of Aghia Photia, dating back to 2300BC. Besides the Minoan finds, the museum exhibits the skull of ayoung Roman athlete wearing a gold olive-leaf wreath, dated to the1st century AD. Many visitors travel to the fortified islet ofSpinalonga. The ruins once held Europe's last leper colony.

Shopping in Agios Nikolaos

Good clothing and shoe shops, as well as high-quality jewellerystores are available in Agios Nikolaos. The street market is a goodplace to find clothes, plus traditional foodstuffs, local thyme,honey, herbs, fruit and vegetables. The resort is fashion-forwardin many ways, with visitors and locals often dressing up indesigner labels for a night out.

Dining in Agios Nikolaos

The Agios Nikolaos lake area is full of tourist-orientatedtavernas that charge more for the location than the quality of thefood. Aggressive waiters try to pull tourists into the restaurants,and a firm 'no' is sometimes required. That said, some of these'advertisers' can be charming. The most fashionable places to dineout are along the harbour.

Activities in Agios Nikolaos

Agios Nikolaos used to be famous for its bar culture, whenthousands of holidaymakers would flock over every year for a goodparty. Today, it still maintains a few 'touristy' bars serving upthe traditional mix of 80s disco music, and a couple ofBritish-style pubs and sports bars. The more modern and relaxedcafe-bars on the south side of the harbour tend to attract morecustomers, and are popular with locals as well as tourists, whichmakes them feel more authentic.

Things to be aware of in Agios Nikolaos

Restaurants and tavernas down by the harbour tend to be priceyand party animals may be disappointed with the limited nightlifeoptions in Agios Nikolaos.

Les Arcs


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A modern, purpose-built ski resort, the holiday destination ofLes Arcs comprises four resort villages situated above the town ofBourg-Saint-Maurice, all linked by a free shuttle bus. Named aftertheir respective altitudes, Arc 1600, Arc 1800 and Arc 2000 aredominated by large apartment buildings, purposefully designed withconvenience in mind, while the latest addition to the resort, Arc1950, has a more traditional guise and a typically European villagestyle.

The large and diverse network of well-groomed pistes more thanmakes up for any lack of charm, however, and the highest station atAiguille Rouge Peak (10,584 ft/3,226m) guarantees excellent snowconditions from December to April. Its vast trail system has beenlinked to that of La Plagne, making the combined Paradiski area oneof the largest interconnected ski and snowboard areas in theworld.

Arc 1800 is the biggest and most popular of the four villagesthat make up Les Arcs, and is the most conveniently situated forall levels of skiers and non-skiers on holiday, while just below,Arc 1600 is smaller and suited to young families, although it canget busy on weekends due to the direct funicular link from the townof Bourg Saint Maurice.

More devoted snow enthusiasts prefer to head to the highestresort, Arc 2000, situated at the foot of Aiguille Rouge in thenext valley, where the emphasis is on skiing and snowboardingrather than apres-ski holiday facilities. It has easy access to theglacier and is linked to Arc 1950 by a free cable car. Both 1950and 2000 are invariably ski-in/ski-out all season.

There are a few other villages in the area that, while notofficially part of the resort, are seamlessly connected and offertheir own accommodation and ski areas as well. These includeVallandry, Peisey, Plan-Peisey, Le Pre and Villaroger.

Shopping in Les Arcs

Visitors on holiday in Les Arcs will find there are supermarketsand ski shops in all the villages, although Arc 1800 has the mostchoice. Arc 1950 also offers a wide range of shops, from clothesand souvenirs to sport equipment and rental. Arc 2000 has the leastvariety, but it's easy to get down to 1950 for more options. Mostof the accommodation in Les Arcs is self-catering, and those whodriving to resort can bring pre-prepared meals with them, or stockup in a supermarket en route where they'll find better prices andmore choice.

Dining in Les Arcs

All the Les Arcs villages offer a variety of dining options tosuit all tastes and budgets, from local specialities, pizzas,creperies and haute cuisine. Les Arcs 1800 has the biggest variety,and there is a good selection in 1950 too, while Arc 1600 and Arc2000 have only a handful of restaurants to choose from. L'Arpetteis one of the best mountain restaurants, situated just above 2000,although La Folie Douce now puts up still competition. Thosestaying in Les Arcs 1950 should consider booking Chalet du Luigi orNonna Lisa, while Le 2134 Restaurant is a good option in 2000, andChez Boubou and L'Escale Gourmande are popular choices in Arc1800.

Activities in Les Arcs

There's loads of options for those who want a well-earned drinkafter a hard day on the slopes. L'Arpette Restaurant, just above2000, has good music and a great deck for those who want to soak upthe last of the sun, and La Folie Douce recently opened its doorsjust above 1800, bringing its legendary dancing-in-ski-boots apresski vibe to Les Arcs. It's open until 7pm daily. 1800 has the mostapres-ski options, while the other resorts are more familyorientated and have a relatively low-key nightlife, although allthe villages have plenty of bars and late-night watering holes.

Things to be aware of in Les Arcs

Other than in 1800, the Les Arcs village have limited nightlifeand après-ski options, so those looking for a more hip andhappening party scene might consider heading to another resort.

Skiing in Les Arcs

The vast terrain of Les Arcs offers good skiing for all levelsof skiers and snowboarders, with easy access to the excellentnursery slopes from all the villages for beginners. Intermediatesare the most spoilt for choice, with abundant blue and red runsthroughout the area, while advanced skiers should head to the highpistes above Arc 2000 and the black runs on the Aiguille Rougepeak. Off-piste opportunities are also available in Les Arcs,although there's less choice than in some other resorts. Snowconditions on the higher pistes are generally good, and snowcannons keep the sunnier, lower slopes covered. There is also agood snowboard park with jumps and a half pipe at Arc 2000.




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The captivating holiday resort town of Sousse lies on Tunisia'seast coast, about two hours drive south of the capital, Tunis. Fromthe 9th century onwards, the Phoenicians, Byzantines, Arabs, andRomans all discovered the delights of this fertile spot. Dubbed'the pearl of the Sahel' in ancient times, today its mild climateand beautiful Mediterranean shoreline work their magic onholidaymakers from all over Europe.

Sousse is also favoured by Tunisians as a getaway destination,and locals enjoy mingling with visitors on the sandy beaches andbusy promenade. Thankfully, the proliferation of modern resorthotels along the beachfront has not detracted from the charms ofthe inner city.

Sousse is still regarded as having probably the finest old cityin Tunisia, even if is fairly small. A warren of narrow coveredalleyways nestling below the ribat(fort) hides hundreds of colourful shops selling amyriad of local goods from carpets and porcelain to leather bagsand olive oil. Outside the medina, there is also a vast modernshopping complex.

However, Sousse is not all just shopping and beach bathing. Thetown's museum, situated in the old kasbah(castle), is renowned for its collection of mosaics,masks, statues, and other relics of the Roman occupation. There arealso several miles of well-preserved ancient Christian catacombsand marble tombs in the town.

Sousse offers its many package-tour visitors all the facilitiesand surroundings of a relaxing seaside holiday, overlaid with theundeniably foreign and exotic atmosphere of North Africa, all atextremely affordable prices.

Shopping in Sousse

There are bargains to be had in the alleyways of the Sousse oldcity for holidaymakers who can haggle successfully. Carpets andleatherware are favourite buys for tourists, but there is also avast stock of cheap souvenirs on which to fritter away the holidaybudget.

Some visitors are intimidated and do not enjoy bargaining withthe souk shopkeepers, who usually begin negotiations with inflatedprices. These visitors would be better advised to do their shoppingin the adjacent modern shopping mall, which is crammed with shopsoffering local goods and wares from all over North Africa at fixedprices.

Dining in Sousse

Visitors to Sousse are spoilt for choice when it comes to diningout, with a variety of options available such as pizza, tapas, andFrench cuisine. Couscous is a local staple. Most of the betterrestaurants are located inside the luxury hotels; others are withinwalking distance of wherever visitors are staying.

Activities in Sousse

Nightlife for tourists is generally confined to the apartmentresorts and hotels, and offers dancing and entertainment. YoungTunisians tend to gather on the beach promenade after dark.

Things to be aware of in Sousse

Many visitors have complained that shopkeepers in the medina areoverbearing, and even frightening, in their persistence. There havealso been reports of pickpockets being active in the alleyways.



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Kardamena is one of the most popular resorts in Greece. Situatedmid-way along the south coast of Kos Island, the former fishingvillage is now a commercialised town with scores of English-stylepubs, restaurants and tightly packed apartment blocks. Visitors canorganise a wide variety of watersports from the long sandy beach,and Kardamena resort is a good base for those who want to explorethe island's fascinating interior.

Shopping in Kardamena

Kardamena is packed with shops that offer everything fromdesigner clothes to tacky holiday souvenirs. Most are locatedaround the main square. Travellers who choose to stay inself-catering apartments can shop for well-known brands at goodsupermarkets or venture to some interesting local markets,including one across the water in Bodrum, Turkey.

Dining in Kardamena

Kardamena's restaurants range from Indian and traditional Greek,to fast-food establishments offering full English breakfasts. Manyof the best Greek restaurants are clustered on the seafront.

Activities in Kardamena

Kardamena's fairly intense nightlife has dozens of bars andclubs that cater to a variety of musical tastes. Though not quiteIbiza, the scene is fun, vibrant and dominated by tourists.

Things to be aware of in Kardamena

All bars along the main strip of Kardamena's seafront have loadsof touts working for them. Their efforts to turn tourists intopatrons can become annoying after a few nights. Drinks can beexpensive by Greek standards.



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Kefalos is a purpose-built holiday resort with a laid-backatmosphere. Situated in the southwest of Kos, it's surrounded byspectacular scenery and visitors can expect a charming andauthentic experience, as the village has retained many traditionalways. The resort has plenty of good restaurants and a couple ofsmall nightclubs, but is mainly geared towards tourists looking fora relaxing beach holiday.

Shopping in Kefalos

The usual souvenir shops and grocery stores dot Kefalos.Seasoned shoppers usually find themselves heading to Kardamena orKos Town, where there are more shops, markets and boutiques tochoose from. Visitors can buy anything from homemade jams and honeyto expensive, hand-crafted jewellery.

Dining in Kefalos

Kefalos boasts some of Kos' best restaurants. Travellers willfind familiar international staples and exciting local options.

Activities in Kefalos

Though its nightlife isn't as well-known as some other Greekresorts, Kefalos is by no means boring. A number of low-key barsoffer co*cktails and live music.

Things to be aware of in Kefalos

The shingle beach in Kefalos can be very hard on feet. Visitorsshould wear good sandals.

Val Thorens


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At over 7,500 feet (2,200m), Val Thorens is one of the highestholiday ski resorts in the Alps and offers guaranteed ski-to-dooraccommodation. Along with Meribel and Courchevel it forms thefamous Trois Vallées ski area. Val Thorens is a fairly unattractivepurpose-built holiday resort, but its exceptional snow reliabilityand wide choice of skiing makes it hard to beat for the skienthusiast.

Shopping in Val Thorens

While not exactly a major shopping destination, Val Thorens doesoffer holidaymakers a variety of good ski shops and plenty ofprovisions are available for self-caterers.

Dining in Val Thorens

There is a wide choice of restaurants in Val Thorens cateringfor most wallets and holidaymakers' tastes. There are also somegood mountain restaurants and it's easy to ski over to Meribel forlunch. As always it's best to take local advice and book ahead forthe better restaurants.

Activities in Val Thorens

The nightlife in Val Thorens is more limited than in the largerresorts, but there are still a few discos and plenty of livelybars. The clientele are less likely to be English than inneighbouring Meribel.

Things to be aware of in Val Thorens

Due to its height and north-facing location, Val Thorens can becold and bleak and has less off-slope activities on offer than manyresorts.

Skiing in Val Thorens

The Trois Vallées ski area is one of the best and most extensivein the world (10 times larger than Vail, the largest ski resort inthe States), and Val Thorens offers some of the best skiing in thearea. It's possible to ski through Meribel to Courchevel for lunchand back within a day, but visitors should check the lift timesbefore setting off. The Funitel des 3 Vallées is a lift designed totransport skiers between Val Thorens and the rest of Les TroisVallées.

The slopes are high and mostly north facing, so there's likelyto be a good covering of snow well into spring. There are a widevariety of slopes for beginners and intermediates and somechallenging slopes for more advanced skiers higher up, includingthe Cime de Caron, a steep descent from the top cable car.

Val Thorens also offers access to some excellent off-pisteoptions, the descents towards Lac du Lou being the most famous.Even the most experienced skiers and snowboarders should hire aguide when going off-piste, both for safety and to find the bestsnow.



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Once a small, unremarkable fishing village, these days Cancun the reason most people visit Mexico. It is made up of two parts: the glitzy hotel zone dedicated to tourism, and the downtown area inhabited by the permanent residents. A different atmosphere prevails in each, with a dramatic contrast between the air-conditioned shopping malls, chic restaurant dining, spring break vacationers and wealthy pleasure-seeking tourists in one; and bustling market street stalls, noisy vendors, and the daily grind of people at work in the other.

The hotel zone, situated on a thin strip of land (Isla Cancun) in the shape of a figure '7', is what people imagine when they talk about Cancun. It is a vision of Caribbean paradise with soft white sand beaches and clear blue-green waters. There is plenty of high quality holiday accommodation available, a wide choice of restaurants and shops, a notoriously energetic nightlife, and an array of activities, including both land and water sports. Cancun is also a good base from which to explore some of the nearby attractions, particularly the ancient Mayan site of Chichén Itzá on the mainland, which is the best restored and most famous of the archaeological sites on the Yucatán Peninsula.

Shopping in Cancun

Shoppers can rejoice in Cancun, with a choice of seemingly endless shopping facilities, from ultra-modern malls with chic boutiques to street vendors, open-air markets and department stores. The Plaza la Fiesta is a favourite shopping venue in the Hotel Zone, and there is also a popular handicraft bazaar, El Zocalo, opposite the Convention Centre. Numerous malls line the main drag of Paseo Kukulkan that runs down the eight-mile (13km) hotel strip. Prices, however, are better in Cancun City itself, also known as Centro, on the mainland. There are some good shops along Yaxchilan Avenue, and the market on Tulum Avenue is recommended for buying silverware and Mexican handcrafts.

Credit cards are accepted almost everywhere in Cancun. If you use cash you may have the 15 percent sales tax deducted if the shopkeeper is willing. Expect to bargain in the markets. If offered black coral, refuse, because it is an endangered species and you could run into problems taking it back home. Shops in Cancun are generally open between 10am and 2pm, and 4pm and 7pm on week days. Many stores choose to stay open during the 'siesta' hours from 2pm to 4pm, but some may close. On Saturdays most shops only open for the morning. A few open on Sunday until 1pm. Shops in malls tend to open weekdays only from 10am to 8pm.

Dining in Cancun

Cancun's wide variety restaurants will be able satisfy every palate, with high-class eateries and familiar franchises, to taco stands and fast-food joints. Those who wish to eat like the locals can be assured that Yucatan cuisine is regarded as the finest in all Mexico, combining Mayan and Spanish influences. Local dishes worth sampling include cochinita pibil (suckling pig baked in banana leaves with annatto sauce) and panuchos (tortillas with fried black beans, chicken and pickled onions). Seafood is also plentiful. A popular romantic option is to book for one of the numerous dinner cruises offered.

For a true taste of Mexico visitors can pay a visit to one of the many cantinas, traditional bar-restaurants, which are situated mainly around the downtown bullring. The atmosphere at the cantinas is particularly lively on Wednesday afternoons after the weekly bullfights, but the food and drink is good quality and good value for money every day of the week.

Activities in Cancun

Cancun's nightlife is legendary, with its huge choice of nightclubs, discos and bars to suit every mood, from romantic to raunchy, funky to frenetic, rock to reggae and salsa to techno. After dark the city, particularly the Hotel Zone, comes alive, with most clubs opening around 10pm and pumping out the music until sunrise, or later, the next morning.

Most clubs and pubs offer a continual variety of promotional or theme evenings, with foam parties, mini-skirt and bikini contests being hot favourites. Most offer ladies nights with free drinks for women. Hip and happening parties can be found at Dady Rock, Bulldog, The City, Dady O and Coco Bongo's nightclubs, all offering massive dance floors and pumping beats. The Party Hopper tour is a popular way to enjoy a number of Cancun's top nightlife venues; visitors pay about US$75 for free drinks and entry into three of Cancun's top clubs and bars.

Those seeking some more cultural entertainment should not miss the internationally renowned Ballet Folklorico, which holds performances in various venues around Cancun, featuring lavish costumes and traditional dances.

Things to be aware of in Cancun

Cancun is a fantastic vacation destination, even during peak season, and perhaps it has been justifiably called 'vacation utopia'. The resort is expensive, but most hotels offer all-inclusive rates which are generally good value. Petty crime is common, but sensible precautions should ensure there are no problems. Some visitors are afflicted by cases of diarrhea and fever, known colloquially as 'Montezuma's revenge', caused by unfamiliar bacteria in water and food. This can be avoided by drinking bottled water and taking care about over-indulgence in spicy Mexican foods, margaritas or Mexican beer.

Cancun's beaches are extensive and spread out enough to never become too overcrowded even in peak season. The resort is exceptionally busy during America's Spring Break in March, when it is the favoured destination of thousands of college students from North America; those wanting a more relaxing and less frenetic holiday should visit Cancun outside this season.



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Courchevel is made up of four separate ski resorts, all withinthe Trois Vallées (Three Valleys) ski area, which also incorporatesMeribel and Val Thorens. Courchevel 1850 has been rebranded assimply Courcheval; it is the highest and most expensive of the fourvillages and is known as a playground for the rich and famous,attracting celebrities and Russian oligarchs. Courcheval 1650 isnow called Moriond, 1550 is now known as Courchevel Village andfinally there is Le Praz at 1300 meters. La Tania is another small,purpose-built holiday ski resort situated on a ridge betweenCourchevel and Meribel. Courchevel 1850 is the smartest and mostexpensive of the resorts; it has the best restaurants, nightlifeand access to the slopes. Courchevel 1650 and 1550 are quieter,more suited to families, and Le Praz is a pretty village withnarrow streets, but due to its altitude has less reliable snow.

Shopping in Courchevel

Courchevel 1850 offers the best shopping, ranging from ski shopsto expensive designer boutiques. The lower resorts all have skishops and mini-supermarkets as well as a fine selection of bakeriesand delicatessens.

Dining in Courchevel

Courchevel 1850 has the best and most expensive restaurants inthe holiday resort; however, all the resorts have a good choice ofreasonably priced, good quality restaurants.

Activities in Courchevel

All the villages have their own nightlife to offerholidaymakers, although most visitors make the trip to Courchevel1850 for the liveliest clubs and bars.

Things to be aware of in Courchevel

Courchevel 1850 is very expensive and no longer feelsparticularly French. As a rule, it is cheaper the lower visitorsgo; Moriond and Courcheval Villiage cost no more than otherwell-known resorts. During school holidays some slopes can get verycrowded although the lift queues are rarely bad.

Skiing in Courchevel

The Trois Vallées ski area is one of the best and most extensivein the world (10 times larger than Vail, the largest ski resort inthe United States), and Courchevel offers arguably the best skiingwithin the area - the snow is more reliable than Meribel, whichgets more sun. There are lots of easy slopes for beginners beneaththe Saulire cable car base station, and there is lots of choice forintermediates in both Courchevel and neighbouring Meribel. Advancedskiers will enjoy the reds and blacks above La Saulire; there arealso some challenging north-facing slopes above Val Thorens, whichcan be reached within a day's skiing. Snowboarders will find somegreat slopes for cruising and some exciting couloirs for experts.When the snow is fresh there is some good off-piste, but it isadvisable to go with a knowledgeable guide. There are several goodski schools in Courcheval, in addition to the state-run ESF, suchas New Generation, which has offices in both Moriond and Courchevel1850.



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A busy trading port in ancient times, Albufeira declined into apoor fishing town in the 18th century, having been swamped by tidalwaves and burnt out by civil war. But since the 1960s the tide hasturned again and this central Algarve enclave is once more awashwith prosperity, thanks to a tourist boom.

Albufeira, Portugal's most popular holiday resort, has beendescribed as a stretch of 'holiday-land suburbia', spreading fromthe old town both east and west along the coast, its sandy covesand golden beaches drawing an assorted crowd from retired couplesto wild teens, and plenty of families with young children.Satellite resort developments provide every imaginable type andgrade of accommodation.

Everyone finds something to enjoy in this sprawling, low-riseholiday destination, which retains its old world charm in narrowalleyways behind the new hip and happening "Strip". The Strip, tothe east of town, runs from the Montechoro Hotel down to the Praiada Oura, lined with dozens of cafés, restaurants and bars that keeppumping from breakfast time to the small hours. On the long stretchof beach below Albufeira's central square, accessed through atunnel, craggy fishermen mend their nets, unperturbed by thelanguishing topless sunbathers around them.

While the chief holiday attraction of Albufeira is its numerousenchanting beaches, most protected by ochre-tinted cliffs, thereare some interesting sightseeing possibilities too, like the newVirtual Archaeological Museum, the Municipal Art Gallery and asmall museum showcasing Ming ceramics. Those who venture inlandwill find a tranquil green countryside to explore, replete withalmond, fig, orange and pine trees, where little villages standtimelessly in the sun.

Shopping in Albufeira

From seafront kiosks full of fun-in-the-sun odds and ends to afull on shopping mall experience, Albufeira can keep most shoppersreaching for their wallets with a tantalising array of merchandise.The town's main shopping plaza is the Modelo Centre in Rua deMunicipio, north of downtown. Not far away is the lively AlgarveShopping Complex in Guia, where brand name shoes and clothes are onoffer in a high street mall type complex, along with restaurants,an English-language cinema and bowling alley. Those seeking genuinelocal souvenirs should look out for mats made from rush orcornhusks in the villages of Almeijoafras and Monte Novo, wovenbaskets, woodcarvings and some glazed terracotta ceramics. Theseare to be found in numerous independent shops in the town centre aswell as local markets.

Dining in Albufeira

Like everywhere in Portugal, seafood is the speciality of thehouse in most of the dozens of restaurants in and around Albufeira.The catch of the day is guaranteed to be fresh in this traditionalfishing town, particularly in the eateries clustered at Fisherman'sBeach, below the main town square. Specialities to seek out aresardines, flounder and bass, lobster and prawns. A true local dishis Caldeirada, a stew made up of several types of fish, cooked upwith potatoes, peppers and parsley. Steamed clams, cuttlefishcooked in their ink and octopus salad are other indigenous culinaryadventures. The local wine is a worthy accompaniment.

Activities in Albufeira

After a day in the sun most holidaymakers enjoy sipping a drinkat one of Albufeira's many outdoor cafés, watching the world go by,before adjourning to one of the lively bars that surround the townsquare or line The Strip. Bars keep hopping until three or four inthe morning, but those who want to dance the night away can keepgoing until sunrise at one of the nightclubs or discotheques thatare ten a penny in the town.

Things to be aware of in Albufeira

During the height of summer Albufeira is a favoured holidaydestination for young singles, and it can become a bit rowdy atnight.



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Like Bodrum and Kusadasi, its neighbours on Turkey'ssouth Aegean Coast, Altinkum is heavily frequented by Britishholiday package tourists. But unlike these other frenetic resorts,Altinkum is small and quiet, making it perfect for families withyoung children and those seeking a relaxed, easy-going beachholiday.

The resort town's main attraction are its three longsandy beaches that stretch from the small harbour at one end of agently shelving bay to a rocky cliff at the other end. Littlewonder that the name Altinkum means 'golden sands'.

In this resort devoted to leisure and lazy days onthe beach, visitors can also indulge in water sports.Alternatively, evenings are spent trying out the laidbackrestaurants and bars, many of them serving British fair. Thoseyearning for sightseeing will find Altinkum perfectly placed tovisit two major ancient sites, the Temple of Apollo at Didyama andthe vast Roman ruins at Ephesus.

Shopping in Altinkum

Holidaymakers should brush up on their haggling skills asshopping opportunities abound along the pedestrianised seafront ofAltinkum, which is packed with souvenir shops, jewellery stores.and boutiques selling copies of designer clothing.

The main centre is Dolphin Square, and there is a modernshopping complex called the Didyma Shopping Mall not far away.Self-caterers will find all the provisions they need at the twomain supermarkets, Gima and Migros, between the seafront and towncentre.

Dining in Altinkum

Altinkum is bursting with good restaurants serving most forms ofinternational cuisine, although Turkish and traditional Englishpredominates to cater to the demand of holidaymakers. With such afeast of eateries it is difficult to single out any particularestablishment, but for the best of British it is hard to beat AliBaba's for friendliness, price, and quality. Barney's Restaurantprides itself in introducing visitors to the delights of Turkishcuisine.

Activities in Altinkum

While it is not as rowdy as the major Turkish holiday resorts,those who wish to indulge will find plenty of after-darkentertainment and fun in Altinkum, where nightlife is centredmainly in Dolphin Square and in the bars along the sea frontpromenade. Everything from disco dancing, karaoke, andbelly-dancing to bingo and pool is on offer, the entertainmentfuelled by cheap drinks and co*cktails. Clubbers are catered forduring the height of the summer season at Medusa, an open-air nightclub that is regarded as Altinkum's best party. Another hotfavourite for young people is the Dolphin Bar.

Things to be aware of in Altinkum

During the local Turkish summer break in August, Altinkum is afavourite destination and can become rather overcrowded. Visitorsshould also be aware that temperatures can be extremely high insummer.

La Paz


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The holiday retreat of La Paz is the laid-back capital of Baja California Sur, known for its stunning sunsets and beaches. The city is a perfect base from which to explore the magical surrounding landscape. Although it has excellent beaches, it is not known specifically as a beach resort, but is a tranquil Mexican port which has retained a charming colonial atmosphere. La Paz is a 'real' city where locals go about their daily business among the tourist shops, fancy restaurants and tour operators. The most romantic feature in the city is the waterfront promenade, or malecón, around which city life revolves, stretching for several kilometres along sandy beaches. Much of the dining and nightlife most popular with travellers is found along this walkway and it is the best place to catch one of the city's famously spectacular sunsets while on holiday.

La Paz is the eco-tourism capital of the country, surrounded by desert and situated in a large bay on the Sea of Cortez, with a variety of outdoor tour guides offering excellent trips. The region boasts astonishing plant and animal life, the varied and dramatic geology of the inland deserts, mountains and oases, and the Sierra de la Laguna Biosphere Reserve. Beautiful unspoilt offshore islands offer naturalist hiking, as well as amazing diving and snorkelling from pristine beaches with hammerhead sharks, dolphins, sea lions and gigantic whale sharks. The islands are the destination of kayakers, sailors and boat cruises, and the bay is a popular yachting stopover. La Paz is a fisherman's paradise and its international fishing competitions are world famous. To the north of the city, along the Pichilingue Peninsula, are some magnificent beaches, backed by mangroves and the cactus-studded mountains of the desert.

Besides the eco-tourist activities on offer, La Paz boasts plentiful shopping, a varied nightlife, excellent fish and seafood, and comfortable accommodation, offering visitors everything they need for a relaxing and stimulating holiday.

Shopping in La Paz

From small, exclusive boutiques lining the Malecon, to the department stores of busy downtown La Paz, known as 'El Centro', the city offers plenty of options for lightening the pocket, with high fashion and upmarket branded goods aplenty. There are also numerous stores selling locally produced Mexican arts and crafts to delight souvenir hunters on holiday, and supermarkets on just about every street corner for self-caterers.

Dining in La Paz

There are delicious treats to suit all tastes available in the many restaurants of La Paz, from the highly rated street corner hotdog and chocolate clam stands, to mouth-watering lobsters from the Sea of Cortez served up in classy seafront restaurants. The cuisine of most nationalities is available, including Chinese, Italian, French and Korean, but traditional Mexican naturally remains the holiday favourite.

Activities in La Paz

La Paz has no shortage of lively nightspots, with the most popular located along the Malecon. This brightly lit promenade and adjacent pier is abuzz with strollers and party-animals after dark, entertained by groups of street musicians known as mariachis. Shops stay open late to cater for evening browsers. Like in most Mexican cities, the party action doesn't start hotting up until late in the evening, from around 10pm, but continues until the early hours of the morning. Discos offer all kinds of music, from traditional Latino to American rock, and many of the bars and restaurants offer live music. La Caliente and Las Varitas are great night spots and live music venues. Culture vultures will probably find a play or concert to their taste at the Teatro de Ciuidad or Teatro Juarez, and there are several movie theatres showing American films with Spanish subtitles.

Things to be aware of in La Paz

La Paz can be expensive during peak season.



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Between the Mediterranean and the Sahara lies the pride of theTunisian Riviera: Hammamet. The sophisticated holiday resort townhas a perfect sweep of beach, an ancient and exciting medina,healing mineral baths, and renowned hotels.

Once a sleepy fishing village, Hammamet (meaning 'the baths')was awakened to its tourist potential back in the 1920s when aflock of wealthy American and Europeans decided to make it theirplayground.

Today it has become a destination mainly for middle-to-upperrange package tours from Europe, the streets abuzz withholidaymakers speaking Swedish, German, English and French. Despiteits modern architecture, Hammamet retains its sense of exotichistory. It is dominated by its 15th-century medina and souk(bazaar), where visitors can purchase items such ascarpets, brass ornaments, jewellery, traditional kaftans, pottery,and leather goods.

The narrow winding alleys also conceal bright, whitewashedwindowless houses behind splendid ornate doors. The town's baths,famed since Roman times, are also situated in the crowded medina,alongside ancient mosques and over-shadowed by the medieval castleor kasbah.

The big attraction of this seaside town, though, is its six-mile(10km) stretch of palm-fringed shore, boasting beautiful sandyclean beaches, decorated with colourful fishing boats. South of theold town along the beach, a plethora of attractive Moorish-stylelow-rise hotels set in stunning lush gardens has mushroomed,offering visitors luxury accommodations, watersports,entertainment, gourmet restaurants, and all the trappings of aperfect holiday.

Shopping in Hammamet

Shopping in the medieval souk (bazaar) in Hammamet is one of themost memorable holiday experiences for visitors. They often go homeladen with attractive souvenirs. A treasure-trove of irresistiblegoods such as exotic carpets, embroidered kaftans, glitteringhookah pipes, brassware, jewellery, leather goods, and pottery areon offer to delight avid shoppers. It is expected to haggle overprice. Those needing to buy more practical goods will find whatthey require in the modern shopping centre.

Dining in Hammamet

Most hotels catering for holidaymakers in Hammamet have theirown restaurants, but the town itself overflows with a variety ofeateries and pavement cafes where it is possible to find anythingfrom fish and chips to pizza. However, no visit to Tunisia iscomplete without sampling the renowned local dishes, though theycan be overly spicy.

Among the specialities to sample are couscous (steamed semolinagrains mixed with vegetables, fish, chicken, or meat), brik (pastryfilled with egg, herbs and tuna), choba (thick, creamy tomatosoup), and makroudh (a syrup-soaked honey cake stuffed withdates).

Activities in Hammamet

Nightlife in Hammamet is low-key, with no all-night clubbingexperiences on offer. Most hotels offer dancing and entertainment,and there are numerous bars and discos catering for visitors, mostclosing by midnight however.

Things to be aware of in Hammamet

Care is required when swimming in the sea, as there are someunexpected deep patches near the shore. Vendors of souvenirs inHammamet can be irritating and an annoyance to holidaymakers on thebeach, and some find shopkeepers in the medina a little too pushyand overbearing.

El Gouna


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The elite holiday resort of El Gouna, also known as the 'Veniceof the Red Sea', is 25 miles (40km) north of Hurghada InternationalAirport and is nestled between the mountains and the shores of theRed Sea. The resort stretches along six miles (10km) of coastlineand spreads onto several small nearby islands.

Linked by lagoons, this luxurious resort has an air of fantasyabout it. El Gouna is not only an exquisite holiday resort but alsoa residential area with a vast range of villas, designed byworld-renowned architects, all boasting breath-taking views of thesea and the surrounding mountains. Its infrastructure caters to anactive, yet relaxed and friendly lifestyle.

Shopping in El Gouna

Shoppers can pick up a wide variety of items in El Gouna,ranging from typical Egyptian souvenirs, antiques and art to exoticoriental furniture and hand-made Turkish lamps. There is also aselection of chic shops for clothing and furniture. Along themarina boardwalk there are international brands and boutiquesoffering a taste of Europe.

Dining in El Gouna

El Gouna has two prominent tourist districts, namely Kafr ElGouna and Abu Tig Marina, as well as many prominent hotel chains,all offering a wide variety of some of the world's finest cuisines,from Indian to Thai, French, Belgian, Chinese, German, Italian andmuch more. Not all local restaurants serve alcohol, but the food isexcellent. El Gouna offers everything from relaxed marina-sidebistros, seafood buffets and poolside eateries to five-starrestaurants.

Activities in El Gouna

Holidaymakers will find that El Gouna's nightlife is pulsingwith variety and entertainment. The two main hubs of Kafr el Gounaand Abu Tig Marina offer the trendiest bars, alongside cosy pubs,billiard bars, beach bars, karaoke cafes, and the infamous open-airdisco. There are often live concerts and social events, includingBarbeque Beach parties.

Things to be aware of in El Gouna

The beach is far from the resort and can only be reached by abus ride or a ferry trip across the lagoon. Luckily these transportservices run very regularly.



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Delightfully situated among towering vertical cliffs,Kas is the region's second major holiday resort. Although lackingin idyllic stretches of beach, the dramatic rocky coastline createseasy access to clear and unpolluted Mediterranean waters. Kas alsoboasts an abundance of outdoor activities and a lively nightlife,ensuring its reputation as a satisfying holiday destination.

It is the centre for glass-bottomed boat trips to thesunken cities around Kekova Island, where remains of mysteriouscivilisations can be viewed just below the surface of the water.Visits can also be arranged to the surrounding archaeological sitesat Demre, Myra, and the Xanthos Valley. The town is built aroundthe remains of ancient Antiphellos, and there are ruins of aHellenistic theatre, the monumental Lion Tomb, and some hillsiderock tombs in and around the town.

Despite attracting thousands of holidaymakers everyyear and the tourist development of what was once a simple fishingvillage, Kas still preserves its small-town charm with narrowcobbled streets and novel boutique shops.

Shopping in Kas

With plenty of good shopping available, travellers will have tosift through the dozens of carpet shops, souvenir stalls, andcounterfeit sportswear to find the true gems. The best places toshop in Kas are the little boutiques that sell tools, hand-carvedartefacts, local silver and gold jewellery, and plenty of Turkishkilims (handwoven rugs).

Dining in Kas

Kas is home to a growing number of cafes, restaurants, andpatisseries. Visitors will be spoilt for choice when it comes todining out. Boasting all kinds of cuisine from around theMediterranean, including fresh local seafood to meze (similar toSpanish tapas). Eating out in Kas is a culinary experience toremember and one that will linger on visitors' taste buds for hoursafterwards.

Activities in Kas

When the sun sets on the fishing town of Kas, the streets cometo life with bars and cafes emitting warm glows of light, laughter,and local music. The romantic feel to the town makes it a popularchoice for couples, meaning there are not as many trendy danceclubs as other Turkish resorts and young singles should headelsewhere if looking for a lively night out.

Things to be aware of in Kas

The two main beaches in Kas, Buyuk Cakil (Big Pebble Beach) andKucuk Cakil (Little Pebble Beach) are both shingled, so manyvisitors tend to visit the nearby beach of Patara.



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Steamboat is a hugely popular holiday resort boasting a widevariety of options for families of all skiing levels, and toppedoff with rustic cowboy charm. Its reputation and quality has earnedit the nickname 'Ski Town USA'. The resort is located in SteamboatSprings, Colorado, on Mount Werner in the Park range. With almost3,000 acres of varied terrain, reaching a height of 3,668 feet(1,118m), and encompassing 165 trails including mogul fields andtree runs, there is bound to be enough for everyone. The Steamboatresort is incredibly popular for holidays due to its rich Olympicheritage and friendly atmosphere. It is also perfect for families,accommodating beginner skiers and snowboarders quite comfortablywith experienced instructors at the ski school.

Shopping in Steamboat

There are plenty of shops throughout Steamboat sellingeverything one could possibly want for a skiing and snowboardingholiday. Apart from regular groceries and food supply stores andthe ubiquitous outdoor apparel shops, determined shoppers will finda variety of speciality stores selling things such as collectibles,arts and crafts and high-quality clothing.

Dining in Steamboat

There are more than 75 bars and restaurants in the Steamboatarea, ensuring a broad offering for visitors. Live country music isthe order of the day in many bars, enhancing the traditional cowboyappeal of Steamboat.

Activities in Steamboat

There is something for all tastes in Steamboat, with numerousbars and restaurants staying open late when the beer, wine andtequila flows a lot freer. Happy hours, live music and beer on tapis never hard to find, but travellers shouldn't expect a largevariety of nightclubs.

Things to be aware of in Steamboat

In recent years the big reputation has left some advanced skiersdisappointed with the over-hyped terrain.

Skiing in Steamboat

Steamboat gets reliable dumps of some of the finest 'ChampagnePowder' (a term coined in Steamboat) in the world. There are about165 named trails spread out over 2965 acres (1200km) across fivemountains. There is something for every level of skier but mostruns fall in the intermediate and advanced categories. There are 18lifts in total, ensuring a rapid delivery of skiers to the top ofthe runs. Steamboat also has the longest Superpipe in NorthAmerica, an absolute dream for freeriders.



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Kuta, just a short drive from the airport in southern Bali, has become the island's most popular and most crowded holiday resort, blessed as it is with a lovely sweep of golden sand, crashing surf and spectacular sunsets. The natural attractions have now been complemented by the full range of tourist trappings, and Kuta is bursting with hotels, shops, restaurants and an energetic nightlife. It is also teeming with touts and vendors offering everything from sarongs and 'Rolex' watches to hair-braiding and tattoos. Kuta's atmosphere is relaxed, cheerful and friendly, and holiday visitors find it easy to wear a smile and enjoy excellent accommodation with good food.

A holiday must for every visitor in Kuta is a visit to the nearby Temple of Tanah Lot, Bali's most holy place and a magical experience when viewed at sunset.

Shopping in Kuta

Kuta is swarming with shops and holiday shoppers, with clusters of stores and stalls all selling much the same goods, waiting for customers to barter on the prices. Accessed either from the beach or Kuta Square is the vast, fun market area where you can buy things like CDs, kites, sarongs, shoes and lots of fake brand name clothing. Local handcrafts, jewellery and custom-made leather goods are good buys. Visitors are usually assailed by pushy street hawkers selling goods like fake watches, and are expected to haggle on prices, which are often quoted in US Dollars.

Kuta is also well supplied with department stores and shopping centres where prices are fixed, like the new Discovery Mall on Jalan Kartika Plaza. Around Kuta Square you can have a spending spree at dozens of brand name stores where goods (the real thing) are sold at amazingly low prices.

Those who are keen to buy local crafts, hand-made jewellery or traditional wood and stone carvings will do well to take excursions into surrounding villages where these arts are practised; some handcrafts are available in Kuta, but better examples can be found a bit further afield.

Dining in Kuta

On holiday in Kuta, you can find anything from Japanese sushi to Wiener schnitzel, pizza to paella, and enchiladas to burgers. Sometimes the taste is not quite as expected because these international favourites have been adapted to suit local tastes and ingredients. If you want to play it safe stick to McDonald's or Pizza Hut! On the other hand, travellers yearning for more authentic local food can brave the rather primitive little roadside food stalls, warungs, to sample local cuisine like Bakso soup, or pick a padang, which is a 24-hour diner displaying a dozen or so different dishes in a glass box at the door where you can sample them all for just a few US dollars. Be warned that wherever you dine wine and beer is very expensive; try locally produced versions which are better value than the familiar imports often enjoyed by tourists.

Activities in Kuta

Whatever your choice for after-dark entertainment you will find it in Kuta, which is the main party district of Bali. Evenings usually start with witnessing spectacular sunsets over co*cktails, progress through a leisurely dinner and then around midnight the partying starts, either with a pub crawl, club rave, a rhythmic Balinese dance show or a Wayang Kulit shadow puppet performance. Cafés, pubs and discos line the streets of Kuta, but nothing gets going very early, with the serious party venues often only starting to peak at about 2am. There are also often special events, like beach full moon parties, or body-painting parties, which are announced by way of flyers handed out around town.

Things to be aware of in Kuta

Currents and a strong undertow make Kuta's beach dangerous for swimming. The beach can also be over-crowded and flooded with vendors hawking all manner of goods. The roads can be dangerous after dark, with a number of potholes on the streets and more than a few drunken drivers.



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Nestled among three picturesque lakes, the year-round holiday town of Branson is a live entertainment capital that has become known as a family-friendly Las Vegas or 'Ozark Disneyland'. It has dozens of theatres and more than 100 daily shows all firmly geared towards families, as well as a number of exciting theme parks and family entertainment centres.

In fact, more than seven million visitors holiday in Branson annually. At night, the main road called the Strip is filled with visitors to the mass of theatres and theme parks. Branson's best-known attraction is Silver Dollar City, a combination of craft village and theme park. Branson Landing offers world-class shopping and dining options along the waterfront and features a nightly water show.

The beautiful area around the lakes, particularly Table Rock Lake, and the hills and valleys of the Ozark Mountains, allows for a peaceful escape from the town, providing excellent opportunities for fishing, hiking, camping, and water-based activities.

Shopping in Branson

Branson is a paradise of outlet malls and factory shops, but the most popular place to shop is Branson Landing, a pedestrian waterfront on Lake Taneycomo with more than 100 shops and restaurants. There's even a 'town square' with synchronised fountain and fire shows. Apple Tree Mall is a huge flea market with plenty of antiques. For the biggest bargains though, head to the Tanger Outlet Center or Factory Merchants Branson.

Dining in Branson

There is no shortage of family-friendly restaurants in Branson, ranging from steakhouses and barbecue joints to Mexican cantinas and seafood restaurants. A good budget option for families with picky eaters is the Grand Country Buffet, while Dolly Parton's Dixie Stampede Dinner and Show is great for a special night out. Another popular restaurant is the White River Fish House, a seafood and steak restaurant with good views and interesting local foods like alligator and catfish.

Activities in Branson

While Branson is primarily a family-friendly resort, there are a few bars and nightclubs in town. A number of restaurants, including the perennially popular Outback, offer pub and bar sections with live music in the evenings that become party hotspots for adult visitors to Branson, and The Club at Lodge of the Ozarks is popular with younger crowds, with entertainment like comedy shows accompanying supper.

Things to be aware of in Branson

Branson can get uncomfortably crowded in peak season, and travellers without children looking for nightlife may be disappointed.

Mammoth Mountain


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Just six hours' drive from Los Angeles, three hours from Reno,or a short distance from San Francisco, lies some of the finestAlpine skiing in the world at the holiday resort of MammothMountain, on the eastern edge of California's Sierra Nevada range.Every year an average of 400 inches (10m) of snow falls on thesummit, providing about 3,500 acres of skiable terrain, which canbe revelled in by all, beginner to expert, during the November toJune season. Despite all the snow, 70 percent of Mammoth's winterdays are sunny, providing plenty of time to enjoy the slopes andnumerous other facilities at this well-equipped holiday resort,which offers hotel and condominium accommodation.

Shopping in Mammoth Mountain

Mammoth Mountain has an interesting and varied selection ofstores that will keep holidaymakers enthralled. There are severalart galleries, a souvenir shop called 'Mammoth Memories' sellingbranded items, sports equipment outlets, designer boutiques andeven a store that sells Christmas decorations and goodies all yearround.

Dining in Mammoth Mountain

The village of Mammoth Mountain itself has plenty of diningoptions, and holidaymakers who are able to reach further afieldwill find the surrounding area has dozens of restaurants to choosefrom, whether they're craving a quick burger or are inclined tohave a full course dining experience. Some of the favourite spotsare John's Pizza Works and Roberto's Mexican Cafe. Travellersshould try the Lakefront Restaurant at Tamarack Lodge for deliciousCalifornia French cuisine, and Shea Schat's Bakery for terrificpastries, freshly baked bread and moreish apple fritters.

Activities in Mammoth Mountain

Apres-ski in Mammoth Mountain begins around 3pm each day whenthe first thirsty skiers and holidaymakers run straight to the doorof the Yodler Restaurant and Bar. Later, visitors head to localbars such as the Hawaiian flavoured Lakanuki bar and MammothTavern. The Clocktower Cellar Pub and the Side Door Cafe are alsopopular nightspots.

Skiing in Mammoth Mountain

Mammoth Mountain caters to all levels of skiers andsnowboarders, from steep chutes, moguls, tree skiing, wide openbowls, beginner trails and wide well groomed slopes. MammothMountain is as big as its name implies with 3,500 acres of terrainand a vertical drop of 3,100 feet (945m), 150 named trails and 27lifts. Snowboarders can also enjoy three unbound terrain parks withhalfpipes, a quarter pipe and jib park.




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Heraklion is Crete's main city and usually the starting pointfor holidays on the island. Built on a fairly steep hillside, itshistory of Venetian occupation is clear in its architecture,especially the Venetian fortress that dominates the harbour andaccents the city's bustling mix of shops, hotels, traffic, andfast-food outlets.

The main square, Plateia Venizelou, is a pedestrian mallsporting cafes and restaurants, and some fascinating shops in thesurrounding streets. History buffs should visit the archaeologicalmuseum, which contains the world's most comprehensive collection ofMinoan artefacts, dating back to around 1600 BC. Heraklion is alsoclose to the major archaeological site associated with the Minoansat Knossos.

Shopping in Heraklion

Heraklion is Crete's commercial centre and has a great manyshops with top designer labels and original jewellery forreasonable prices. Antiques, leather goods, folk art, olive oil anda variety of interesting cheeses are on offer as well. Some shopsmay have reduced operating hours during the winter off-season.

Dining in Heraklion

Crete offers traditional Greek food in its cafes, local tavernasand elegant restaurants. The island is also home to many ouzeribars that specialise in the aniseed-flavoured liqueur called ouzo.Many of the destinations fast-food outlets and restaurants serveinternational favourites such as pasta, pizza, Indian and Mexicanfood.

Activities in Heraklion

People-watching from a sidewalk cafe is a favourite eveningpastime among locals in Heraklion. The city also has many clubs andbars.

Things to be aware of in Heraklion

Heraklion is a busy, overcrowded city that can be claustrophobicand noisy. Hotel standards do not always live up to expectationsand visitors are often harassed by touts outside the restaurantsand cafes, particularly in Fountain Square.

Los Gigantes


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Los Gigantes (The Giants) is aptly named after the Acantiladosde los Gigantes; large, striking cliffs that surround thisattractive holiday resort. The resort is set on the west coast ofTenerife and is essentially joined together with its neighbours,Playa la Arena and Puerto Santiago, to provide visitors with anexciting resort experience. A concerted effort has been made not todestroy the natural beauty of the town and as such there are noneof the towering hotels common to other Spanish tourist resorts. Thescenery is dominated by a rocky cliff which is 2,600 feet (800metres) high in places. The resort is self-sufficient, with plentyof shops, restaurants and activities to keep holidaymakersentertained, well-fed and happy. Los Gigantes is a peaceful resort,ideal for a relaxing holiday.

Shopping in Los Gigantes

Uphill from the marina is the resort's commercial centre, withplenty of shops ranging from supermarkets to upscale fashionboutiques and a convenient pedestrian zone near the church. Thenearby village of Masca also has a few independent souvenir shopsthat sell unique items like local pottery, liquor made from bananasor honey, and embroidered tablecloths and clothing. Los Gigantes isa good resort for shopping and the proximity of a number of otherresorts and villages ensures there is plenty of variety.

Dining in Los Gigantes

There are quite a few restaurants and bars at the marina, andseafood is the local speciality (paella is always a good bet in thecoastal regions of Spain!). While at the popular holidaydestination of Los Gigantes, it's essential to sample the finecuisine at Krishna's. El Rincon de Juan Carlos and Jardin del Solalso garner rave reviews from foodies and casual diners alike.Guests may not smoke indoors in most restaurants, but smoking isallowed on covered verandas and in marked areas.

Activities in Los Gigantes

Although Los Gigantes has a selection of bars and evennightclubs, it is a peaceful resort and does not have an energeticnightlife. Much of the live music and entertainment in Los Gigantesis provided by the hotels and restaurants. Visitors will hear jazz,salsa, rock music, and the local folk music called Tenderete. Mostof the bars and clubs in the resort are centred in SantiagoBajo.

Things to be aware of in Los Gigantes

Los Gigantes is hilly, with narrow streets that can be difficultto traverse for people with mobility issues. Youngsters in searchof a party may be disappointed with the sedate nightlife.



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Southern Spain's answer to Benidorm, Torremolinos is a vastpurpose-built holiday resort situated 10 miles (16km) west ofMalaga on the road to Marbella. According to archaeological finds,the region has been inhabited for a startling 150,000 years. Butthe resort itself is modern with no evidence of the long history ofhuman habitation. Holidaymakers looking for culture in Torremolinoswill be disappointed, particularly in high season when it's noisy,hedonistic, and fast paced. What makes this energetic resortpopular is the six miles (10km) of wide sandy beaches, along withnumerous water sports, masses of bars and restaurants, and anexhilarating nightlife. Torremolinos attracts tourists of all agesfrom across Europe, but twenty-somethings dominate in the peaksummer months. There is a large gay scene, while the resort is alsopopular with families.

Shopping in Torremolinos

There is a great variety of shops in Torremolinos, ranging frominternational clothes stores and designer boutiques to lots ofsmall touristy shops selling souvenirs. Good buys include the localjewellery, leather goods and the famous Spanish Lladro porcelain.For self-caterers, there is a good selection of corner shops andsupermarkets stocking well-known international brands. Calle SanMiguel is at the heart of the Torremolinos shopping scene: it is anattractive pedestrianised street, flanked by small shops and cafesand is a good place to sip sangria and people watch for those notinterested in shopping. More extensive shopping can be found innearby Malaga.

Dining in Torremolinos

Torremolinos is packed with restaurants catering for the touristtrade and menus, usually in a few languages, offer goodinternational staple dishes such as fish and chips, steak, pastaand schnitzel. Popular options include Kate's Cottage and BistroEuropa. However, some excellent Spanish restaurants are alsoaround, particularly those serving tapas. The best seafoodrestaurants are in the fisherman's district of La Carihuela, whichhas been relatively undisturbed by high-rise hotels and hasretained its Andalucian coastal charm. The upmarket harbour atPuerto Banus is only ten miles (16km) along the coast and is packedwith good restaurants overlooking rows of expensive-looking yachts.For something a little different try The Carvery (Italian), TheKathmandu Nepali Indian Restaurant (Indian), and Shang HaiRestaurante Chino (Chinese).

Activities in Torremolinos

The nightlife in Torremolinos can be fairly intense, with dozensof bars and clubs catering for all tastes and persuasions. A goodplace to start the evening is in one of the tavernas in Calle SanMiguel or in one of the cafés and restaurants that line thepromenade. Torremolinos is also home to the chiringuitos beachcafe/bars, focused in La Carihuela. The clubs start to open ataround 10pm and the Palladium disco is a great favourite. The bestselection of clubs is along Avda Palma de Mallorca. There is a biggay scene in Torremolinos centred on La Nogalera, where the clubsvary from the mainstream to drag bars. Exotic shows are a featurehere and are popular with both the gay and straight visitors.

Things to be aware of in Torremolinos

Tourists are regularly pestered by salesmen selling everythingfrom trinkets to timeshare apartments in Torremolinos. The centreof the resort is fairly run-down in places; the suburbs ofBenalmadena and Fuengirola are cleaner, friendlier and cheaper.

Tossa de Mar


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Once a haven for writers and artists, Tossa de Mar is now afavourite holiday destination for families and couples. People fromall walks of life are drawn to this attractive town on the CostaBrava to eat, drink, and relax. Tossa de Mar's picturesque cobbledold town, the medieval Vila Vella, is highly atmospheric, enablingthis resort to retain its historic atmosphere and authentic feel.An ancient Roman fortress overlooks the bay, providing gorgeousviews. The sandy beaches are beautiful and the town's positionallows for easy access to other coastal resorts and the scenichinterland. Although well supplied with shops, bars, andrestaurants, Tossa de Mar is not ideal for all-night partying andthere is no nightclub scene. However, Barcelona is only 56 miles(90km) away and an ideal destination for those wanting toexperience the energetic Spanish nightlife.

Shopping in Tossa de Mar

Shopping in Tossa de Mar offers a selection of Spanishsouvenirs, including ceramics, leather goods, and clothing. Mostshops are open from 10am to 8pm, closing briefly for siesta in theafternoons. For true bargain hunters, the duty-free shopping ofAndorra is only an hour away by car, and the wonders of Barcelonaare also easily reached.

Dining in Tossa de Mar

The prices at restaurants in Tossa de Mar tend to go up thecloser you get to the beach. With over 300 places to eat in Tossade Mar, there are a range of cuisines to choose from, includingtapas, traditional Spanish cuisine, and various internationalofferings. Tursia, La Luna, Restaurant Pizzeria Bar Lluis, andL'Ajustada all come highly recommended in Tossa de Mar for goodfood.

Activities in Tossa de Mar

Tossa de Mar doesn't have a wild nightlife culture for youngsingles; however, there are plenty of bars and restaurants for amore relaxed night out. Many restaurants host live music and stayopen past midnight during the summer tourist season. Bars such asArdilla or Tahiti are good venues to find Spanish music such asrumba or flamenco, and Trinquet is the place to go for acid jazz.Other places such as Chaplin's and The Mediterraneo are popularwith British tourists.

Things to be aware of in Tossa de Mar

Tossa de Mar's popularity in summer means it can be extremelyhard to find accommodation unless booked well in advance. Duringlow season it can be very quiet, with not much of a nightlife.



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The holiday retreat of Calis (pronounced Chalish) inTurkey is renowned for its spectacular sunsets and its laidbackatmosphere. Situated in the southwest of the country on thebeautiful Mediterranean coast, Calis has a selection of hotels,bars, and restaurants that line the extensive beachfront road whichdesignated a car-free strip.

The Calis beach is long and narrow, with a mix ofsand and shingle, and, as in Dalyan, a population of loggerheadturtles gathers here to lay eggs at certain times of year. Calis isalso a dolmus(minibus) or water-taxi ride away from neighbouringFethiye for those seeking bigger crowds. The best way to enjoy aCalis holiday, however, is to grab a seat at a beachfront cafe withcameras at the ready, and enjoy a co*cktail as the sun dips belowthe horizon.

Shopping in Calis

A little way out of town is a lovely market that takes place onSundays, with the usual selection of very well priced fake designeritems, as well as spices, teas and foods. There is also a smallselection of shops selling beachwear, sporting equipment, and localhandicrafts.

Dining in Calis

Calis has a variety of restaurants, with an emphasis on Chinese,English, and local Turkish cuisine. The Sultan Bakery is known forits great baklava, or travellers can visit the fish market inFethiye and choose their own fresh seafood.

Activities in Calis

The nightlife in Calis is very laidback with a few late-nightbars which host events such as foam parties, karaoke and salsanights, but for a wild party tourists can head to nearby Fethiye.Like most resorts, the most popular clubs are located along thebeachfront.

Things to be aware of in Calis

Calis is quiet, and not suited to those looking for a livelynightlife. It's best suited to families and older couples.



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On Bali's north coast, the Lovina holiday resort stretches along several miles of black volcanic coastline, encompassing seven villages, with Kalibukbuk the established tourist centre. Although Lovina is the second largest resort outside of the Kuta region, it is not as developed as the south of the island and retains a rural charm not in evidence in the more commercial areas, with guesthouses prettily situated on the beach or among the rice fields. Ducks, pigs and chickens scratch in the fields and cattle wander along the roads.

Colourful Balinese boats take Lovina tourists out to see the sociable dolphins, most active at sunrise, and the reef-protected waters provide a calm environment for snorkelling. Situated between the main diving sites on the north coast of Bali, Lovina is a good base for diving excursions. The black-sand beaches are calm and good for swimming. Bali's only Buddhist monastery, Brahma Vihara Arama, is a few miles away and can be combined with a visit to the delightful Air Panas hot springs at Banjar, another great holiday attraction.

Shopping in Lovina

The holiday resort of Lovina is actually a string of small villages strung along the coast, centred on the main town, Kalibukbuk. Here there is a western-style shopping centre and a variety of souvenir shops, where plenty of Balinese beachwear and tourist necessities are available. For serious shopping make excursions to the south, and to the villages where local craftsmen produce stone and woodcarvings, and jewellery designs.

The most popular souvenirs from Lovina are the carved wooden dolphin statues, but don't believe the touts who try to convince you that they are ebony.

Dining in Lovina

Don't expect to find many gourmet establishments while on holiday in Lovina, but Kalibukbuk has plenty of good-value restaurants catering for the tourist trade, most of them serving up a combination of Western and Indonesian cuisine. Rijsttafel buffets are popular and special deals abound, as do 'happy hours'.

Activities in Lovina

In Lovina, the nightlife is confined to entertainment provided at the hotels, especially the highly entertaining shadow puppet shows. There are some cosy bars in town where you can enjoy a co*cktail or a local Bintang beer and live music or karaoke while on holiday. Some even offer discos on Friday nights. There may not be a booming party scene, but there is fun to be found for those who prefer a more sedate night time experience.

Things to be aware of in Lovina

There are lots of hawkers on the beach in Lovina and this can become a nuisance to travellers.

Crested Butte


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The popular holiday destination of Crested Butte is located inGunnison County, considered the wildflower capital of Colorado.Regardless, when the resort is covered in white each winter, theflowers are forgotten and skiers from all over the world descend onthis resort town, often touted as one of the best extreme skiinglocations in the world. Both the US Extreme Skiing Championshipsand X-Games have been hosted here and the extensive terrain hassomething to offer everyone. The resort town is famous andwell-loved within the skiing community as a laidback,unpretentious, fun-loving place to visit; 'Worth Getting To', asthe Crested Butte saying goes.

Shopping in Crested Butte

Crested Butte has almost anything holidaying visitors couldpossibly want for mountain sports, including rental and repairshops. For other shopping needs the resort is quite limited, butthere are some gift shops and clothing stores available forsouvenirs. Avid shoppers may be a little disappointed, but theresort does provide everything visitors may need on holiday.

Dining in Crested Butte

There are fantastic restaurants offering everything for allnationalities of holidaymakers across the town. Offerings includesushi, seafood, vegetarian options, great steak and, of course,pizza.

Activities in Crested Butte

A small mountain, Crested Butte has a charm that relies on thefriendliness of the regulars and holidaymakers who frequent thebars, pubs and breweries. Princess Wine Bar opens daily at 5pm andhas a wide selection of award-winning wines, cognacs and singlemalt scotches and often has live entertainment in the evenings.Talk of the Town offers a variety of bar games, such as foosball,pinball, pool and video games, and of course a happy hour everyafternoon, while The Eldo Brewery is a popular microbrewery withlive music and dancing on weekends.

Things to be aware of in Crested Butte

Crested Butte is further out than other popular Coloradoresorts, some 250 miles (400km) from Denver InternationalAirport.

Skiing in Crested Butte

Although the reputation and renown of this resort is in theextreme skiing arena, there truly is something for all types. Mostof the mountain is suited for intermediate skiers and riders butthere is plenty of terrain suitable for beginners and experts aswell. Crested Butte also has a terrain park, Canaan, with a numberof jumps, tables and rails for beginners and intermediates. Thereis also a Superpipe at the top of Forest Queen, and a mini halfpipe for beginners in the terrain park.



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Davos was one of the first ski resorts to be created and is thelargest in Switzerland. An alpine city with major thoroughfares andhotel blocks lining the streets, Davos is a premier Europeanholiday resort, offering not only accommodation with a reputationfor excellence, but also an endless array of winter and summerrecreational activities, crisp mountain air and health spas. Thefive separate ski areas ensure a superb variety of skiing andsnowboarding for all abilities. Nearby is the little sister resortof Klosters, a small traditional village with a quiet andunobtrusive atmosphere that shares the large Parsenn ski area.Davos is a two-hour transfer from Zurich.

Shopping in Davos

Davos is a huge resort in comparison to the usualvillage-centred ski destinations in the Alps, and offers unrivalledshopping opportunities, with more than 100 shops, art galleries andboutiques ready and waiting to swipe eager visitors' credit cardsin exchange for a plethora of goods, from tinkling cow bells todesigner clothing. It takes hours to explore all the shopsclustered mainly along the two main streets around the DavosPlatz.

Dining in Davos

There are scores of restaurants in the greater Davos-Klostersarea, offering a vast selection to suit every taste and pocket.When it comes to haute cuisine the best are located in the majorhotels, and 24 of the finest hotels offer a 'dine around', whereguests on half board can sample menus in other hotel restaurants.Around the Davos Platz there is an international selection ofrestaurants that ranges from simple cafes to gourmet restaurantsoffering everything from French and Italian menus, to Indian,Chinese and Thai. For cosy apres ski evenings and spectacularviews, travellers should use the funiculars and cableways to headup to a mountain restaurant and sample homegrown local delights.The more upmarket restaurants require advance booking, and manyDavos establishments close their kitchens early, around 10pm.

Activities in Davos

Davos offers evening entertainment to suit most tastes. Popularapres ski bars can be found at the foot of the Jakobshorn andParsenn ski lifts and, after dark, there is a wide selection ofbars and clubs in the town centre, centred around Davos Platz. Manyclubs stay open until the early hours, including the Ex-Bar andBolgenschanze in the centre of the Platz, and the Postli Club atthe Morosani Posthotel. Davos also has a casino and cinema.

Things to be aware of in Davos

Davos and Klosters are not suited for those on a budget.

Skiing in Davos

The best-known and largest area in Davos is the Parsenn,offering intermediates and beginners miles of wide slopes that areideal for smooth cruising. There are also advanced runs, steepdrops and moguls that appeal to experienced skiers. Opposite theParsenn, Jakobshorn, or the 'Fun Mountain', is the second largestarea in Davos and has become one of the top snowboardingdestinations in the world. Davos also boasts the second largestcross-country ski area in Switzerland, with miles of groomed trailsavailable. The Davos-Klosters ski area also offers some of the bestoff-piste skiing in the world.

Lech and Zurs


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The alpine resort of Lech, in the beautiful Arlbergmountain range, combines superb skiing, reliable snow, anddelightful scenery. The loyal clientele of this celebrated resortlook forward to the restaurants, spas, and apres ski, as much as tothe excellent skiing.

Together with neighbouring Zurs, Lech is perhapsAustria's most exclusive ski resort. Between them, Lech and Zürsboasts dozens of four and five star hotels, but there are alsooptions for more budget conscious skiers.

Despite its reputation for luxury, Lech remains apicturesque traditional Austrian village. The resort has sprung uparound an old farming village set in a high valley, and even nowthe settlement is sometimes cut off from the outside world whenthere is heavy snowfall.

Innsbruck airport is just 1.5 hours from Lech and Zurs, whilethe drive from Zurich airport takes a little over two hours.

Shopping in Lech and Zurs

Shopping is surprisingly limited in Lech, and even more so inZurs, considering both their reputations as fashionable resorts.Most of the shops are to be found on the Hauptstrasse, includingmajor winter sports stores that sell all the latest brandedequipment, as well as souvenirs, trinkets, and traditional Austrianclothing. Visitors will find everything they need in Lech, but itis not really a destination for shopping sprees. No doubt this lackof extensive shopping outlets helps to preserve the charmingtraditional atmosphere of the two alpine villages.

Dining in Lech and Zurs

There are an appetizing number of good restaurants to be enjoyedwhile on ski holiday in Lech. Some of the most popular are Hus Nr 8and Rote Wand for traditional Austrian food, Don Enzo Due forpizza, and f*ck for modern Asian fusion cuisine. Balmalp serves foodsuch as pizza and ribs, and enjoys stunning views of the valley.Zurs has a similarly good restaurant scene, with numerous upmarketoptions.

Activities in Lech and Zurs

The apres ski in Lech is world famous and many holidaymakersstaying in Zurs venture out to sample some of the atmosphere (thereare regular buses connecting the resorts). The Eisbar, outside theHotel Tannbergerhof is the most popular place to head for agluhwein after a long day on the slopes. There's a small disco inthe hotel too. The Krone Bar lures well-dressed clientele, as doesthe Hotel Arlberg. The champagne bar at the Hotel Montana is also apopular after-ski stop. The nighlife in Zurs is fairly quiet butthere are a selection of bars and also a small disco. Those lookingfor a more rowdy nightlife may want to take a taxi to St Anton.

Things to be aware of in Lech and Zurs

Lech and Zurs are expensive by Austrian standards. There arealso limited challinging pistes, although nearby St Anton hasextensive sking for all standards.

Skiing in Lech and Zurs

Lech and Zurs offer some of the best intermediateskiing to be had in Europe. There may not be as many challengingpistes as in nearby St Anton, but there are extensive off-pisteoptions.

Snow reliability is one of the main contributingfactors to the success of this resort. There is a high annualsnowfall and the highest lift station is at 2,811m. Lech is alsohome to the famous White Ring ski circuit, which takes skiers on atour through the ski area.

Lech is linked by lifts and ski runs to the higherZurs slopes, and a new gondola connects Lech to the pistes of Warthand Schrocken to the north, which doubles the available skiingarea. Thanks to the new Flexenbahn gondolas, there is now also easyaccess to St Anton and other nearby Arlberg resorts.

There are plenty of excellent ski schools in Lech,Zurs and other ski resorts in the Arlberg area, but visitors shouldbook early if they want to hire a private guide.

Cala Millor


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Cala Millor is the liveliest and largest holiday resort onMallorca's rugged northeast coast. The name means 'better bay',which is indicative of its main attraction: a mile or more longstretch of sandy beach, which slopes gently into a crystal clearblue sea, protected at each end by rocky headlands. Sunbeds,parasols and pedalos can be hired for the day by sun seekers. Therest of the island's east coast is lined with inlets and coves,which are fun to explore. Cala Millor developed as a favouritedestination with holidaymakers from one hotel, the Eureka, built inthe 1930s, and is now a bustling enclave of high-rise hotels andapartment blocks, slowly merging into neighbouring resorts alongthe coast, fronted by a wide pedestrian promenade along itsalluring beach. Adjacent to Millor, across the headland to thenorth, is the quieter and more traditional resort of Cala Bona,with a little harbour, while a few miles to the south is thewell-known resort of Sa Coma.

Cala Millor is about 40 miles (70km) from the Son Sant JoanInternational airport near Palma, the capital, in the south of theisland. The area, particularly favoured by German holidaymakers, ispacked with shops, markets, entertainment venues, bars andrestaurants to ensure non-stop fun in the sun. The resort isparticularly well-suited for family holidays.

Shopping in Cala Millor

Holidaymakers will find that the pedestrian promenade that runsalong the Cala Millor seafront is jam-packed with stores and stallsselling a multitude of souvenirs and tourist requisites, open untillate in the evenings. Visitors will also find, however, that theselection is repeated over and over again in the different storesand variety is limited despite the amount of shops. A fun optionfor shopping enthusiasts is to head for Mallorca's markets wherebargains such as lace tablecloths or leather goods can be pickedup, after a bit of haggling. The closest markets to Cala Millor areSon Servera, held on Friday mornings, and Monacor on Mondays.Special buses are usually available for holidaymakers to reach thebigger markets, particularly those at Palma and Inca.

Dining in Cala Millor

There is a wide choice of restaurants scattered along theseafront promenade of Cala Millor, and around the fishing harbourat adjacent Cala Bona. Most are eclectic, serving a variety ofdishes to cater for the tastes of hungry holidaymakers with othersdedicated to international cuisine. Oxford Blue, CafeteriaRestaurante Bella Vista, Alahambra and Antonio Montoro are amongCala Millor's top-rated eateries for holidaymakers. Fast-fooderswill find Burger King and KFC at hand.

Activities in Cala Millor

Nightlife in Cala Millor is essentially low-key compared to someof Spain's well-known, rowdy holiday hotspots. A great deal of theevening entertainment is hotel-based, but those who like to be outand about will find plenty of fun at the numerous British bars,such as Cheers, which offer a variety of pursuits from karaoke toquiz evenings or bingo. The younger set is catered for by a fewdiscos, the largest being Palace Q, which play a mix of Spanish andinternational music. The club scene, however, is not as boisterousas that to which the 18 to 30 crowd may be accustomed.

Things to be aware of in Cala Millor

Visitors looking for a good party and clubbing-scene should lookto other resorts as the nightlife is fairly limited in CalaMillor.



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Once just a small picturesque fishing village, Cascais hasexploded into one of the most bustling, sophisticated holidayresorts on the Portuguese Riviera. It retains its laid-backatmosphere, however, and the local fishermen still ply their tradeand auction their catch on the main square.

Cascais town now hosts a plethora of elegant shops, bars andeateries set around colourful cobblestone walkways, to cater forthe holidaymakers. Besides the lovely local beaches there are someother great sightseeing opportunities. Cascais' 16th century churchhas carved and gilded woodwork and some famous paintings, while theCascais Amunicipal Museum is housed in a palace and has someinteresting exhibits and illuminated manuscripts.

The Sea Museum contains everything maritime from model boats tofishermen's boots, and the 16th century Fort of Cascais offers abeautiful view and an open-air artillery museum. About two miles(3km) out of Cascais is a strange rock formation known as the Mouthof Hell, which is worth a look en route to the lovely beach ofGuincho, a holiday favourite for surfers.

Shopping in Cascais

Shopping in Cascais' town centre is an enjoyable pastime,exploring the Rua da Raita pedestrianised street which offersnumerous small shops selling local wares, includinghand-embroidered linen and hand-painted tiles and other ceramics.Along the beachfront are the ubiquitous open-fronted stores andkiosks selling holiday requisites like buckets and spades,sunglasses and sunscreen. For local colour the place to be is onthe Rua Mercado on Wednesdays or Saturday mornings when thefarmer's market is held, selling fresh produce and plenty of othergoods. Glitzy shopping is at the huge Shopping Cascais Centre, outof town on the highway to Sintra. There are two floors withhundreds of stores dealing mainly in clothing, accessories,furniture and household goods.

Dining in Cascais

Cascais is renowned for its quality dining, drawing gourmetsfrom Lisbon and nearby Estoril. The main restaurant strip ofCascais is the walk-through Rua Frederico Arouca, and the livelyLargo Luis de Camoes. Here you will find a wide choice of eateries,most with outside areas, from cafes to traditional taverns, servingboth local fare and international cuisine. Fish restaurants abound;be warned it is said that one should not eat fish in Portugal onMondays, because fishermen do not go to sea on Sundays!Specialities of the Estoril coast are fish stew, sole, driedcodfish, lobster and crab. Spicy chicken dishes are also popular.Enjoy the reasonably priced good local wines. Popular restaurantsin Cascais include the Michelin-starred Fortaleza do Guincho, andthe local seafood at Restaurante B and B.

Activities in Cascais

The Cascais resort has a vibrant nightlife, offering everythingfrom traditional Fado to wild dance clubs. Largo Luiz de CamoesSquare is the hub of the hotspots, with a collection of bars andclubs. Most popular and lively of the clubs, Coconuts, is to thewest of the town on the seafront, with a bar and dance floor. Otherfavourites include Baluarte, Ferdi's, O' Neills Irish Pub and BallyBally Pub.

Things to be aware of in Cascais

Visitors staying near the centre of town may find it quitenoisy.



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Away from the madding crowds of Benidorm, the peaceful andcharming town of Altea offers plenty of amenities for those whoprefer a less frenetic beach holiday, without the glitz, glamourand gusto of the custom-made resorts. Of all the towns on the CostaBlanca, Altea is probably the one that remains the least exploitedand overdeveloped; daily life remains largely uninterrupted bytourists and huge hotels have yet to be built. Altea has a longjetty and attractive walkway fronting a calm stretch of shorelinewith pebbly beaches encircling the town. The town's central Plazade la Iglesia leads onto narrow cobblestone streets and offersbeautiful Mediterranean views. Altea is a pretty coastal town,promising a lovely combination of local culture and seasideactivities.

Shopping in Altea

Quaint local shops can be found around town. They are mostlyopen until late in the evening, but closed for siesta in the earlyafternoon. From Easter until September there is an interestingmarket in the Altea town square, and it's great for buying localproduce and gifts such as embroidered linen, leather goods, potteryand olive oil. The Altea market is open on Tuesdays and has becomeknown as one of the best markets on the Costa Blanca. Visitorswanting a more comprehensive shopping experience should head toeither Benidorm or the Sunday market at La Nuncia, just north ofAltea.

Dining in Altea

Altea is unusual in that it has more local, paella-styleeateries than pubs. The Hotel San Miguel gets good reviews for itsfood and has great views over the sea. El Castell in the old townserves some of the region's best pizzas, while La Maja is theperfect spot for a cooling co*cktail or a stylish Mediterranean dishafter a long day at the beach. Altea is home to family-run eateriesrather than glitzy, upmarket restaurants, but many visitorsconsider this part of its charm.

Activities in Altea

Altea is a peaceful place and those in search of a party willlikely be disappointed. All the nightlife is in Benidorm, a shorttrip by bus or car up the coast. Bar Plaza, on Altea's main square,has live music and jazz on summer evenings.

Things to be aware of in Altea

Altea is quiet and traditional and not ideal for those wanting aparty scene close to town.



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Saalbach and its close neighbour Hinterglemm form the heart ofone of Europe's largest ski areas, with access to more than 270kmof pistes. Saalbach is a charming Austrian villlage, withtraditional wooden chalets and a charming car-free centre with busycafes, bars and boutiques and some excellent hotels. Hinterglemm isa short distance up the valley, it has a more peaceful atmostphereand is better suited for families. Saalbach is 90 minutes fromSalzburg airport and a three hour drive to Munich.

Shopping in Saalbach

Hinterglemm is the best place to shop in the valley because itsstores are frequented more by locals, who are averse to payingtourist prices. Saalbach's pedestrianised High Street has severalattractive boutiques and shops where holidaymakers can enjoy a spotof shopping, but prices are higher.

Dining in Saalbach

On the mountain, rustic alpine restaurants serve up hearty localfare to skiers, while the valley towns bristle with restaurants,cafes and bars. Local Austrain favourites include wiener schnitzeland tiroler grostl, a Tyrolean hash made with with beef andpotatoes.

Activities in Saalbach

So hectic is the apres-ski in Saalbach that it is surprisingsome holidaymakers can muster the strength to hit the ski slopes inthe morning! Copious amounts of excellent local beer, schnapps andwarming gluhwein flow in the mountainside inns and village bars,along with some loud music and good-natured gemuchtlikheid. Dancingon the tables is expected and drinking anthems with cries of prost!echo everywhere. Most parties get going even before the ski liftsclose at 4pm, in the chalets above the villages. One of the mostpopular mountain bars is the Goasstall on the Hinterglemm side,which features indoor and outdoor bars and live music. Anotherfavourite is the Spielberghaus, which is reached by snowmobilealong a four-mile (6km) track through the forest. Revellers arethen transported home on high-speed sleds. There are a dozenoptions for late night fun at hotel bars, beer halls, and clubs.Discos get going at around midnight and keep the pace until theearly hours.

Things to be aware of in Saalbach

Saalbach can be extremely crowded over the Christmas season andthe boisterous evening behaviour doesn't suit everyone. The resortis relativley low and south facing, so the snow is not a reliableas in other well-known resorts.

Skiing in Saalbach

Saalbach has access to a massive network of prepared pistes,which are well connected by an excellent system of modern lifts.The north side of the valley offers a variety of easy skiing forbeginners, and there are plenty of ski and snowboarding schools inthe area, providing tuition by professional English-speakinginstructors. Intermediate skiers are also well catered for with anextensive area beyond the Reiterkogel. Schattberg Ost, SchattbergWest, and Zwolferkogel offer some challenging north-facing slopes,with the north face of the Zwolfer providing a notably harsh blackrun. Nearby Leogang offers a remote, demanding ski area, reachedfrom Vorderglemm by the Schonleitenbahn gondola. There are somespectacular off-piste powder runs on the north side of the valley.Saalbach is also extremely popular with snowboarders, with amassive terrain park reserved for boarding at Hinterglemm, and somehalf-pipes at Saalbach itself and neighbouring Leogang.

La Plagne


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La Plagne is a vast ski resort with an enormous vertical drop of2,000m (double that of Aspen). The resort is linked to Les Arcs viathe Vanoise Express cable car, and together they form Paradiski,one of the largest ski areas in the world.

The high altitude La Plagne villages centre on apartment life;there are few hotels and its convenience makes up for its lack ofcharm. The highest complex at 2,000m, Aime La Plagne is consideredto be the most convenient, with many of the best apartments. Thelowest mountain village, at 1,800m, is the neo-Savoyard Plagne1800. Belle Plagne, situated at 2050m, is one of the moreattractive resorts, with traditional wood and stone buildings and apedestrianised centre.

The largest complex, with the liveliest holiday atmosphere, isthe original Plagne Centre, one of the first villages in Europe tobe built to cater specifically for the skiing season. The lifts arenear to the accommodation and visitors can generally ski to theirdoor.

The three traditional villages within La Plagne ski area includeMontchavin-Les Coches, which is just below the Vanoise Expresscable car, Montalbert, which lies below Plagne Aime 2000, andChampagny, which is on the other side of the mountain and has itsown smaller ski area.

La Plagne is one of Europe's best ski resorts for beginners andintermediate skiers, and with its self-catering apartments it ishugely popular with families. The resort is around two hours fromGeneva and Lyon airports.

Shopping in La Plagne

Each complex of the purpose-built sections of La Plagne hasholiday apartments, with supermarkets, restaurants and ski shopsall interconnected by tunnels and walkways. The undergroundpassages are reminiscent of a subway shopping mall.

Dining in La Plagne

Although large self-catering apartments dominate thepurpose-built villages of La Plagne, the choices are endless forthose who want to go out to eat. There are quaint localrestaurants, both on and off the slopes, with delicious Savoyardespecialities on the menu, as well as quick and easy lunch stopsoffering toasties, pizza, pasta and burgers. There is also noshortage of bars offering an après-ski beer or vin chaud at the endof the day.

Activities in La Plagne

La Plagne is more of a family resort than a party destination,but there are nightclubs in La Plagne Centre and Belle Plagne, aswell as plenty of bars that offer live music. There's a bowlingalley in the centre of Belle Plagne, which is open late.

Things to be aware of in La Plagne

The La Plagne resort is not the image of a traditional village,with many high-rise buildings and purpose-built complexes. Waitingtimes at lifts can be lengthy.

Skiing in La Plagne

There is a huge amount of good skiing for all levels in LaPlagne and the surrounding area, and as a high-altitude resort, thesnow is as reliable as anywhere in Europe, particularly up on theBellecôte Glacier, which goes up to 3,250m.

La Plagne is one of the best ski resorts for beginner andintermediate skiers and boarders, with literally hundreds of milesof pistes, but there is also plenty of off-piste terrain andchallenging runs from the glacier for experts. As well as big, openslopes there are also runs between the trees, at Montchavin andMontalbert, and also over at Champagny.

The scenery and views are stunning and can be enjoyed by all skilevels from the highest point, where pistes for all abilities willlead even novice skiers safely down again. Intermediates will findmore than enough to believe they are in skiing heaven, andbeginners are well catered for with nursery slopes and ski schoolsadjacent to all the villages and plenty of blue and easy red runs.If visitors tire of the skiing in La Plagne, or simply want achange of scenery, they can take the Vanoise Express to LesArcs.

Lake Tahoe


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The beautiful, bright blue, mile-high holiday paradise of LakeTahoe, straddling the border of California and Nevada in the UnitedStates, is the second largest alpine lake in the world. The lake,perched atop the Sierra Nevada, is surrounded on all sides byworld-class ski resorts, magnificent golf courses, first-classhotels and casinos, which cater for millions of holidaymakers everyyear.

Although the area's scenery and facilities draw visitors onholiday year-round, it is as a skiing and snowboarding destinationthat Lake Tahoe really thrives. Recently most of the popularresorts, with appealing names such as Alpine Meadows, Heavenly andSquaw Valley, have undergone extensions and face-lifts. Thecomfortable resorts, bolstered by the fact that Lake Tahoeguarantees 300 days of sunshine a year, 33 feet (10m) of annualsnowfall, unrivalled scenery and more than 17,500 acres of terrainto explore, make it nearly irresistible for anyone contemplating awinter sports holiday in California.

For a holiday at Lake Tahoe, visitors can fly in to the nearbyReno-Tahoe Airport, or drive on all-weather highways from Reno,Sacramento, San Francisco and Los Angeles in just a few hours, fora dose of fun in the pure mountain air.

Shopping in Lake Tahoe

There is an abundance of shops in the holiday resorts and townsaround Lake Tahoe, and it is easy to explore them all by making useof the free trolley shuttles and cheap surface transportationoptions in the area. Great bargains are to be had at the variousfactory shops in South Lake Tahoe, situated at the junction ofHighway 50 and 89. The bustling Swiss-style Cobblestone Center inthe centre of Tahoe City and The Boatworks Mall at Tahoe CityMarina, North Lake Boulevard, are treasure-troves of interestingstores and galleries. Good buys in the area are gold and silverjewellery, Native American art, crafts, gifts and souvenirs, and ofcourse, outdoor recreational clothing and equipment.

Dining in Lake Tahoe

With literally hundreds of restaurants and eateries to selectfrom in the Lake Tahoe area, the main problem for hungryholidaymakers is what to choose. Most are well satisfied with thetop quality restaurants in their particular resorts, but theoptions are unlimited if one decides to move further afield. Afavourite in South Lake is Sprouts, the go-to spot for salads andsandwiches that are both healthy and delicious; if comfort food iswhat visitors crave, South Lake is also home to Mac Duff's Pub,serving up generous portions of fish and chips, burgers and generalpub fare. On the north shore in Tahoe City is the casually elegantChristy Hill, featuring a spectacular view of the lake. With avaried menu of homey dishes, Fire Sign Cafe is a well-lovedfavourite for breakfast and lunch in Tahoe City.

Activities in Lake Tahoe

Lake Tahoe has much to offer for visitors who want to live itup, from gambling or shooting pool to watching a raunchy cabaretshow. The numerous casinos, concentrated on the south shore,provide non-stop action way beyond the tables and slot machines, insatellite bars, clubs, restaurants and lounges. Himmel Haus inSouth Lake is a German beerhouse that serves up an impressive rangeof German and Belgian beer and wine, along with bavarian-inspireddishes. They also host multiple weekly events. One of the hottestLake Tahoe clubs is Peek, in Harrah's Casino, offering greatdrinks, music and dancing till the early hours. Opal Ultra Loungecan be found at Montbleu Resort and is also a late nightfavourite.

Things to be aware of in Lake Tahoe

Unless travellers are approaching it from the East Coast, LakeTahoe is a little tricky to get to.

Skiing in Lake Tahoe

Lake Tahoe's winter wonderland offers perfect powder, andgroomed snow covers the slopes from November through to April. Thesnow can be enjoyed at any of 15 alpine and 13 cross-country skiareas, encompassing world-renowned ski resorts. At South Lake thebest-known areas are Sierra, Kirkwood and Heavenly, all offeringsteep, deep and scenic runs; on the North Shore is Squaw Valley andAlpine Meadows. The total ski terrain of more than 17,500 acresoffers hundreds of runs catering for all levels of skiers andboarders, from powder in the trees, moguls and open bowls toperfect corduroy cruisers. Some of the area's more famous runsprovide adrenalin-pumping challenges for advanced skiers. All theresorts offer ski instruction and child-care facilities.



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Pucon is a pretty resort town situated on Lake Villarrica, set against the looming backdrop of the live Villarrica Volcano. The town has excellent tourist infrastructure and is one of Chile's most popular domestic holiday destinations. Surrounded by one private park and two national parks, Pucon is the focus of the Lake District's adventure tourism industry and is a growing centre for outdoor sports including hiking, kayaking, whitewater rafting, windsurfing, horseback riding and mountain biking. More relaxing outdoor activities in Pucon include fishing, birdwatching, soaking up the sun on the lakeshore, or bathing in the nearby hot springs.

In the winter months, skiing and snowboarding in Pucon are the major attractions, and the resort is one of the few places in the world where visitors can ski on a live volcano. Travellers should note, however, that although the conspicuous activity of the Villarrica Volcano is delightful in some ways, it also means that adventures on the slopes of the volcano are sometimes suspended due to the volcanic activity. The last serious eruption was in March 2015.

Shopping in Pucon

It's seldom a good idea to shop too extensively in a resort town, as the prices are generally higher, and the range more generic than in less commercialised towns and rural areas. In Pucon there are plentiful high-quality carvings, textiles and leather goods and the range is impressive but cheaper crafts can be found outside of the little town. There are a few charming little bakeries and some big supermarkets in Pucon for those choosing to self-cater.

Dining in Pucon

Hordes of hungry tourists have ensured a lively and diverse restaurant scene in Pucon. There are plenty of international staples available (foods such as pizza and burgers are popular all over Chile) but there are also some more authentic eateries offering local cuisine. It is possible to eat cheaply or to splurge, depending on budget.

Activities in Pucon

The nightlife in Pucon is usually lively, and the town has the reputation of having something fun to do 24 hours a day. Evenings out generally involve plentiful food and oversized beers and, although the nightlife is energetic, it isn't generally sophisticated. There are one or two more stylish venues though. Many bars and nightclubs are open only in summer (November to February), which is the peak tourism season; the town is much quieter during the winter months, though there is always somewhere to get a drink.

Things to be aware of in Pucon

Pucon can get crowded so accommodation should be arranged well in advance in the peak summer months.

Skiing in Pucon

Skiing in Pucon revolves around the Villarrica Volcano, making it one of the few places in the world where visitors can ski on an active volcano. Prior to the 2015 volcanic eruption, the resort boasted about 10 major runs, served by a number of ski lifts as well as several natural half pipes; however, the slopes were never opened in 2015 and it is unclear when the resort will once more function at full capacity. When the ski slopes are open, facilities for ski and snowboard equipment hire and a ski school are usually available. Apart from the off-piste options the resort is simple and the slopes are best suited to beginners and intermediates. The views from the slopes are sublime.



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Nestled high in the Pyrenees, Soldeu may not be Andorra's mostattractive or popular holiday ski resort, but it's a great placefor family holidays and provides excellent value for money fortravellers on a tight budget. It's renowned for being cheerful andfamily orientated, and is rated as one of the best places in Europefor beginner skiers.

The village is located in the greater Grandvalira region, whichincorporates neighbouring Pas de La Casa and has four other resortbases in the eastern half of Andorra. During summer, Soldeu is apopular destination for hiking, mountain climbing, and even whitewater rafting. During the winter months, the pistes below Picd'Encampadana are covered in snow, providing perfect conditions forskiers, snowboarders, and those who just enjoy the beauty of thefrosted Pyrenees peaks.

Shopping in Soldeu

Despite the fact that Andorra is one of the few countries in theworld that is blessed with duty free shopping, the resort of Soldeuis fairly limited when it comes to shops, with a sprinkling ofsmall sports stores that provide equipment and a supermarket forsupplies. Most shoppers head to nearby La Vella, located about 30minutes away via public bus, to go duty free shopping.

Dining in Soldeu

Soldeu's restaurants and cafes offer world-class cuisine and themajority of them can be found sprinkled along the main street andthroughout the village. With French, Spanish, Italian, and localPyrenean fare to choose from, visitors will have a tough timedeciding where to dine. The highly popular Fat Alberts serves adelicious fillet steak, while other establishments offer fantasticviews and a la carte menus. There is a plethora of cosy cafes andsmall takeaways along the main streets selling everything frombaguettes and sandwiches to slices of pizza and more.

Activities in Soldeu

Soldeu's nightlife is not as lively as neighbouring Pas de laCasa, but it does offer a number of fantastic bars and nightclubsproviding plenty of after dark entertainment for holidaymakers.There are bars with live entertainment, with others showing sportsevents. Anyone looking for a night out after a long day on theslopes can head to Fat Alberts, where happy hour après ski drinkscan be enjoyed, and live music and DJs keep the place going untilthe early hours. Barcode is another popular venue for those after aquieter après ski drink.

Things to be aware of in Soldeu

Holidaymakers who are hoping to experience a wilder nightlifewith a greater option of bars and clubs should consider staying atthe nearby Pas de la Casa resort. Shopping options are alsolimited.

Skiing in Soldeu

With its large number of red and blue slopes, Soldeu is bestsuited for beginner and intermediate skiers. There are goodEnglish-speaking ski schools, and easy nursery slopes for beginnersto learn on. Soldeu is hugely popular with snow boarders; there aretwo permanent boardercross tracks and the legendary El TarterSnowpark.



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Situated 25 miles (40km) southwest of Malaga, the few miles ofcoast between Marbella and Puerto Banus is Spain's answer to MonteCarlo. Spain's elite, and Britain's more successful, have flashyholiday homes in the surrounding hills, and swanky yachts in themarina. Marbella is the Costa del Sol's best quality holiday resort- the restaurants and bars are more stylish (and expensive) and thetown has been spared the worst excesses of concrete developmentthat have blighted neighbours such as Torremolinos. The old town ofMarbella is hidden away and retains some of its medieval charm, andhas some good clothes shops and restaurants. The more exclusivePuerto Banus, six miles (10km) to the west, is where you will findthe casino and the seriously large yachts. Those holiday visitorswho drive just a few miles inland, to the villages in the hillsaround Ronda, will discover a Spain seemingly untouched by tourism,with village markets and authentic tapas bars to be explored.

Shopping in Marbella

The best shopping is at the markets, which are a focal point oflocal life. Marbella has a good Monday market at Recinto Ferial deArroyo Primero, and an antiques market on Fridays in the old town.Good buys in Marbella include Moorish pottery, designer clothing,and Andalucian crafts such as shirts and leather shoes. Touristsshould expect to bargain hard on all items from fresh produce toSpanish tourist souvenirs and clothing.

Dining in Marbella

Eating out in Marbella tends to be pricey although there areplenty of good value fish and chips venues around the seafrontpromenade. Beach bars offer good pub grub and excellent views atsunset. Tapas is always a good bet, as is the local fish,particularly in paella. Visitors should avoid eating the widelytouted Chanquetes (tiny, deep-fried baby fish) which areendangered.

Activities in Marbella

Marbella's best bars include Ana Marias, La Notte Piano Bar andStones Music Bar. Clubs worth trying while on holiday in Marbellaare the legendary Nikki Beach, long-standing favourite DreamersDisco, Suite del Mar and Olivia Valere. Dress codes are the norm inMarbella, and entrance fees are often higher than those in Madridand Barcelona. The Golden Mile in Marbella is the place to be seenand tourists in Marbella should expect to rub shoulders with therich and famous including many well-known celebrities and evenmembers of the Saudi royal family.

Things to be aware of in Marbella

Marbella can be expensive when compared to smaller towns on thecoast; it has also grown into a busy and modern place, with littleof the old world charm that attracted many visitors here twentyyears ago.



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The holiday destination of Mazatlán is the most important port on the Pacific coast of Mexico. It is also the shrimp capital of the world, with the largest fleet of commercial shrimp vessels in Latin America. This attractive city also has the reputation of being one of Mexico's premier beach holiday resorts. The contrast between commercial port and tourist resort is interesting and sets the place apart from other popular resorts. Travellers will find world-renowned deep sea fishing, miles of lovely beaches, excellent seafood, a variety of water activities and a choice of accommodation to suit all tastes. Fondly called the 'Pearl of the Pacific', Mazatlán boasts Mexico's longest and prettiest waterfront promenade, or malecon. This is the city's defining characteristic, and much of the city's life can be viewed from here.

The colonial old town centre is the heart of Mazatlán, where the busy main plaza, alongside the 19th-century cathedral with its blue and gold motifs, and the open-air market, are a hive of activity. The city emanates a combination of laid-back seaside charm and affordable luxury, its beaches lined with bars and outdoor cafés, and the sky above filled with colourful parasails. Sunbathers and hawkers compete for space on the city beaches, and fishing vessels and jet skis circulate in Mazatlán bay.

Shopping in Mazatlan

Mexico is a great place to shop for diamonds because the gems can be purchased here tax-free. The best place to seek out jewellery is Mazatlán's Golden Zone (Zona Dorada) tourist area. The streets of the Golden Zone are a paradise for greedy shoppers, where jewellery, designer clothes, seashell souvenirs and almost anything else imaginable can be found within the tiny boutiques and vast emporiums. The Mazatlán Arts and Crafts Center is a treasure-trove of handmade goods. Wandering the Central Market in Old Mazatlán is a colourful shopping experience, with busy street food stalls under bright umbrellas in front of little stores selling a hodge-podge of crafts, clothing and novelties. Away from the sea, on the Avenida de los Deportes, is a large shopping mall, La Gran Plaza, which has a supermarket stocking essentials. Shops generally open from around 10am and stay open until late.

Dining in Mazatlan

Shrimp in every guise is the mainstay of Mazatlán restaurants. A favourite spot for tasting this tempting crustacean is the tourist-oriented El Shrimp Bucket on Olas Altas, the original of the chain of restaurants that has proliferated throughout Mexico. Great cuisine here is not confined to shrimp, however: Asian and Italian restaurants abound, along with some superb authentic Mexican eateries. Favourites among these include Cenaduria El Túnel, near the Angela Peralta Theatre, famed for its chicken gorditas and the best pozole (pork stew) in town. There is a fairly good choice of dining options around the Plazuela Machado, including the upmarket al fresco Pedro y Lola. For a quick snack opt for a hotdog or taco from a street stall, or find a cheap meal at the Central Market where a few restaurants offer inexpensive daily specials.

Activities in Mazatlan

Mazatlán, like any busy seaside resort, has a lively nightlife with a plethora of dance, live music and drinking venues. Extremely popular are Mexican fiesta theme parties that are organised by the larger hotels. Most of the nightclubs and popular pubs are to be found in the Zona Dorada, offering a variety of music from chilled piano playing to lively local mariachi groups. One of the favourites for locals, offering sizzling Latin beats, is Mundo Bananas, on Avenue Camaron Sabalo. The young crowd tend to favour the Fiesta Land complex at the southern end of the Zona Dorada, which is packed with restaurants and lively clubs like Bora-Bora and Valentinos. Those whose tastes run to other than dancing will find plenty of sports bars, karaoke bars, co*cktail bars, and brew houses in which to spend a fun, social evening.

Things to be aware of in Mazatlan

There are lots of hawkers on the beach in Mazatlan and this can become a nuisance to travellers. Don't stray too far from the tourist areas alone as travellers are easy targets for petty crime.

Plettenberg Bay


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The upmarket holiday town of Plettenberg Bay, about 380 miles (600km) from Cape Town and 125 miles (200km) from Port Elizabeth, was originally called Bahia Formosa(Beautiful Bay) by the early Portuguese explorers, and it is still possible to see why, despite explosive development of luxury homes, hotels and a thriving town centre.

The town - familiarly known as 'Plett' - is a favourite holiday destination for South Africans and foreigners alike with its unspoilt golden beaches, year-round Mediterranean climate, dramatic rocky Robberg Peninsula, and vibrant nightlife. The bay is a nursery for the endangered Southern Right Whales, which arrive each winter and spring to calve.

Shopping in Plettenberg Bay

Plettenberg Bay's shopping malls and a variety of shops provide everything that is needed by travellers, including clothing and speciality goods at several boutiques where souvenir-hunters can also find arts, crafts and antiques. Plett is by no means a shopper's paradise, but the town is well-equipped for self-caterers and holidaymakers.

Dining in Plettenberg Bay

There are plenty of dining opportunities in Plettenberg Bay, from beach pubs, bistros and deli's to five star cuisine and award-winning à la carte menus. Foodies will find Thai, Italian, fresh seafood, steak and a variety of other choices on offer.

Activities in Plettenberg Bay

Although Plett is a small town, the nightlife is fairly lively, yet laidback. Choices are somewhat limited. In summer most action takes place on or near the beach, beginning with sundowners in typical South African style at one of the lovely beach bars, but there are a few fun pubs and clubs for later evening entertainment with pool tables, live music and dancing. Travellers should note that Plett is one of a handful of South African coastal towns that draw massive crowds of school graduates at the end of the academic year (late November and early December), meaning that during this time the town is crowded and the nightlife is extremely frisky.

Things to be aware of in Plettenberg Bay

Plettenberg Bay is best avoided over the Christmas holiday period when prices are double, accommodation is impossible to find and everything gets very crowded.



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A popular holiday retreat, Sandanski is an internationally-renowned health destination situated in the foothills of the Pirin Mountains and is one of Bulgaria's best spa resorts. Sandanski records the highest number of sunny days in Bulgaria, and a combination of clean air, a mild climate, beautiful surroundings and natural mineral springs make it an ideal town for rehabilitation, recreation and spa treatments. The town is famous for its treatment of respiratory problems, particularly bronchial asthma, but the comprehensive balneo-climatic treatments also address numerous other conditions.

Sandanski is a small town in the Bistritsa river valley, with a population of around 30,000. The city centre is a beautiful place to walk around, with a number of restaurants, shops, hotels, art galleries and internet cafes. The town hosts several festivals throughout the year and is a point of departure to various attractions in the Pirin Mountains, including the sandstone pyramids in Melnik, the thermal hot springs at the Rupite volcanic crater, and the Rila Monastery.

Shopping in Sandanski

Shopping in Sandanski is concentrated in the city centre, with a number of shops, art galleries, and market stalls dotted around Macedonia Avenue. Popular Sandanski souvenirs include wooden toys and puzzles, local art, and clothes. There are also several ateliers who makes custom suits at prices far below those in other parts of Europe.

Dining in Sandanski

Eating out options in Sandanski include a range of sidewalk cafes and outdoor restaurants. Many of the hotels in the city offer good places to eat, and most of Sandanski's restaurants are clustered around the city centre, within easy walking distance.

Activities in Sandanski

Although renowned for its spa holidays, Sandanski boasts a surprisingly energetic nightlife, with a variety of clubs, lounges and bars to investigate.

Val dIsere


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Val d'Isere is one of the most popular ski resorts in the Alps,and for good reason. It offers some of the best and highest on- andoff-piste skiing in the world. The Val d'Isere resort is linkedwith Tignes, and between them they have about 193 miles (310km) ofmarked runs for every level of skier. Both ski resorts weredeveloped in the 1970s and although large square hotels stilldominate the town, recent developments have succeeded in creating amuch more attractive feel. Val d'Isere holidays remain hugelypopular, with the British in particular, due to the great skiingand busy nightlife. There are also plenty of excellent restaurantsto choose from. The Val d'Isere village is becoming increasinglybusy in the summer, when tourists flock there on holiday forwalking, climbing and paragliding.

Shopping in Val dIsere

Val d'Isere has plenty to offer shopaholics on holiday,particularly those with large wallets wanting to look their best onthe slopes. Prices are much more affordable towards the end of theseason as shops clear the shelves for next year's look. There aremini-supermarkets and some wonderful delicatessens for those whoare self-catering.

Dining in Val dIsere

There are dozens of restaurants in Val d'Isere, most serving upa first-rate food and many with a pricey menu. La Luge has cosyatmosphere and is good spot for dinner after drinks in bar of theadjacent Blizzard Hotel. It serves delicious home-cooked Savoyardspecialties. Le Lodge is a more affordable option for a familymeal; they do excellent steaks, pizzas, pasta and fondue at anexcellent price. The Fondue Factory is a contemporary fonduerestaurant that is an homage to Jean Claude Killy, the Olympicskier. La Baraque has good co*cktails and a lively setting, oftenwith live bands playing. It serves delicious Asian food, arefreshing change from the heavy food served in many Alpinerestaurants. As is often the case, the smaller more intimaterestaurants sometimes offer the best fare and it's best to ask alocal for up-to-date advice. The same goes for the mountainrestaurants. Le Peau de Vache is one of the best mountainrestaurant, and is situated half way up La Face. Other goodmountain restaurants include La Fruitiere and La Cucucina (bothpart of the Folie Douce), Eidelweiss and Etincelle.

Activities in Val dIsere

Val d'Isere has perhaps the most lively nightlife and apres skiscene anywhere in the Alps. For many people the Folie Douce is thefirst stop after skiing and their terrace is packed on sunnyafternoons. It's been dubbed the highest club in Europe and has aresident DJ and band. Cocorico is situated on the nursery slopes,it also has great music and a lively atmosphere, and gets goingaround 5pm. Le Bananas and the Fall Line are more Val D'Isereinstitutions and popular pre-club venues, while Dicks Tea Bar hasevolved from a pub into one of the most famous nightclubs in theFrench Alps, open between 11pm - 4am.

Things to be aware of in Val dIsere

Few Val d'Isere chalets are within walking distance of thelifts, so skiers have to make use of the efficient bus service. Vald'Isere is very popular and slopes get crowded during schoolholidays. The town developed quickly in the 1960s and 70s whenthere were few planning controls, and this is reflected in much ofthe town's architecture. However, since the 90s all new buildingshave had to conform with traditional styles, in keeping with theancient village that the town grew up around.

Skiing in Val dIsere

The combined area of Val d'Isere and Tignes offers a massiveamount of skiing for all standards. The nursery slopes just abovethe village are free and a number of companies offer first-rateinstruction. As standards improve, skiers can make their way up theslope to the wide choice of green and blue runs. The Solaise slopescan be reached by cable car from the village centre and offer avariety of exciting piste skiing for intermediates and beginners;experts can drop off the sides for some powder. The Bellevardeslopes offer some good high-altitude skiing including a 3,000-foot(1,000m) run down to La Daille. Skiers from all over the worldflock to Val d'Isere for its vast expanse of off-piste skiing;whatever the visitor's standard, it's best to take a guide forsafety and to help find the best powder.

Sun Valley


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The holiday destination of Sun Valley opened in 1936 as thefirst purpose-built ski destination in America, modelled after therenowned ski resorts of Europe. It was quickly christened the'American Shangri-La' and has been a favourite of Hollywood starsand the glamorous ever since. In spite of its elite status, SunValley has a laid-back atmosphere. In keeping with the spirit ofIdaho, the focus is on the pristine beauty of the environment andthe feats accomplished by athletes and outdoorsmen.

Sun Valley is built around Bald Mountain, known affectionatelyas 'Baldy' and considered by many to be the single best skimountain in the country. The old stomping ground of OlympiansPicabo Street and Reggie Crist boasts something like 3,400 verticalfeet (1,036m), 14 lifts and 65 runs on 2,054 skiable acres. Thewidely varying terrain of 'Baldy' and neighbouring Dollar Mountainmeans skiers of all levels can hit the slopes. The ski andsnowboard school offer clinics for all skill sets and ages. A widerange of accommodation is also available, from romantic retreats tospacious family options, including four mountain lodges, theoriginal and elegant Sun Valley Lodge as well as villagecondominiums and cottages.

Shopping in Sun Valley

Shoppers and holidaymakers will find the latest designerfashions and the top brands in technical skiwear in Sun ValleyVillage, as well as skiing, snowboarding and mountain bikingequipment and accessories. In addition to an art gallery, there area variety of gift and souvenir shops. Free bus service to livelyKetchum and its shops is also available.

Dining in Sun Valley

Sun Valley's restaurants cater to every taste, from hearty Idahofare to pizza to gourmet Mediterranean cuisine. Holiday visitorswon't be disappointed. Those in a nostalgic mood can take thegondola up to Roundhouse, the first day lodge on Bald Mountain,built in 1939. A visit to Trail Creek Cabin is also a tradition,with its sunset views and three outdoor decks open year-round.Visitors can even find sushi in nearby Ketchum.

Activities in Sun Valley

Nightlife comes alive in Sun Valley during the winter months,when holiday visitors can enjoy the apres-ski socialising. TheDuchin Lounge serves special hot-buttered rum that is a must-try.The Boiler Room is a popular nightspot, serving the obligatoryAmerican bar fare of nachos and chicken wings.

Things to be aware of in Sun Valley

Some skiers have found the tighter valleys of the ski areas tobe a bit uncomfortable during busier times. Others have judged thetrails to be slightly more difficult than their posted ratings. Attimes, there is a lack of natural snow.

Skiing in Sun Valley

Sun Valley is consistently rated in the top ten by Ski Magazine. Bald Mountain's seven high-speed quads, fourtriples and five doubles take skiers to a height of 9,150 feet(2,789m), and its terrain includes glades, bowls, bumps, groomers,tree skiing, and easy rollers. It is also famous for its lack oflift lines, allowing for more time on the slopes. Dollar Mountain'sgentler, treeless slopes are perfect for beginners, and its tubinghill is popular with families. Snowboarders aren't neglectedeither, as Dollar Mountain has a 22-foot superpipe. Sun Valley alsohas one of the most extensive and well-maintained Nordic trailsystems in the country. The Zions Bank Boulder Mountain Tour, oneof the country's top cross-country skiing events, is held here eachyear.



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Sugarloaf is one of the best ski mountains in theeast, celebrated for its incredible terrain and variety, excellentvertical drop and late ski season which can stretch to May. Theresort's relative isolation (just over two hours' drive time fromthe nearest airport) means quieter slopes even in peak season,while the wide range of activities keeps visitors occupied even ifthe fairly restricted apres ski scene doesn't. The resort isenormous, covering 1,400 acres (560 ha) of skiing terrain, so it'spossible to spend a week here and never ski the same run twice.

Shopping in Sugarloaf

The largest town is Farmington, 39 miles (63km) away with apopulation of around 8,000, so it's no surprise that shopping isnot a popular Sugarloaf pastime. The most popular souvenir isthermal underwear to cope with the occasionally icy weather.

Dining in Sugarloaf

There are some good quality restaurants right on the slopes ofSugarloaf. Bullwinkle's is great for lunch, and in the eveningsoffers a six-course meal at a secluded spot accessed by snow cat.At base lodge one can find Narrow Gauge Food Station, which offersdecent enough food on the go. In town, visitors shouldn't miss TheBag and Kettle, home to Skiing Magazine's Best Burger 2008/9 andthe famous Cheeseburger Soup. Another good bet for great food andapres ski entertainment is The Shipyard Brewhaus in the SugarloafInn.

Activities in Sugarloaf

Sugarloaf's apres ski is a classic bar scene of the beer andsing-along variety, and most venues close relatively early at 1am.Some of the best apres ski is at the very top of base lodge in theWidowmaker Lounge, less sinister and a whole lot more fun than itsounds. Weekends are best when live music keeps the party goinguntil late. Travellers should check out the restaurant 45 Northinside the Sugarloaf Mountain Hotel for live entertainmentnightly.

Things to be aware of in Sugarloaf

The resort is just over two hours from the nearest airport. Itdoesn't have the most exciting apres ski scene so party animalsmight be disappointed, as will avid shoppers. Sugarloaf can be alittle expensive and gets very cold in February.

Skiing in Sugarloaf

There are 12 lifts in total, including two high speed quads,equating to around 19 720 skiers carried per hour. This resortprobably has the shortest lift lines of any large US resort, a bigplus over holiday season. Sugarloaf is famous for its challengingand super steep black diamond snowfields, although there are plentyof runs for beginners and intermediates too across the almost 160named runs available. The ski school is excellent, though notcheap, and there are plenty of groomed runs on which topractice.

Sunny Beach


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Lying about 22 miles (35km) north of Bourgas, Sunny Beach is the largest Bulgarian sea resort. Sunny Beach is situated on a wide semi-circular bay along the southern part of the Black Sea Riviera, with a five-mile (8km) strip of beach backed by natural golden sand dunes, which is regarded as the best beach along the coast and is a widely popular holiday destination. It is naturally protected by the Balkan mountain range to the north, and with its warm Mediterranean climate, clean and calm water, and safe swimming, it is a perfect all-round holiday destination, living up to its motto 'Where families come first'. Only the most world-weary of visitors could get bored here considering the wide variety of activities and entertainment, including almost every kind of sport imaginable and plenty of fun and games for children. The resort comprises of more than 120 modern hotels, and offers a wide range of services as well as organised day trips to surrounding attractions, including the ancient town of Nessebur.

Shopping in Sunny Beach

Sunny Beach features several big shopping centres which provide plenty of opportunities for visitors to find clothes, souvenirs and food while on holiday. You'll find traditional Bulgarian souvenirs like leather and textiles, wooden toys and puzzles, and jewellery alongside touristy fare like t-shirts, sunglasses and postcards at places like the Royal Beach Mall in the centre of town.

Dining in Sunny Beach

More than 130 restaurants and taverns in the Sunny Beach holiday resort cater to foreign tastes with a wide range of cuisine for holidaymakers of all nationalities. Places to eat in Sunny Beach range from familiar British pubs for homesick tourists, to traditional Bulgarian mehanas, and the range of cuisines ensures there are options to suit all budgets.

Activities in Sunny Beach

Nightlife in Sunny Beach is varied and ranges from nightclubs, discos, casinos and bars, to cafés, folk-style spots and a variety of acts and entertainment in the local taverns. The nightlife in Sunny Beach is so varied and energetic that holidaymakers visit from surrounding resorts to make the most of the Bulgarian entertainment scene.

Things to be aware of in Sunny Beach

The Sunny Beach holiday resort can get very crowded during peak season with over 100 hotels and two large campsites accommodating thousands of visitors.



Minorca Destination Guide (92)

Vilamoura, an ambitious purpose-built holiday resort on thecentral Algarve coast, is one of Europe's largest privatelydeveloped tourist havens, offering holidaymakers every form ofsport, entertainment and amenity imaginable. The resort is builtaround a magnificent 1,000-berth marina, alongside which arepreserved Roman ruins that were unearthed during construction backin the 1960s.

The southern border of the Vilamoura holiday resort is host to along, sandy beach, which is lined with quality hotels,self-catering apartments, numerous restaurants and shops, and ahost of leisure facilities including a casino. Further inland,villas nestle in lush gardens between the golf courses. Vilamoura,which means 'Village of the Moors', is designed for pure pleasurefor everyone, of any age or orientation. Nature has enhanced theresort with a temperate sunny climate and beautifully landscapedsurroundings. Development has been environmentally friendly andtasteful.

Shopping in Vilamoura

Shopping arcades are an integral part of the Vilamoura holidaydevelopment, packed with designer boutiques, shoe stores, sport'soutlets, perfumeries, tobacconists, jewellers and plenty more.Those wanting to seek out the local colour can make an expeditionto the Saturday market in nearby Loule.

Dining in Vilamoura

From fine dining to fast food, Vilamoura has it allin dozens of restaurants, coffee bars, ice-cream parlours and cafésscattered throughout the resort, though many of the most popularplaces are near the Marina.

Activities in Vilamoura

Nighttime is fun time in Vilamoura, where bars, discos and liveentertainment venues abound. Everything from traditional PortugueseFado to striptease and karaoke is there to be enjoyed. Vilamoura'sinternational Casino is the haunt of celebrities, offering nightlydinner shows in addition to gambling tables, slot machines andbingo rooms.

Things to be aware of in Vilamoura

Some of the prettiest areas in Vilamoura are not open to thegeneral public, including privately-owned areas and exclusiveresorts.



Minorca Destination Guide (93)

Vallnord is one of Andorra's most popular ski holiday resorts,appealing to all kinds of holidaymakers and travellers. Thediversity of pistes draws thousands of tourists each year, fromexperienced skiers to beginners and families looking for theultimate in skiing holidays. With green, blue, red and black ratedruns, skiers of all skill levels can enjoy the resort of Vallnord,and there are even ski schools for beginners and children keen ontrying their hand at the sport.

Pal and Arinsal, which are linked by cable car, form part of thelargest ski area in Vallnord, offering very different types ofskiing terrain, while the Ordino-Arcalis Valley area in the extremenortheast is highly popular with experienced locals for itsoff-piste skiing.

The summer months are also a great time to visit thismountainous resort, where activities such as mountain biking, horseriding, and fly fishing are highly popular. Most holidaymakers whovisit Vallnord generally stay in Arinsal, but the town of LaMassana also makes a great base as the gondola to Pal is nearby andArcalis is located within close proximity, too.

Shopping in Vallnord

Like other ski resorts in Andorra, there are a few specialistshops, fashion boutiques, and sports stores scattered throughoutthe town. But since Vallnord is located just three miles (5km) fromthe capital of La Vella, many keen shoppers choose to head throughto this mountain town for a day of duty free shopping, where itemssuch as perfume, designer clothes, electronic goods, alcohol, andtobacco can be scooped up at bargain prices. With thousands ofstores and boutiques, shopaholics can shop to their heart's contentin one of the world's greatest shopping meccas.

Dining in Vallnord

Food and drink in Vallnord is much cheaper that in any otherEuropean resorts, and it's not surprising that eating out is afavourite pastime while on holiday here. There is a huge array ofrestaurants to choose from, offering all kinds of fare, fromItalian and Mexican to Japanese and French, visitors will not bedisappointed. Many of the finest restaurants in Vallnord arelocated in the very swish hotels, but there are also plenty ofother eateries to choose from catering to all kinds of tastes.

Activities in Vallnord

The après-ski in Vallnord is lively, despite the resorts smallsize. With many local favourites and even some English and Irishpubs to choose from, Vallnord provides the perfect environment fora great night out after a long day on the slopes. In Vallnord, foodand especially drinks are much cheaper than in other parts ofEurope, making it the perfect destination to begin a night out at arestaurant, before heading out for a night on the town at one ofthe resort's many clubs, discos and bars until the wee hours.

Koh Chang


Minorca Destination Guide (94)

The tropical island resort of Koh Chang is Thailand's secondlargest island after phu*ket, and is made up of stunning whitebeaches, lofty mountain peaks, pristine rainforests and cascadingwaterfalls. Koh Chang is only a few hours away from Bangkok by roadand is easily reached, yet remains relatively undeveloped andlaid-back.

Koh Chang Island is home to exotic flora and fauna, abundantmarine life and untouched, colourful coral reefs, making it anattractive holiday destination for adventurers, hiking enthusiastsand scuba divers, and the beautiful scenery, friendly locals,quality restaurants and trendy nightlife make it appealing toeveryone else!

There is an array of accommodation options for visitors on theisland, ranging from simple beach huts and bungalows to upmarketvillas, suites and apartments. Daily flights from Bangkok, phu*ketand Ko Samui arrive at the airport in Trat, from where ferries areavailable to Koh Chang.

Shopping in Koh Chang

Most Koh Chang shops are located along the main road of eachbeach, and offer an assortment of souvenirs, beachwear, paintings,and sunglasses. The main beaches, such as White Sand Beach and KaiBae Beach, also have shops such as Speedo and BSC. Klong Prao Beachhas three villages and each one has its own shopping centre withsmall shops, convenience stores, tailors, banks and touragents.

Dining in Koh Chang

There are a number of great restaurants on Koh Chang. White SandBeach (Had Sai Khao) and Klong Prao Beach both have a few good Thairestaurants and interesting cafes, including vegetarian options.Many beachside eateries are scattered around the island andsomething tasty is never too far away. Visitors shouldn't be scaredof trying some street food, as this is often the cheapest andsometimes the best option for backpackers and budget travellersalike.

Activities in Koh Chang

Koh Chang's nightlife ranges from pubs and beach bars to livemusic venues and vibrant nightclubs. White Sand Beach is thenightlife hub of the island and has some of the most popular venueson its southern tip. On Klong Prao Beach there are cafes and barswith pool tables, board games and big screen TVs, and the same canbe said for Kai Bae Beach. The bars on Lonely Beach appeal to ayounger crowd, as there is live music and an increasingly debauchedatmosphere.

Things to be aware of in Koh Chang

Sandflies are a real irritation, as their bites cause itchysores to develop.



Minorca Destination Guide (95)

Situated on a peninsula and flanked by two stretches of goldenbeach, the pretty holiday resort town of Side is a jumble of oldand new, with an extensive range of tourist accommodation, shops,late-night bars, and restaurants mixed in among the ruins of theancient city. In the centre of town is the magnificent 2nd-centurytheatre with beautiful views towards the sea, and the remains ofthe Roman Baths contain an impressive collection of artefacts.

Shopping in Side

The shopkeepers in Side have a reputation for pesteringtourists, especially in the city centre. Many shops will notdisplay prices so be prepared to haggle. Busy streets that leaddown to the sea are lined with souvenir shops selling typicalTurkish handicrafts such as carpets, jewellery, and leather goods.Visitors can take a bus to the Manavgat market on Thursdays, whichhas the usual souvenir options such as t-shirts and leather goods.The main markets are fun and have a lively atmosphere, but the bestdeals can usually be found in quieter areas.

Dining in Side

Side has a variety of restaurants, ranging from Western stylefood to local delicacies such as dolmades and kebabs. Anatolia Cafeis a popular place for English breakfasts and roasts.

Activities in Side

Most of Side's nightlife is concentrated along the beachfront.There are a few lively bars and clubs, but they don't stay openvery late.

Things to be aware of in Side

Side can be very crowded on weekends, when many local touristsvisit.



Minorca Destination Guide (96)

Unlike neighbouring holiday resorts, Dalyan is alargely undeveloped and tranquil village offering a significantnumber of natural and historical attractions. Due to the fact thatnearby Iztuzu beach is one of the world's few remaining breedinggrounds for loggerhead turtles, an effort has been made to conservethe area's astounding natural beauty.

The town is set on the winding Dalyan River thatflows between the Mediterranean Sea and Lake Koycegiz, and on theother side of the river are the ruins of the ancient city ofCaunos, dating back to the 3rd century.

A Dalyan holiday must is a boat trip to the 2.5 mile(4km) beach (about a 40-minute journey) that transports visitorsthrough tall reeds, to 2,300-year-old Lycian cliff tombs and theruins at Caunos, and finally to the large sandbar at the turtlebeach in Koycegiz. A quicker, but less scenic ride is by dolmus.

Nearby thermal springs at Sultaniye, and the Dalyanmud baths are also not to be missed and make for anout-of-the-ordinary holiday experience. The surrounding wetlandsare a haven for a variety of wildlife and birds, and the town isoffset by a backdrop of pine-covered mountains and lush fields,making Dalyan a perfect destination for nature-lovers.

For those looking to party until dawn the busierholiday resorts such as Marmaris would be better suited, but forthe more discerning traveller there are plenty of activities andexcursions to enjoy, local delicacies to savour, and spectacularscenery to delight in while on holiday in Dalyan.

Shopping in Dalyan

The Dalyan local market on Saturdays provides an excellent wayto pick up bargains while on holiday. As with anywhere in Turkey,haggling is key and there are unbelievable deals to be had. Thereare several small shops, including local arts, crafts, and carpetdealers, and there is also the usual range of very cheap but fakedesigner goods. There are also several mini supermarkets.

Dining in Dalyan

There are a number of restaurants catering for a range of tastesin Dalyan, including several that offer tasty traditional Turkishdishes. Unlike many resorts, this is not the place to look forBritish style food or McDonalds. Paradise Restaurant is the bestplace to go for fish and chips, though. Some favourites include LaPerla and Simarik cafe. Riverside Restaurant has beautiful views ofCaunos.

Activities in Dalyan

Dalyan is not the place to come on holiday for a buzzingnightlife, but there are several bars and a few clubs and manyestablishments have regular Turkish nights offering up a moretraditional experience of belly dancing, traditional music, andspecial food.

Things to be aware of in Dalyan

Dalyan can be a bit more expensive than neighbouring holidayresorts and, as it is a more family-orientated resort, partyanimals looking for late nights and pumping clubs should headelsewhere. Mosquitoes can be a problem.



Minorca Destination Guide (97)

North of Bourgas lies the ancient town and popular Bulgarian holiday destination of Nessebar, located on the tip of a long and narrow peninsula in the Black Sea. The picturesque town is one of the oldest in Europe, emerging as a fortified Thracian settlement over 9,000 years ago and changing hands many times before being captured by the Bulgarians in the 7th century. Like many European cities, Nessebar has an old town and a new town, but it is the old quarter that gives the peninsula its character, and is protected as a UNESCO World Heritage site. A popular tourist attraction, Nessebar charms holidaymakers with its narrow cobblestone streets, period wooden houses, courtyards, taverns and romantic atmosphere. The old town is famous for its medieval churches, with beautiful facades and well-preserved interiors that are remnants of the historic Slav and Greek Orthodox communities. Nessebar is an architectural and historic monument of Bulgarian culture and is one of the most popular tourist resorts along the southern coast. It offers a good selection of private accommodation, and the new town has modern facilities as well as larger hotels.

Shopping in Nessebar

Popular souvenirs from Nessebar include leather and textiles, wooden toys, and silver jewellery. The street markets in Nessebar's old quarter have a good variety of colourful mementos.

Dining in Nessebar

Nessebar has no shortage of restaurants, cafés and taverns for visitors to choose from on holiday. The most alluring restaurants are along Roussalka and Tsar Ivan Assen Streets on the southeastern tip of the peninsula. Fresh seafood and sea views are the order of the day!

Activities in Nessebar

Nessebar's nightlife is limited, but the mega-resort of Sunny Beach is just two miles (3km) away and offers an excellent nightlife for those seeking more entertainment than the quiet beach holiday can offer.

Things to be aware of in Nessebar

For modern amenities and a bigger variety of holiday accommodation it is necessary to stay in the new town on the mainland, which doesn't have the charm and atmosphere of the old quarter.



Koh Phi Phi


Minorca Destination Guide (98)

Koh Phi Phi is an extraordinary holiday destination. The twinPhi Phi islands, 25 miles (40km) east of phu*ket, areworld-renowned, particularly since the making of the Leonardo diCaprio film, The Beach. Phi Phi Leh, the smaller of the two islands,was the setting for this movie, and now draws scores of daytrippers from phu*ket, just a 45-minute boat ride away. The islandhas no accommodation and is accessible only by boat, but offerssensational snorkelling and trips to the Viking Cave and its wallpaintings.

Phi Phi Don, the larger island, has idyllic tropical beacheslining its shores and Ton Sai Bay, the main tourist centre on PhiPhi, may be a little overdeveloped for some visitors wanting arelaxed beach holiday. Although overrun by tourists, the islandsretain their spectacular quiet beauty.

Shopping in Koh Phi Phi

Koh Phi Phi's larger island of Phi Phi Don has plenty ofsouvenir shops, clothing stores and shops catering specifically totravellers' holiday needs. Local shops offer everything fromjewellery and clothes to sports equipment. There are alsomini-marts and a supermarket.

Dining in Koh Phi Phi

There is an abundance of dining possibilities on Phi Phi Don,the larger of the Koh Phi Phi islands, offering both local andinternational cuisine. Many restaurants are located on the beach,and there are also numerous food stalls selling pancakes and fruitshakes. Most restaurants are in Ton Sai, but each holiday resorthas its own restaurant. Pee Pee Bakery has good sandwiches andcheap Thai food. Seafood buffets near the pier are the best placeto find the fresh catch of the day, and Mama Resto is a popularoption on Phi Phi Island.

Activities in Koh Phi Phi

Despite its small size, the nightlife of Koh Phi Phi is prettylegendary, and after sunset the sleepy island of Phi Phi Don comesto life with a selection of activities. There are parties at mostbeach bars and clubs, and bars offer anything from reggae to jazzmusic. The Reggae Bar is a longstanding favourite, with late nightdancing, five different bars and pool tables. There are also fireshows on the beach, cabaret shows and Thai kickboxing competitionsfor variety.

Things to be aware of in Koh Phi Phi

There are no cars on Koh Phi Phi, so people with walkingdifficulties will find the hills and lack of transport trying.

Sao Miguel


Minorca Destination Guide (99)

São Miguel, largest in the Azores group, is a scenicallyspectacular holiday resort destination, with green pastures andforest-covered volcanic peaks. The island may be the largest, butit is still very small - just 40 miles (64km) long and 7.5 miles(12km) wide.

The São Miguel town of Ponta Delgada is the largest in thearchipelago, and features a historic centre with prettywhite-washed houses dating from the 17th and 18th centuries. Thereare numerous low-key holiday accommodation establishments and goodrestaurants. The island is famed for its delicious pineapples andintricate embroidery.

Shopping in Sao Miguel

São Miguel has a three-level shopping mall, Sol Mar, withseveral movie theatres in addition to shops. Popular São Miguelsouvenirs include edibles like local cheese and tea.

Dining in Sao Miguel

There are a number of good restaurants, centred mostly in thetowns of Ponta Delgada and Ribeira Grande. You best bet is to gofor local cuisine, which is beautifully prepared by most of therestaurants in this region.

Activities in Sao Miguel

The nightlife in São Miguel is low-key and café-based, but thereare a few lively bars in Ponta Delgada and Ribeira Grande that stayopen quite late. Most of the night hangouts are low keyestablishment, often serving up live music and a few pool tables tokeep guests entertained.

Things to be aware of in Sao Miguel

Avid partiers will find São Miguel's nightlife lacking.



Minorca Destination Guide (100)

Turkey's third largest city, Izmir is a busy port,commercial centre, and gateway to the Aegean Coast. Despite itssize and importance, it still retains enough holiday atmosphere tocause visitors to stay amongst the population of around threemillion.

Lively and cosmopolitan, Izmir is also scenic thanksto its palm-lined promenades lining the bay, backed by gracefulavenues with attractive horizontal terraces rising up the slopes ofthe surrounding mountains.

Visitors come to see the sights, haggle in thecolourful bazaar, and dine on delicious meals at the manywaterfront restaurants. Formerly known as Smyrna, Izmir is ancientand dates back to around 3,000 BC. But today it is thoroughlymodern having been almost obliterated by a fire in 1922 andsubsequently rebuilt.

There is some worthy sightseeing to be done in thecity, such as the 19th century clock tower, the 18th century KonakCami Mosque, and an archaeology museum. A must-see is the city'slandmark public elevator, linking Mithatpasa Street with the summitof the hill at Halil Rifat Pasa, from where there is a stunningview across the city and the bay. The best way to enjoy Izmir is abalmy evening stroll or horse-drawn carriage trip along itspromenade between Konak Meydan and Alsancak.

Shopping in Izmir

Like any modern city and holiday destination, Izmir has itsshare of shopping centres, and here the best stores are to be foundlining the Kordon Promenades in Alsancak, Karsiyaka, and CumhuriyetAvenue. Visitors, however, would do better to head for theatmospheric old district with its narrow streets and hiddendoorways.

There are bustling markets in Konak Square and Kemeralty. Thereis a larger mall called the Forum in nearby Bornova. Shopping hereis a fascinating experience, and travellers can buy anything fromantiques and dried figs (for which Izmir is famous), to finejewellery, hand-made shoes, and a variety of clothing.

Dining in Izmir

The holiday destination of Izmir is renowned for its manyseafood restaurants. However, all tastes are catered for in thiscity, which is well supplied with extremely affordable and goodeateries, particularly along the Kordon Boyu Promenade. The localspeciality is the delectable fish Cipura. It's so popular that itis farmed and served up in dozens of city restaurants. It is bestenjoyed grilled, with a salad of fresh greens and herbs andsprinkled with olive oil. Reputedly Izmir's top seafood restaurantis the Deniz, while for traditional Turkish, spiced up with bellydancing, head to Sini Sofrasi or Topcu'nun Yeri, a down-to-earthsidewalk cafe.

Activities in Izmir

Holidaymakers will find that the nightlife in Izmir can be ashectic or as sedate as they wish. Most of the after dark action forvisitors is centred on the Kordon Boyu, Passport Pier, andKarsiyaka, where nightclubs and bars stay open until the earlyhours. 1448 Sokak in Alsancak has a number of clubs, and is apopular area for gay nightlife. More cultural entertainment is onoffer too, such as performances of the Aegean PhilharmonicOrchestra. The city is particularly lively during the annualInternational Arts Festival, which takes place between June andJuly.

Things to be aware of in Izmir

Visitors should be aware that temperatures can be extreme in theheight of summer.



Minorca Destination Guide (101)

The Spanish holiday destination of Tarifa is ideally located onthe border of the Costa del Sol and Costa de la Luz, near theStrait of Gibraltar and a short ferry ride away from the exoticMoroccan city of Tangier. The popular beach resort town is famedfor being the windsurfing capital of Europe: Atlantic winds createideal conditions and kite surfing is also growing in popularityhere, especially on the beaches of Playa Valdevaqueros and PlayaLos Lances. Those who feel safer on land can try horseback riding,hiking, dolphin and whale watching, cycling, rock climbing and someof the region's best bird watching in Tarifa. The Moorish heritageof the area is evident in the preserved Castillo de Guzman andholidaymakers should visit the old part of the town to wander thenarrow streets, shop, and enjoy one of the many great tapasrestaurants. Don't expect the madness and mayhem of places likeTorremolinos, nor the 'chips with everything' style resorts; Tarifais a charming beach resort that offers authentic Spanish flavourand plenty of sunshine.

Shopping in Tarifa

When it's time for shopping in Tarifa there are many options tochoose from, but many of the tourist shops sell the same basicstock. The old town has a number of small boutiques and a multitudeof surf shops selling all the most popular brands. The old townalso has an indoor market where you can buy fresh produce and otherfood, including the catch of the day in the outdoor area. Tarifaalso hosts a market on Tuesday mornings, which stocks touristsouvenirs, artwork, handicrafts and ceramics. You'll find manyTarifa souvenirs echo the region's Moorish heritage, with Moroccanlamps, pillows, shoes, and linens all being popular gifts.

Dining in Tarifa

Eating out in Tarifa is an adventure in Andalusian food, as thecity has a mix of traditional restaurants, tapas bars, and cafes inaddition to more cosmopolitan options like Italian, Moroccan, andFrench eateries. For the most authentic experience, simply wanderthrough the old town and enjoy the local tapas and jerez (sherry).Cafe Azul, Cafe Mogador, Casa Juan Luis and La Trattoria are a fewof Tarifa's most recommended eateries for holiday visitors.

Activities in Tarifa

Tarifa's nightlife is constantly buzzing. The city's bars arebusy with the after-dinner crowd from 9am until 3am when they areforced to close by law. Popular options include Bar Almedina, whichis set into the historic city wall, and the stylish Cafe del MarTarifa. The clubs take over where the bars leave off, carrying onthe party until around 8am. These include the house venue Club NewRif, the historic La Ruina, and the stylish Carpe Diem. Tarifaattracts great live music as well, including Flamenco, samba, jazz,and its own particular brand of hip hop. Many of the hotel barshost live music performances.

Things to be aware of in Tarifa

Tarifa is a very windy holiday resort, perfect for kite surfingand windsurfing, but not always ideal for those looking forrelaxing days on the beach.



Minorca Destination Guide (102)

As the third largest city in Bulgaria, one of the country's most attractive towns, and a popular holiday destination, Varna is known as 'Bulgaria's Seaside Capital' and the 'Pearl of the Black Sea Coast'. The town is arranged in tiers along the curve of Varna Bay, and besides being a popular beach resort, it rivals the important cities of Sofia and Plovdiv in its wealth of museums, art galleries, historical buildings and cultural entertainment, and as such is a year-round holiday destination.

The 19th-century Cathedral of the Assumption of the Virgin is an impressive landmark, while the extensive ruins of the Roman Spa in the centre of town constitutes the largest ancient building in Bulgaria, dating back to the 2nd century AD. Varna is the main port for commercial and naval shipping and has a casual, cosmopolitan atmosphere with a Mediterranean charm created by the sunny climate, calm sea, beach promenades and red-tiled roofs, popular with holidaymakers.

Varna is the gateway to the nearby beach resorts, including Albena and the mega-resort of Golden Sands, and numerous scenic spots along the coast are within easy reach, such as the nature reserve at Kamchia and the crumbling rock formations and dramatic cliffs along the Balchik coast.

Shopping in Varna

Shopping in Varna is focused on the massive Varna Shopping Mall, which is one of the largest in Bulgaria. Its shops offer everything from souvenirs and beachwear to music and electronics. There are also shopping promenades located in Bul. Slivnitsa and its surrounding area.

Dining in Varna

Eating out in Varna includes a huge selection of informal cafes and good restaurants to choose from. You can enjoy mouth-watering seafood with your toes in the sand, sample traditional Bulgarian food, or try some Bulgarian wine at one of the upmarket restaurants. Those on a budget will find plentiful wallet-friendly options.

Activities in Varna

Like most holiday beach destinations, this Bulgarian resort town has a number of nightclubs and bars along the sand and in the city centre, contributing to a vibrant nightlife. Varna is a city and has all the amenities and entertainments one would expect.

Things to be aware of in Varna

Many of the buildings in Varna are uninspired Socialist-era architecture and look slightly run-down, and the city is cut off from the beach by a large garden.



Minorca Destination Guide (103)

The charming hill town of Hisaronu, a short distanceinland from Turkey's Mediterranean coast, has boomed into a popularholiday resort. Bristling with hotels, bars, restaurants, shops,and tour operators, it is ideally situated for those intent onexploring the region and enjoying an active holiday.

Hisaronu is centrally located on the Turquoise Coast,within a short dolmus(local taxi) ride from the busy centre of Fethiye,the beautiful seaside resort of Oludeniz with its blue lagoon andcrescent beach, and numerous sites of interest.

The town of Hisaronu itself is a bit of a hodgepodgeof buildings, but the surrounding area offers a ruggedly beautifullandscape covered in pine forest, ideal for holidaymakers keen onwalking, and a coast filled with secluded bays and coves accessedthrough winding forest paths. Being set at high altitude the townalso has the advantage of being cooler and less humid than thecoast, a pleasant refuge to retreat to after a day in the summersun.

Shopping in Hisaronu

The main street of Hisaronu is well supplied with a variety ofstores selling everything holidaymakers look for in Turkey,including fake designer wear, carpets, and leather goods. Hagglingis expected and part of the shopping experience, and there is abeachfront minimarket that offers a number of bargains.

Dining in Hisaronu

Hisaronu has a veritable smorgasbord of restaurants to cater forthe tastes of international tourists, including traditionalEnglish, sizzling pizzas, and spicy Mexican. Most are along themain street, including favourites such as the Shine IndianRestaurant and the Dragonara Chinese Restaurant. For traditionalTurkish delights the Olive Tree is hard to beat, while Malibuoffers a mixture of English and Turkish cuisine. Travellersshouldn't overlook the street vendors and their deliciouskebabs.

Activities in Hisaronu

The nightlife of Hisaronu on the Turquoise Coast is legendary,its clubs and pubs rocking until the early hours during the summerseason. Holidaymakers will find everything from Turkish-themednights to British soccer, 60s discos, or full-on nightclubs. Mostclubs are centred round the main street of town.

Things to be aware of in Hisaronu

During the summer months the beaches can be a little crowded soit's best to secure a spot early.



Minorca Destination Guide (104)

A modern ski resort in the heart of the Rhodope Mountains, at an altitude of 5,413ft (1,650m), Pamporovo is a popular ski holiday destination with a sunny climate and powdery snow. The town provides a variety of excellent ski runs covering all degrees of difficulty, most of them starting from the Snejanka peak above the resort. With plenty of easy slopes, the resort is ideal for beginners and families, and the ski school is considered one of the best in Europe with highly qualified English-speaking instructors. The unique Mediterranean climate is thought to be extremely healthy and provides excellent conditions for climatic therapy and health tourism all year round, and there are a variety of excellent spas within the resort. Off the slopes there are loads of opportunities for entertainment and plenty of interesting tourist attractions. The Rhodope Mountains have long been the source of legends and stories, including the mythical singer Orpheus, and the region is full of rich folk traditions and culture. Pamporovo is a two and a half hour transfer from Sofia airport.

Shopping in Pamporovo

The main shopping centre in Pamporovo, containing mostly boutiques, souvenir shops and sports gear outlets, is attached to the Hotel Perelik and should amply satisfy the shopping urges of holidaymakers. There is also a shopping centre at Murgavets Hotel. Many stores sell traditional Bulgarian souvenirs, and there are a variety of shops that stock ski equipment.

Dining in Pamporovo

Pamporovo restaurants serve a wide variety of cuisine, but most holidaymakers favour the local folk taverns like the Chevermeto, where whole sheep are roasted over open fires and dancers in traditional costumes provide colourful entertainment. Lively pubs selling international staples like steak and pizza are numerous, and those looking for more upmarket dining will find a few restaurant options worthy of the fine Bulgarian wine.

Activities in Pamporovo

The nightlife in Pamporovo is lively and incredibly cheap, with plenty of options to choose from, whether you're the kind of holidaymaker who prefers sipping wine in a quiet bar, heading to one of the many pubs, or hitting the town until the early hours. Many of the most popular entertainment venues are attached to the big hotels.

Things to be aware of in Pamporovo

This is not a ski resort for experienced skiers, while there is the odd black slope, most of the skiing is gentle and unchallenging. There are plenty of pubs offering cheap booze and a good atmosphere in Pamporovo, but the après ski is not as lively as in other Bulgarian resorts.

Skiing in Pamporovo

Although Pamporovo offers skiing for all levels of experience, its nursery slopes are particularly good and beginners soon flourish. There are more than 100 well-qualified instructors available fluent in a variety of languages at the ski school centre. All the main runs start from the peak of the Snejanka at the TV tower. The most difficult ski piste is 'The Wall', a black run which offers an exciting challenge. Some great off-piste skiing and snowboarding is also on offer, but this is not really a destination for advanced skiers. Snow conditions usually excellent throughout the season.


Fernie Alpine Resort


Minorca Destination Guide (105)

Fernie Alpine Resort, in the heart of theCanadian Rockies, is one of the largest ski resorts in the countryand highly popular with holidaymakers. Spread along the LizardRange, Fernie boasts excellent powder, five bowls, picture perfectscenery and some extremely challenging skiing.

Its steep terrain has garnered a seriousreputation and a certain mystique. It's the kind of resort thatdie-hard snowsport fans seek out to set their pulses racing. Tuckedaway as it is, over three hours from Calgary, perhaps the best partof Fernie is the lack of crowds with regulars trying to reserve itsmagic for themselves.

Skiers and snowboarders can enjoy uncrowdedopen runs and more than 2,500 acres (1,011ha) of skiable terrain.Those taking a break from the slopes can explore the picturesquetown of Fernie, three miles (5km) from the resort, or indulge insome fireside drinks and a post-mortem of the day's runs.

Shopping in Fernie Alpine Resort

The resort of Fernie is by no means a celebrated shoppingdestination, but there are plenty of stores where holiday visitorscan enjoy browsing (particularly on 2nd Avenue in downtown),including food, alpine sport stores, local arts, crafts andglassware shops, and jewellery and clothing stores.

Dining in Fernie Alpine Resort

Although relatively small and out of the way, there are plentyof dining options for holidaymakers to enjoy on and off themountain, with Indian, Thai, Japanese, Mexican, and Italian cuisineto supplement the more traditional Canadian fare. There are bothupmarket and more casual eateries on offer.

Activities in Fernie Alpine Resort

Fernie has a laidback, relatively quiet nightlife, so it's notfor holidaymakers looking for a huge off-slope party. The GrizzlyBar is perhaps Fernie's most popular off-the-slopes hangout andattracts quite the crowd. Hosting thirsty skiers since 1962,visitors enjoy live music and dancing on weekends. There are someother venues selling co*cktails and offering live music for visitorswho are in search of some evening drinks and entertainment.

Things to be aware of in Fernie Alpine Resort

The skiing at Fernie is mostly aimed at advanced andintermediate levels, and can be a serious challenge for beginners.Those looking for serious nightlife, shopping, and extensiveaprès-ski activities will be disappointed.

Skiing in Fernie Alpine Resort

Fernie offers some incredible snow conditions and can boast upto 29 feet (9m) of magical powder each year, with some of thesteepest inbound terrain around. There is plenty of variety andterrain, although the resort is perhaps rather challenging forbeginners.

A good idea is to take advantage of the free mountain tour toget orientated, as well as learning about potential avalanchezones. There is excellent snowboarding on offer too. Along with ahalf pipe and a terrain park, there is awesome natural terrain toexplore. There are also plenty of ski schools for beginners, 10lifts, and a vertical drop of 2,816 feet (858m).



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The beautiful town of Knysna is clustered around a vast tidal lagoon which opens to the sea through a narrow inlet guarded by two sandstone cliffs known as 'The Heads'. Arguably the most popular holiday hub of the Garden Route, Knysna draws more visitors than it can cope with, particularly during the peak summer holiday season.

The town has an interesting history, having started as a point of export for timber cut from the surrounding dense forests (which have been badly denuded as a result). In the early 19th century, Knysna was almost solely owned by the enigmatic character George Rex, who was believed to be the illegitimate son of King George III of England. Rex fathered 13 children and is a legend in the Knysna area.

The town features some quaint Victorian houses, a modern commercial waterfront development, a lovely sandy beach at Leisure Isle on the east side of the lagoon, and some good shopping for local arts and crafts in the crowded town centre. There are some lovely scenic drives and walking trails through the remaining indigenous forests in the area, and sampling Knysna oysters and locally-brewed Mitchell's beer while on holiday here is highly recommended. The best time to visit Knysna is during its annual Oyster Festival, held every July, which includes live music, food, sporting events, and of course oysters!

Shopping in Knysna

Knysna's three shopping malls have a variety of shops, and there are numerous local art, craft and curio shops in and around the town centre.

Dining in Knysna

In and around Knysna one will find a selection of fine restaurants, seafood taverns, pubs, coffee shops and eateries. The waterfront has a variety of restaurants, serving food like oysters and seafood as well as traditional South African fare. There are fine dining options and international fare includes Mexican, Italian, Moroccan and Asian.

Activities in Knysna

As evidenced by its popular food and music festivals, Knysna is an entertainment hub on the Garden Route and boasts a vibrant nightlife. This picturesque small town is home to more than 50 restaurants and pubs. There are also a handful of vibey dance clubs and live music venues. December and January is peak season in Knysna, with crowds of night-time revellers descending from along the coast; in the winter off-season the town is significantly quieter.

Things to be aware of in Knysna

In the peak summer holiday season, Knysna gets very crowded and accommodation is difficult to find. The national highway N2 passes through the centre of town and traffic jams are common.

Pas de la Casa


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The tiny mountain principality of Andorra sits atop the Pyreneesbetween France and Spain. In the last decade or so, it has become aworld favourite for winter sports enthusiasts, helped along by itsgood snow, clear sunny weather and unreal natural beauty. Anotherplus is that the tiny country's mountain resorts are just a shorthop away from Barcelona International Airport, and close to theFrench border. The pick of Andorra's ski resorts is Pas de laCasa.

Set at an altitude of 6726 feet (2050m), this lively resort townis linked to the nearby Soldeu resort and the wider Grandvalira skiarea, providing miles of pistes suited to all levels of skiers andsnowboarders. With its high altitude and good snow makingfacilities, snow conditions here are excellent and the resortrarely closes before April.

Pas de la Casa, or 'Pas' as it is fondly known by loyalregulars, can hardly be described as picturesque, consisting mainlyof modern, unattractive box-like apartment blocks and hotels. Butall the accommodation and facilities are conveniently situated nearthe slopes and provide all the trappings necessary for anentertaining winter holiday at affordable prices.

Shopping in Pas de la Casa

Pas de la Casa, like the rest of Andorra, stands out as one ofthe world's best duty-free shopping enclaves, its shopping precincta gold mine of holiday bargains. There are, of course, sports shopsfor snow gear, but shoppers here also stock up on electronic goods,perfumes and cosmetics, designer clothing, and car and motorbikeaccessories, from tyres to leathers.

Dining in Pas de la Casa

With dozens of restaurants in and around Pas de la Casa, no oneworking up an appetite on the slopes need go hungry. Local cuisineis largely Spanish (with paella as a favourite) but there areplenty of French influences on the local menus. Most restaurantsare family-run, with El Marselles being one of the favourites.There are some excellent mountain restaurants too, and many morecafes and restaurants in town offer everything from quick snacks togourmet delights.

Activities in Pas de la Casa

Pas de la Casa stands out as the liveliest ski resort inAndorra, keeping the young crowd partying throughout the night withthrobbing music and cheap drinks. Local bars can often extend happyhour to extremes.

Things to be aware of in Pas de la Casa

The village is not much to look at and can become quite rowdy inthe evenings, and at weekends it's busy with traffic and weekendcrowds from France. Pas de la Casa is not the ideal destination fora family holiday with young children, and advanced skiers will findmore interesting skiing in the Alpine resorts.

Skiing in Pas de la Casa

Skiing and boarding in Pas de la Casa caters for all standards.With its good ski schools and gentle slopes, the resort isparticularly suited to beginners and intermediate skiers. There issome good off-piste skiing above Grau Roig, but advanced skierswill find few challenging on-piste slopes. The resort is popularwith snow boarders.

Cortina d Ampezzo


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Regarded as one of the most beautifulholiday resorts in the world, Cortina overlooks the spectacularDolomites region of the Italian Alps. It is considered Italy's mostfashionable ski resort and most of the visitors are Italians,particularly weekenders from Milan and Venice visiting their secondhomes.

Many rarely make it to the slopes as they'dprefer to enjoy the restaurants and shops, and to wander throughthe streets in their finery, partaking in the passeggiata, which isthe traditional Italian early-evening stroll. This leaves theslopes wonderfully empty for those who come to ski. Cortina is atwo-hour drive from Venice or Innsbruck.

Shopping in Cortina d Ampezzo

Cortina offers some of the best and mostupmarket shopping of any European holiday ski resort through anumber of clothing boutiques and plenty of spots selling ski andsnowboarding equipment, which during summer focus on mountainbiking needs. Shopping is one of the perks of a holiday in Cortina,fuelling the resort's fashionable reputation.

Dining in Cortina d Ampezzo

Cortina is all about traditional Italian fare and holidaymakerscan enjoy delightful, cosy restaurants offering good times andgreat views. Must-eat local dishes include the classic casunziei(beet-filled pasta envelopes sprinkled with poppy seeds) andcanederli (bread dumplings). Both fine dining and more casualoptions are available. Eating out in Cortina tends to be expensive,but the quality of food is generally high.

Activities in Cortina d Ampezzo

Cortina is easily as popular for its amazing nightlife as it isfor its skiing. There are glamorous nightclubs and bars, which seethe fashion brands and furs on parade, as well as some more basicand unpretentious apres-ski venues. However, the nightlife mostlyrevolves around classy wine bars instead of the karaoke venuesnormally found at mainstream resorts.

Things to be aware of in Cortina d Ampezzo

Cortina can get crowded with day visitors during peak periodsand is quite expensive as Italian resorts go. Snow reliability canvary.

Skiing in Cortina d Ampezzo

There is skiing for all standards atCortina, with some fantastic groomed runs for beginners andintermediates, and a scattering of challenging slopes for experts.The skiing is fragmented, with three separate unlinked ski areas.The Faloria-Cristallo ski area is closest to the town, and can beaccessed via cable car rather than bus. However, at just 1225m thisis not a ski-in, ski-out resort. As in much of the Dolomites, thesnowfall is not that reliable, but the resort has good snow-makingfacilities and it's almost guaranteed that there will be snow onthe pistes.

Although Cortina's popularity means thetown can become busy, the slopes are generally surprisinglyuncrowded and, when it does snow, there's less competition forvirgin powder than in other well-known resorts. The Hidden Valley,accessed from the Lagazuoi cable car, is one of the world's mostbeautiful ski runs. While not particularly challenging, it windsdown the mountain through stunning scenery to the river valleyabove the hamlet of Armentarola.



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At the southern tip of the Rocky Mountains, tucked into a canyonringed by the soaring peaks of the San Juan Mountains, lies thetiny historic mining town and holiday destination of Telluride,which, twinned with its modern purpose-built 'alter-ego', MountainVillage, perched 9,500 feet (2,895m) up the mountain-side, formsone of America's most spectacular ski resorts.

Telluride sports a dozen or so blocks of quaint Victorian homesand clapboard storefronts, around a pedestrianised core. A uniquefeature of the twinned towns is the three-stage gondola system,which provides the only access to high altitude Mountain Village.Visitors take the swift, scenic and free ride to the elegant,contemporary resort town, marvelling at the panoramic views of someof Colorado's most magnificent mountain peaks. While Tellurideprovides the picturesque historic atmosphere, Mountain Village,founded in 1987, provides modern recreational and accommodationoptions for discerning guests, with luxury hotels and condominiums,sophisticated boutiques, eclectic restaurants, a championship golfcourse, conference centre and world-class spas. The attractive,upmarket modern facilities and stunning setting have ensured thatTelluride/Mountain Village is not just a winter sports destinationwith eminently attractive ski slopes, but popular all year round asa mountain holiday destination. It is easy to see why the UteIndians in days of yore cherished this valley and its guardianpeaks as sacred territory.

Shopping in Telluride

For those who regard shopping as an essential part of a funholiday, Telluride and Mountain Village have great pleasure instore. The element of surprise is what makes shopping in thepedestrianised town centres so enjoyable, because browsing amongthe numerous speciality shops and one-of-a-kind boutiques will turnup some interesting and unique buys. The resort is largely devoidof the regular chain retailers, outlet stores and strip malls.Instead it is packed with galleries of original art and sculpture,gift and jewellery stores sporting hidden treasures, antiquestores, trendy clothing boutiques, and of course a host of sportsshops with the latest gear and equipment.

Dining in Telluride

You name it, you can eat it while on holiday in Telluride, fromintimate supreme cuisine establishments to buzzing family diners orcosy corner coffee shops. Recommendations are difficult with such aspread of excellence to choose from but, in Telluride town, firstfor formal dining is 221 South Oak, mere steps from the gondolastation, with a menu that changes daily and a deserved reputationfor fine food and wine. There are plenty of family-friendly optionsserving up pizza, burgers and other favourites too. Up in MountainVillage the fare is enhanced by the views from mostrestaurants.

Activities in Telluride

Aprs-ski in Telluride tends away from wild partying, but thisdoes not mean the nightlife is dull. The West End Bistro at TheHotel Telluride is one of the more popular options; it's whereskiers sip their drinks to the tune of background music, ensconcedin leather chairs before a roaring fire.

Things to be aware of in Telluride

The terrain can be quite challenging and timid skiers andbeginners will struggle with some of the slopes.

Skiing in Telluride

The Telluride ski area offers 1,700 acres of lift-servedterrain, 24 percent of which is perfect for beginners, the restequally divided to suit intermediate and advanced skiers. Beginnerssoon gain confidence on the Prospect Bowl's long, gentle runs,which is why the resort is renowned as being perfect for novices.Intermediates can stroke their ego too, rock 'n rolling down runssuch as Sandia, Magnolia and Stella that will make them feel likeexperts. Telluride's signature run is named See Forever, which iswhat happens as skiers glide down the two miles (3km) ofmountainside. Awesome views are the order of the day too for theexperts, who can take on daring snow highways such as The Plunge,or opt for a choice of double-diamond backcountry experiences.

St Moritz


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St Moritz is the original Swiss winter holiday resort, anextravagantly fashionable mountain resort world-famous for itsskiing, fantastic scenery, the curative waters of its Health Spaand the social life. Although not the classic image of a Swissmountain resort, the setting and spectacular scenery more thanmakes up for St Moritz' lack of charm.

Consisting of two villages, St Moritz-Bad on the lake and StMoritz-Dorf on the hillside above, its romantic setting in thewildly beautiful corner of the southeastern Swiss Alps is acombination of forests, mountain and lake that has twice hosted theWinter Olympics. A St Moritz holiday guarantees some of the mostreliable and abundant winter snowfall in the country, and the milesof downhill runs offer some of the finest intermediate skiinganywhere.

The St Moritz area also encompasses a network of cross-countryski trails, legendary toboggan and bobsled courses, and an Olympicski-jump. The spa section of this exclusive and exciting town, StMoritz-Bad, offers the long-time tradition of mineral baths, mudbaths and spa therapies for a relaxing spa holiday. The nightlifeon a St Moritz holiday is renowned as the most energetic andexpensive of all the alpine ski resorts.

Shopping in St Moritz

With its reputation for style and elegance, St Moritz inevitablydraws the elite of the world to its winter sports season and catersfor them in its shops as well. Hundreds of designer boutiques arecrammed into the resort leaving shoppers on a St Moritz holidayoverwhelmed by the number of choices representing internationalbrands and trends. Even the less well-heeled can indulge inpleasure simply by window-shopping.

Dining in St Moritz

In line with its promotional tag as being 'on top of the world',St Moritz does not lack for gourmet fare. A variety of deliciousinternational cuisine is on offer in elegant formal restaurants,romantic rustic rendezvous, chic cafes and snow bars. Even theseveral pizzerias here are elegant, wood-panelled edifices withupholstered chairs, where the traditional base and toppings becomea work of gastronomic art. Elegant fare can be had at populareateries such as Talvo and White Marmite.

Activities in St Moritz

A refined new casino is the latest addition to St Moritz'renowned nightlife and entertainment scene, which encompasses closeon 30 other nightspots ranging from hot nightclubs to cosy hotelbars, and discos to demure cigar bars. Bobby's Pub is a popularEnglish-style bar, and the posh Badrutt's Palace Hotel offers adisco for those bent on dancing.

Things to be aware of in St Moritz

St Moritz contains some hideous block buildings and lacks theclassic Swiss 'chocolate box' charm, especially during the summer.There are no proper beginner slopes at resort level and there arevery few blue (easy) runs in the area. Spread over several unlinkedmountains, the ski terrain is vast and transport is needed betweenmost areas. The holiday resort is exclusive and very pricey.

Skiing in St Moritz

The St Moritz area has five major holiday resorts in theimmediate vicinity, which can all be accessed by a general skipass. Due to the altitude of between 5,906ft and 10,827ft (1,800mto 3,300m) the area is fairly snow sure, but there are alsoextensive snowmaking facilities available. St Moritz is ideal forintermediate skiers and snowboarders, as about 70 percent of theterrain is suited to the intermediate level.

Each of the four larger mountains also has challenging terrainfor advanced skiers, a favourite being the famousDiavolezza-Morteratsch Glacier and the long steep runs from thesummits of Lagalb and Diavolezza. The Corviglia-Piz Nair ski areais the most convenient and can be accessed by foot from most hotelsin St Moritz.

Piz Nair is the highest skiable peak in the area at 10,030ft(3,057m) and is suited to more advanced skiers and snowboarders,while Corviglia has many broad intermediate runs. Corviglia is alsothe most versatile area for all abilities with slopes high up forbeginners. The St Moritz Ski School for skiers and boarders isranked as one of the top in the world, and has highly trainedinstructors for all levels.



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Located on the north coast of Corfu, Sidari is known for itslong, sandy beaches, lively tavernas, bars and nightlife. Manyholidaymakers stop at the village's small, romantic beach covecalled Canal D'Amour, where locals say bathers will find love.

Shopping in Sidari

Visitors will find plenty of shopping along the main strip,where there are many souvenir shops selling quality merchandise.The island is noted for its gold and silver jewellery, leathergoods, painted ceramics and olive-wood items.

Dining in Sidari

Sidari has many restaurants offering anything from authenticGreek fare to Western staples. Many of the most popular restaurantsare on the beachfront.

Activities in Sidari

Sidari has a range of bars and nightclubs. Visitors can expectlots of action, particularly during the peak tourist season.

Things to be aware of in Sidari

Sidari's main strip can become quite noisy due to bars and clubsclosing late. The area's lack of cultural and historicalattractions puts many travellers off.



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Nestled on a high plateau, the charming town of Zermatt sits atthe foot of the highest and most photographed peak in Switzerland,the Matterhorn (14,692ft or 4,478m). The resort is a picturesque,if rather sprawling, old mountain village of Swiss-stylechalets.

The village of Zermatt can only be reached via a spectacular cograilway from the valley below. Its network of super-efficient cablecars, gondolas and cog railways is one of the best in the country,and it connects to three separate ski areas and to altitudes ofover 12,000ft (3,600m). Twenty-one of the 36 lifts also operateduring the summer to cater for the busy hiking and climbingseason.

There are also plenty of non-skiing holiday activities inZermatt, which include superb views, some of the best mountainrestaurants worldwide, and a raucous nightlife to keep everyoneentertained. The Matterhorn Museum commemorates the tragic firstascent of the Matterhorn in 1865 and the many lives claimed by 'thekiller mountain', as well as telling the story of Zermatt.

Shopping in Zermatt

Switzerland is renowned for high-quality products, and most ofthem are on offer in the dozens of classy shops that line the mainstreet of Zermatt. Options include fine Swiss watches, classicSwiss army knives, and T-Shirts bearing an image of the mightyMatterhorn; cuckoo clocks and fluffy toy animals abound, as well,and there is enough jewellery to stock a treasury. Being a ski andclimbing resort, Zermatt also boasts several stores offering thelatest in equipment and outfits, and there are also numerousdesigner clothing boutiques.

Dining in Zermatt

The holiday hub of Zermatt excels particularly in the area offine dining, but those who prefer something a little more basic canalso find McDonalds in the Main Street. The most charming diningexperiences are offered at the mountain restaurants in littlevillages (such as Sunnegga, Rothorn and Findeln) surrounding thetown, where quaint chalets have been turned into gourmet kingdoms,and view sites topped with terraces offer hearty snacks and warmingdrinks. The mountain restaurants specialise in luncheons, andreservations are advisable.

In Zermatt itself there are plenty of restaurants throughout thetown. Regarded as one of the best is the Rotisserie La Broche inthe Zermatterhof, and its prices match its elegant and flawlessreputation. Part of the Zermatt experience is to enjoy atraditional Swiss fondue (either meat or cheese). The StockhornGrill Room is highly recommended for fondue, as is the Cafe Du Pontset at the south end of the main street. Homegrown lamb is anotherlocal speciality, prepared in a variety of delicious ways.

Activities in Zermatt

The evening fun begins when skiers are wending their way downthe slopes heading home, stopping off to warm up with schnapps or amug of hot spiced wine in one of the cosy mountain stubli. InZermatt itself, restaurants tend not to open too early, so beforedinner drinks are called for at one of the multitude of bars hiddenaway in the village alleys, or the firelit pubs in the hotels. Todance off the effects of dinner later there are discos aplenty. Thehottest spot in town is the Post Hotel, which has a disco and ajazz bar.

Skiing in Zermatt

Abundant snowfall, high altitudes and the glacier area of theKlein Matterhorn allow Zermatt to offer some of the finest skiingin Europe, and glacier skiing can be enjoyed well into the summer.The high and extensive terrain stretches across three individualmountains and mainly caters for intermediate and experiencedskiers. The resort is best known for its excellent powder skiing,although off-piste areas and unofficial runs should only beexplored with a guide, due to sudden drop-offs and avalanche risks.Intermediate skiers have a wide range of slopes to enjoy around theZermatt-Matterhorn Ski Area and it is possible to ski across allthree mountains in a day. Klein Matterhorn is reached by thehighest aerial cable car in Europe, which provides access to asnowboard half pipe and one of the longest ski runs in Europe, anexhilarating slope with breathtaking views that drops all the waydown to the village.

Jackson Hole Mountain Resort


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Known locally as 'The Big One', Jackson Hole Mountain Resort is a popular holiday destination famous for its steep terrain, deep powder and acres of backcountry that provides ideal conditions and challenges for top skiers and snowboarders from around the world. More than 1,012 hectares (2,500 acres) are spread over Après Vous and Rendezvous Mountains and claim to offer holidaymakers one of the best ski and snowboard experiences on earth, with the highest elevation on Rendezvous Mountain at 10,450ft (3,185m). Jackson Hole Mountain Resort is also the gateway to Yellowstone and Teton National Parks. Situated at the base of the mountain is the Swiss-style Teton Village, which is just 15 minutes from the town of Jackson.

Shopping in Jackson Hole Mountain Resort

The square in Downtown Jackson is where holiday visitors should head for any kind of serious shopping atmosphere. There are no malls, but surrounding the square are a variety of shops from fine art and hat shops to a range of speciality shops. Those looking for recreational equipment and outdoor gear will be in their element among the skiing, snowboarding, climbing and hiking shops both in Jackson and Teton Village. Holidaymakers in Jackson Hole will enjoy browsing through everything from elk antler chandeliers and cowboy boots to Oriental rugs and American Indian craft stores.

Dining in Jackson Hole Mountain Resort

On-mountain restaurants offer breakfasts and lunches for hungry skiers and snowboarders; Casper Restaurant offers the largest variety of food and has some of the best fare on the mountain, as well as superb views over the valley. For a winter dining experience with a difference, the Solitude Cabin Dinner Sleigh Ride offers a horse-drawn sleigh ride along an alpine trail at Teton Village and a four-course meal at Solitude Cabin. The valley offers many restaurants ranging from fine dining to BBQ cookouts. The Snake River Brewing Company in Jackson Hole has an excellent and affordable menu as well as internationally acclaimed microbrews, while the Mangy Moose Restaurant provides a fun and family friendly, western experience with good food and fine wine.

Activities in Jackson Hole Mountain Resort

The number one après ski establishment is the Mangy Moose Saloon in Teton Village, with live entertainment for holidaymakers to enjoy, as well as good food. Another favourite spot to kick off the evening is at the Snake River Brewing Company with excellent microbrews. There are plenty of bars, saloons and cowboy cafes in the valley to provide a place to drink, meet friends, dance or play a game of pool.

Things to be aware of in Jackson Hole Mountain Resort

Families are not well catered for as the skiing and snowboarding is best suited to experts and there are limited beginner and intermediate trails.

Skiing in Jackson Hole Mountain Resort

With a vertical drop of more than 4,000 feet (1,220m), Jackson Hole Mountain Resort is better known for its challenging terrain best suited to expert skiers and snowboarders. The steep, demanding topography on Rendezvous Mountain is deservedly famous for its chutes, couloirs, bowls and glades, and can only be reached by two 63-passenger Aerial Tram cars. Thousands of acres of backcountry skiing are also available. Après Vous Mountain is the intermediate mountain with 2,100 vertical feet (640m) of groomed runs and open bowls offering exciting skiing on more friendly slopes, and also has gentle beginner slopes at its base. The Mountain Sports School has private and group ski or snowboard lessons, children's programmes and alpine and backcountry guides.



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A popular port of call and destination for cruise passengers, the Mexican resort of Ixtapa is set on one of the Pacific coastline's most spectacular bays and is justly renowned for its beautiful beaches. It's located just three miles (5km) from the municipal seat of Zihuatanejo. Ixtapa was constructed in the 1970s on a coconut plantation and mangrove estuary and in recent years has given way to high-rise hotels and luxury villas, making it one of Mexico's most modern resorts with an energy and atmosphere that is reminiscent of Acapulco's earlier years. In fact, Ixtapa is only 152 miles (245km) northwest of Acapulco, so the attractions of that famous resort hub are accessible on daytrips and long excursions.

Ixtapa is home to the all-inclusive luxury resorts, international restaurants, and upscale shopping most people associate with Mexican beach holidays. The neighbouring town of Zihuatanejo has a very different character, and has become known as a quaint backpackers' hotspot with picturesque winding streets, lots of art galleries and folk appeal, small boutique hotels, and traditional seafood restaurants. The proximity of this more bohemian beach hangout offers visitors a change of scene and mood and more options for dining and accommodation.

With breathtaking views, sugary white beaches, offshore tropical islands, two world-class golf courses, exciting scuba diving and snorkelling opportunities, mouth-watering restaurants, and a pulsating nightlife, Ixtapa is fast becoming a popular choice for holidaymakers looking for the perfect beach holiday in Mexico.

Shopping in Ixtapa

There is a good selection of shops available throughout Ixtapa, from boutiques and famous brand and designer names and jewellery stores to specialist shops and craft markets selling local wares. Ixtapa Boulevard is the place to go for shopping centres and stores, as well as the artisan market where popular buys include huaraches(handmade leather sandals), wooden sculptures, art, jewellery, furnishings, beachwear, sarongs and traditional masks. Those looking for the quintessential Mexican souvenir need look no further than Tequila Por Favor,Zihuatanejo's first liquor store, which offers an amazing variety of tequila, fine spirits, and Cuban and Mexican cigars.

Dining in Ixtapa

With some of the most picturesque and romantic beach-side settings, those looking for a night of wining and dining will find there is no shortage of quality restaurants and eateries in Ixtapa. For some of the best seafood around, try 4 Hermanos, and for bit of spice, look no further than Deborah's Chili Beans on Ixtapa Boulevard. For a more familiar dinner, head to Porto di Mare for a bit of Italian fare.

Activities in Ixtapa

The nightlife in Ixtapa is second to none with a good selection of restaurants, bars, clubs and discos to keep you partying into the early hours. Sip a co*cktail under the tropical overhang at La Playa Bar in the heart of Zihuatanejo. Head for the world renowned restaurant-cum-disco on Ixtapa's beach, Carlos 'n' Charlie's, to enjoy some of the finest BBQ ribs and dancing. Or head to Bandido's for live music from Wednesday through Saturday. Senor Frog's and Christine on Ixtapa Boulevard see the DJs spin a mix of pop and disco to keep the party going.

Things to be aware of in Ixtapa

There are a lot of peddlers and hawkers along the beach in Ixtapa which can become a nuisance for travellers.


Puerto del Carmen


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Set beneath a range of steep hills on the southeastern coast ofLanzarote, Puerto del Carmen is one of the island's major holidayresorts and is very popular. The resort's main feature is aspectacular two-mile (3km) golden beach, which is backed by themain road, The Strip, where shops, bars and restaurants of everyvariety can be found. The Old Town retains some of its old-worldcharm but for the most part the resort of Puerto del Carmen is asprawling holiday complex offering entertainment for all ages. Itis the centre of Lanzarote's nightlife and boasts the highestconcentration of bars and nightclubs of all the resorts on theisland, making it the destination of choice for those wanting toparty. Puerto del Carmen is within easy distance of all theisland's key attractions, making excursions easy to arrange.

Shopping in Puerto del Carmen

Puerto del Carmen is stuffed with shops of all kinds, fromduty-free electrical stores and stalls along The Strip targetingholidaymakers, to the excellent clothes shops and boutiques in theOld Town. The Sunday Market in Teguise is worth a visit: as well asthe usual tourist tat and holiday souvenirs visitors will find avariety of locally produced goods from pottery to tablecloths.Puerto del Carmen is perhaps the best Lanzarote resort forshopping.

Dining in Puerto del Carmen

There are hundreds of restaurants to suit all holidaymakers'tastes and wallets in Puerto del Carmen, the most popular includingLa Bottega Della Pasta, Casa Bodeco's, Bodega, and Chiquito. Mostrestaurants are on The Strip, serving everything from local cuisineto fast food, as well as Chinese, Mexican and Indian food. Thereare many fine restaurants near the harbour in the Old Town. Thosewanting to get out of Puerto del Carmen for the evening can take ataxi to the old capital, Teguise. It has a lovely atmosphere in theevening and a few good restaurants.

Activities in Puerto del Carmen

Puerto del Carmen is the main nightspot on the island and itspopulation swells most evenings as tourists from other holidayresorts come to enjoy its bars and clubs. There are loads of goodEnglish, Irish and Scottish bars in the New Town along The Strip.The Centre Atlantico has a number of co*cktail bars and can be agood spot to start the evening. The Hippodrome is also here butmore serious clubbers may prefer Caesars. There are also severallive music venues and karaoke bars, while the Star Bar providesgreat family entertainment.

Things to be aware of in Puerto del Carmen

Whilst water is safe for cleaning teeth and washing food, it isvery high in mineral content and can cause bad stomachs. Bottledwater should be used for drinking. There are lots of people tryingto sell tourists everything from trinkets to timeshare apartments;if you are not interested avoid getting into a conversation.



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Paguera has been a favoured Mallorcan tourist resort since the1960s and is immensely popular with European visitors, particularlyfrom Germany. Although not as frenetic as nearby Magalluf and PalmaNova, and slightly more upmarket, it is still a noisy and bustlingresort, not one to visit if seeking peace and tranquillity. Paguerais situated on the southwest coast of the island and boasts threeprincipal beaches that are popular with holidaymakers (PlayaPalmira, Playa Tora and Playa La Romana) and are linked by apedestrian promenade. This Spanish resort town offers a number ofactivities to enjoy during the day, as well as a lively nightlife,although many choose to simply enjoy the entertainment offered bytheir hotels. There are also regular buses to the ever-popular,even busier Magaluf and other neighbouring towns and resorts. Manyvisitors come to enjoy the web of coastal hiking routes, whileothers prefer to just laze on the beach and enjoy the sunshine andwarm waters.

Shopping in Paguera

Paguera features El Bulevar Street, which is a long stretch ofshops behind the pedestrian promenade where holidaymakers andshoppers can splurge on designer clothes, jewellery, leather goodsand other Spanish holiday souvenirs. Visitors should be sure toexplore the boutiques and smaller shops in the side streets alongEl Bulevar. There is also a lovely market at nearby Andraitx onWednesday mornings that is worth exploring.

Dining in Paguera

In Paguera, the top-rated restaurants for holidaymakers includeLa Grita, Casa Rustica and La Gran Tortuga. The resort offers anumber of different restaurants with a variety of fare; many caterfor the German palette, though some offer local dishes andexcellent Spanish seafood. There are also various sidewalk cafesand bistros along the promenade.

Activities in Paguera

Paguera has a good range of bars, and although many cater toGerman holidaymakers, there are British style pubs available too.There are some low-key discos, a number of live music venues and afew nightclubs, but although it is a lively resort Paguera'snightlife pales in comparison to the neighbouring resorts ofMagaluf and Palma Nova. These party resorts are only a hop and askip away though, so those in search of fun after dark shouldn'tstruggle to find it.

Things to be aware of in Paguera

Paguera can get highly congested and parking space is limited.Many of the hotels are up on the hills behind the town centre,which can pose a problem for those with disabilities, the elderlyand parents with pushchairs.



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Situated on the Costa Dorada's sun-drenched coast, 50 miles(80km) west of Barcelona and six miles (10km) west of Tarragona,the popular holiday resort town of Salou is hard to beat for a funfamily vacation. It is fairly spread out and merges with theneighbouring resorts of La Pineda to the east and Cambrils to thewest, all of which benefit from the string of wonderful clean,sandy beaches and secluded rocky coves. As well as the naturalattractions, Salou is also packed with entertainment for all ages,including numerous water sports, an aqua park, go-karting and thePortAventura Theme Park, one of Europe's most thrilling themeparks, formerly owned by Universal. Sightseers interested inmuseums or ancient history will find plenty to occupy them innearby Tarragona, or on excursions into the countryside. Salou'sseafront promenade is set with beautifully landscaped gardens andparks; fountains are lit up at night when holidaymakers stroll tothe restaurants, nightclubs, bars and British-style pubs.

Shopping in Salou

There is a good selection of souvenir and fashion stores inSalou, and holidaymakers who want to enjoy more extensive shoppingcan hop on a train and travel to the renowned shopping paradise ofBarcelona, just 40 minutes away. Self-caterers will easily find allthey need within the resort and there is a flea market in the oldtown centre of Salou on Mondays.

Dining in Salou

Eating out is relatively cheap and although many places cater toholidaymakers and British palates with international stables andpub grub, there are also plenty of good Spanish seafood restaurantsand traditional tapas bars. There are Chinese and Italianrestaurants as well for those wanting some variety.

Activities in Salou

Holidaymakers looking for a good night out in Salou will findplenty of fun bars, including popular options like Christy's IrishBar, 007 Bond, Double Scotch or Charlie Chaplin's. The nightlife isvaried, with flamenco venues, nightclubs and discos, but it maystill be a a bit quiet for those meaning to do some seriouspartying. Luckily, Barcelona is under an hour away by train andwell worth a visit for an energetic and atmospheric night out.

Things to be aware of in Salou

The beaches in Salou can get very crowded in July and August;however, quieter beaches and empty coves can be found nearby.

Playa la Arena


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Once a fishing village on the west coast of Tenerife, Playa laArena is today one of three separate holiday resorts (Los Gigantes,Puerto Santiago and Playa la Arena) that have to all intents andpurposes merged into one. Playa la Arena is the most modern of thethree and has a lovely long stretch of black, sandy beach, withBlue Flag status. The sea offers excellent swimming, but the watercan sometimes be rough. A promenade runs along the seafront and isflanked by a variety of restaurants (some offering excellentseafood), several bars and shops. There is plenty to do besidesrelaxing on the beach or sampling local cuisine and many visitorsopt for a boat trip to neighbouring Los Gigantes, whale watchingtours, day trips to the nearby village of Masca or a cable car rideup Mount Teide in the Teide National Park. Visitors can also chooseto take a stroll to either Puerto Santiago or Los Gigantes forsomething different, or catch a bus to the bustling Playa de lasAmericas for a night on the town. In general, Playa la Arena ispeaceful and laid-back, lacking the aggressive touting common inother resorts, and offers a perfect combination of activity andrelaxation for all types of visitors seeking the perfect holidaydestination.

Shopping in Playa la Arena

Duty-free shopping is one of the big attractions of a visit toTenerife. The best mall for consumer goods is in the nearby town ofLos Gigantes, although the Commercial Centre in town has a decentrange of shops as well.

Dining in Playa la Arena

Many international restaurants and tapas bars line thewell-developed promenade at Playa la Arena. British-style pub foodis widely available. It is worth sampling some of the deliciousCanarian dishes, such as salty new potatoes boiled in sea water,baked with a spicy mojo sauce. The variety of restaurants in thethree connected resorts is more than sufficient for all budgets andtastes. Some of the restaurants and bars close in winter when theresort empties out.

Activities in Playa la Arena

Although there are many bars and cafes, proper nightclubs arefew and far between in Playa la Arena, and most after darkentertainment is limited to what the all-inclusive hotels offertheir guests. It is a peaceful, family resort which is not wellsuited to those seeking an energetic nightlife. However, there aresome popular party resorts nearby, such as Playa de lasAmericas.

Things to be aware of in Playa la Arena

This area is very hilly and therefore challenging for peoplewith walking difficulties or parents with prams. The sea can havestrong undercurrents so take red flag lifeguard warningsseriously.




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A sprawling town on the southern tip of Corfu, Kavos is the mostaction-packed of the island's holiday resorts and is very popularwith fun-loving British under the age of 25. The long, narrow beachis far from the best in Corfu but offers lovely views over to theGreek mainland, lots of watersports and is fine for sleeping offthe night before. Those looking for a quieter holiday (but stillwithin reach of the nightlife in Kavos) can stay in theneighbouring resort of Aghios Petros, one mile (2km) to thenorth.

Shopping in Kavos

Shopping in Kavos is mostly limited to souvenirs. Visitors whowant more to choose from can catch regular buses to Corfu Town,which has excellent gold, lace, leather, silver and ceramic items.Self-caterers will find essentials at mini-markets.

Dining in Kavos

Most tourists choose to eat in their apartments, but those whoare looking for a night out will find a wide choice on the menu,from local delicacies to seafood, curries and traditional Englishpub grub.

Activities in Kavos

Kavos is one of the top party destinations in Greece and iscrammed full of bars and clubs with music, dancing and karaoke. Allsorts of day and night-time entertainment is available, from boozecruises to foam parties, themed club nights, and resident DJs. Mostof the activity is centred on the main strip, where bars lure inearly drinkers with happy-hour deals.

Things to be aware of in Kavos

The nightlife in Kavos is famously vibrant and the resort isprobably not ideal for families or those seeking a relaxingholiday. Pushy touts come from far afield to steer travellers toclubs and can be a source of free drinks if handled well. Visitorsshould watch out for pick pockets.




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Anyone in the 18 to 30 age bracket whose holiday mission is fun,sun and soaking up sangria (or any other alcoholic beverages) willhave the time of their lives in Mallorca's raucous premier partyresort of Magaluf. The resort is situated about 10 miles (16km)west of Palma, the island's capital, and has become one of Europe'smost popular destinations for young British travelers eager toexperience the famous nightlife of Mallorca. It sports hundreds ofbars, discos and clubs, and has a wide choice of budgetaccommodation and restaurants. Magaluf and its wide sandy beachessuch as Mallorca Beach, Magaluf Beach and Palma Nova Beach, isparticularly packed during June, July and August with youngholidaymakers who are known locally as 'gambas' (red prawns),especially if they stint on the sun cream. During the off-season itis much quieter with many of the wilder entertainment venuesclosed, and in recent years has been drawing older clientele andfamilies during this period.

Shopping in Magaluf

The promenade and streets in the centre of Magaluf are linedwith dozens of shops selling beachwear, souvenirs and other Spanishvacation souvenirs geared towards holidaymakers. Better shoppingcan be found in Palma, an easy taxi or bus ride away. Every Mondaythere is a market in Calvia, six miles (10km) inland; good buyshere include porcelain, jewellery and leather goods. There is alsoa popular market in Inca each Thursday for those who want to gofarther afield. There are good supermarkets for shopping in PalmaNova and Magaluf, that stock all the well-known internationalbrands, as well as local produce. Most things are good value,particularly alcohol and cigarettes.

Dining in Magaluf

Magaluf is a resort favoured by young budget holidaymakers, andit therefore has an abundance of fast food outlets. Those inself-catering accommodation find they are never very far from afamiliar name like McDonalds, Burger King or Pizza Hut. The resortalso has a wide selection of restaurants, the majority catering toBritish tastes. There are several restaurants that offer Sundayroasts and other favourites like bangers and mash, fish and chipsand shepherd's pie. For variety there are Indian, Chinese, Mexican,Italian and even some Spanish restaurants too.

Activities in Magaluf

It is the pulsating nightlife that brings holidaymakers toMagaluf, and therefore there is no lack of bright lights afterdark, with the party swinging into, and beyond, dawn every night.Most start the evening in one of the plethora of bars and move onto dance or themed parties hosted by top DJs in the numerous clubsalong the famed Punta Ballena strip. Touts line the strip seducingcustomers into their establishments with special offers on drinksand co*cktails. The most renowned of Magaluf's clubs is the massiveBCM, which uses around three million gallons of bubbles to coverits floor on its famous foam party nights. Other well-known namesare Carwash, Bananas and Boomerangs. A popular alternative todrinking and clubbing is an evening at the Pirates Adventure themeddinner and show.

Things to be aware of in Magaluf

Magaluf is geared mainly for young Brits looking for a loud andlively holiday; it's not a great destination for those after peaceand tranquillity. Although it has improved in recent years, theskyline of Magaluf remains characterised by 1960s and 70s apartmentblocks and the resort is packed with salesmen; the street vendorsare best avoided but the 'PRs' outside the bars and restaurants canbe worth chatting up as they offer free drinks. Visitors should beaware of the pickpockets on the beach at night.



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Rows of shops selling beach buckets and flip-flops line theseafront of Benidorm, the Costa Blanca's largest and liveliestholiday resort town, where hordes of tourists throng the streets 24hours a day. Of the thousands who come to holiday here on thetown's three miles (5km) of white sandy beaches each year, manyhave stayed and purchased apartments in the numerous blocks thatnow dot the skyline. Benidorm, north of Alicante, is the partycapital of the Costa Blanca with an unrivalled nightlife and adaytime carnival-like beach culture.

Remnants of Benidorm's historic past are now well hidden, buttucked into the Casco Antiguo section are the ruins of a castlebuilt in the 14th century to fend off Berber pirates. Benidorm'sspectacular sunsets are best viewed from the castle's mirador(balcony). The place to see and be seen in thetown, however, is the Playa de Levante, a two-mile (3km) boardwalklined with trendy cafés and bars. Benidorm is a wildly popularresort with all the amenities one would expect.

Shopping in Benidorm

The streets of Benidorm are lined with gift shops catering forpeople on holiday and the supermarkets are fully stocked withwell-known brands. Prices in the holiday resort are comparativelycheap, particularly alcohol and cigarettes. There is an open-airmarket every Wednesday and a rastro (car boot sale) every Sundaynext to the railway station. The town of Altea is worth a visit onTuesdays for its outdoor market or simply for a leisurely strollalong the promenade, while Alicante is a good destination forshoppers in search of some more sophisticated shops.

Dining in Benidorm

Top-rated restaurants in Benidorm include Paneil's, ChinaGarden, India Gate, Mme Butterfly, The Vagabond and Witches Bistro.All the major fast food restaurants are also available and the oldharbour is the best place to try out the local cuisine. Benidormhas a wide range of restaurants catering to all budgets.

Activities in Benidorm

Benidorm is one of the biggest nightspots on the Med withsomething to suit all preferences. There are loads of bars hostinglive shows, quizzes, bingo, karaoke and drag shows, and lots oflive bands playing everything from Abba to ZZ Top. Those lookingfor a party in Benidorm should go to Wheeltappers, Sinatras, thePalladium or the Stardust Benidorm. It is one of the best resortsin Spain for those seeking out a fun and varied nightlife.

Things to be aware of in Benidorm

Benidorm is not a good choice for those wanting an authentic, orpeaceful Spanish holiday, but for those looking for entertainmentand nightlife it can't be beaten. The resort abounds with hundredsof persistent touts trying to sell tourists everything fromtrinkets to timeshare apartments. There are also insistentpromotions staff outside the bars and restaurants, but these may beworth chatting up as they sometimes offer free drinks.


Belle Mare


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Considered one of the most beautiful beaches in Mauritius, Belle Mare Plage is a white sandy beach, 1.2 miles (2km) long, on the island's eastern coast. The beach is fringed by several luxury hotels and resorts. The offshore coral reef that protects the beach makes it ideal location for snorkelling and scuba diving. Belle Mare Plage is deservedly one of the most popular beaches and resorts in Mauritius and is well-suited to both family and romantic getaways. The east coast of Mauritius is great for sailing and game fishing. Belle Mare is known for its stunning sunsets and enjoying a boat trip with a sundowner in hand will certainly be a highlight of any vacation.

Shopping in Belle Mare

There are small local supermarkets nearby where visitors can buy basics like snacks and bottled water (which tends to be expensive at the hotels), and there are hotel shops selling souvenirs and the like, but there is no real shopping scene at Belle Mare Plage. Everything travellers need should be available, but those wanting holiday shopping sprees may need to travel further afield to get them.

Dining in Belle Mare

Visitors to Belle Mare Plage are spoilt for choice when it comes to dining options. The Constance Belle Mare Plage hotel has seven restaurants, some of which offer elegant fine dining and others simple meals to be enjoyed on the beach. There are a variety of cuisines and budgets to choose from. All different dietary requirements are catered for. It is even possible to take cooking classes at the resort - and Mauritian food is worth learning about!

Activities in Belle Mare

The nightlife at Belle Mare Plage is limited to the variety of restaurants and bars affiliated to hotels and the entertainment offered by them. It is not considered a party resort. However, for those in search of some nighttime fun, Trou d'Eau Douce, a short way up the coast, has some livelier bars.



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Laganas is the hottest spot on Zakynthos (Zante), wheresun-lovers can enjoy golden sand and warm waters along one of theMediterranean's longest beaches. It's the most busy and developedarea of Zakynthos, and is the party capital of the island. Laganasis the most popular beach, with loads of restaurants, bars andactivities available. Nearby Kalamaki Beach is family-friendly,with warm, shallow waters and pedalo and surf boards available forhire. Turtles do lay eggs on this beach so areas are sectioned off.A trip to Dafni Beach is worth it for the amazing views alone;there's a welcoming taverna for those who make the dramatic drivedown to the beach.

Shopping in Laganas

Visitors will find everything from grocery stores to hundreds ofsouvenir shops. Good buys include jewellery, leather goods,designer clothing and local crafts. The fresh bread and sweetpastries from local bakeries are particularly good.

Dining in Laganas

Laganas is awash with a huge range of restaurants, includingsnack bars and fast food outlets. Cuisine ranges from Greek dishesat local tavernas, to curry and pizza.

Activities in Laganas

Laganas is packed with party people on summer nights. ReputableDJs are frequent visitors and play through to the small hours andbeyond. Dance clubs, pubs, co*cktail bars and karaoke bars are allpart of the experience.

Things to be aware of in Laganas

Laganas is one of the biggest and busiest resorts in Greece andis complete change of pace from the quiet, traditional Greek islandexperience. The beach is always jam-packed in the height of theseason and the resort is continually full of noise and commotion.Many visitors have complained about over-insistent touts outsideclubs and restaurants, and some have reportedly been misled on thequality of their accommodation. The resort doesn't offerwatersports because of the nesting loggerhead turtles on thebeach.



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Once just a tiny fishing village on the north coast ofFuerteventura, Corralejo's harbour now receives ferries full ofday-trippers from Playa Blanca in Lanzarote every day of summer,and the town plays host to hundreds of holidaymakers who are drawnto spend a sunny, sandy holiday in the island's largest resort.Although tourism is booming and development is keeping pace, thelittle port still retains its charm. The fishing village as was isnow surrounded by apartments and hotels, and the waterfrontpromenade is lined with cafes and restaurants. Just outside theresort is a protected nature reserve boasting miles of undulatingsand dunes. The surrounding beaches are more than inviting andvisitors to this Spanish resort town are spoilt for choice: thesheltered Playa la Clavellina, just near the harbour, is perfectfor windy days; Playa del Medano, which joins to Playa de Viejo, islovely; Playa del Pozo, located just outside of Corralejo, ispopular with nudists; and Flag Beach, fronting the main hotels, isa great venue for kitesurfing and windsurfing. The spacious sandystretches ensure that the beaches don't feel too crowded despitethe area's popularity.

Shopping in Corralejo

Corralejo is not a bad shopping destination, if visitors candrag themselves off the beaches and out of the restaurants. Themain street, Calle General Franco, is flanked with shops sellingeverything from radios to surfboards, and sunscreen to luxurywatches. There is a good craft market on Saturdays at the Caleta deFuste where tourists can bargain for souvenirs.

Dining in Corralejo

While in Corralejo, recommended eateries for holidaymakersinclude El Bribon, The Point Restaurant, El Pescador and theTaverna Los Piratas Bar Tapas. Individual eateries may come and go,but the waterfront promenade boasts numerous restaurants and cafes,many in charming converted historic houses, and as the resortexpands the variety only increases. Corralejo's restaurants offer awide choice, from good old English fish and chips to Mexican tacosor Indian curry. There is also a smattering of eateries serving uptraditional Canarian cuisine and fresh seafood.

Activities in Corralejo

Most of the bars and restaurants in Corralejo are on the mainstreet, Calle General Franco. There is a variety of bars and clubs,with everything from sports bars and karaoke to dance clubs andlive music venues. The high street and town square have a number ofquieter restaurants and lounges. The clubs close around 1am, butthe bars often stay open later. Grab a copy of the freeFuerteventura Grapevine magazine for event listings and a nightlifeguide.

Things to be aware of in Corralejo

Corralejo can be quite expensive and travellers on a budgetshould take this into account before booking a holiday. Familiesshould be aware that the beach area around Playa de Pozo is popularwith nudists, and that there are sometimes strong oceancurrents.



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As a winter holiday destination, Megève exudes old-world charm;the small village is huddled around the old church, a medievaltower and the town hall. Among the narrow Megève streets and smallsquares are antique shops, crowded bistros and old-fashionedbutcheries and bakeries. Unlike many French holiday resorts Megèvehas remained almost exclusively French; the upper crust make Megèvetheir winter home when the mistral forces them to leave theRiviera. Furs are the coats of choice for strolling past the trendyMegève boutiques and dining at its excellent restaurants. Theresort is just over an hour's drive from Geneva.

Shopping in Megeve

Megève is the shopper's paradise of ski resorts. There are anumber of chic boutiques and antique shops along the narrow cobbledstreets, including clothing shops and art galleries mixed with skiequipment stores and souvenir shops. Foodies will be tempted by thedelicious crèmeries, pâtisseries and boulangeries.

Dining in Megeve

There are a number of high-end restaurants in Megève, with morethan a few Michelin stars between them, but there are also somecheaper options offering simple French and international fare.

Activities in Megeve

Megève has a few lively bars that make its nightlife fun andrelaxed. There are nightclubs in the centre of town, and a numberof bars that stay open until nearly 4am. Bars and clubs in Megèvetend to be highly priced and, even when there is no entrance fee,drink prices can be exorbitant.

Things to be aware of in Megeve

Megève is not a budget ski resort and prices can be high.Advanced skiers will find few challenges on the slopes in theimmediate area and the snow can be unreliable. Traffic to theresort can get very congested at weekends and in peak season.

Skiing in Megeve

Megève is fairly uninspiring for experienced skiers, butworld-class resorts Chamonix and Argentiere are within strikingdistance, and so it still makes a good base, especially if thereare non-skiers in the group. Megève itself has 186 miles (300km) ofmarked trails with 81 lifts, two snow parks and a half-pipe forsnowboarders. The facilities are all very good, and snow coverageis generally reliable, with snow cannons on hand to make up forMother Nature's occasional failure to provide. Chamonix is aforty-minute drive from Megève.



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Nestled in a pretty bay on the southeast coast of Spain, thesmall Spanish resort town of Moraira is an oasis of traditionalcharm on the busy Costa Blanca, a favoured holiday spot andretirement haven. Moraira has grown from a small fishing villageinto an attractive resort surrounded by luxury villas withoutlosing its Spanish character, which is entrenched in its impressivemarina, variety of shops, colourful weekly markets, atmospheric oldtown, and waterfront restaurants and bars. The relaxed traditionalambience of Moraira is complemented by two main beaches withEuropean Blue Flag status, separated by a promontory crowned with amedieval fortress. There are also plenty of sport and leisurefacilities on offer. When it comes to holiday weather in Moraira,it is one of the best Spanish beach resorts claiming an average 325days of sunshine a year, and temperatures that stay constantlypleasantly warm. Fresh sea breezes ensure that it is neversweltering in summer, and the surrounding mountains protect thetown from the chilly winter winds.

This beach resort is easily accessible, being equidistant (about62 miles/100km) by motorway from both Alicante and Valenciaairports. For those who enjoy a taste of the high life, it is alsowithin easy reach by car or bus of the busier, glitzier CostaBlanca resorts of Javea, Calpe and party-mad Benidorm. Thecountryside around the holiday destination of Moraira offers somelovely scenery dotted with unspoilt villages to explore.

Shopping in Moraira

There are no large supermarkets and shopping malls within theconfines of the holiday resort of Moraira itself, but these can befound not far away in the approaches to the town and surroundingsuburbs. In the main avenues of old Moraira, shoppers are wellcatered for with all manner of boutique stores selling local artsand crafts, souvenirs, holiday gear and bric-a-brac. The most funto be had shopping, though, is at the Friday weekly market wherethe wares range from fresh fruit to leather goods, pottery andrugs. Good buys include wicker furniture, handbags and wrought ironobjects. Serious shoppers can make expeditions to the largerresorts and towns nearby. The street market in Teulada, a few milesinland, is worth a visit.

Dining in Moraira

Despite being relatively small, central Moraira is equipped withnumerous good quality restaurants, several of them Michelinstarred, offering great value for money. Being a fishing communitywith an active fishing fleet that brings home a catch each day itfollows that fresh seafood forms the base of the local cuisine, andmany of Moraira's restaurants offer this in delicious abundance.For a budget meal, Visitors should look out for the menu del dia(menu of the day) offered by many restaurants, usually consistingof different courses with wine and coffee for a set price.'Workman's specials' also feature on some menus, offering goodvalue. Most Spanish bars serve tapas selections during the day,good for a satisfying local snack meal. Those with diverse tasteswill find a variety of international cuisines among the localestablishments, from English fish and chips to Greek delights, andIndian curry to pizza.

Activities in Moraira

The nightlife of Moraira is considered sedate compared to someof the larger and flashier Spanish resorts, but the town buzzeshappily after dark. Many of the restaurants offer liveentertainment of some description, including flamenco dancing andkaraoke, and there are one or two open-air dance venues. The mainclub for youngsters is the Costa Sur, just outside of town, whichoffers a range of entertaining evenings with foam parties,striptease and the like. Other Moraira nightlife options includeSaxo Disco and the music pumping Algas Beach Bar. Those who holidayin Moraira during the months of April, June, July and November willcatch lively fiestas full of local colour and tradition. CalataludDrive in the old town is generally closed off during summer andfiesta nights.

Things to be aware of in Moraira

There are no huge nightclubs or discos in Moraira and theclubbing scene is fairly low key when compared with other Spanishbeach resorts in the Costa Blanca region.



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The holiday resort destination of Tavira, to the east of Faro inthe south-east corner of Portugal, is one of the most photogenictowns along the Algarve coast, sporting white-washed houses toppedwith decorative chimneys and pyramid shaped Roman-tiled roofs, setamong orange, fig and almond trees. The charming town, on the GilaoRiver, dates back to around 2,000 BC, and also boasts a MoorishCastle, with some splendid views from the ramparts.

There are some attractive churches (37 of them to be exact) tosee on holiday in Tavira, including the Church of the Misericordiawith a beautiful Renaissance door and carved high altar. Not manyof the buildings pre-date the devastating earthquake of 1755, whichdestroyed much of the Algarve, but the town was painstakinglyrebuilt with many fine 18th century buildings.

Tavira flanks both banks of the river, which are linked by aRoman bridge. Along the coast and on an island opposite the town(reached by ferry) are some beautiful isolated sandy beaches, wellworth visiting while on holiday in the area.

Shopping in Tavira

Tavira is well equipped with utilitarian supermarkets forself-caterers on holiday, and many souvenir shops selling corkitems, lace, embroidered goods and shell art. There is an upmarkethandcraft shopping centre called "Old Market" for discerningshoppers. The town has a fresh produce market daily.

Dining in Tavira

Like most of the holiday resort towns on the Algarve, Tavira isa food-lovers haven, especially for those who enjoy seafood. Thereare numerous restaurants along the quayside and riverbank, servingexcellent cuisine at reasonable prices.

Activities in Tavira

There are bars and cafés aplenty in Tavira, though the town isnot famous for its nightlife. Docas, near the central market, hasnumber of lively bars. Arco Bar mixes up some great co*cktails, orfor a more chilled out evening The Poet, in the middle of town,always attracts a good crowd. Patrick's is popular with expats, andUBI is a sleek bar located in a former tuna factory.

Playa del Ingles


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'The Englishman's beach' is how Playa del Ingles translates;those naming the holiday resort had great foresight as todaythousands of Brits flock here for sun, sea and San Miguels.Situated in the south of Gran Canaria, the resort is one of thelargest and busiest in Europe and its main attraction is the widesandy beach that stretches from the Maspalomas dunes to San Agustinin the north. The Playa del Ingles seafront is lined by a lovelypedestrian promenade, the Paseo Costa Canaria, planted with lushgardens. With its conglomeration of high-rise hotels, apartmentblocks and shopping malls, Playa del Ingles will not win any awardsfor architecture or sophisticated ambience, but the ever-growingholiday resort, purpose-built for pleasure and leisure back in the1960s, is hard to beat for good value summer fun. Although mainlygeared towards the younger market, families and older visitors arealso attracted to Playa del Ingles by the glorious year-roundclimate and endless beach. Those who want to avoid all the hubbubcan find quieter spots on the long, spacious beach, and should besure to get accommodation well away from the party centre.

Shopping in Playa del Ingles

There is a fine choice of shops in Playa del Ingles wherevisitors on holiday can indulge in some duty-free delights,including cheap electrical shops and stalls selling imitationdesigner gear and African curios. The shopping is mainly confinedto the dozen or so shopping centres and each centre has its owndistinctive character. Visanta is best for duty-free electricalgoods as they offer a European guarantee and refunds if visitorschange their minds about something. Yumbo is the biggest and mostpopular shopping centre in Playa del Ingles and also houses theTourist Information Centre. Five minutes away are the Kasbah andMetro centres, but the widest selection of quality designer wear isin nearby Plaza Maspalomas. Travellers should be aware that somesalesmen can be quite aggressive. It's best to haggle hard andremember that the shop next door probably sells the same thing. TheSan Fernando Market is held every Wednesday and Saturday morning,offering the same sort of stuff.

Dining in Playa del Ingles

The best eateries in Playa del Ingles include Taberna La Canafor fantastic Spanish seafood, Tapas Bar Capaco for their greattapas selection, and Restaurante Hong Kong for something different.Fast food (including McDonalds), Chinese, Italian and local cuisineare all available, as well as rows of restaurants serving somethingwith chips.

Activities in Playa del Ingles

Playa del Ingles is packed with bars, pubs and clubs, especiallyin the Kasbah centre, which is home to the famous Cream and Paschanightclubs, both of which pump out the best in dance music untilthe early hours. Chinawhites is also immensely popular. Still inthe Kasbah, the Hippodrome, Havana and Sugar, a small co*cktail bar,are good places to start the evening. The English and Irish centresare also lively and entertaining. The Yumbo centre is orientatedtowards the gay scene at night and Rickys Cabaret Bar has regulardrag shows; the centre is also popular with families looking for aless hectic evening. There are quieter bars along the promenade anda casino on the edge of town.

Things to be aware of in Playa del Ingles

Visitors should be aware that there are lots of steps from somehotels and apartments to the beach, and that the centre of thePlaya del Ingles holiday resort can be very noisy late into thenight. The resort is also full of salesmen and touts which can bean annoyance.

Puerto Rico


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The vibrant, modern holiday resort of Puerto Rico, on the islandof Gran Canaria, revels in excellent weather year-round, beingsituated on the island's southern tip just across the ocean fromthe Sahara. Scenic Puerto Rico is encircled by hills, itswhite-washed holiday accommodation clinging to steep cliff sidesabove two golden beaches. The picturesque resort includes threelarge commercial centres overflowing with shops, bars andrestaurants, and is flanked by a marina packed with luxury yachtswhere it is possible to indulge in almost every kind of water sportimaginable. Puerto Rico is primarily a family resort, with sunnycorners for seekers of peace and tranquillity, and lively venuesfor family entertainment. Puerto Rico also boasts a decentnightlife, although it is not a famous party resort.

Shopping in Puerto Rico

Puerto Rico boasts three large shopping and entertainment malls,the largest being the Centro Civico, where visitors can buyliterally anything. There is everything from banks and boutiques toflorists and fishmongers, and dozens of duty-free stores sellingelectrical goods, photographic equipment and perfume at greatprices. The other two centres are Agua La Perra and Europa, andboth have good selections of restaurants, souvenir stores andbeachwear shops, and at least one supermarket. Opening hours forshops and supermarkets in the centres are about 9.30am to 10pm inthe peak summer months. The largest market on the island is atArguineguin, only 10 minutes away by taxi, and is open everyTuesday. This is a good place to test your bargaining power;hagglers should start negotiating at about half the askingprice.

Dining in Puerto Rico

Like most holiday resorts on the Canary Islands, Puerto Rico hasvarious top-rated eateries, including Caballito de Mar, Le PetitLyonnais, Ma Bakers and El Brasero. The restaurants and fast foodoutlets cater for a wide range of tastes. Here visitors can dine onanything from fish and chips to haute cuisine. Most of therestaurants are in the Centro Comercial and those who like to dineoverlooking the beach will find some good restaurants on the westside of the bay.

Activities in Puerto Rico

Puerto Rico has a few discos and many good bars, but cannotcompare to the Gran Canarian party resorts of Playa del Ingles andLas Palmas. Nevertheless, there is plenty of fun to be found afterdark in the Puerto Rico and Europa centres, and many of the hotelsoffer entertainment.

Things to be aware of in Puerto Rico

Puerto Rico is built on steep cliff sides and most apartmentblocks are reached via long stairways. Those with difficultywalking should ensure they find accommodation on the level. Theholiday resort is full of touts and 'promotions staff' from variousrestaurants and shops vying for business. They can be overlyinsistent and should be dealt with firmly but politely.



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Sixteen miles (26km) west of Lisbon is the trendy resort town ofEstoril, a cosmopolitan holiday destination with a promenade alongthree narrow coarse sandy beaches, luxury hotels, championship golfcourses and some excellent restaurants. During World War II exiledroyalty from all over Europe took refuge here and whiled away theirtime gambling in the Estoril's casino, which is one of the largestin Europe. The town is also known for its summer handicraft fair,and the nearby Estoril Autodrome, which draws motor racingenthusiasts.

Shopping in Estoril

Shopping is limited in Estoril, mainly confined to mini-marketgrocers serving the locals with a few craft shops and vendors alongthe beachfront. Souvenirs are available but for a real shoppingspree while on holiday, visitors have to head for the large CascaisShopping Centre a few miles away.

Dining in Estoril

The Estoril resort has a modest selection of restaurants servingboth local dishes and international fare, but most tend to berather upmarket and expensive. There are some laid-back cafesaround the casino, and casual eateries along the promenade. For asuperb dining experience one cannot beat the Four Seasons in thePalácio Hotel, Rua do Parque, where the gourmet menu extends fromsole meneure to wild boar cutlets. An excellent fish restaurant,next to the casino, is the Costa do Estoril, a good place toindulge in the Portuguese favourite codfish.

Activities in Estoril

The main drawcard after dark in Estoril is the famed casino,which not only caters for gamblers and slot machine addicts, butalso offers a flashy cabaret show. When it comes to clubs and pubs,the options are better in nearby Cascais.

Things to be aware of in Estoril

Estoril is a sedate seaside destination, not suited to childrenor young party animals.

Caleta de Fuste


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Fuerteventura's busiest holiday resort has been built up aroundthe town of Caleta de Fuste, also known as Castillo, about sixmiles (10km) south of the island's airport. The resort'shorseshoe-shaped, gently sloping beach is man-made, covered withimported golden sand. Caleta de Fuste is a family orientated resortboasting a range of restaurants and bars. Holidaymakers at thisSpanish resort town can enjoy the usual water sports and activitiessuch as snorkelling, scuba diving, water skiing, surfing and goingon fishing trips. The town is well equipped with a number ofcrèches as well as massage parlours and beauty salons for the fewoccasions when you're not on the beach. The resort is steadilygrowing in facilities and popularity, the latest addition being agolf course. Accommodation is mainly in apartment blocks. Caleta deFuste's central location makes it a good base from which to explorethe rest of the island, although there is little public transportand hiring a car is necessary for most excursions.

Shopping in Caleta de Fuste

Caleta de Fuste is a well-equipped tourist hub with a decentselection of shops and boutiques. There is a new shopping complexnear the golf course which has a cinema and bowling alley as wellas some good shops. Tourists will be able to find all they need andindulge in some recreational shopping if the urge takes them.

Dining in Caleta de Fuste

The long main street of the town is lined with low-risebuildings containing several restaurants and bars, which provide agood selection for tourists. Caleta de Fuste's top-rated eateriesinclude Fado Rock Steak House and Risto Pizza La Torre.

Activities in Caleta de Fuste

The resort has a varied nightlife, with after-dark entertainmentincluding live music, dancing venues and activities like karaoke.For a good night out in Caleta de Fuste, stop in at Mappy's Bar. Ifvisitors want to partake in the nightlife, it is a good idea toensure that their accommodation is close to the town centre, as theever-expanding nature of the resort can mean they are staying quitefar from the entertainment hub.

Things to be aware of in Caleta de Fuste

Those who want to explore the island will find the resortconveniently situated, but the lack of reliable public transportcan be frustrating.



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Belek is a sprawling holiday resort town specificallydeveloped for tourism, and over the last two decades has grown toencompass the neighbouring village of Kadriye. Boasting 300 days ofsunshine and the warm, turquoise waters of the Mediterranean, thearea has become a haven for those seeking the luxury of five-starhotel complexes, as well as some great golf courses.

Many Belek hotels have their own strip of privatebeach and some holiday visitors never leave the comforts of theirseaside accommodation. Belek is, however, close to a number ofinteresting sites and there are several exciting activities onoffer.

The ruins of the Roman town of Perge is aninteresting excursion, as is the well-preserved ancientamphitheatre at Aspendos; its acoustics have stood the test of timeand it still plays host to the occasional concert.

From Belek, jeep safaris into the mountains areanother popular holiday outing, as are boat trips, watersports, andvisits to nearby Manavgat waterfalls and the thermal baths atPamukkale. Scuba diving, white-water rafting, horse riding, andmore are also on offer to visitors on holiday. The town of Belekitself is compact and has a small shopping centre and some souvenirshops and some cafes to enjoy on holiday.

Kadriye has more to offer in the way of streetmarkets and nightlife, but day trips to busier towns such as Alanyaor Antalya are also available. Belek is the perfect holiday resortfor golfers and those seeking lazy days lounging on a beach or by aswimming pool.

Shopping in Belek

Most of the large Belek hotels have shops selling curios andholiday souvenirs, and the town has some lively street markets thatare the perfect place to sample freshly cooked food and do a spotof gift shopping. There is also a huge bazaar every Saturday whereshoppers can haggle to their heart's content. Holiday makers canhead to the old town of Antalya for more extensive shopping.

Dining in Belek

There is a limited choice of restaurants in Belek with mostholiday visitors eating in their hotels, but the village of Kadriyeis just two miles (4km) away, and easily reached by dolmus, and hasa selection of shops, bars and restaurants. The nearby city ofAntalya, 22 miles (35km) away, offers many restaurants that serveup some of the best of local Turkish food. Adana Ockbkbasi is arestaurant in Belek well worth a visit for its special Turkish fishand kebab dishes. Coco Bar, which serves the tastiest lamb shishkebabs around and has a cosy open-air terrace, is rated as one ofthe friendliest restaurants in town by tourists and localsalike.

Activities in Belek

The nightlife in Belek is largely limited to the large hotels,many of which have their own nightclubs, bars, and entertainment.There are one or two popular clubs, however, including the largeClub 29 on the waterfront.

Things to be aware of in Belek

Many shopkeepers can hassle visitors who enter their stores.Those who are not interested should give a polite but firm'no'.

Koh Tao


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Koh Tao ('Turtle Island') has been described as offering 'heavenunder the sea', its main holiday attraction being the incrediblesnorkelling and scuba diving opportunities afforded in its clean,clear waters. Situated to the north of its more famous sisters, KohSamui and Koh Pha Ngan, the island is a typical tropical paradise,with rich jungle in the centre surrounded by quiet, palm-treedbeaches.

Although tourist development has exploded in recent years,turning Koh Tao's traditional dirt-road villages into a montage ofholiday resorts, souvenir stalls and restaurants, there are stillplenty of unspoilt spots both on the coast and inland. The mainbeach is Sairee Beach, stretching about one mile (2km) along thewest coast, offering a range of reasonably priced holidayaccommodation, dive centres, restaurants, beach bars and otherfacilities.

Shopping in Koh Tao

No-one could describe Koh Tao as a shopping destination, butmost of the essentials required on holiday are available, includingbasic medicines, sun screen, swim suits, sarongs, snorkellingequipment and so on. Most of the little stalls and stores liningbeachfronts and main roads carry craft souvenirs made of shells orbamboo, and there is plenty of local jewellery available. There area few supermarkets and market stalls with a good range offoodstuffs.

Dining in Koh Tao

Not too many years ago, no one in Koh Tao would have heard ofpizza or pancakes. Today, international cuisine has taken over theisland and it is possible for visitors to find anything they fancy,from Tex-Mex to French baguettes or good old English steak andkidney pie. This has not been at the expense of local authenticThai food, however, which is still available everywhere from simplestreet stalls to beachfront terraces.

There are dozens of restaurants, new ones opening all the time,many offering open-air barbecues and grills. Some currentfavourites are the Cafe del Sol grill house, with a French chefserving up delectable steaks and homemade Italian dishes; theGreasy Spoon (Mae Head), delighting Brits with full-on Englishbreakfasts and hefty portions of fish and chips, bangers and mash,and the like; and the open-air Eagle View on a hill top near SharkBay, offering Thai cuisine with a spectacular view.

Activities in Koh Tao

For a relaxed, idyllic island, Koh Tao has a surprisinglybuzzing nightlife. When the sun sets the parties start, usually atbars and clubs right on the beach. Most of the action takes placeat the main centres of Mae Had and Sairee, but there are manyimpromptu theme parties happening, usually advertised in shopwindows or via word of mouth. Sand sculptures, crazy games, friedchicken, bucket co*cktails and fire-jugglers are usually all part ofthe party scene. Those who prefer a more sedate evening can retireto a pub for a game of pool or darts, or sip co*cktails in alaid-back lounge to the tune of some modern classics.

Things to be aware of in Koh Tao

Visitors should check the tide as often as possible, as it canbe so low during a full moon that getting past the reef to snorkelcan be a problem.



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The holiday resort of Port d'Alcudia is situated in the north ofMallorca at the top of a long curving bay with a seemingly endlesswhite sandy beach. It is two miles (3km) south of the historicalold town of Alcudia, from which it takes its name. The sprawling,purpose-built resort, together with its neighbour Playa de Muro,stretches for five miles (8km) either side of the coast road and isparticularly popular with British, German, and Scandinavianholidaymakers. It has a fairly relaxed atmosphere, and itsspectacular beach is the major attraction. It is also well placedfor exploring the attractions around the north of the island.

Shopping in Alcudia

Alcudia doesn't have a distinct shopping district: shops sellingbuckets and spades and tourist trinkets line the beach road and theother small shopping areas dotted around the resort cater mainly toholidaymakers. The satellite resort of Playa de Muro has anupmarket mall with some nice boutiques and the port area has aselection of designer shops. The supermarkets are good, stockingall the well-known brands along with cheap alcohol and cigarettes.The local market opens on Tuesday and Sunday mornings and themarket in Inca, 15 miles (24km) inland, opens on Thursdays. Goodbuys include the porcelain and leather goods, but it is a good ideato bargain hard.

Dining in Alcudia

Most restaurants in Alcudia cater to holidaymakers andunadventurous palates, with plenty of fast-food joints and cafés.There are also a few Italian, Indian, and Chinese restaurants. Thebetter restaurants are mostly in the port area, where diners canfind some decent Spanish, French, and seafood restaurants within alovely harbour setting. Alcudia's recommended restaurants includeGarlanda, Rancho Chico, Bistro Mar, and Nova Marina, as well as CasCapella and Casa Galega.

Activities in Alcudia

Alcudia has lots of bars, pubs and discos catering for mosttastes but this is not the resort for holidaymakers after someserious clubbing; for a bit of dancing, try the Mentra Disco. Manyof the hotels offer in-house entertainment ranging from flamencodancing demonstrations to stand-up comedy.

Things to be aware of in Alcudia

The resort of Alcudia is not known for its architectural merit;its skyline is dominated by 1960s style apartment blocks. To therelief of many, Alcudia is not the resort for party animals; thoselooking for some serious clubbing should head for the south of theisland.



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With over three miles (5km) of golden shoreline, Sitges is theperfect weekend break for tourists wishing to experience Spanishresorts without straying too far from Barcelona. One of the mostpopular holiday resort towns south of Barcelona, Sitges is 21 miles(45km) from the city. With more than 17 sand beaches, many of themwith EU Blue Flag status, it is easy to see why Sitges has beencalled the 'Playground of Barcelona'. Renowned for its nightlife,Sitges attracts thousands of holidaymakers, including many youngday trippers from Barcelona. The city is gay-friendly, expensive,and decidedly arty, said to be the town where the modernistmovement began when it attracted artists such as Santiago Rusinoland Salvador Dali. Rusinol's home in the town has been turned intoa museum, displaying some of his works. Beachgoers andholidaymakers in Sitges can enjoy a number of activities and sightsin and around the town. It also plays host to the popular SitgesFilm Festival, which specialises in fantasy and horror film genres.Most people visit Sitges primarily for the beautiful sandy beaches.Between the church at one end of the town and the Terramar Hotel atthe other extremity there are nine breakwaters, each shelteringgently sloping golden beaches equipped with showers, refreshmentkiosks, and sunloungers for rent.

Shopping in Sitges

Shopping in Sitges generally revolves around a number of smallboutique shops and a range of designer stores such as UnitedColours of Benetton, Lacoste and Adolfo Dominguez. Most shops inSitges are located along Calle Major and Calle Francesc. Shops areopen from 10am until 8pm with a siesta break at around 2pm.Supermarkets in Sitges stock all the groceries and food items thatholidaymakers would need for a fun beach vacation. Buying yourgroceries from shops located close to the beach is more expensive,while the larger supermarkets towards the back of the town are morereasonably priced. Many visitors to Sitges prefer to shop at thelocal markets, such as the food market next to the trainstation.

Dining in Sitges

Sitges has a fine selection of restaurant options and perhapsthe most difficult part of dining out in the resort is choosingfrom the long list of fine dining options available. Mezzanine onCarrer de Espalter, Fragata and La Salseta have all garnered ravereviews. As with most Spanish coastal towns seafood and tapas arethe dishes of choice, but diners should be wary of ordering seafoodon a Monday as the catch may not always be fresh.

Activities in Sitges

Sitges caters for all tastes but the gay community isparticularly prominent and the local Gay Pages booklet publishes amonthly list of some of the most hip and happening pink parties andclubs in Sitges. Other popular nightspots include Trailer, for itsweekly foam parties, Organic and Atlantida. There are numerous pubsand bars to choose from. Being so close to one of Europe's topparty cities, many Sitges holidaymakers choose to party inBarcelona on weekends, particularly on Saturday nights.

Things to be aware of in Sitges

During the peak summer season, and Carnival at the beginning ofyear, Sitges can be crowded and expensive. Those travelling at thistime will need to book well in advance. Sitges is also one ofEurope's premier gay holiday destinations and there are many nudebeaches; visitors of a more conservative disposition and those withyoung children should bear this in mind.



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Albeit a purpose-built resort with somewhat unattractivearchitecture, the holiday destination of Tignes is one of Europe'shighest resorts and offers some of the best snow conditions in theAlps, with excellent snow cover and a place to ski almost yearround thanks to the high-altitude Grand Motte glacier. An excellentlift system links the holiday resort of Tignes to its neighbour Vald'Isère and together they form the vast ski area known as Vald'Isère (formerly Espace Killy), with 193 miles (310km) oflift-linked trails and an area that is regarded as one of Europe'sbest and most beautiful ski areas.

Tignes is made up of three villages: Val Claret is the highestand is situated at the foot of the glacier; Tignes Le Lac, with itsstunning setting on the lake, is the largest; and the modern TignesLe Lavachet is further down. Two small villages below, Tignes LesBrévières and Tignes Les Boisses, are directly linked to the skiarea and provide a more traditional atmosphere with charmingchalets, narrow streets and picturesque churches. All five villagesare connected by a free bus service.

Shopping in Tignes

With more than 150 shops, holiday visitors wanting to shop tillthey drop will be able to find almost everything in the resortarea, from upmarket French boutiques to sports equipment andtourist items. Markets offer homemade goods with a traditionalFrench flavour.

Dining in Tignes

Many restaurants in Tignes cater to the different tastes andbudgets of all holidaymakers, with a wide selection ofinternational cuisine and local Savoyard fare, from American-stylefast food, pizzerias and a taste of Mexico to crèperies and chickencordon bleu.

Activities in Tignes

The nightlife in Tignes is relatively quiet, and those seeking amore active scene will have to head to neighbouring Val d'Isère.Numerous bars and cafes cater to the off-the-slopes crowd, andseveral discos shake until the early hours, but the villageauthorities do not tolerate wild partying in the streets andgeneral rowdiness is likely to bring on a large fine or a visit tothe local jail. Tignes Le Lac and Val Claret are the liveliestvillages.

Things to be aware of in Tignes

Tignes is a purpose-built resort and those seeking a traditionalFrench-chalet style atmosphere may be disappointed. The resort ispopular and prices are accordingly high. The nightlife andaprès-ski action is limited.

Skiing in Tignes

The ski area is large and varied, with terrain suitable to alllevels of skiers and snowboarders. Val d'Isère is known for itsfantastic off-piste and has good lift access. The Grand Motteglacier, at 11,335 feet (3,455m), has a wide variety of runs, frombeginner slopes to challenging off-pistes for experts.

Beginners will also find plenty of nursery slopes in thevillages and some nice easy runs in Val d'Isère; most beginnertrails are lower down and therefore less favourable during thesummer skiing season, although snow machines are used. Longer greenruns are available in the Val d'Isère area, with special lifttickets offered. Skiing and snowboarding schools teach all levelsin private or group lessons.

Intermediates have a large choice of groomed runs in both Tignesand the Val d'Isère area, with Bellevarde offering some challengingruns. Expert skiers and boarders have some of the best off-pisteskiing in France at hand and an assortment of steep, narrow slopes,cliffs and deep gullies to choose from. The Aiguille Percéedownhill course is famous in this area, but avalanches areprevalent; other well-known runs are Lavachet Wall, and the DoubleM. For those who enjoy the challenge of moguls there are someexcellent runs at Tovière.

Whistler Blackcomb


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Consistently rated as the number one skiresort in North America and among the best in the world, the resortof Whistler Blackcomb is just a two-hour drive from the city ofVancouver in the Coast Mountain range.

The village of Whistler lies cradled in avalley between two mountains, Whistler and Blackcomb, that rise up5,280ft (1,609m) to provide more than 8,100 acres of prime mountainterrain, including 12 alpine bowls and three glaciers.

There are more than 200 marked ski trailsto enjoy while on holiday at Whistler Blackcomb. In fact, thestate-of-the-art facilities at Whistler provided the cross-country,biathlon, Nordic combined and ski jumping venues for the 2010Winter Olympics.

The resort offers cutting-edge lifts thatcan carry 60,000 skiers per hour to jump-off points throughout thearea. With two million visitors coming on holiday to WhistlerBlackcomb every year, such lift capacity becomes a necessity.Skiers and snowboarders flock here from the world over, not for theweather (which can often be wet and foggy), but for the exceptionalvariety of skiing.

The village of Whistler is set around acluster of small lakes and is British Columbia's fastest-growingmunicipality. It boasts a quaint village atmosphere and offersshopping areas and après-ski restaurants bordered by squeaky-cleanstreets. In summertime, Whistler Blackcomb is a popular holidaydestination when the focus shifts to outdoor activities such asmountain biking, hiking and fishing.

Snowfall is rare in the city of Vancouver,but is more than adequate for the ski slopes on the Coast Mountainsto the north where Whistler is situated. As with all Canadian skiresorts, Whistler can get bitterly cold so go prepared for theoccasional blizzard.

In general though, temperatures aremoderate throughout the winter season, rarely dipping below 12°F(-10°C) in the valley and 5°F (-15°C) on the peaks during thecoldest part of the year. The average daily alpine temperatureduring most of the winter months is 22°F (-5°C).

Shopping in Whistler Blackcomb

If the glare of the snow becomes a bit too much while on holidayin Whistler Blackcomb, take time out to explore the shopper'sparadise which is the village of Whistler. In the quaint plazas ofWhistler Village, Upper Village, and Village North nestle about 150attractive shops, boutiques, and art galleries, open seven days aweek. Warm interiors beckon with a wide variety of merchandise,from native artwork and jewellery to high fashion for labellovers.

Dining in Whistler Blackcomb

Comfortable and casual are the keywords for dining while onholiday in Whistler Blackcomb, with a choice of more than 80top-class restaurants offering a variety of cuisines covering theflavours of the world. There are options from luxury fine dining tosmall bistros and cafés.

Activities in Whistler Blackcomb

Whistler rocks with some of the best nightlife in BritishColumbia. Visitors on holiday in Whistler Blackcomb can browse theoptions presented in the holiday resort's news magazine, The Pique,which provides updated bar and nightclub listings everyThursday.

Live music, pool tables, sports bars, and even comedy clubs canbe found in Whistler, in the collection of nightclubs, co*cktailbars, and pubs. Whistler's public transportation system runs untilabout 3.30am to accommodate the nightlife crowd.

Things to be aware of in Whistler Blackcomb

As with all Canadian ski resorts, Whistler Blackcomb can getvery cold so go prepared for the occasional blizzard. The resortcan be overrun with young partygoers around the holidays, and shopsand accommodation can be expensive.

Skiing in Whistler Blackcomb

Both the Whistler and Blackcomb mountains offer ahuge variety of skiing for all standards of skiers. Generally,Whistler has more scenic alpine bowls while Blackcomb has more treeruns. Beginners will particularly enjoy the Green Line, a verylong, gentle run from the upper terminal of the 7th Heaven Expressin Blackcomb.

Whistler and Blackcomb also offer a massive choice ofon- and off-piste skiing for intermediate and advanced skiers andsnowboarders. Experts will be challenged by the black-diamondchutes running off the back of the Horstman glacier below the MileHigh summit. Due to the crisp temperature, powder skiing inWhistler is often touted as the best in the world. Whistler andBlackcomb are very family friendly with child-minding services andall-day ski lessons for children.



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Probably because it was purpose-built, the holiday destinationof Flaine is one of the most user-friendly ski resorts in France:compact, with easy access to the pistes, and a location thatensures exceptional snow conditions. Flaine is situated beneathMont Blanc, near Geneva, at the gateway to 'Le Grand Massif', oneof the best ski and snowboard areas of France. From the nurseryslopes, to an easy glide on the nearly nine mile (14km) blueCascade run, or the off-piste challenge of the Combe de Gers,Flaine is a trend-setting, family-orientated resort that caters forall levels of skiers and boarders.

Consisting of concrete apartment blocks built on three levelsalong the slopes, at an altitude of 5,250 feet (1,600m), in thecentre of a natural bowl, this, the youngest resort in the FrenchAlps, may not sound particularly appealing. Flaine may not conformto the archetypal image of the Alpine village, but it has beenarchitecturally designed for comfort and convenience, and visitorsare amazed at how the buildings blend in with the limestone oftheir surroundings. The three levels, Flaine-Foret, Flaine-Forumand Flaine-Front de Neige, are connected by elevators andpedestrian trails. The centre is car-free, with restaurants, barsand services grouped around two central shopping plazas. Allactivities are either close and easily accessible, or in the resortcentre. There is also a cultural centre where classical and jazzmusic events are scheduled, a library and an art gallery. Thoughnot exactly a fashionable destination, Flaine is increasing inpopularity, particularly as a family ski resort, and caters verywell for children.

Shopping in Flaine

Cleary holidaymakers do not come to Flaine to shop, but to ski,as none of the resorts sport designer boutiques or glitzy malls.Shopping arcades contain the necessities for visitors; those whofind they need sunglasses or gloves, will easily find some, butthose set on fashionable shopping sprees will be disappointed.There is a supermarket and bakery for self-caterers, and servicessuch as a post office and hair-stylist. Serious shoppers will haveto save their credit cards for a spree in Geneva on the wayhome.

Dining in Flaine

Most holiday visitors to Flaine come on package deals, whichinclude dining in the hotel, but for those who want a change ofscene, Flaine has about two-dozen establishments offering a varietyof typical French cuisine, traditional fondues, or pizza andsnacks.

Activities in Flaine

Being primarily a family holiday resort, Flaine is not a hecticparty spot. Après ski can be enjoyed at The White Pub (formerly TheWhite Grouse), which has a good atmosphere, and at some low-keydisco and karaoke establishments.

Things to be aware of in Flaine

While the skiing is great for novices and intermediates, expertsmight find the slopes lack challenges. Although the scenery ismagnificent, Flaine lacks the charm and atmosphere of a traditionalAlpine resort.

Skiing in Flaine

The majority of Flaine's marked ski runs are suited tointermediate skiers, but there are also some challenging adventuretrails for experts. The breathtaking view from the cable carstation atop Les Grandes Platieres gives a perspective on thevariety of terrain, lifts and trails spread out in threedirections. Flaine is connected by a system of lifts to the moretraditional resorts of Les Carroz, Morillon and Samoens, offeringaltogether a huge ski-circus of 78 lifts and more than 160 miles(257km) of trails. There are 16 black, 54 red, 47 blue, and 15green pistes, along with a 'hot' snowpark for snowboarders (the JamPark), and about 40 miles (64km) of cross-country. There areseveral excellent ski and snowboarding schools available forbeginners, and excellent nursery slopes close to the resort. Thealtitude virtually guarantees good snow coverage from December toMay.



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Originally developed as a town for resort workers from Punta Cana, Bavaro quickly became a holiday resort in its own right when hotels started springing up along its tropical eastern coast. Ideally situated on the famous Costa del Coco (Coconut Coast) and known for its six miles (10km) of pristine, sandy white beaches and shimmering crystal waters, Bavaro's vast stretches of beach rarely experience overcrowding, and so everyone can have their very own piece of holiday paradise! For more adventurous travellers, a trip off the not-so-beaten track to the nearby town of Cortecito, the only fishing village left on this stretch, is an absolute must. This little village, known as the downtown area of Punta-Cana-Bavaro, where friendly local vendors can be found selling their wares along the edges of palm-fringed beaches, is frequented mostly by backpackers and independent European travellers intent on having a truly authentic Dominican experience.

Shopping in Bavaro

There are three main shopping centres where shopaholics on holiday in Bavaro can spend, among other things, their time. Bavaro Shopping Centre is the main place to look for clothing, while the Plaza Bavaro offers almost everything from boutiques, gift shops, souvenir shops, jewellery stores, pharmacies and beach clothing stores. Palma Real Shopping Centre is a great place to buy cigars, and outside many of the hotels are flea markets where Bavaro locals can be found peddling their wares.

Dining in Bavaro

Most of the hotels and holiday resorts in Bavaro offer an array of eateries; some even have up to six or seven à la carte restaurants. A few restaurants can be found on Plaza Bavaro serving some wonderfully exotic Dominican fare. Bavaro Cortecito has plenty of other options for those looking to escape their hotels for the evening, Captain Cook's being the most frequented. When the moon is full, head on over to the Jellyfish Restaurant on Bavaro Beach where live entertainment can be found.

Activities in Bavaro

Like most things in Bavaro, the nightlife is mostly concentrated in the hotels and holiday resorts, although the nearby town of Cortecito sees some of the most dedicated party-goers in its clubs. Disco Mangu is one of the most popular clubs and a favourite for people to let loose and dance the night away while on holiday. Plaza Bavaro also offers some wonderful bars ideal for relaxing and enjoying a pint.

Things to be aware of in Bavaro

The hotel nightlife leaves a lot to be desired and party-animals are warned that Bavoro may be a little boring. It is geared more towards couples and older travellers.

Puerto Costa Maya


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Mexico's newest port, Puerto Costa Maya, is the first port on Mexico's Caribbean Coast to have been built exclusively for cruise ships and cruise holiday visitors. Situated on the Yucatan Peninsula, near the fishing village of Majahual, Puerto Costa Maya is the fastest growing cruise port in the Caribbean and consists of three grand pavilions in the ancient Mayan style. The grand pavilions are a commercial, cultural and entertainment hub offering dining, shopping and recreational facilities, a swimming pool and swim-up bar, local performances in the amphitheatre, and art and craft galleries showcasing the region's local artists and their art. In short, it has been custom-made to provide all the things cruise passengers could want on holiday and the carefully designed infrastructure is tailored particularly to holidaymakers. Beyond the pavilions, Costa Maya provides access to undeveloped areas of coastline, colourful reefs and shipwrecks for diving and snorkelling, and some ancient Mayan sites to explore. Puerto Costa Maya tour operators offer dune buggy tours, Mayan sites like Kohunlich and Dzibanche, and kayak adventures. Free shuttles transport passengers regularly between the pier complex and their ships.

Shopping in Puerto Costa Maya

Passengers alighting from cruise ships in Puerto Costa Maya are carried by shuttle to the Mayan-inspired port complex, which boasts 70,000 square feet (6,503sq m) of shops and a bazaar. On offer are a wide variety of typical Mexican holiday souvenirs, especially local crafts, as well as designer perfumes, leather goods, and jewellery. The bazaar stallholders expect bartering to take place.

Dining in Puerto Costa Maya

The Puerto Costa Maya port complex contains some fast food outlets and eateries, but visitors docking here who want to enjoy a leisurely local meal can take a stroll into the fishing village of Majahual, where there are several small, rustic restaurants along the beach serving up Mexican favourites, as well as delicious lobster and fresh fish. For something a little upmarlet, try Leaky Palapa Restaurant. The Krazy Lobster offers cheap and delicious seafood right on the beach.

Activities in Puerto Costa Maya

As it is mainly a cruise destination, visitors to Puerto Costa Maya tend to be day-trippers who do not spend evenings at the port. Those who find themselves overnighting will no doubt be staying in a beach cabana in Majahual, where the only entertainment is to sip margaritas in an unsophisticated open-air beach bar under the stars. This lack of a nightlife scene is considered an advantage by some holidaymakers.

Things to be aware of in Puerto Costa Maya

Puerto Costa Maya can sometimes experience hurricanes and tropical storms. Hurricane season runs from June to November and visitors to the region during this time should take care to check weather and storm forecasts.

Copper Mountain


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Copper Mountain is the largest holiday resort, in terms of area,in the whole of Summit County Colorado. The resort, owned by PowdrCorporation, is an incredibly popular holiday destination and notedespecially for its varying terrain and diverse runs. CopperMountain boasts three villages filled with shops, restaurants, barsand a variety of accommodation. The village of Copper is the centreof the holiday resort and most of the action takes place aroundhere. The East Village and Union Creek (on the west side of CopperMountain) have fewer restaurants and shops. Former owner,Intrawest, put a lot of money into the upgrading of the villages,with massive amounts of construction aiding to bring up thestandard and reputation to where it stands today. Copper Mountainis now one of the most popular holiday resorts in the whole ofColorado and continues to attract visitors from within the UnitedStates and worldwide.

Shopping in Copper Mountain

There are shops located throughout the villages of the CopperMountain holiday resort, selling a variety of ski and snowboardinggear, clothing, jewellery and souvenirs. A number of outdoorequipment stores sell everything necessary for hitting the slopes,and a number of clothing brands are represented. Those looking forsouvenirs will also find plenty of handicrafts and trinkets onsale.

Dining in Copper Mountain

While on holiday in the Copper Mountain resort, there issomething for every taste. There are some fine dining options forspecial occasions but budget travellers will also find an array ofhearty eateries selling reasonably priced food.

Activities in Copper Mountain

Although not the best holiday resort for nightlife in the RockyMountains, Copper Mountain has a few bars and clubs that will besure to meet apres-ski needs.

Things to be aware of in Copper Mountain

Copper Mountain can get very busy over the Christmas and NewYear holiday period and over Spring Break.

Skiing in Copper Mountain

The Copper Mountain holiday resort has a lot to offer skiers andriders of all levels. Towards Union Creek are the beginners' slopeswhere the ski schools heads out to teach newcomers, or those simplyin need of a refresher course, on the gentler green runs. TheVillage at Copper is more suited to intermediate skiers and riders,while nearby the East Village hides some of the black and doubleblack runs for advanced skiers and riders. There are four bowls:Copper, Union, Spaulding and Resolution, for the confident andexperienced.



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The largest holiday resort town on the north of the Costa Bravais the busy, crowded port of Roses, thought to have been founded bythe ancient Greeks but sporting few remnants today of its longhistory besides a crumbling citadel and sections of city wall.Instead the harbour town, where once a handful of British sailorsrepulsed an attack by Napoleon, is now a mass of typical high-riseresort developments, rising in tiers from a busy harbour and a fewmiles of man-made sandy beach, abuzz with holidaymakers indulgingin all kinds of water sports. There is an aquatic park, go-karts,numerous take-away and fast food restaurants, scuba centres,cruises from the harbour and many more tourist amenities. The townis the only beach resort in the region that faces west, making itfamous for its sunsets over the Gulf of Roses. Roses is a large andpopular resort with an energetic nightlife, some good restaurantsand many beautiful beaches nearby. It is suitable for relaxedfamily holidays and popular with the 18 to 30 age group in searchof sun, sand and a party.

Shopping in Roses

Most of the shops in Roses are concentrated near the beachfrontarea. There are a few good markets around the town centre sellinglocally made holiday souvenirs such as jewellery, leather goods,and fabric. The best market is held in Roses every Sunday. Althoughnot considered a shopper's paradise, Roses certainly provideseverything holidaymakers may need on a resort holiday.

Dining in Roses

For many years Roses was famous for the celebrated El Bullirestaurant, generally considered one of the best restaurants in theworld, but it has sadly closed. There are, however, still a numberof good restaurants in Roses, which has a reputation as one of thebetter resorts as far as eating out is concerned. There are severaltraditional eateries serving excellent local Catalan cuisine; trythe suquet de peix, a stew made from fresh fish and shellfish. Thearea around Xines Mulan has a range of cuisine from Mexican toChinese food, and some steak houses.

Activities in Roses

Roses' nightlife is bustling, with every option from liveflamenco music to thumping house clubs. New Orleans, in AvenidaClot dels Franquets Nord, is home to the most clubs, and popularvenues include Octopuss*, Picasso, and Chic. Roses hosts regularfiestas and festivals, on almost a monthly basis. The resort can benoisy at night due to all the revelry, but those wanting a quieterholiday can get accommodation a little further out from the centralparty hub.

Things to be aware of in Roses

Some neighbouring beaches are nudist beaches and familiestravelling with children should take this into account beforebooking a holiday.

Ocean City


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Ocean City is Maryland's number one summer holiday resort, with so many visitors during the peak summer months that it becomes the second largest city in the state for the season. It is not the place to enjoy a quiet holiday by the sea, especially on weekends or during the college holidays, when hordes of students looking for a party swamp the town.

With more than 10 miles (16km) of white sandy beaches and pounding surf, Ocean City presents itself as an attractive holiday resort, dominated by the famous old boardwalk that is lined with shops, bars and restaurants, flashing neon signs and holiday condos. Among the ice-cream stands and all-night fast-food franchises are hotels dating back to the 1920s. The fishing pier at the end of the Ocean City boardwalk has an amusem*nt park with a huge Ferris wheel. There are plenty of activities including boating and deep-sea fishing, mini-golf courses, tram rides as well as the beaches.

To escape the holiday crowds in Ocean City, the Assateague Island National Seashore is a 37-mile (60km) stretch of wild and undeveloped beach and marshland that extends into Virginia. Little brown and white ponies are the only inhabitants that roam the dunes and graze in the grassy marshes. The main roads and paths can be crowded in summer with people coming to see the legendary wild ponies, but a short way off the main routes will bring the peace one may be looking for, but clouds of mosquitoes tend to plague even the most intrepid explorers.

Shopping in Ocean City

For avid holiday shoppers, Ocean City's 20-block Boardwalk and the town's Gold Coast Mall are the stuff of dreams, bursting with speciality and boutique shops, as well as a number of brand name factory outlets. Souvenir shopping is particularly enjoyable with a host of fascinating things to seek out and take home. Golfers are well advised to check out the local golf shops where bargains are to be had.

Dining in Ocean City

Ocean City prides itself in tempting the taste buds of all ages and persuasions in keeping with its affordable family holiday image, but the gourmet's choice in this resort is irresistible fresh seafood including clams, mussels, oysters, crab and lobster. The city has more than 22,000 restaurant seats, most of them al fresco with views of the Bay, and that is without the take-away and delivery joints, many of the restaurants touting 'all you can eat' banquets, and dinner cruises.

Besides delicious seafood visitors can take their pick of a gamut of international flavours like Chinese, French, Italian and Mexican. Recommendations include Smoker's BBQ Pit for ribs and chicken, On the Bay Seafood for Maryland crabs, and the the award-winning fa*ger's Island Restaurant with its spacious outdoor decks.

Activities in Ocean City

After the sun sets, Ocean City's Boardwalk and the Ocean Highway lights up as party-seekers explore the hundreds of clubs, pubs and bars offering a wide variety of attractions from hot deejays to live entertainment and dancing.

Things to be aware of in Ocean City

Ocean city is urbanised, a little noisy and can get extremely crowded during the summer months. Not the best holiday resort for those looking for some peace and quiet.

Sunday River


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Located in the small town of Newry, Sunday River is one of NewEngland's most visited and celebrated ski resorts and among themost popular in Maine. The resort is more than three miles (5km)wide with terrain suited to skiers of all abilities. In fact, fewresorts in the north eastern United States can rival the uniquediversity and classic New England skiing of Sunday River.Conveniently located about three hours from Boston, familiestravelling with kids in tow can enjoy a relatively painless journeyto the resort, making it an ideal family holiday destination. Dueto the wide variety of terrain, Sunday River is generally free oflong queues for ski lifts (great for those with kids) and crowdedslopes, making it a great place to let loose and have some fun!

Shopping in Sunday River

The shopping in the nearby town of Bethel just seven miles away(11 km) away is enough to meet most shopaholics' requirements. Themain street is the place to go where almost 30 shops, boutiques andspecialist stores line the sidewalks. Visitors can head to SundayRiver Alpacas for scarves, gloves and beanies made from warm andcosy Alpaca wool, while Mt. Mann Jewelers is the place to buyjewellery made from gemstones mined locally in Maine.

Dining in Sunday River

The dining out scene in Sunday River offers plenty of varietyand between the slopes and the nearby town of Bethel, holidaymakerswill find everything from pizzerias and burger joints to finedining and sushi. The on-mountain restaurants are serviced by theresort trolley system, while the access road and Bethel eateriesare serviced by the Mountain Explorer shuttle, making dining outfor holiday makers a joy. Visitors can head to Camp for comfortfood and Maine specialities done with a sophisticated twist, whileSliders offers sweeping views of the Jordan Bowl and is one of themost popular dinner eateries in the resort.

Activities in Sunday River

Sunday River's apres ski is a classic bar scene with many of thelodge bars being the local hangouts. The Foggy Goggle is the placeto go for live music, good beer and delicious food after a long dayon the slopes; the Barker Pub in Barker Mountain Lodge is a greatlocal's spot where skiers can enjoy a drink on the deck overlookingthe Barker and Locke Mountains; and the Shipyard Brew Haus at WhiteCap Lodge features entertainment throughout the entire season.

Things to be aware of in Sunday River

Many skiers may feel that Sunday River does not live up to thestandard of nearby Sugarloaf, and the abundance of families andchildren might not appeal to those looking for a moresingles-friendly resort.

Skiing in Sunday River

Sunday River features 135 trails spanning across eightinterconnected mountain peaks, which are serviced by 18 lifts. Theterrain is suited mostly to intermediates and beginners,particularly Barker Mountain, Aurora, Spruce and North Peak.Advanced and expert skiers head for Oz or White Cap located at theeastern end of the resort, which features some of the resort's mostchallenging runs like White Heat, or Obsession. Jordon Bowl, whichboasts Sunday River's most stunning scenery, is suitable for allskill levels and features some of the resort's best runs.



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The beautiful Colorado high mountain valley and holidaydestination of Breckenridge first attracted settlers back in 1859,when the glitter of gold drew hundreds of hopeful prospectors tothe banks of the Blue River. The gold wore out in the 1940s, but,like Aspen, Breckenridge soon boomed again, this time as aworld-class ski resort where visitors came seeking thrills andspills on the white powdery slopes. When it comes to snow-sports,Breckenridge is acknowledged as one of the finest places in the USAto experience them all, and it has a reputation for being the bestplace to learn to ski in the US, with more than 600 professionalinstructors and plenty of gentle beginner slopes available.Breckenridge is also a haven for snowboarders, having been one ofthe first resorts in the country to cater for this now boomingsport. The quaint mining town with its charming Victorian buildingsforms the nucleus of the Breckenridge resort, and has become ayear-round popular holiday destination with a host of activities onoffer during the summer months as well as exceptional skiing inwinter. The resort's popularity is enhanced by its easyaccessibility from Denver via the Eisenhower Tunnel, the drivetaking about an hour and a half.

Shopping in Breckenridge

Avid shoppers are extremely well catered for in the historictown of Breckenridge and holiday makers with a view to spend won'tbe disappointed. Although downtown Breckenridge is fairly small,with the main street less than a mile long, there are more than 250shops and boutiques offering a vast array of goods, from logfurniture to wigs! A good percentage of the stores offer sportsgoods and outdoor clothing, so visitors have a wide choice fromwhich to equip themselves for the slopes. Speciality, jewellery andgift shops also abound, along with a crop of galleries, purepleasure for browsing if visitors want to take home a genuineStetson, Navajo rug or one of hundreds of trinkets, novelties,paintings or pots.

Dining in Breckenridge

Holiday visitors will find that eating out is essential inBreckenridge because there are just so many good options to choosefrom. Those craving Alpine fare will enjoy the fondue and rostipotatoes at the Swiss Haven, while any sweet tooth will be wellsatisfied with the delicious desserts for which The Hearthstone isrenowned. There are several fine dining establishments, but cheapmeals are also available.

Activities in Breckenridge

Apres-ski in Breckenridge is a feast of fun, with the eveningusually kicking off in one of the many lively bars and restaurants,which offer happy hour specials. Nightlife establishments come andgo but there is always somewhere to dance the night away atBreckenridge. For a change of pace visitors can enjoy a productionat the Backstage Theatre, which offers a programme of live showsthrough the season.

Things to be aware of in Breckenridge

Because of the high elevation of the resort and its mountains,ranging from 9,603ft to 12,999ft (2,927m to 3,962m), some peoplemay suffer from the effects of altitude sickness and require a fewdays of inactivity to acclimatise. The north and east facing slopesare prone to high wind-chill factors.

Skiing in Breckenridge

The high altitude of the slopes means abundant, long lastingsnow. While Breckenridge is largely a paradise for intermediateskiers and snowboarders, there is terrain suited to all levels frombeginners to expert skiers. Peak 8 and the area between Peaks 9 and10 is excellent for beginners, with a variety of long, flat trails,and Peak 7 has gentle, but more difficult runs to progress to.Intermediates can enjoy moguls, wide-open bowls and miles ofgroomed trails, while the steep canyon between Peaks 8 and 9 is oneof the expert slopes for advanced skiers, along with Lake Chutes,tree skiing on Peak 9 and Horseshoe or Imperial Bowl. The longesttrail in the area is Four O'Clock, a four-mile (6km) run.

Roquetas de Mar


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The popular holiday resort town of Roquetas de Mar, one of themajor resorts in Costa de Almeria, was once a sleepy, picturesquefishing village, dating from Roman times, and it still retains itswarren of Moorish alley-like streets and pretty aspect ofwhite-washed houses ascending the hillside. Hotel and apartmentcomplexes, however, are beginning to dominate the skylineespecially along the long, sandy beaches adjacent to the village.Tourism is big business along the holiday strip in Roquetas de Mar,with shops selling local crafts jostling with numerous restaurantsand bars, and myriad activities on offer from horse riding to scubadiving or sailing. Roquetas has an 18-hole golf course (at PlayaSerena), a bull ring and a specially designated nudist beach. Thoseinterested in history will enjoy exploring the ruins of themedieval Castilla de Santa Ana and other fortifications in thearea, and bird-watchers have a treat in store at the Las Marinassalt marsh and Punta Entinas beaches a few miles south of thevillage, where flamingos, egrets and avocets gather. The resort ispopular with both Spanish and foreign tourists and the spaciousbeaches ensure that it feels less over-crowded than many otherSpanish beach resorts.

Shopping in Roquetas de Mar

Shopping in Roquetas is aimed at tourists, with the usualsouvenir options like postcards, t-shirts, and beachwear. There area few markets worth visiting, particularly the Thursday open-airmarket.

Dining in Roquetas de Mar

Costa de Almeria is known for its fresh produce and seafood, andthe port of Roquetas de Mar receives its fresh catch every morning.Visitors will find many great seafood restaurants and tapas bars onthe promenade. There are a variety of international restaurants tosuit tourists' tastes, but a great way to sample local cuisine isat one of the many tapas restaurants. British and American staplesare easily found and the selection of restaurants should be morethan sufficient for all tastes.

Activities in Roquetas de Mar

There isn't much of a nightclub culture in Roquetas de Mar, butthe hotels offer a variety of entertainment for a low-key nightout, including live music and shows. The Teatro Auditorio hostsclassical music and dance performances. A few hotels have their owndiscotheques, including the dancing rooms at the Sabinal andZoraida hotels. The Bull Ring also offers live entertainment. M25is a popular British themed sports pub for tourists.

Things to be aware of in Roquetas de Mar

Jellyfish tend to visit the shores of Roquetas de Mar which canmake swimming and water activities difficult; the town has tried toput buoys and netting up to stop the jellyfish but tourists shouldstill take precautions. Entertainment and nightlife is very lowkey.

Kos Town


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Kos has been home to Persians, Romans, Venetians, Ottomans andthe Knights of St John. Today, it's a fascinating town and popularholiday destination, with a busy nightlife of bars, restaurants andlocal tavernas. Sadly, the main beach is a fairly narrow, shingleaffair packed with beach chairs and umbrellas, though betterbeaches are just a short bus journey away. Kos Town is perfectlysituated for taking boat trips to Turkey and nearby islands.

Shopping in Kos Town

Kos Town is the major shopping destination on the island.Visitors will find a number of souvenir shops, as well as marketsselling spices, olive oil, and seashells. Popular souvenirs includejewellery and leather goods.

Dining in Kos Town

Kos has many restaurants clustered along the waterfront andaround the main square, ranging from traditional Greek to Italianand Chinese.

Activities in Kos Town

There are bars, pubs and tavernas scattered all over Kos Town,but the aptly named 'bar street' is the place to go at night. Theparty lasts until dawn in the warmer months and offers an eclecticmix of music, from local bouzouki orchestras to thumping electronicbeats.

Things to be aware of in Kos Town

The nearest sand beaches are several miles from town, and thenightlife can be overwhelming for tourists looking for a quieterholiday.



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Borovets is the oldest and largest ski resort in Bulgaria and is a favourite for beginners and families looking for a good-value ski holiday destination. The resort is situated on the northern slopes of the Rila Mountains at the foot of Moussala, the highest peak in the country. Nestled among old pine forests, the resort was founded in 1896 as a hunting lodge for kings and aristocrats and gradually developed into a modern resort with luxury hotels, restaurants and a superb network of ski runs varying in difficulty. There is also a wide choice of off-slope entertainment and nightlife as well as organised trips to places of interest in the Rila Mountains. Winters are mild and snowy and the air is clean, clear and invigorating. Borovets is a short 90 minute transfer from the airport in Sofia.

Shopping in Borovets

The busy shopping street in front of the Rila Hotel is a beehive of open-fronted small shops, with a colourful market atmosphere, selling all sorts of goods from ski gear to souvenirs. The prices here much lower than elsewhere in Europe.

Dining in Borovets

Most people go to Borovets on a package holiday, staying in a self-catering apartment or at one of the big hotels that have their own bars and restaurants. Those looking for a change of scenery will find that there are plenty of excellent restaurants in town serving international cuisine and traditional Bulgarian dishes, along with delicious local wines. There are also British-style pubs, burger bars and pizza restaurants. The mountain restaurants offer traditional warming stew and fast food alike.

Activities in Borovets

Every night is party time when it comes to Borovets' nightlife, as it has a reputation for being one of the hotspots on the European ski circuit and a popular destination with lively holidaymakers. The fun is fuelled by the fact that drinks are cheap, there are long happy hours, and sometimes drinks are even offered for free. All the bars, clubs and discos serve well-known international brands as well as local beers like Astika, Zagorka and Kamenitza. Beware the national drink, rakia: it is a rather strong variety of plum brandy and not for the faint of heart.

Things to be aware of in Borovets

Borovets is perfect for those seeking a fun skiing holiday on a tight budget, but don't expect Three-Valleys sophistication. There are few challenging slopes for advaced skiers, and there is limited off-piste skiing. Borovets can appear almost abandoned in the summer, though there is good hiking.

Skiing in Borovets

The ski slopes are divided into two main sectors, with the Markoudjik sector offering the best skiing above the tree line, including the highest ski point reaching 8,333ft (2,540m). Borovets has a total of 22 miles (35km) of ski pistes, and has recently installed new lift facilities with lighting and sound systems, which allows for night skiing and snowboarding. The resort also boasts modern snowmaking machines ensuring that conditions stay excellent. Snowboarders enjoy the Rotata half-pipe with a vertical drop of 1,050ft (320m), suitable for advanced riders at its upper end and beginners at the lower end. The Borovets ski schools have an excellent reputation, with professional English-speaking instructors.

Squaw Valley


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The second largest holiday resort in Lake Tahoe receives over600,000 visitors annually and is regarded as one of the best skiresorts in the world. Squaw Valley was the site of the 1960 WinterOlympics (the first televised Winter Olympics) and has attractedmillions of holiday visitors to its varied terrain. Nowadays theresort is packed with several accommodation options, restaurants,bars, entertainment venues and shops while still retaining itsunspoilt, quintessentially Californian character. The resortattracts a mixed international crowd and is suitable for skiers ofall abilities.

Shopping in Squaw Valley

Skiing and snowboarding needs will be taken care of in shopsthat include Squaw Valley Outfitters and The North Face. There areother smaller grocery stores offering enough for all self-cateringneeds and several other novelty stores include Black Diamond WineExchange, and Double Diamond Jewelry, selling liquor, candles andshiny stones. Granite Chief ski shop can handle all tuning andwaxing needs. Megalithic shopping mall, The Village At SquawValley, will cover all remaining shopping needs.

Dining in Squaw Valley

There are any number of restaurants to suit just about allvisitors' tastes and budgets at Squaw Valley. Graham's at SquawValley remains an outstanding fine dining option while the FiresidePizza Company serves some of the best pizza in Tahoe. Focusing onNorthern Californian cuisine, Six Peaks Grille inside the Resort atSquaw Creek offers picturesque views, attentive service and a cosyatmosphere. Sandy's Pub serves up hearty comfort food and is theperfect spot for watching sport. Le Chamois and Loft Bar is theplace to go for lunch after a morning on the slopes or for anapres-ski beer at their legendary bar.

Activities in Squaw Valley

Not known for its apres-ski scene, Squaw Valley has a fewworthwhile nightspots of the down-to-earth variety. For anauthentic local scene, travellers should check out The Loft Bar.Long-time favourite The Auld Dubliner is a great place to savour afew pints after a hard day on the slopes and was originally a pubbuilt in Ireland until it was dismantled and brought all the way tothe US.

Things to be aware of in Squaw Valley

Squaw Valley can get quite busy over the Christmas and SpringBreak periods.

Skiing in Squaw Valley

At 9050 feet (2760m) above sea level and spread across six peaksand 4000 acres of terrain, there are enough runs for every level ofskier and snowboarder at the resort. In total there are 112different runs totalling 485 miles (782km). Unusually Squaw Valleydoes not mark trails on its piste map relying instead on a gradedlift markings. The resort attracts plenty of expert skiers, who aredrawn to cliffs and chutes that rival some of the best found acrossthe continent. Squaw Valley also offers the best nightskiing inTahoe.

Taba Heights


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Surrounded by picturesque crimson mountains and azure seas liesthe exotic holiday resort of Taba Heights. Ideally situated in onethe most breathtaking spots on the Sinai Peninsula, on the borderof Israel and Egypt, it is fast becoming one of the mostsought-after destinations on the Red Sea Riviera and a much lovedholiday spot.

Taba Heights offers a relaxed yet luxurious retreat thanks toits simple yet characteristic Bedouin camps boasting remarkableviews of the sea and surrounding mountains, as well as clear viewsof Saudi Arabia and Jordan. Taba Heights is truly the perfectdestination for a lazy beachside holiday.

Shopping in Taba Heights

Though there are a few shops worth visiting for gifts, and it iseasy to find snorkelling and beach equipment, Taba Heights doesn'toffer much of an overall shopping experience for holidaymakers.

Dining in Taba Heights

Taba offers a fairly wide variety of cuisine for visitors toenjoy, ranging from Tuscan to all sorts of Asian, with many aseafood restaurant gracing the area's selection of hotels. Thereare also pubs and grills.

Activities in Taba Heights

Taba Heights does not offer diverse nightlife venues but it doeshave a 24-hour casino as well as nightly entertainment programmesfeaturing local talent.

Things to be aware of in Taba Heights

The beach is quite stony and it is recommended that visitorstake beach shoes and dive shoes for the coral reefs in the sea.Some of the hotel shops sell them, but they tend to beoverpriced.



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Cadiz, founded in 1100 BC on a peninsula 76 miles (122km) southof Seville as a Phoenician trading post, is said to be the oldestinhabited city in western Europe and is a very popular holidaydestination. Cadiz had to wait, however, until the 16th centurybefore it came into its own as a launching point for journeys tothe newly discovered lands of the Americas. From here Columbus setout on his second voyage. Sir Francis Drake later famously raidedthe city, as did Napoleon. The city's Old Town is picturesque andMoorish, with cobbled streets and squares presided over by thegolden cupola of the Cadiz Cathedral. There is a gallery displayingsome of Goya's works, and some lush parks on the headlands whichoffer panoramic views of the bay. The city is also home to some ofSpain's loveliest beaches, including La Playa de la Caleta,situated between two castles of the Old Town, and La Playa de laVictoria, which is the most visited by holidaymakers due to itssafe bathing and water sports. Cadiz is a fantastic destination forthose keen to combine a lazy beach holiday with a wealth ofcultural and historical diversions.

Shopping in Cadiz

Cadiz is an ancient city and a popular holiday destination withall the shopping opportunities one would expect. Some great shopscan be found on Calle Pelota, Calle Compania, Calle San Franciscoand the Plaza de Candelaria. A great place for quality Andalucianitems such as ceramics and leatherwork is Belle Epoque, close tothe Museo de Cadiz. For incredible local foods, travellers shouldgo to Hecho in Cadiz. There are excellent food markets at MercadoCentral de Abasto (the Central Market), La Merced and San Josewhere high-quality wine, sausages, and cheeses can be bought.

Dining in Cadiz

The city boasts numerous great restaurants and a wide variety ofcuisines, catering to all budgets and palettes. They say that Cadizis home to the best fried fish in the world, and the best in towncan reputedly be found at Las Flores Freideria on Plaza Topete.

Activities in Cadiz

Cadiz has a lively nightlife scene, with something for everyone,from laid-back beach bars serving tapas and ambient music toall-night clubs. The foundation for most evenings out is laid bytapas and sundowners, and the practice of botellón, which involvesbuying your own alcohol and drinking while strolling the plazas orthe beach. The main nightclubs are on Playa Victoria beachfront,and tend to open around 10pm. The most popular club in town, from4am when it opens, is El Hoyo on Calle Manuel Rancés.

Things to be aware of in Cadiz

Cadiz is a well-developed city and a hugely popular touristdestination and is therefore not suitable for those wanting a quietholiday or looking to experience a traditional Spanish village.



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Maspalomas is a popular holiday resort on the southern tip ofGran Canaria, adjacent to this trendy Spanish island's largest andmost hectic package-tour resort, Playa del Ingles. Maspalomasthough, is the quieter and more upmarket option, sporting the bestfour-mile (6km) stretch of golden, sandy beach on the island.Maspalomas is separated from Playa del Ingles by a spectacularundulating sea of sand dunes, a protected area that provides ahabitat for some rare species of flora and fauna, and a favouritehaunt for nudists. Along the Maspalomas waterfront the promenade,stretching to Playa del Ingles, bristles with bars, shops,restaurants and entertainment venues between luxury hotels andvillas. Maspalomas also boasts an exhilarating water park andnearby are numerous other attractions like amusem*nt parks, natureparks, a golf course, an aquarium and theme parks. The resort hasbecome a favourite holiday destination for the gay community, witha designated gay zone on the beach and in the sand dunes. Theresort's week-long Gay Pride festivities each May have becomeworld-renowned on the party calendar.

Shopping in Maspalomas

The main shopping centre in Maspalomas is the Faro 2 complex,full of designer stores and boutiques. Varadero Shopping Centre isanother popular place to shop in Maspalomas. The surrounding areais crammed with shopping complexes of similar ilk, about a dozen inall, the biggest and best known being the Yumbo Centre inneighbouring Playa del Ingles.

Dining in Maspalomas

Maspalomas cuisine is best experienced at Pizzerria Piz Paz,Escalerita, El Palmeral or Velero Casa Antonio. Maspalomas hasrestaurants aplenty, most very reasonably priced, offering avariety of international cuisines. Many of the restaurants providelive entertainment in the evenings and double as bars. Visitors canenjoy live music or DJs while trying out a range of different foodsfrom pizza and pasta to Chinese, seafood and Tex-Mex.

Activities in Maspalomas

On holiday in Maspalomas, it is a good idea to make sure youjoin the locals in a traditional afternoon siesta in order to takeadvantage of the nightlife, which is lively but sophisticated. Theholiday resort offers a plethora of entertaining bars with karaoke,jazz, salsa, and live bands to spice things up, or themed pubs withhappy hours. A good selection of bars can be found in theMaspalomas Plaza. There are a variety of clubs and discos, twopopular dance spots being found in the Holiday World amusem*ntpark. Most Maspalomas nightclubs only get going after midnight, andoffer free entry, although drinks can be expensive. Those out for areal time on the town, however, will prefer to head forneighbouring Playa del Ingles where the hottest spots are,including the well-known Joy and Cream clubs.

Things to be aware of in Maspalomas

The Maspalomas Dunes are a haven for naturists, so be preparedto see plenty of naked bodies on the sand. The beach, particularlythe sunbed area, becomes extremely crowded during the height of thesummer holiday season.



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The most southerly holiday resort on the Costa Brava, Blanes notonly attracts international tourists but is also frequented bylarge numbers of Spanish holidaymakers. Like many Spanish coastalresorts Blanes has grown from a picturesque fishing village into atourist boomtown. The resort has a two-mile (3km) long stretch ofcoastline offering sandy bays and rocky coves. The main beachfrontis lined with high-rise hotels and apartment blocks, but thehistoric centre of the town remains charmingly well-preserved,making Blanes a refreshing combination of commercial developmentand authentic Spanish culture. The alleyways of the old town revealnumerous shops, restaurants and cafes, and reminders of its pastinclude the medieval castle of St Joan, several churches and someother ancient buildings, which attract hundreds of holidaymakerseach year. The pride of the town are the two renowned botanicalgardens, which boast thousands of plant species. Blanes also offerstraditional street markets, several fiestas and folk dancing fairs.It is a testament to its abiding charm that it attracts locals aswell as foreign visitors.

Shopping in Blanes

There are more than 700 shops in Blanes, from boutiques andsupermarkets to small, traditional retailers. The Monday morningmarket at Passeig de Mar is the best place to buy souvenirs andvarious cheap clothing. Every afternoon, local fishermen sell offthe day's catch here. The daily Municipal Market in Mas Enlaire isalso worth a look for groceries and fresh produce. Blanes offers avariety of shopping opportunities and provides everything visitorsmay need.

Dining in Blanes

There are more than 150 restaurants in Blanes, many locatedalong the promenade. Locals tend to frequent the smaller eateriesbehind the promenade for authentic Spanish fare. Travellers shouldtry the tapas at Cafe Terrassan near the corner of Passeig deDintre, widely considered the best in town. In general, freshseafood is the best bet to order, as are local Catalan dishes.There is also plenty of international food on offer though.

Activities in Blanes

Although Blanes is not known for its nightlife, there areseveral British-themed pubs and some decent bars that stay opentill late, especially in the summer months. For quality nightlifevisitors should head up the coast to Lloret. That being said, atthe end of July each year Blanes hosts the Costa BravaInternational Fireworks Contest, when the seaside town comes alivewith fiestas lasting late into the night.

Things to be aware of in Blanes

On peak summer days the beach and promenade gets verycrowded.

Golden Sands


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Golden Sands ( Zlatni Piasaci) is one of the biggest holiday resort complexes along the northern coastline of Bulgaria, famous for its healing hot-water mineral springs as well as its beautiful two-mile (4km) stretch of fine sandy beach. The resort is 11 miles (18km) north of Varna, and sits at the foot of the forested hills of the Zlatni Piasaci National Park, which is one of the oldest in the country and features a variety of interesting flora and fauna. Golden Sands offers the whole family ideal holiday conditions with plenty of entertainment, sporting activities, warm and clean water, year round luxury hotels and villas, restaurants, bars and spa treatments, making it one of the most popular vacation destinations on the Black Sea Coast.

Shopping in Golden Sands

Visitors can enjoy browsing in the numerous shopping arcades and outdoor bazaars while on holiday in Golden Sands. While Golden Sands' shopping opportunities are fairly commercial, most of the hotels have large gift shops and some authentic Bulgarian crafts can usually be found among the usual tourist beach resort merchandise.

Dining in Golden Sands

Golden Sands has a range of restaurants, cafés, snack bars and local tavernas that serve a wide variety of first-class international cuisine, as well as traditional Bulgarian dishes, mostly at reasonable prices. In addition to Bulgarian cuisine, Chinese restaurants, Irish pubs, and eateries selling international staples like pizza and barbecue can be found. Bulgarian wine and brandies appear on most menus.

Activities in Golden Sands

Golden Sands' nightlife features a wide range of beach bars, discos and nightclubs where holiday visitors can keep the action going until the early hours. A casino will satisfy the gambling spirit and there is always a variety of shows and entertainment to be had, ranging from live music and deejays to floor shows, cabaret, and a go-go bar.

Things to be aware of in Golden Sands

Golden Sands is a large tourist complex and one of the biggest on the northern Black Sea Coast. For this reason it is a little characterless and visitors can miss out on what Bulgarian life along the Black Sea is really about amid the commercial attractions.



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Time and time again the holiday hub of Vail is ranked one of thetop ski destinations on the continent, one of the most visited skiresorts in America, and one of the world's premier winter holidaydestinations. Claiming the largest single mountain ski area inNorth America, Vail offers miles of ski terrain and the opportunityto choose a different descent every time.

The Austrian-styled village of Vail is a neat concentration oftrendy shops, restaurants and nightlife, all within easy reach ofthe hotels, inns and lodges, and never more than a five-minute walkfrom the slopes. There is a lift system that provides access to abackcountry experience with trees and peaceful ungroomed terrain.The ski season lasts from November to early May, but the resortremains open for summer holiday activities such as hiking, mountainbiking and fishing.

Shopping in Vail

With more than 200 shops to choose from, there is plenty to keepshoppers off the slopes on a Vail holiday. Shops range fromspeciality boutiques and art galleries to sporting equipment andjewellery, and from souvenirs to fine clothing stores.Self-caterers will easily find everything they need.

Dining in Vail

More than 120 Vail restaurants offer everything fromaward-winning cuisine to local family favourites, from French,Italian, Asian and American fare to fast food, bakeries and delis.One of the top restaurants in the Vail Valley is Sweet Basil.

Activities in Vail

The nightlife and apres-ski on a Vail holiday is energetic andvibrant. There are sports bars with big screen televisions andbilliards, and a few quality live music venues. Local hotspotsinclude The Bully Ranch, and a spot on the deck of The RedLion.

Things to be aware of in Vail

Vail is more expensive than many other holiday resorts, but hasa lot to offer visitors for the price. The enormity of the areameans that getting between chosen runs takes time and often runs ondifferent parts of the mountain are linked by flat trails, whichmakes it frustrating for snowboarders.

Skiing in Vail

Vail Mountain is a giant that offers three different mountainskiing experiences for different levels of ability, and over 120named trails. An enormous front face of long, smooth slopes isperfect for cruising, with runs for every level. For intermediatesthere is a wide variety of groomed runs, the longest of which isalmost five miles (8km) long, from Flap Jack to Riva Ridge. Theseven world-famous Back Bowls consist of miles of undefined openterrain and panoramic vistas, and are strictly for advanced andexpert skiers, excellent on powder days. There are numerousbeginners' areas as well as special family skiing areas around themountains and a ski and snowboard school for learners or thosewanting to advance to the next level. The resort reliably receivesan average of about 27 feet (8m) of light powder snow eachyear.

El Arenal


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Situated on the east coast of the Bay of Palma, on the centralsouth coast of Mallorca, El Arenal (also known as S'Arenal or justArenal) is a lively and highly developed holiday resort, popularwith German travellers (many of whom have stayed) and the 18 to 30age group. It is an ideal beach resort for singles seeking a beachholiday complemented by a vibrant nightlife. The long, palm-linedbeach is exquisite; perfect for stretching out on a sun-lounger andenjoying the calm waters. A stroll along the El Arenal waterfrontpromenade at sunset, past various shops, bars and restaurants,offers a great way to unwind, and a walkway links El Arenal toneighbouring C'an Pastilla and Playa de Palma. It is now almostimpossible to tell where each of these once distinct resorts beginsand ends.

Hiring a car is an excellent way to explore the rest of theisland and take in the sights while on holiday, but many choosesimply to enjoy their hotels and the entertainment they provide.There are regular busses to Palma, with all its urbanattractions.

Shopping in El Arenal

The resort has all the usual tourist trappings, and there areshops enough for visitors to buy anything they might need as wellas souvenirs, but those who want quality shopping sprees shouldtake the short journey to Palma (busses depart every 15 minutes orso), where the best shopping on Mallorca can be enjoyed. There aresome touts on the beaches of Arenal selling 'genuine' watches andother branded items which are almost certainly fake.

Dining in El Arenal

El Arenal is dominated by German tourists and expats and hasdeveloped a genuinely German character, with many of the bars andrestaurants demonstrating this. There are tapas bars, seafoodrestaurants, pizzerias and burger joints (including internationalchains such as Burger King), as well as Chinese restaurants. Thevariety of restaurants ensures that everybody should find what theyare looking for, but those expecting numerous authentic Spanisheateries may be disappointed.

Activities in El Arenal

El Arenal's social highlight is probably Woody's Bar, but thereare a host of lively resort bars and clubs that will keep youdancing until the early hours. There are also a number of Britishand German-style pubs and the balnearios, 16 small beach huts thatrun from El Arenal to C'an Pastilla, many of which have been turnedinto beach bars. El Arenal is a popular party resort, particularlyin the summer months, when the festivities tend to continue tilldawn.

Things to be aware of in El Arenal

Although the close proximity to Son Sant Joan InternationalAirport is convenient it does mean that visitors sometimes hearaircraft noise. This in combination with the energetic nightlifemake the resort ill-suited to those looking for peacefulholidays.

Can Picafort


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C'an Picafort is a relatively large holiday resort situated onthe northeast coast of Mallorca on the lovely Bay of Alcudia, aboutan hour away from Palma. Like El Arenal, C'an Picafort is highlypopular with German visitors, and due to those who have returned tolive there, it retains a certain German flavour. The resort grewfrom a tiny fishing village (the remains of which can be seen inthe town's working harbour) and today spreads along a grid of smallstreets near the principal beach.

Pedestrian-friendly, with a promenade perfect for eveningstrolls, the resort has become popular with those seeking a quietbeachside getaway, and hotels provide much of the resort'sentertainment. There are several bars, restaurants and nightclubs,however, as well as plenty of shops and an excellent market onFridays. C'an Picafort is right next to Son Baulo, which has itsown beach, shops and restaurants and is a popular holidaydestination in its own right.

Shopping in Can Picafort

C'an Picafort is not a shopper's paradise, but there is a goodvariety of little gift shops and visitors should be able to findeverything they require on holiday. Most shops face onto the pavedroad lining the beach. The Caprabo shop on the Carreterrad'Arta-Port d'Alcudia road sells all things British for thosemissing the luxuries of home. Market days are Tuesday and Sunday,and while the market is small if visitors are prepared to bargainhard they can pick up some great souvenirs.

Dining in Can Picafort

There are numerous British-themed pubs and eateries, and anequal number of German and Scandinavian restaurants catering to thelarge number of visitors from those countries. For fine dining tryEs Turo which is housed in a centuries-old building. The mostpopular style of eating for locals and visitors alike is tapas,provided at any café in town.

Activities in Can Picafort

Although not generally considered a party hub, C'an Picafortdoes boast some nightclubs as well as some fun bars, and the hotelstend to provide vigorous entertainment schedules for those keen totake part. The longest running nightclub at the resort is Skauwhich is open every night during the summer season. Anothernightlife hotspot in C'an Picafort is the western-themed barCharly's.

Things to be aware of in Can Picafort

There are few worthwhile attractions in town and for thosewanting more than a beach-based holiday C'an Picafort can be a bitdull.



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Meribel is in the centre of the Trois Vallées, which alsoincorporates the ski resorts of Courchevel, La Tania and ValThorens. Together they form one of the largest ski areas in theworld. Unlike most French resorts, Meribel has retained anatmosphere of the traditional skiing village, despite having grownenormously in recent years. Meribel consists of a number ofdifferent villages. The main village is known as Meribel Centre andis home to the main shops and après ski scene. The outlying resortsof Les Allues (1,200m) and Meribel Village (1,400m) are connectedby regular shuttle buses. Meribel-Mottaret is situated two miles upthe valley and is well positioned for the skiing, but not thenightlife. The resort was founded by a Scottish skier in 1938 andis still very popular with British holidaymakers. Meribel is atwo-hour drive from Geneva airport.

Shopping in Meribel

Meribel is stuffed with lots of good-value ski shops and thosewith more expensive taste can ski over to Courchevel 1850. Thereare plenty of mini-supermarkets for self-caterers as well as a fineselection of bakeries and delicatessens.

Dining in Meribel

There are some seriously good restaurants for skiers to enjoy inMeribel, both on the mountain and in the resort. It's best to getlocal advice on arrival and to book early for the betterrestaurants. There's more choice for those happy with a simplefondue and nice carafe of local wine. Visitors should try AuxPetit* Oignons for it's welcoming atmosphere and homely food, orTsaretta Spice for some tasty Indian food.

Activities in Meribel

The nightlife in Meribel is not as wild as in some holiday skiresorts, but there's still plenty going on. Dick's Tea Bar is thebest-known nightclub and the queues can be long. Meribel-Mottarethas few choices and closes up for the night earlier.

Things to be aware of in Meribel

Meribel is quite spread out and much of the accommodation is farfrom the slopes, meaning visitors need to queue for a bus. The mainresort is quite low and it is often not possible to ski to the mainvillage.

Skiing in Meribel

The Trois Vallées ski area is one of the best and most extensivein the world (10 times larger than Vail, the largest ski resort inthe States), and Meribel is in the middle, between Courchevel andVal Thorens. Meribel has a vast choice for beginner andintermediate skiers, and those with more experience will want totest out the slopes in Courchevel and Val Thorens. Snowboarderswill find lots of challenging slopes and couloirs and, when thesnow is good, there is some excellent off-piste skiing.

Flic en Flac


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Once a small fishing village, Flic en Flac has grown to become a popular holiday spot in Mauritius. Located on the west coast of the island and linked by road to Port Louis, the town's long and beautiful white sand beach is protected by a lagoon that makes it perfect for watersports like waterskiing and scuba diving, and there are great dive sites including caves and wrecks nearby. Accommodation in Flic en Flac caters for all budgets with a good selection of self-catering accommodation alongside stunning luxury hotels. There is also a prominent golf course nearby, as well as a casino for those who fancy a flutter. For a unique excursion, visit the nearby sugar cane estates which offer tours during cutting season, from July to November.

Shopping in Flic en Flac

Tourists will find plenty of little souvenir shops and stalls along the beach and there is a big supermarket for self-caterers. Many hotels have their own shops. There is also a pharmacy, an internet cafe, and a shopping centre.

Dining in Flic en Flac

There is a large selection of restaurants in and around Flic en Flac, with some impressive high-end hotel restaurants as well as plenty of local options for budget travellers.

Activities in Flic en Flac

Flic en Flac is one of Mauritius's most developed and popular resort areas and the nightlife is more exciting than most of the smaller, more secluded resorts. There are a number of popular bars and even a casino, many of the hotels have their own clubs, and Port Louis is just a 30-minute drive away. However, Flic en Flac is not yet as big a party resort as Grand Baie and those in search of a pumping holiday clubbing scene may still be disappointed.


Puerto Mogan


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Situated on the southwest coast, nine miles (14km) west ofvibrant Puerto Rico, Puerto Mogan is one of the more up-marketholiday resorts on Gran Canaria. The town is an old fishing villagethat has recently started to be developed into a modern resort townbut retains an authentic Spanish charm. Tourism is centred aroundthe marina which bustles with local boats, yachts and Atlanticcruisers. There are a selection of bars, shops and restaurantsaimed at tourists, but the shops are less tacky than in someneighbouring resorts and the restaurants serve some of the bestseafood on the island. Backed by the mountains, the picturesque oldPuerto Mogan village is a maze of narrow roads and colonial stylehouses; the couple of canals running through the town has promptedtour operators to dub it 'Little Venice'. There is one small beachin the resort and another, Playa Taurito, three miles (5km) to theeast; both have black volcanic sand and boulders. Although there isa disco or two in Puerto Mogan, those looking for a more energeticnightlife should head to Puerto Rico or Playa del Inglés.

Shopping in Puerto Mogan

Puerto Mogan has all the shops that you would expect from aholiday resort in the Canary Islands, but they are generally alittle more arty-crafty and sell less of the rubbish that youusually find in souvenir shops; there is less quantity and morequality in Puerto Mogan than at many other resorts. Every Fridaymorning there is a large market in town, which is aimed at localsas well as tourists and sells everything from fresh fish tofootball shirts.

Dining in Puerto Mogan

While there is no shortage of fast food stalls and restaurantsoffering full English breakfasts in Puerto Mogan there are also afew restaurants offering good Canarian cuisine, wines and cheeses.Puerto Mogan is best known for its excellent seafood restaurantsserving locally caught fish. Some top choices include RestauranteEl Castillo for paella or tapas, La Bodeguilla Juanana for greatCanarian cuisine, and Casito Mediterraneo for some of the freshestfish in town. Most restaurants are located around the harbour.

Activities in Puerto Mogan

While there is a disco or two and many restaurants offer somesort of entertainment, most visitors come to Puerto Morgan onholiday for peace and relaxation. The nightlife is limited andsedate and those in search of a party will need to travel to a moreenergetic resort.

Things to be aware of in Puerto Mogan

Visitors should be aware that there is some building work goingon in Puerto Mogan, but this is mostly towards the back of theresort; it is worth checking that there is no building site nearyour accommodation. Those looking for large nightclubs and dancemusic will need to make the short trip to Playa del Ingles.



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Situated on the east coast of Rhodes, Faliraki is popular amongparty-people and sun worshippers. Deckchairs, umbrellas and sunbedsdominate its sandy shoreline, as holidaymakers look out over clearwaters and a variety of skiers. The resort also has a vibrantnightlife and restaurant scene. Day trips from the resort ventureto small bays, some of which are nudist, and several natural,undeveloped beaches.

Shopping in Faliraki

Visitors can find everything a holidaymaker needs in Faliraki,from local crafts to toothpaste, and shops stay open till very lateduring warmer seasons. Serious shoppers can head to Rhodes Old Townand haggle for bargains in the narrow, cobbled streets. Good buysinclude leather bags and sandals, rugs, gold and silver jewellery,and ceramics.

Dining in Faliraki

Faliraki has a huge variety of restaurants, from traditionalGreek tavernas to Chinese. Prices range from cheap to reasonable;fast-food bars abound, staying open until the wee hours.

Activities in Faliraki

Bar Street and Club Street in Faliraki live up to their namesand reputations as a paradise for young clubbers and pubbers. Theareas have many dance floors and watering holes, with renownedinternational DJs often gracing party goers with a set. For manyguests at Faliraki resort, the vibrant nightlife is a significantdrawcard.

Things to be aware of in Faliraki

Faliraki has received some bad publicity in recent years becauseof the rowdy, drunken behaviour of some young holidaymakers.Travellers who want a peaceful beach retreat should consider otherresorts.

Grand Baie


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The seaside village of Grand Baie (Grand Bay) is the most developed resort area in Mauritius and one of the most popular tourist destinations on the island. In fact, the tourism has overwhelmed this small town, and the peak season of December and January can be unpleasantly crowded, though the buzzing nightlife in this period is enjoyable for younger travellers. In fact, one of the main reasons to visit Grand Baie is the variety of restaurants and shopping, second only to Port Louis. Despite its popularity, it is still possible to find more secluded and peaceful spots along the coast, and the development in the area has not destroyed the natural beauty of the place. Those looking to be somewhat removed from the hustle should opt to stay in Pointe aux Canonniers. The beaches in Grand Baie are an aquatic paradise for watersports lovers with scuba diving, snorkelling, and sailing on offer. Visitors will find plenty of accommodation in Grand Baie, with both quaint local guest houses and luxury hotel options on offer. Public transportation in Grand Baie is fairly good.

Shopping in Grand Baie

Outside of Port Louis, Grand Baie is the best shopping destination on the island and visitors will find plenty of shops and stores selling souvenirs and local arts and crafts. There are supermarkets for the self-caterers.

Dining in Grand Baie

Grand Baie is bursting with restaurants and bars and there are a variety of cuisines on offer to suit a variety of budgets.

Activities in Grand Baie

The nightlife is a big drawcard for Grand Baie, and definitely the best to be found in a Mauritian resort. The clubs and bars buzz until the early hours during peak season.

Sharm el-Sheikh


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A world-acclaimed dive centre and the most developed of the Red Sea resorts, Sharm el-Sheikh has many holiday activities, and plenty of luxury accommodation and restaurants available. Most Sharm el-Sheikh hotels and diving centres are situated four miles (7km) from the city at Naama Bay and it has become a busy holiday resort with plenty of shopping opportunities, lots of late night entertainment and an attractive holiday atmosphere.

Numerous dive sites are within reach of Sharm el-Sheikh, including the huge drop-offs at Ras Mohammed in the extreme southern part of the peninsula, the Straits of Tiran, various wrecks, and about 28 sites located along the coast that are accessed by boat. Naama Bay has a gently sloping sandy bottom, is ideal for dive classes, and provides diving and snorkelling opportunities for all levels without having to use a boat or car to get there.

Besides excellent diving and snorkelling, which are the main activities when in Sharm el-Sheikh on holiday, there are plenty of watersports available if one feels like doing more than just soaking up the sun. Add a vibrant nightlife with casinos, discos and nightclubs and one can't complain of boredom!

Shopping in Sharm el-Sheikh

Avid shoppers will find a variety of goods in the old market and Sharm El-Sheikh mall, where shops sell both foreign and local products, including jewellery, leather goods, clothing, pottery and books. Naama Bay offers a more upmarket shopping experience at the Naama Centre, where shopkeepers are less inclined to bargain but everything from souvenirs to scarves can be found.

Dining in Sharm el-Sheikh

Between Sharm el-Sheikh's two tourist districts of Old Sharm and Naama Bay, there are a huge variety of dining options while on holiday, from hotel restaurants and international fast food chains like KFC, to local eateries and fresh fish. Every cuisine from Mexican to Japanese is represented in Sharm el-Sheikh.

Activities in Sharm el-Sheikh

Sharm el-Sheikh's casinos, discos, pubs and bars cater to those ready to party the night away while on holiday. Entertainment ranges from dance clubs to informal hangouts.

Things to be aware of in Sharm el-Sheikh

Shopkeepers and hawkers can become a nuisance but a polite though firm 'no, thank you' should ward them off. Travel authorities currently urge extreme caution when travelleing in the Sinai region; excursions into the desert to places like St Catherine's Monastery may not always be possible.

Big Sky


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Montana's leading holiday destination, Big Sky is a fantasticyear round resort offering the best skiing to be had in the state.Situated between Bozeman and West Yellowstone, Big Sky sits amongsome of the most beautiful scenery in the United States. With greatpowder and long runs on three different mountains, Big Sky is anoutdoor enthusiast's paradise and nothing beats a day out on theslopes than relaxing in a hot tub before enjoying the resort'saprès-ski entertainment.

Shopping in Big Sky

Holiday visitors will find that there are enough shops offeringski and snowboard rentals and associated ski equipment purchases,notably Big Sky Sports, as well as gift and souvenir shops withsome unique Montana-made oddities and grocery stores for the selfcaterers. Visitors should head to the Mountain Mall or MountainVillage for the largest selection of stores.

Dining in Big Sky

No one will go hungry while on holiday in Big Sky, as a numberof restaurants are available. While there are a few Mexican andAsian options, most Big Sky eateries specialise in American faresuch as steak, burgers, and pizza. Popular restaurants includeBuck's T-4 Lodge and Restaurant, the Rainbow Ranch LodgeRestaurant, Olive B's Big Sky Bistro, and The Riverhouse.

Activities in Big Sky

The apres-ski atmosphere in Big Sky, though not the the wildparty many other ski resorts offer, does have a few pubs and barsthat stay open. However, the nightlife only really picks up fromThursday to Saturday. Scissorbills has some great happy hourspecials, while the Carabiner Lounge is a quieter venue worthrelaxing with a good drink.

Things to be aware of in Big Sky

Big Sky is a family-friendly resort and even though there is avariety of nightlife available, those looking for a more raucousski holiday should perhaps look elsewhere.

Skiing in Big Sky

The resort offers mountains to suit all levels of skiers andsnowboarders. With over 5,512 acres to enjoy, 4,350 vertical feetof fun, 220 trails, 400 inches of snow annually, Big Sky is home tothe greatest slopes in Montana. Lone Mountain is perhaps the mostfamous and at over 11,000 feet has enough variety for all. AndesiteMountain suits the intermediates, while Flat Iron Mountain arguablyhas more diversity than Lone Mountain; the backcountry skiing isparticularly good at Big Sky. The terrain park has all the usualsuspects: boxes, rails, ramps, and slides for all enthusiasts aswell as for those starting out.

Lake Louise


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Lake Louise is Canada's largest holiday ski resort area,covering the slopes of four mountain faces that surrounds it. Setin the heart of the magnificent Banff National Park on theTrans-Canada Highway, 35 miles (57km) west of Banff itself.

With plentiful natural snow and an extensive snowmaking system,skiing is guaranteed at Lake Louise from mid-November to mid-May,and it has the reputation of offering some of the best powderskiing in the world.

The pretty village nestling in the Rockies provides everyamenity required by visitors, and a wide choice of cosyaccommodation and dining options. Shuttle buses and an efficientsystem of interconnecting lifts provide easy access to theslopes.

Putting all this together with the spectacular scenery andpristine terrain, you have the recipe for a snowy wonderland. It'snot surprising that Lake Louise has been dubbed a diamond in thewilderness and remains such a popular resort destination.

Shopping in Lake Louise

Lake Louise's shopping precinct is the Samson Mall, located inthe lower part of the village. It offers many shops forholidaymakers to browse, with competitive prices and no provincialsales tax on purchases.

Here, and in nearby Banff, shoppers will find an eclecticselection of goods, including brand name clothing, winter sportsclothing and equipment, art and handcrafts, souvenirs, jewellery,and photographic goods.

Look out for unique Lake Louise paintings by local artists,beadwork by native peoples, and jewellery set with Alberta'sammolite gemstone. Another unusual souvenir many visitors take withthem is a bottle of water from the lake itself, which iscrystal-clear and clean enough to drink.

Dining in Lake Louise

The resort offers a number of restaurants and bars in thevillage itself, and several eateries with terraces and spectacularviews on the nearby slopes, serving everything from ethnic cuisineto famously tender Alberta beef.

There are family restaurants, cosy cafés, and elegant eateriesto choose from. Line dance lessons and sleigh rides are offered insome of the rip-roaring cowboy-style eateries, along with barbecuedbeef, baked beans, and homemade pies. Gourmet Canadian cooking andfine wines take centre stage at some upmarket restaurants.

Staples like pizza, pasta, and hamburgers can be found in anumber of casual eateries. For scenic dining, ride the Lake Louisesightseeing Gondola to the Whitehorn Terrace where the deck affordsa breathtaking view of the lake and surrounding peaks andglaciers.

Activities in Lake Louise

Après ski in Lake Louise does not mean wild partying. But thereare plenty of more subdued yet enjoyable ways for holidaymakers towind down after a day on the slopes. Many local bars and eateriesoffer entertainment like live music, a little dancing, karaoke,limbo competitions, pool tables and darts, shuffleboard, or bigscreen television. Guided night ski tours and sleigh rides are alsoon offer. However, most visitors are content to settle down infront of a roaring fire, nursing a cognac and rehashing the day'sadventures.

Things to be aware of in Lake Louise

Skiing at Lake Louise can be quite expensive.

Skiing in Lake Louise

Lake Louise offers a perfect mix of beginner, intermediate, andadvanced terrain for skiers and snowboarders. The unique layoutmakes both easy and challenging runs down from every chairpossible, on a choice of 113 groomed runs, as well as limitlessoff-trail adventures and acres of open snow bowls.

The efficient lift system also means minimal queue times.Private and group lessons for all levels of skiers and snowboarderstake place daily, but reservations are necessary for the busyChristmas and Easter season. Snow conditions are excellent, butsnowmaking is possible on about 20 percent of the runs ifneeded.



Los Penitentes


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Its name meaning 'The Penitents', this ski resort's title isderived from the curious forms the ice on the mountain sides make,reminiscent of penitents praying on their knees, thought to beformed by the strong winds of the Andes. Located around 110 miles(180km) from Mendoza, Los Penitentes boasts 300 hectares (741acres) of skiing with 28 pistes, incorporating every type of runfrom beginner and intermediate to advanced and expert runs, many ofwhich are used for various competitions.

The resort may be smaller than many of its Argentineancounterparts, but it features ski schools, a kindergarten, ashopping centre, a variety of restaurants, a snow garden whereparents can leave their kids for the day, and a disco to heatthings up on those cold winter nights. The ski season at LosPenitentes lasts from mid-June to August.

Shopping in Los Penitentes

There isn't the largest variety of shopping in Los Penitentesand travellers looking to splurge will do better in the nearby cityof Mendoza. There are, however, a few small shops sellingsouvenirs, sporting goods and the like, and the local shoppingcentre is a good place to indulge in some retail therapy.

Dining in Los Penitentes

Los Penitentes offers plenty of eateries for foodies of allpersuasions. Several restaurants offer great international cuisineand excellent value for money, while restaurants located on themountain allow skiers take a much-needed break and enjoy a steamingcup of hot chocolate.

Activities in Los Penitentes

There is not much nightlife in Los Penitentes, but a few hotelsoffer occasional shows and disco nights, while a few pubs and barsare dotted around the resort. Young travellers looking for a nightof partying and drinking best head to one of Argentina's other skiresorts.

Things to be aware of in Los Penitentes

Los Penitentes is fairly quiet. Travellers looking for wildnightlife should look to other ski resorts in Argentina for a morelively holiday.



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Set on the southeast coast of Turkey where the AegeanSea meets the Mediterranean, the purpose-built beach resort ofIcmeler has a distinctly European flavour. Luxury yachts bob in thebay while a cosmopolitan crowd of holidaymakers sipping co*cktailsat the seafront bars.

Icmeler's package holiday aura is tempered by itsscenic setting, with steep hills clad in pine forests plunging intothe turquoise waters all around the town. Unlike its closeneighbour of Marmaris just a few miles south, Icmeler has a relaxedvillage atmosphere, while lacking none of the modern amenities.

The resort is scrupulously clean and well maintained,from its regularly raked shingly sand beaches to its litter-freepromenade. The town is also resplendent with well-kept gardens,which soften the lines of the dozens of hotel and apartmentblocks.

Shopping in Icmeler

Icmeler does have a central shopping mall, which is adequate foracquiring essentials and holidaymakers can have a pleasant browsefor souvenirs. For more local flavour, there is a market onWednesdays where bargain hunters and hagglers can test theirskills. Serious shoppers, though, would be better advised to take ashort dolmus ride into nearby Marmaris where it is possible to shopfor hours, especially in the fascinating covered bazaar of the oldtown.

Dining in Icmeler

Icmeler is well-supplied with restaurants of all sorts, but mostholidaymakers particularly enjoy local specialities such as guvec,a clay-pot casserole, or tasty kebabs, washed down with someTurkish wine or raki, the traditional aniseed spirit. A good choicefor Turkish cuisine is the Turkish House in Turunc Road, where thefood is served up to the tune of traditional music. For good steaksa favourite is the Love Boat at the Devamli Hotel. For variety themenu at the Majestic Restaurant is a mix of Chinese, Indian, andItalian.

Activities in Icmeler

Icmeler is not a clubbing holiday resort but there are plenty ofpubs, which keep hopping with a lively atmosphere until the weehours. The nightlife may be low key, but those who want somethingmore frenetic have only to grab a dolmus and ride a short distanceto Marmaris, where the pace is hotter; some of the bars havediscos, karaoke, and live shows. Like many resorts, the morepopular bars are clustered by the beachfront.

Things to be aware of in Icmeler

The beach in Icemeler is shingle and travellers should be awareof this before booking their holiday.





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The tiny Thai province of Krabi, 500 miles (800km) south ofBangkok, is a magical, unspoilt paradise and one of the country'smost enchanting coastal holiday resort destinations. The tranquilKrabi coast is made up of pristine, coral-fringed white beaches, amyriad of caves and waterfalls, and numerous exotic islets washedby the azure sea. Beyond the Krabi beaches lie lush jungles wheregiant trees support lianas, and rivers fall over high cliffs orswirl lazily through mangrove forests. Visitors spend theirholidays scuba diving in the Andaman Sea, climbing the cliffs aboveAo Phranang and Railay beaches, hiking to mountain-top pagodas,discovering hidden temples set in the valleys, exploring caves,seeking out offshore paradise islands, or simply relaxing beneath apalm tree on an perfect stretch of white sand. The small city ofKrabi can be flown to direct from Bangkok and a number of othercities, with flights landing at Krabi Airport, which is situatedconveniently close to the city.

Shopping in Krabi

Krabi town has a good selection of shopping for those who wantto sample the wares in the region. Along with the 'same same'merchandise sold in street stalls across Thailand, the typicalt-shirts bearing the logos of Heineken, Guinness and the likes, onecan also find more unique items in Krabi, including handmadepottery and locally produced home ware. Apart from the streetstalls, Krabi has a modernised shopping mall in the centre of townselling high-end fashion labels in the top levels of the buildingand knock-off brands on the ground level and in the basem*nt. Thismall has an interesting coming together of top-end fashion andcheap replicas both in the same store, though shoppers should bewary if the bargain seems too good to be true, as that usually willbe the case.

Dining in Krabi

Krabi has many dining options, both for those who want toexperience the local cuisine and for those who prefer a 'Western'food menu. From Italian pizza to Greek seafood, Krabi has a varietyfor the hungry visitor. For where there is a beach in Thailand,there is inevitably food. In Krabi, travellers can literally eatwith their toes in the sand, as many restaurant are right on thebeach, and what better way to round off a day of activities thansitting down to some fresh seafood and a cold beverage whilewatching the sun go down over the Andaman sea? But if visitorstruly want to eat like locals, Krabi town has a nightly food marketthat springs to life around 5pm every evening. This is wherevisitors will find the cheapest and often the most delicious foodin Krabi, and where they can sit side by side with Thais, as theyand their families huddle around the food carts for dinner and abeer.

Activities in Krabi

Night time is when Krabi comes alive. Many markets around Krabiset up only at night, when the heat of the day has subsided andlocals begin to wander around the streets after hiding from the sunall day. Night markets, especially weekend markets, are a vibrantand colourful meeting place for both visitors and locals. Thebeautiful sights and smells of the food vendors delight the senses,as strange and wonderful items are dished up for willing buyers.After dark is also the time the beachside bars turn on theirfluorescent lights and turn up their music. With so many barslining the beaches, it is often hard to decide where to go, asvisitors begin to slowly drift towards their respective spots tocatch the sunset, accompanied by a randomly chosen, multi-colouredco*cktail. As the night moves on, a younger crowd often filters intothe scene, drawn in by the music, which becomes progressivelyfaster, and the potential of an all night party, signified by thegradual gathering of bodies in the said venue. While Krabi town isnot specifically known for big parties, the close by Ao Nang beachis a verified hotspot for all-night revelry, and with many clubs tochoose from along the main strip, visitors will have no problemfinding a party scene in line with their specific mood.

Playa de las Americas


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Playa de las Americas is Tenerife's largest tourist playground,a purpose-built hedonistic haven for holidaymakers of all ages whocome here for fun in the sun from all over the world. The resort issituated in the south of the island near the Tenerife South Airport(Reina Sofia Airport). It has grown vastly during its 30 years ofexistence and now covers three different zones: the original Playade las Americas, San Eugenio, and Toviscas. There are three naturalbeaches in the resort area and three man-made ones, all coveredwith dark volcanic sand and extremely crowded during the summerseason. The las Americas beaches are linked by a long promenade,which winds along the busy waterfront, backed by dozens ofhigh-rise hotels and holiday apartment blocks. A mini train runsaround the resort stopping at scheduled points every hour, andthere are plenty of free buses to assist visitors in gettingaround, making the most of the Playa de las Americas many bars,entertainment venues, shops and sports facilities. Don't expect tosoak up much authentic Canarian culture while holidaying at Playade las Americas, but for those who enjoy the hullaballoo of apackaged, carefree summer vacation, the resort will exceedexpectations.

Shopping in Playa de las Americas

There is a vast array of shops in Playa de las Americas andholidaymakers can indulge in the delights of duty-free shopping inthe numerous electrical stores and clothing shops. Shoppers shouldbe aware that salesmen can be quite aggressive. It's best tobargain hard and remember that the shop next door probably sellsthe same stuff. The supermarkets offer most of the well-knownbrands, many imported to cater for the British tourists. Those inthe mood for some haggling should go shopping in Las AmericasTorviscas Market (Thursday and Saturday from 10am); there are greatbargains to be had and it's perfect for presents, but shoppersshould get there early as it can get very crowded. A trip to SantaCruz (one hour by bus) is worthwhile for those looking for designerclothes.

Dining in Playa de las Americas

Playa de las Americas has top-rated restaurants in whichholidaymakers can dine. There are restaurants in las Americascatering for every taste; along the seafront are dozens of fastfood stalls and restaurants advertising English breakfasts and SkyTV, and international dishes of all varieties are also offeredincluding Indian, Chinese, Italian, and excellent tapas and localCanary Islands cuisine. Many of the better restaurants are locatedin the Torviscas areas and in the neighbouring resort of LosCristianos. There are also some nice restaurants overlooking themarina in Puerto Colon.

Activities in Playa de las Americas

With more nightclubs than some British cities and some of thebest nightlife in Tenerife, las Americas is a honey pot for thoselooking for more of a nocturnal holiday. The area known as ThePatch is the best place to start the evening as most of lasAmericas' bars are located within easy walking distance. The Patchalso has a fine choice of nightspots and most bars have a happyhour or two. The most popular are Rags and Linekers, dance barsthat play a good mix of Pop, R&B, Dance and 80s party music.Many of the bars also have good live music. Later on, the Veronicascomplex and the Starco Commercial Centre are the places to head tofor a good party. The streets are packed with revellers until theearly hours, particularly during the busy summer months. Tramps isthe largest club on the island and very popular. There are also twocasinos at the resort.

Things to be aware of in Playa de las Americas

The resort is built on the side of a hill and many apartmentsrequire a steep walk up from the beach. The accommodation near thecentre can be very noisy until the early hours. There are hundredsof touts trying to sell everything from trinkets to timeshareapartments. It's best to be firm but polite and avoid getting intoa conversation with them. There are promotions staff outside thebars and restaurants who are also quite insistent, but it can beworth chatting them up as they sometimes offer free drinks.Visitors should be aware of con artists.



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One of New England's most popular ski resorts, Saddleback isnestled in Maine's Rangeley Lakes Region overlooking the town ofRangeley and oozes Alpine charm with its natural beauty anduncrowded slopes. The resort spans 440 acres (178 ha), and boasts66 runs for all abilities, including the biggest glade in the eastat 44 acres (18 ha). Priding itself as one of New England's finestfamily ski and snowboard resorts, it's a great year-rounddestination and offers more than just meets the eye. Saddleback isconveniently located close to both Portland and Bangor airports,making travelling with kids a dream, and with a season stretchingfrom November to late April, there's plenty of snow foreveryone.

Shopping in Saddleback

There is not much shopping in the actual resort of Saddlebackand holidaymakers will have to head to Rangeley to quell their urgeto splurge. There is a good selection of shops along the mainstreet including book stores, specialist sports stores and theAlpine Shop, which carries a nice range of clothing as well asinteresting household goods and some sporting equipment.

Dining in Saddleback

Those looking to eat out will have to head to nearby Rangeleywhere a good range of restaurants lines the main street. Here,holidaymakers can either choose to grab a quick take-away and headback into the mountain, or enjoy a leisurely dinner at one of thelocal pizzerias, barbeque spots, cafes or fine diningrestaurants.

Activities in Saddleback

The apres ski in Saddleback is pretty limited but there'sentertainment in the Swig-N-Smelt Pub upstairs in the base lodgefrom time to time. It closes relatively early most nights however,leaving those looking for something a little more upbeat headingdown to the nearby town of Rangeley for a more hip and happeningnightlife scene along the picturesque main street, where everythingfrom lazy pubs to upbeat bars can be found.

Things to be aware of in Saddleback

Marketed as more of a family resort, apres ski leaves a lot tobe desired and party animals might be left disappointed.

Skiing in Saddleback

With 66 run and glades, including the largest in the east, thereare slopes catering to all kinds of skiers. Beginners have a choiceof 25 trails on the lower section of the mountain where skiertraffic is low, intermediates can carve on up to 19 trails in themiddle section, and 22 trails cater to the advanced and expertskiers on the upper part of the mountain on runs such as Muleskinner, Dark Wizard,and Nightmare Glades.The Freerider Terrain Park is located onthe Wheeler Slope and includes a variety of terrain, rails, jumpsand ramps; the Gee Whiz terrain is the perfect place for youngerriders and beginners to hone their skills; and although the skischool is quite pricey, it's a great way for beginners to improvetheir skills.



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Verbier is a picturesque Swiss ski resort nestled on a vastplateau almost 5,000 ft (1,524m) above the valley floor andsurrounded by majestic snow-covered mountains. Verbier lies at theheart of Les Quatres Vallees (Four Valleys) and is the holiday hubof this extensive ski area.

A sophisticated network of cable cars and gondolas connect allthe holiday resorts in the region and provide access to 102 miles(164km) of marked pistes. Verbier is the primary ski resort ofFrench-speaking Switzerland, attracting advanced skiers andsnowboarders to its demanding slopes and unlimited off-pisteopportunities.

Although quaint in appearance, a holiday at the Verbier resortoffers all the modern comforts and facilities of a major resort,with some of the finest cuisine in the region and a raucousnightlife that combines English-style pubs and French cafes. Muchof Verbier closes down over the summer but, despite this, it canalso be a great summer destination of magnificent scenery, goodweather and wonderful walks; during this time it is popular withparagliders and mountain bikers.

Shopping in Verbier

The shopping while on holiday in Verbier is excellent, althoughexpensive. Visitors will find a range of boutiques and clothingstores, as well as ski wear and equipment.

Dining in Verbier

A wide choice of restaurants caters to the international crowdon a Verbier holiday, with over 60 superb restaurants offeringanything from traditional cuisine to Japanese and American fare.The Al Capone, Le Grenier and La Marmotte restaurants are wellknown for their good quality food, beautiful views and friendlystaff. Local specialities such as fondues, raclette and rosti areserved in traditional establishments such as La Channe Valaisanne,Vieux Valais and Le Carrefour. Vegetarians are well catered for aswell. Fer a Cheval is a great pizza restaurant that is popular withregulars and is within walking distance from the main ski lifts.The main square is surrounded by cafes, patisseries and coffeeshops.

Activities in Verbier

Verbier has one of the wilder and more exciting nightlife scenesamong the European winter ski resorts. The road running from themain ski lift to the town centre is the heart of the apres skiaction and there are plenty of bars and cafes around the townsquare. The Pub Mont-Fort is a popular apres-ski spot with theEnglish holiday crowd, as is Big Ben Pub. The Offshore Cafe is atrendy spot for co*cktails before dinner, while Bar'Jo and King'sBar are also quite popular. A variety of nightclubs stay open andbusy until 4am. The Farm Club is perhaps the most famous nightspotin Verbier; it remains popular with Verbier old-timers and is thechoice for many celebrities. Regular guests keep their own bottlebehind the bar and are waved past the long queue. Coco Club is oneof the most popular venues in Verbier; The New Club and Ice-BoxClub are also trendy party places.

Things to be aware of in Verbier

Verbier's holiday accommodation, restaurants and ski passes areexpensive and queues for the lifts can be long during the holidays.The snow reliability is fairly good in Verbier and it's usuallypossible to ski down to the village, but as with all European skiresorts, weather conditions are unpredictable and it can becloudy.

Skiing in Verbier

Verbier, and the smaller holiday resorts of Nendaz, Veysonnaz,Thuyon and La Tzoumaz are all linked by one ski pass, which offersskiers and snowboarders one of the largest skiable areas in theAlps, including 102 miles (164km) of pistes of all standards.Verbier itself offers pistes for various levels of skiers andsnowboarders. Advanced and intermediate skiers seek the resort'smost famous slopes on the intimidatingly steep Mont Fort and theoff-piste routes from Mont Gelé to Tortin and La Chaux. Verbier isalso renowned for its vast amount of challenging off-piste skiingand demanding mogul runs, which are sought after by expert skiersand snowboarders. Beginners are also well catered for on a Verbierholiday with excellent ski schools, nursery slopes in the centre ofthe village and a wide variety of blue (easy) runs on Savoleyresand Lac de Vaux.

Calas de Mallorca


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The relaxed and quiet purpose-built holiday resort of Calas deMallorca is in the centre of the east coast of the island, close tothe towns of Manacor and Felanitx. The resort is set on a cliff topand is therefore not ideal for those with disabilities or for theelderly, but does have lovely views and good beaches, and ispopular with families with small children. Playa Domingos is theprincipal beach and offers warm, crystal clear water that isperfect for snorkelling; the water can, however, get quite rough attimes. There is a promenade along the headland of Calas de Mallorcawhich affords some spectacular views out to the Mediterranean, andprovides a glorious stamping ground for keen walkers. Calas deMallorca is conveniently close to a number of other resorts,including Porto Cristo, Sa Coma, Cala Millor, Porto Colom and Calad'Or, which all make for great excursions.

Shopping in Calas de Mallorca

Calas de Mallorca has the usual selection of tourist shops nearthe hotels in the Centro Commercial. There is a Sunday morningmarket in nearby Felanitx that has a selection of souvenirs,including good examples of local pottery. The prices are high,especially for tourists, so be prepared to bargain if you want agood deal.

Dining in Calas de Mallorca

Calas de Mallorca has great restaurants for holidaymakers toenjoy, the best of which include C'an Gusti, Cosme Oliver Pila,Explotaciones Hoteleras Edama and Jose Noguera Julia.

Activities in Calas de Mallorca

The resort is not known for its nightlife. There is a smallcollection of bars and restaurants in the Centro Commercial. Whilemost of Calas de Mallorca's nightlife is hotel-based, there are afew live music venues and one or two clubs of which Jupiter's andTiffany's have received positive reviews.

Things to be aware of in Calas de Mallorca

Public transport is limited and unreliable. The beaches havestrong undercurrents and are not suitable for weak swimmers. Calasde Mallorca is not frequented by the single 18 to 30 age set.



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The popular holiday resort of Bodrum, calledHalicarnassus in ancient times, is the South Aegean's mostattractive resort, described by Homer as the 'Land of EternalBlue'. The hillside is covered in painted villas adorned withbougainvillea, narrow streets wind their way down to the sea, andthe peaceful setting of its twin harbours offer shelter foryachts.

Bodrum is a mustering point for local boats offeringtailor-made daytrips to nearby islands or the pristine beaches andseaside restaurants along the magnificent coastline. From itsposition between the two harbours, the 15th century crusader Castleof St Peter dominates every part of the town, now home to thefascinating Museum of Underwater Archaeology. The other Bodrumholiday attraction is the Mausoleum of Halicarnassus, the crumblingremains of one of the Seven Wonders of the Ancient World.

As Turkey's leading seaside holiday destination,Bodrum is packed with foreign visitors in summer. Yet it remainsunspoilt and retains its charming Turkish character, perfecting thebalance between authenticity and tourist comforts. Here, exoticbazaars, the wailing cry of the muezzin, and ancient historyseamlessly blend with popular water sports, sunbathing, and anightlife that is notorious throughout Turkey.

Shopping in Bodrum

Like everywhere in Turkey, shopping on a Bodrum holiday is quitean adventure. Dozens of shops line the busy narrow streets from thebus station down to the marina. Touts and vendors offer a varietyof local goods, from carpets, leatherware, and kilims to fakedesigner clothing, and gold and silver jewellery.

Look out for Turkish meerscewhaum pipes and onyx. There is anextensive colourful craft market in operation on Tuesdays, and afruit and vegetable market on Fridays. Bargaining is expected andit is customary to haggle down to about half the asking price. InBodrum, some shops stay open late at night, some even allnight.

Dining in Bodrum

Warm, sultry evenings in Bodrum are best spent diningon fresh seafood or local specialities in one of the numerousrestaurants. There are plenty of familiar cuisines, such asItalian, Thai, Chinese, Mexican, and European.

Renowned as the top place in town for typical Turkishis Denizhan, a little out of town between Konacik and Ortakent, andeasily reached in a dolmus or taxi. For excellent Aegean dishes,especially lamb, Epsilon in the old town is hard to beat. The bestpizza in Bodrum is served up with a view on the rooftop terrace ofSunger Pizza, while a good blend of Mediterranean and Californiancuisine can be enjoyed at La Jolla Bistro at Xuma Beach.

Also very popular is the Secret Garden, near theMarina, where cooks prepare gourmet Mediterranean fare with flair.The Backpacker Bar & Grill caters to the expat crowd withtraditional English food.

Activities in Bodrum

The nightlife on a Bodrum holiday is frenetic and varied,offering not only western-style decadent clubs but also the chanceto sample local parties. Travellers can visit one of the meyhaneswhere the crowd joins in with the local artists, singing, dancing,eating, and drinking. There are several of these local nightclubson the road to Konacik and Ortakent.

Most of the bars in Bodrum's mile long Bar Street offer bellydancing shows, live music, and outdoor seating (often on the beach)with a view of the illuminated castle. For clubbers, the main placeto be is Halikarnas, one of the biggest and swankiest open-airclubs in the world, where the entrance charge may be high. Thereare plenty of other clubs, even one on a catamaran that sets saillate at night and takes the party out to sea until the dawn.

Things to be aware of in Bodrum

Bodrum beaches are shingled and can become very crowded duringthe height of the summer holiday season. The city's narrow streetsbecome clogged with tourists, day and night, during peak periods.Women have complained of sexual harrasment.


Puerto de la Cruz


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A cosmopolitan old colonial town known to tourists throughoutEurope, the holiday destination of Puerto de la Cruz is located onthe north coast of Tenerife and is the principal tourist centre ofthe island. It was in the 1890s that Puerto de la Cruz became afashionable spa town and since then it has been a preferred holidayspot for European royalty and dignitaries, such as WinstonChurchill and Bertrand Russell. Despite its long-term popularity asa tourist destination, Puerto de la Cruz has maintained the styleand flair of a cosmopolitan spa while retaining the feel of asmall, friendly, and bustling Spanish town. Considered thebirthplace of tourism in the Canary Islands, Puerto de la Cruzattracts some 900,000 visitors annually. The area around the oldfishing port is still lined with cobbled streets, full of colonialarchitecture, and is one of the few resorts where locals stillwork, eat and drink. It is a place where old-world charm existsalongside trendy hotels and apartments, making this the perfectholiday destination.

Shopping in Puerto de la Cruz

Puerto de la Cruz is a shopper's paradise and holidaymakerswon't be disappointed. The 'free port status', which the islandenjoys, allows imports from all over the world. There are a largevariety of goods available from the many hundreds of shops, oftenat good prices. Electronic items of every description, photographicgear, perfumes and alcohol are especially cheap. Travellers shouldbe aware that cheap goods can sometimes be tacky, low-quality orcounterfeit. The Martianez mall is a favourite with touristswanting to splash out on clothes, shoes and gifts.

Dining in Puerto de la Cruz

For a fine culinary experience while on holiday in Puerto de laCruz, try La Casona, Meson los Gemelos, Regulo or La Ganania. Themany restaurants in the resort offer up a variety of dishes andmany different cuisines can be found. The Plaza de Charco is linedwith restaurants and cafés and it is the perfect place to enjoy ameal, tapas or just a drink and watch the world go by.

Activities in Puerto de la Cruz

Holiday visitors should be sure to visit the most popular barsin Puerto de la Cruz, including Friagata, Molly Malones, Color Caféand Azucar. There is, however, a wide range of bars and clubs onoffer, with some staying open into the early hours of the morning.Puerto de la Cruz's nightlife is special in that it is still gearedtowards locals more than tourists and therefore has an authenticSpanish flavour which the purpose-built resorts usually lack.

Things to be aware of in Puerto de la Cruz

In recent years muggings and other street crimes have started tobecome a problem. Thefts from cars, especially cars left overnightand cars left in what appear to be deserted scenic locations, havebecome a major problem. Travellers should not leave valuable itemsin an unoccupied car.



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Known for its high society, luxury hotels, fine dining andexpensive boutiques, Gstaad is the Bernese Oberland's mostglamorous ski resort and the place for glittering socialites to beseen. The town has been the favoured holiday destination of therich and famous for years, entertaining the likes of Roger Moore,Paris Hilton, Elle Macpherson and Tina Turner, among others. Thepicturesque village is traditional in style, with delightful alpinechalets, a pedestrian-only centre and spectacular scenery, and liesat the centre of the Gstaad Super Ski Region: one of the largestski areas in Europe. With lush mountain scenery, miles of hikingtrails, beautiful weather and good-quality hotels, Gstaad is also agreat place to spend a few days in summer.

Shopping in Gstaad

Gstaad's main shopping street is Hauptstrasse, which has a largeselection of stores and boutiques that offer wares from the latestfashions and exclusive sporting goods to jewellery and pastryshops. Stores cater mainly for the wealthy.

Dining in Gstaad

Visitors to Gstaad are spoiled for choice when it comes torestaurants. A large number of establishments have been awardedwith Gault Milau points for outstanding cuisine, such as RestaurantLe Grill at the Palace, while about 70 others offer everything fromtraditional specialities to Asian, Italian, fish and grills.

Activities in Gstaad

After skiing many people gravitate to one of the bars atDorfstrasse for a beer or co*cktail. The GreenGo bar and nightclubat the Palace Hotel is the place to be seen and is the centre ofGstaad's nightlife. Richi's Pub is a popular meeting spot forlocals, and is a favourite among sports fans for watching sportingevents. The more elegant Rialto bar also hosts live music inwinter.

Things to be aware of in Gstaad

Gstaad has a reputation for being an exclusive ski destinationand is expensive even by Swiss standards. The skiing might be adisappointment for expert skiers, and snow coverage is unreliabledue to the relatively low altitude.

Skiing in Gstaad

There is excellent skiing and snowboarding for beginners andintermediates in and around the Gstaad town centre but, for morechallenging runs, it's best to make use of the Gstaad Super SkiRegion pass, which is valid for about 155 miles (250km) of preparedruns spread over six different ski areas. The pass provides accessto the ski areas of Chateau d'Oex, Rougemont, Saanen, Schonried,Saanenmoser, Zweisimmen, Lauenen and Gsteig, which are allaccessible by train. Intermediate skiers are the most spoilt forchoice, as a huge variety of blue and red runs are available nearGstaad, while the Diablerets glacier has snow most of the year andsome challenging skiing and snowboarding for the advanced, as wellas heli-skiing. Advanced skiers will also find off-pistepossibilities in the Saanenmoser and Schonried area. There is anexcellent ski school in Gstaad, and there are many others in theGstaad region.




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The little resort town of Turunc was once a sleepyfishing village, but has grown into a popular holiday resort overthe years. The town is sheltered by forest-covered mountains,situated on a small, rounded bay and is near to the larger resortsof Marmaris and Icmeler. Turunc has managed to retain its charm andoffers a more low-key resort experience to holiday makers than manyof the other Turkish resorts. As the town grows, more amenities aresure to follow, but for now, Turunc offers a relaxing holiday and achance to get away from it all.

Shopping in Turunc

Turunc also has a large range of shops, offering the usual fakedesigner goods, leather items, souvenirs, and jewellery, as well asa chance for holiday makers to improve their bargaining skills atthe market on Mondays. The atmosphere is more laidback than sometowns, but haggling is still a must if travellers want a good deal.Popular souvenirs include honey, Turkish delights, and 'evil eye'charms.

Dining in Turunc

Most restaurants in Turunc offer both Turkish and English food.Fish and lamb are local specialties, and sweet and savoury pancakesin the tea gardens are pleasant. Bondjuk is popular for its lambkleftikos and live jazz music, and Sahin is a well-knownsteakhouse.

Activities in Turunc

There are a few lively bars and clubs in Turunc, but nothingstays open very late and the town is not well-suited to anyonelooking for a party.

Things to be aware of in Turunc

The resort doesn't have much in the way of a nightlife.



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Keystone attracts all types from all over the world on holiday.From first-time families to rogue snowboarders, all manage todelight themselves with the many options available at thisall-encompassing holiday resort. Keystone is situated only one anda half hours from Denver, and just over two hours from DenverInternational Airport. It is part of the Vail Resorts group, andlift tickets can be purchased to include the other resorts in thatgroup: Breckenridge, Beaver Creek, Arapahoe Basin, Vail andHeavenly (California). An efficient bus system in Summit Countryconnects all of these resorts (excluding Heavenly), to allow for anincredible variety of skiing in the area. Keystone itself has threeseparate villages with bars, restaurants, shops, rental equipmentfacilities and a wide range of accommodation for visitors to enjoyon holiday. What really separates Keystone from all the otherholiday resorts in Colorado is the night skiing, which is excitingand fun.

Shopping in Keystone

In the three Keystone villages there are shops catering for allski and snowboarding needs while there on holiday. However, foranything else the resort is quite limited. A few stores rent outski equipment and sell resort memorabilia, and there are also acouple of clothing, jewellery and souvenir stores in Keystone.General stores sell products for self-catering holiday visitors,and the nearby town of Dillon has a small shopping complex withmore variety. The town of Frisco, further on, has a wider selectionstill.

Dining in Keystone

Keystone boasts some of the best restaurants in the area, with avariety of dishes, ranging from seafood to steak, to enjoy onholiday. Top restaurants include Keystone Ranch, Ski Tip Lodge andAlpenglow Stube. An unusual option is to have dinner on a horsedrawn sleigh ride, departing from Dercum Square. It is advisable tomake all reservations in advance. For the budget conscious,take-away pizza is always a good option after a hard day on theslopes.

Activities in Keystone

Although not as well known for its nightlife as nearbyBreckenridge or Vail, Keystone has its share of bars spread acrossthe resort. Visitors will find sports bars and a few venuesoffering live music; there may not be great variety, but it isalways possible to find an atmospheric bar for a few drinks.

Things to be aware of in Keystone

Over the Christmas period and Spring Break, the Keystone holidayresort and mountains can get overcrowded. The nightlife andshopping is not as good as many of the other nearby resorts.

Skiing in Keystone

Between the three mountains at Keystone there are a variety ofruns to suit everybody from the greenest beginner to the mostadvanced. Dercum has most of the green and blue runs for thebeginners, while North Peak and The Outback have blues, blacks andmoguls for those who enjoy the extra challenge. For park-lovers,A51 Terrain Park has enough pipes and rails to keep them happy. Andcome 5pm, when most other ski resorts shut their mountains and headto the bars, Keystone keeps Dercum and A51 open until 9pm, offeringthe largest area for night skiing in the whole of Colorado.



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Skanes, with its beautiful and seemingly endlesssandy beach, is a suburb of the Tunisian Mediterranean port town ofMonastir. The town has happily given itself up as a tourist Mecca,centred on a modern marina and a revamped Medina crammed withsouvenir shops and restaurants. Even its ancient Ribat (fort) hasbeen rebuilt and glamorised by being used as the setting forseveral movies such as Monty Python's Life of Brian, as well as Raiders of the Lost Ark.

The historic city of Monastir retains its ancient airof having been Tunisia's holiest place, and an important strategicstronghold that was once used as a base by Julius Caesar. Just afew miles from the centre of Monastir lies the extravagant stretchof grand hotels that have been built along the coast in the areaknown as Skanes. These magnificent architectural delights are setin acres of lush gardens, most of them encompassing their own patchof well-maintained sandy beach.

The Skanes hotels are well connected to Monastir andother nearby resort towns, such as Sousse, by a tourist road trainand a plethora of taxis. Monastir also has the advantage of havingits own international airport. Parasols and umbrellas pepper thebeaches, along with the stands of local vendors and watersportsequipment renters.

Shopping in Skanes

Like everywhere in Tunisia a great deal of fun can be hadhaggling for bargains in the local medina. Monastir and Skanes arealso well supplied with modern shopping centres catering to touristneeds.

Dining in Skanes

Most dining in Skanes is confined to the hotel restaurantsgeared towards holidaymakers. But those wanting a change of eatingvenue are spoilt for choice in nearby Monastir, particularly aroundthe marina and its adjacent shopping centre.

Here, restaurants, cafes, pizza parlours, and snack bars abound.Most of these establishments are aimed at European tastes andalcohol is served. Many even happily accept Euros in payment. Thosewanting to try genuine local fare won't have to venture far and canenjoy the spicy dishes served with unleavened bread at far moreaffordable prices.

Activities in Skanes

Holidaymakers will find that the nightlife in Skanes mainlycentres on live entertainment and dancing provided 'in house' bythe various hotels.

Things to be aware of in Skanes

Vendors and shopkeepers often pester tourists to buy theirwares. There is little for children to do apart from enjoying thesandy beaches.


Ayia Napa


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Once a small fishing village in the southeastern corner ofCyprus, Ayia Napa is now a hotspot for holidaymakers looking for alively holiday. Over 250,000 clubbers swarm into this party capitaleach summer and the atmosphere, with its scores of bars andnightclubs, is nothing short of amazing.

Located in the centre of the market garden area of the island,Ayia Napa also boasts a string of superb golden sandy beaches andvestiges of its cultural heritage. There's a Venetian-decoratedmonastery fronted by a 600-year-old sycamore tree, and a quaintharbour filled with colourful fishing vessels. Just a few milesfrom Ayia Napa, the resort of Protaras is more restrained andsuited to family holidays. Both resorts have excellent beaches, themost famous being Fig Tree Bay.

Other popular beaches include Nissi Beach and Nissi Bay, twomiles (3km) west of Ayia Napa; Cape Greco to the east, where thechallenge is to leap from the rocks into the sea; and Konnos Bay,just past Cape Greco, where there is a beach cafe and speedboatsfor hire.

Shopping in Ayia Napa

Shopping in Ayia Napa is pure pleasure for locals andholidaymakers alike, with real bargains to be had, particularly ondesigner goods. High-end watches, sunglasses, clothing, cameras,and jewellery are available at cheaper prices than in the UnitedKingdom. Shops and boutiques are generally small and friendly,opening until 11pm every night except Sundays.

The local handcrafts make for good souvenir shopping, andinclude beautiful embroidered Lefkara lace, original ceramicpottery, artistic silver jewellery, baskets, woven and silk goods,and high-quality leatherwear. Major credit cards are acceptedeverywhere.

Dining in Ayia Napa

Variety is the spice of life when dining out in Ayia Napa, wherecountless restaurants specialise in a host of cuisines from aroundthe world. Everything from the romantic and traditional to fastfood and pub-grub is on offer. Whether it's a Big Mac or fish 'nchips, Chinese or classic French, travellers won't have to go farto find it.

Visitors are well advised to try the Cypriot fare, particularlyin the delightful traditional tavernas clustered around theharbour. Highly recommended is the typical Cypriot meze platter,made up of between 15 and 30 island dishes. Other localspecialities include taramosalata, tzatziki, moussaka, stifado(beef or veal stew), afelia (pork in red wine), and loukoumades(doughnuts dipped in syrup).

Activities in Ayia Napa

Holidaymakers in the resort soon learn that it's essential toplan an afternoon siesta if they are to make the most of thesensational nightlife for which Ayia Napa is world-renowned. TheCypriots' appreciation for the good life and good times comes tothe fore after sunset, with bars, discos, nightclubs, and bouzoukiclubs open well into the early hours of the morning.

Most hotels have their own nightly entertainment, with aresident band and Greek nights when folk dancing is offered. Theresort's clubbing scene is legendary, with big name deejaysappearing frequently at some of the popular clubs.

Things to be aware of in Ayia Napa

Generally Ayia Napa is clean, well ordered, and favoured by alltypes of holidaymakers. Those who do not enjoy noise and brightlights, however, are advised to stay clear of the central monasterysquare area, which is where most of the popular nightclubs aresituated. The main clubbing season is between June and September,and during this period the resort is packed with young people fromall over Europe.

Older holiday makers may prefer to enjoy the resort during theshoulder months (April, May, October and November), when theweather is still good, the sea relatively warm, but the temposlower. The island can be windy, but the geographic locations ofthe surrounding beaches means that it is possible to find asheltered beach even on windy days. Nissi Beach tends to beovercrowded, but there are other beaches within easy reach whereit's possible to enjoy peace and quiet.



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Situated on the Gulf of Antalya on Turkey's Mediterranean coast,Alanya has been a favoured seaside holiday resort for over 800years. Today's European package tourist is drawn here for much thesame reasons as the Seljuk Turks all those centuries ago: the seais warm and gentle, the beaches stretch for miles, and the town hasan interesting history.

The southern part of the town is the most tourist-orientated,although, fortunately, a height-restriction has limited the sprawlcommon to resort towns. There is, however, the usual collection ofresort-style hotels and tourist-orientated fare in Alanya. Theharbour is a hub of activity, particularly at night, and when tiredof relaxing on the beach, there are several sites such as theDamlatas Caves, Alanya Castle and the Red Tower to visit.

Alanya is also backed by the pine-forested Taurus Mountains andwhile on holiday there, a half hour's drive out of town allowsvisitors to enjoy spectacular views, as well as the charm of small,rural villages where life continues much as it always has.

Shopping in Alanya

Alanya has a range of good shops, and part of the fun forvisitors is perfecting their haggling skills. Barring food items,bargaining on everything is expected and patience is key. One canusually expect to get prices marked down by 30 to 50 percent. Toutscan get annoying and it is best to avoid shops with aggressivesalesmen. Alanya offers some excellent jewellery stores, as well asleather goods and clothing stores, a local market, and the usualtourist tat. Hookahs (water pipes) and tobacco are popularsouvenirs from Alanya, as well as Turkish tea sets.

Dining in Alanya

Alanya has a large range of restaurants, catering for a varietyof tastes, from traditional Turkish food to McDonalds. Somefavourites include Memos, serving traditional Turkish dishes suchas a delicious Ottoman stew, and Big Ben's for more English-stylebreakfasts and Sunday roasts. Visitors should try a kebab or mezzeplatter, followed by a cold Efes beer for an authentic Turkishexperience. If travellers eat from street vendors, they shouldremember that they can haggle the price of their meal; haggling isfrowned upon in restaurants and grocery stores, however. Localspecialties such baklava and thick, sludgy Turkish coffee arehighly recommended.

Activities in Alanya

Much of Alanya's nightlife is centred on the harbour, butseveral more locally frequented bars and clubs can be found tuckedaway in the side streets. Many of the clubs close relatively early,but a free shuttle ferries serious partiers to Auditorium, anenormous venue that stays buzzing until the wee hours and is awayfrom the town centre. Other favourites include Robin Hood, andBistro Bellman. Several venues also provide more traditionalentertainment such as belly dancing, fire shows, and traditionalmusic.

Things to be aware of in Alanya

Alanya is a popular holiday resort and can get very noisy andcrowded. The busy main highway runs through the resort, and causespollution, noise, and congestion. An ancient lava field just belowthe water line can be hard to negotiate while swimming.



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The traditional mountain holiday village of Morzine is situatedin the middle of one of the most extensive ski areas in the Alps,the Portes du Soleil, which links 14 ski resorts in France andSwitzerland, including Avoriaz, Les Gets and Châtel. Morzine ispopular with young, lively skiers, and it's also a great familyresort with traditional chalets, special childcare services, andplenty of beginner and intermediate slopes nearby, as well asfamily-orientated activities. Advanced skiers and boarders willalso find endless off-piste opportunities and ample challenges onthe black slopes. About a mile higher up the slope is thepurpose-built resort of Avoriaz, which is a popular base for tripsacross the border to the Swiss resorts, and its treeless slopesoffer powder snow and great boarding.

Shopping in Morzine

Holidaymakers will find a variety of local handmade goods andtypical French souvenirs displayed in shop windows in Morzine, suchas traditional Savoyard pottery, sculpted objects made from thelocal wood and slate, mountain cheeses and salted meat. There arealso clothes boutiques and sports shops.

Dining in Morzine

Morzine specialises largely in fully catered chalet-styleholidays, but for those looking for a night out there are a varietyof options available. Traditional fare such as raclette, fondue,berthoud or diots can be found in a number of establishments. Mealsare well accompanied by local wines.

Activities in Morzine

Après-ski is generally low-key and relatively calm, but severalbars and discos in Morzine offer a bit of after-hours entertainmentfor holidaymakers keen on a big night out. There are a variety ofbars and English-style pubs, though many close as early as 8pm, anda couple of nightclubs that stay open late. Most clubs are closedaround 2am.

Things to be aware of in Morzine

The low altitude of the resort means that resort-level snow israre and there may be a wait at the lifts to access themountains.

Skiing in Morzine

The unlimited ski area of the Portes du Soleil offers slopes forall levels of skiing and snowboarding at the foot of the Dents duMidi and the Dents Blanches, with wonderful panoramic views. Theterrain covers about 404 miles (650km) of marked runs, making itthe largest ski area in the world. Both Morzine and Avoriaz havenursery slopes next to the resort, while intermediates have aplayground of vast proportions in the Morzine area as well asthroughout the Portes du Soleil circuit. Advanced skiers andboarders will find more than 20 black runs, endless off-piste andsome of the biggest moguls in the world on the legendary 'Wall' atAvoriaz. Avoriaz is also one of Europe's top snowboardingdestinations. Ski schools offer lessons to all ages from threeyears up, for all levels.

Palma Nova


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Together with its neighbour, Magaluf, the island resort of PalmaNova, on the southwest coast of Mallorca, makes up the most popularholiday area on the island, situated a few miles west of thecapital, Palma, and the Palma Mallorca Airport (Airport Son SantJoan). Most visitors to Palma Nova come on package tours from theUK, intent on enjoying an entertaining, fun-in-the-sun vacation ina 'home-from-home' setting. Few are disappointed because thepurpose-built resort offers all they need and more, from beautifulbeaches to a wild nightlife. The three sandy beaches of the holidaystrip, Es Carregador, Playa de Palma Nova and Son Maties, arebacked by a long promenade and have European Blue Flag status.Palma Nova is divided from Europe's famed party capital, Magaluf,by a rocky headland, but the resorts are basically merged into oneconglomerate of hotels and apartments offering a range ofaccommodation from budget self-catering to luxury suites. PalmaNova is known as the quieter section of this hedonistic seasidedevelopment, and therefore more suited to families. Many Palma Novahotels offer discounted rates during off-peak but a fair amount ofthe bars and nightclubs in the resort are closed during winter.

Shopping in Palma Nova

Holidaymakers who prefer not to stray too far from theiraccommodation and the beach will be able to find all they need inthe commercial centre of Palma Nova, which is liberally sprinkledwith convenience stores, souvenir shops, gift shops, camera andelectrical goods stores, a chemist and clothing outlets. Forvariety it is easy to take a stroll across to neighbouring Magaluf,which has even more tourist-oriented retail outlets. Seriousshoppers can catch a bus or taxi into Palma, Mallorca's capital,which is famed for its excellent shopping, or visit one of thelively markets in the nearby towns and villages. For anything fromgifts and souvenirs to delicious cheeses, olive oil and livelybargaining banter there is a weekly market held in nearby Andratxevery Wednesday.

Dining in Palma Nova

Palma Nova has some of the best restaurants on Mallorca. Greateateries in this Spanish resort town include Maritimo, Natalies,Real Dion, Modigliani and the unimaginatively named Palmanova. Thelong promenade that stretches along the three beaches of Palma Novais lined with dozens of good restaurants offering British, Chinese,French, Italian and Mexican cuisine. The resort also bristles withfast food outlets of all descriptions. Several Spanish bars serveup tapas snacks during the day, and of course there are plenty ofseafood eateries to choose from in Palma Nova.

Activities in Palma Nova

Some of Palma Nova's bars have discos, live acts or TV (footballand UK soaps) for holidaymakers to enjoy. Palma Nova and Magalufhave virtually merged, making the choice and range of nightclubsand bars even greater. In Palma Nova itself, tourists wanting apub-type bar should go to Willows, while those after music bars andclubs can choose from Banana Joes, Papis and Ruby Tuesdays. Magalufis the more party-orientated resort and has a more energeticnightlife.

Things to be aware of in Palma Nova

Palma Nova, although not as busy as Magaluf, is a close second.Beaches and streets can be crowded and congested in peak season,and this is not the place to seek out peace and quiet. Clubs oftenhave touts or reps encouraging patrons to choose theirestablishment; these PRs are sometimes seen as a nuisance.





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Oludeniz is situated just a few minutes from Fethiyeand has a crystal-clear lagoon and a beautiful beach that adornsalmost every Turkish travel brochure. Despite being developed withmany hotels and apartment blocks, the scenery in Oludeniz isspectacular and the town is a lively place to spend a holiday.Perched on the mountain plateau overlooking Oludeniz, the resorttown of Hisaronu is packed with bars, nightclubs, shops, andrestaurants. With their rugged surrounds, both Oludeniz andHisaronu are fast becoming realised for their potential as outdooractivity destinations. For example, the beach at Oludeniz offers ahuge variety of watersports, such as paragliding from BabadagMountain onto the beach below, and a selection of boat trips departregularly from Oludeniz or Fethiye for a day exploring the sceniccoastline. The numerous paths that wind their way along thehillsides offer spectacular views and sights, including thefascinating Greek Village, which was evacuated during theGreco-Turkish War.

Shopping in Oludeniz

Oludeniz has several souvenir shops sprinkled along the Belcekizbeach seafront, and many of the resort hotels and holiday apartmentcomplexes boast their own gift stores. For honest to goodnessshopping, however, travellers should catch a dolmus into nearbyHisaronu or Fethiye, where it is possible to haggle for bargains.Good buys are leather goods, carpets, jewellery, as well asknock-off designer sunglasses and watches.

Dining in Oludeniz

No-one need go dissatisfied in Oludeniz, no matter what theirtaste in food, and if they do manage to exhaust the holidayresort's possibilities, there is always Hisaronu just a fewkilometres inland with a vast array of restaurants. Somerecommendations are Blue Star Pide and Sultan Ahmet, both offergood Turkish cuisine; and the Belcekiz Beach Club A la Carte for anexclusive Mediterranean night out.

Activities in Oludeniz

Nightlife in Oludeniz is more low-key than in the nearby holidayresorts, concentrated more on chilling out in beachside bars thanfrenetic clubbing. Those looking to party the night away can take ashort trip to Hisaronu, or a little further to Fethiye, and findplenty of action. Among the most popular seafront bars are BuzzBeach Bar, the Sugar Shack, and Crusoe's. Most of the local resortestablishments offer live evening entertainment for guests aswell.

Things to be aware of in Oludeniz

Many visitors have complained about overzealous touts becoming anuisance, and prices in the resort town have risen in recent years,making it rather expensive by Turkish standards. The weather tendsto be extremely hot and humid in the height of summer andmosquitoes can be a nuisance.



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Beyond being the largest city in western Crete, Hania (Chania)is also one of the most attractive. Its small harbour and labyrinthof Turkish and Venetian buildings never fail to charm visitors.Colourful markets and exquisite cuisine add more dimensions to afantastic Greek holiday destination. Shops, cafes and tavernas linenarrow, winding lanes, which lead to delicate stonework, whiteOrthodox churches and other photographic opportunities. Parts ofthe old city walls and buildings have also been excavated. Visitorscan enjoy them during walks around town. Hania's port area is theoldest and most interesting locale. Holidaymakers will find itsmany bars and restaurants busy at night, while its few museums arecertainly worth visiting for history buffs. Hikers must venturethrough the famous Samaria Gorge.

Shopping in Hania

Holidaymakers should visit Hania's Municipal Market for gooddining and souvenirs, and the famous Leather Street (Stivanadika)for leather items. Shoppers will also find many craft and jewelleryestablishments around the city.

Dining in Hania

Visitors will find many cafes, tavernas and restaurants aroundthe harbour. The city also has a number of traditionalestablishments in the market area.

Activities in Hania

Hania has a number of clubs, with some quietly gay-friendlyoptions.

Things to be aware of in Hania

The pavements in Hania are very narrow, so strolling along thestreets can be a bit hazardous.

Beaver Creek


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A major resort in Colorado, this upmarket ski haven is a greatholiday destination for families, couples and even a fewcelebrities, as it offers good skiing, fine dining, world-classshopping and fantastic accommodation. Beaver Creek has a veryEuropean feel to it, styled similarly to Switzerland's St Moritz,Italy's Cortina and Spain's Val d'Aran, and exudes the sense ofluxury that complements the resort's maxim: Not Exactly Roughing It.

The resort includes three villages with mountain access fromall. The Beaver Creek Village is the heart of the resort and hasplenty of shops and restaurants in its surrounds, whereas BachelorGulch and Arrowhead are more secluded but with great access to theslopes. Beaver Creek is part of Vail Resorts and ski packages caninclude access to Keystone, Vail, Breckenridge, and Heavenly(California), all of which (excluding Heavenly) can be accessed viaan efficient transport system in the Summit County Area.

Shopping in Beaver Creek

Apart from offering a wide selection of skiing and snowboardinggear, shops in Beaver Creek sell jewellery, clothing, furniture,arts and crafts and much more, throughout the villages. A number ofski apparel and equipment centres provide all the necessary skiparaphernalia, a variety of gift shops offer Beaver Creekmemorabilia, and boutique stores offer everything from fine winesto Swarovski Crystal.

Dining in Beaver Creek

There is something for every taste and price tag in BeaverCreek, and for any time of day. Restaurants are located all acrossthe resort and on the mountain. A meal on the mountain may well beworth the price and what better way than arriving on a sleigh to afive-course meal at Beano's Cabin! In addition to some superbfine-dining options, there are plenty of delis, pizza parlours andburger establishments spread across and up the mountain for anin-between snack or light lunch.

Activities in Beaver Creek

Beaver Creek, though not renowned for an incredible nightlife,does offer quieter, more sophisticated evenings at the Beaver CreekChophouse. The Coyote Cafe is another popular option, with localsas well as visitors.

Things to be aware of in Beaver Creek

The Beaver Creek resort is pricey compared to others in thearea.

Skiing in Beaver Creek

Beaver Creek skiing conditions are often excellent thanks to theefficiency of resort handlers in maintaining the slopes. In 1989,the resort hosted the World Ski Championships, and it offers avariety of levels for beginners, intermediates, and even expertskiers. The resort also keeps park-lovers entertained with threeparks, including a beginners park, Park 101, and Moonshine forthose who can handle the rails, tables and half-pipes. Beaver Creekalso boasts two bowls, Rose and Larkspur, creating a playground foradvanced skiers and riders.

Los Cabos


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Located at the southern-most tip of the Baja Californiapeninsula, where the warm waters of the Sea of Cortez collide withthe wild Pacific, Los Cabos is an area of striking beauty and oneof Mexico's top holiday resort destinations. Surrounded by a vastcactus desert and ochre-coloured mountains, the azure waters offerdiving, sailing and swimming, and the area is a world-renownedMecca for sport fishing and surfing.

Los Cabos is an area made up of the two resort towns of San Josédel Cabo and Cabo San Lucas, sitting at either end of an 18-mile(29km) stretch of exquisite beaches sprinkled with exclusive luxuryholiday resorts and championship golf courses, known locally as theResort Corridor. San José del Cabo is the older and moretraditional of the two resorts with the unhurried pace of acolonial Mexican village. Cabo San Lucas started as a simple fishing village and is now one of the favourite beach holidaydestinations of the elite, with high quality luxury services and anenergetic nightlife. The majority of visitors base themselves inSan Lucas or the Resort Corridor. Just offshore is the area'slandmark and an impressive natural wonder, Los Arcos (The Arches),a beautiful, wave-sculpted rock formation.

Shopping in Los Cabos

There are shops galore in the two towns and along the ResortCorridor, and shoppers will not be disappointed in the variety ofclothes and shoes, gifts and souvenirs, furniture, jewellery,leather goods and speciality stores. Cabo San Lucas has the largestselection of shops, and also has imported American goods, anartisan's market and dozens of boutiques to explore while onholiday.

Dining in Los Cabos

There are numerous restaurants in Los Cabos offering a widerange of fare from Italy, France and North America, as well as someexcellent local Mexican cuisine. Seafood is understandably popularand is offered by almost every style of eatery. Diners can choosebetween fine dining, local restaurants with dancing and live music,bistros, and casual eateries. The tourist-orientated ResortCorridor has a vast variety of fine dining options, while simpleMexican cuisine is best found in either San José or San Lucas. Oneof the best places to sit elbow-to-elbow with locals is MarisqueríaMazatlán, which serves simple and delicious seafood.

Activities in Los Cabos

The after dark scene in Los Cabos is mainly located in Cabo SanLucas, which has a livelier atmosphere than the relativelylaid-back San José and attracts a younger, more energetic crowd.The most popular nightclubs are El Squid Roe, Cabo Wabo, Zoo Bar& Dance, and The Giggling Marlin, while many hotels havepopular clubs and bars. For a quieter evening out, there are alsonumerous places to enjoy soft music and a romantic atmosphere.

Things to be aware of in Los Cabos

Los Cabos can sometimes experience hurricanes and tropicalstorms. Hurricane season runs from June to November and visitors tothe region during this time should take care to check weather andstorm forecasts.

Puerto Vallarta


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Puerto Vallarta is situated in the Bahia de Banderas, a 14-mile (22km) long bay lined with long stretches of sandy beaches. It is the second largest holiday resort on the Pacific coast after Acapulco, but despite its resort status it has managed to maintain its own unique character. Puerto Vallarta's charm is due to its blend of first-world cosmopolitan city and the colonial features of its historic old town. The graceful centre is embellished with quaint cobblestone streets that are lined with delightful white adobe houses, flower-filled wrought-iron balconies and red tiled roofs, making this one of Mexico's most picturesque coastal cities.

Puerto Vallarta's luxury hotels, restaurants, bars, and shopping centres have spread out along the coast on either side of the original town, allowing Puerto Vallarta to grow as a holiday destination without sacrificing its colonial charms. With more than 250 restaurants, visitors to Puerto Vallarta are spoilt for choice when it comes to dining out in this charming city. In Puerto Vallarta tourists will find a cosmopolitan hub which nevertheless boasts the simple pleasures of a Mexican village. Outdoor recreation is limitless in Puerto Vallarta, especially considering the diversity of watersports available, including scuba diving and snorkelling, while whales and dolphins inhabit the bay and can often be seen on organised boat trips.

Shopping in Puerto Vallarta

Even serious shoppers won't be disappointed by the variety of shops in Puerto Vallarta, which line almost every downtown street and range from speciality stores and shopping centres to outdoor markets and art galleries. No other holiday resort destination in Mexico can offer a better shopping experience than Puerto Vallarta. It has developed a reputation as an art centre and there is an abundance of local arts and crafts, such as pottery, ceramics and hand blown glass. Boutiques stock an array of shoes, traditional Mexican sandals and clothing, while the main flea market is the place to bargain for inexpensive handicrafts, clothes and souvenirs.

Dining in Puerto Vallarta

As the culinary capital of Mexico, and host to the annual Gourmet Dining Festival every November, foodies will be in paradise while on holiday in Puerto Vallarta. It is home to some of the best restaurants in Mexico, and offers thousands of places to dine ranging from award-winning venues and family-run restaurants to coffee houses and relaxed beachside cafes. A wide range of international cuisine is available, from Italian to Japanese and French, with the eclectic Daiquiri Dick's coming out tops and La Ola Rica serving popular pizzas and coconut shrimp. For traditional local Mexican fare, visit El Arrayán in the centre of town.

Activities in Puerto Vallarta

The nightlife in Puerto Vallarta offers something for everyone. There are nightclubs and all night discos, strip bars, live music clubs, bars serving up sundowner co*cktails, restaurants that bring on bands after the food has been cleared away, folkloric dancing and Mexican fiestas, and hotel bars where visitors and locals alike gather over a drink for a chat at the end of the day. The centre of the nightlife is the Malecon strip where the vibrant atmosphere suits the young and the young at heart. The South Side features a variety of alternative entertainment, including gay bars and strip shows.

Things to be aware of in Puerto Vallarta

During the warmer months of May to August insects and mosquitoes can become a problem in Puerto Vallarta so be sure to bring plenty of repellent with you.



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Aspen's reputation as a holiday destination precedes it; thename is synonymous with glitz, glamour, unparalleled skiing, andspectacular mountain scenery. Most reviews would have one believethat Aspen is a holiday resort exclusively for the rich and famous.Although this elite resort does host super stars such as GigiHadid, Kim Kardashian, Jack Nicholson and Cher, anyone with a lotof cash can experience the powder snow, superb skiing andsophisticated accommodation, as well as good dining andhigh-society shopping, with an unrivalled range of winter andsummer activities. An Aspen holiday in summer is more affordable asprices are lower at this time; there are numerous trails forhiking, biking and horse riding, as well as renowned culturalfestivals of dance and music to keep visitors occupied when thereis no snow. The resort attracts thousands of Americans, as well asEuropean visitors every year. Aspen began as a silver mining townwith the discovery of the world's largest silver nugget in the1870s. After the crash of the silver market, its economy dwindleduntil it was recognised as a prime ski location. The ostentatiousapres-ski is one of the major draw cards of Aspen, as it's a chancefor the rich and famous to mingle.

Shopping in Aspen

Whether travellers are on an Aspen holiday for the winter sportsor just to be seen (or both), they will have to schedule quite alarge slice of their time to the resort's other main activity,which is world-class shopping. Unfortunately, prices are high, butthat should not deter even the most budget-conscious browsers from'just looking'. The retail options extend from home-grown storesoffering handcrafts to high-fashion designer boutiques, jewelleryto die for, antiques and collectibles, and even a unique pet'sparadise where animal lovers can outfit their pooches in style.Those who do not come well prepared can, of course, also findtrendy ski-wear at local upscale outlets such as Gorsuch, wherecelebrities flock for the latest in mountain style.

Dining in Aspen

All that crisp, cold air and exercise ensures that Aspen'svisitors are a hungry bunch, but even the heartiest appetites gowell satisfied in the resort, which has a huge range of restaurantofferings, from takeaways to gourmet fine dining. Somerecommendations include the eclectic Woody Creek Tavern, where theburgers are sought after by some celebrity regulars; and theKenichi sushi den, with its lively, buzzing atmosphere.

Activities in Aspen

Apres-ski is a vital part of any winter resort holiday, andAspen pulls out all the stops to ensure its visitors an unrivallednight out on the town. Sophisticated social spots abound, fromcomfy cigar bars to trendy co*cktail lounges, while the younger setwill find live music venues such as Belly Up to enjoy artists fromaround the globe.

Things to be aware of in Aspen

A top-rate ski resort, the quality is reflected in the prices atAspen and, as such, it is not the right resort for those seeking abudget ski vacation. It can also get rather crowded.

Skiing in Aspen

Aspen is regarded by many as America's prime winter holidayresort, with downhill skiing providing its lifeblood since 1936.The Silver Queen Gondola transports skiers to the top of AspenMountain, above the town, to take on the expert and intermediateslopes. Two miles (3km) west of town the Buttermilk area providesnovice and intermediate runs, while farther out, at Snowmass andAspen Highlands, families can enjoy a variety of types and levelsof snow fun. Cross-country trails snake through the nationalforest.

Port El Kantaoui


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Visitors could be forgiven for imagining that the quaint blueand white holiday village of Port El Kantaoui had been built as aHollywood set, and simply uprooted and placed down on the Tunisiancoast. In fact, this is not far from the truth. El Kantaoui is achic, purpose-built holiday resort that owes nothing to history,but everything to a desire to cater for the up-market touristseeking leisurely luxury in an enchanting setting.

The El Kantaoui Complex is built around a modern marina and canaccommodate more than 300 vessels, most of them moored bymillionaires. Its complex of hotels centres on the cobblestonestreets of the perfect reproduction of a typical medieval medina,abuzz during the day with souvenir hunters. In the evening, theaction switches to the bars and cafes opposite the marina. Theentire town has been termed a 'tourist ghetto' and is indeed adelightful and highly successful one, enhanced by its Mediterraneanlocation and Moorish flavour.

Shopping in Port El Kantaoui

Like the entire resort, the shopping centre and model 'souk' inPort El Kantaoui is geared to holidaymakers, stocking mainlysouvenir items with prices higher than elsewhere in Tunisia.Bargaining for goods is an entertaining experience, however. Forbetter bargains and a more realistic Tunisian bazaar experience,travellers should take an excursion to nearby Sousse.

Dining in Port El Kantaoui

El Kantaoui bristles with excellent restaurants serving allsorts of cuisine, and holidayakers will not be disappointed. Mostof the best restaurants front the Marina in the form of high-class,sophisticated eateries, serving up traditional specialities andlocal favourites. Prices are modest by European standards, buthigher than elsewhere in Tunisia.

Activities in Port El Kantaoui

Nightlife is low key, but most holidaymakers can find somethingto their taste, whether it be simply lingering over a deliciousmeal, sipping drinks at a waterfront cafe, or enjoying the in-houseentertainment at one of the hotels. There is also a casino aboutfive minutes away.

Things to be aware of in Port El Kantaoui

Port El Kantaoui is often extremely crowded and more expensivethan the other holiday resorts in Tunisia. There are no facilitieshere for budget travellers because most hotels are top-ratedestablishments.

Puerto Santiago


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Puerto Santiago is the central holiday resort of three separateones, Los Gigantes, Playa Arena and Puerto Santiago, which havespread and essentially merged into each other on Tenerife's westcoast, forming the area's largest tourist hub, collectively knownas Los Gigantes. The resort of Puerto Santiago was once a smallfishing village, but is now a popular holiday destination garneringrave reviews from most tourists and visitors. Puerto Santiagoboasts a small but decent selection of bars, restaurants, shops andactivities to suit the tourist palette. Puerto Santiago has managedto retain some of its traditional charm and offers visitors thechance to relax and enjoy a seaside break with local Spanishflavour; although some visitors might take a while to getaccustomed to the black sand beach. The resort is peaceful andwell-suited to relaxed beach holidays in beautiful surroundings.Puerto Santiago doesn't have much to offer the young party crowd,but it is only a short drive to more energetic resorts, like Playade las Americas.

Shopping in Puerto Santiago

There is no shopping district in Puerto Santiago, but there isan assortment of shops that cater for tourists. Shopping on theisland of Tenerife is tax-free, so it is possible to find gooddeals on cigarettes, perfume, alcohol, electronics, and othergoods. Although Puerto Santiago is not a shopping hub, there is alarger variety of shops in neighbouring resorts like Los Gigantes.A unique souvenir from Tenerife is the locally-produced sweet rumcalled Ron Miel.

Dining in Puerto Santiago

There is the usual assortment of international restaurants inPuerto Santiago, but the local Canarian eateries and tapas bars arethe best. Try some of the delicious traditional dishes, such asroast chicken in banana cream or 'wrinkly potatoes' in the localmojo picón sauce. One of the most popular restaurants in PuertoSantiago is Pancho, while TJ's Entertainment Bar serves pub foodlike sandwiches and pies and is also well-loved.

Activities in Puerto Santiago

Most of the entertainment in Puerto Santiago is provided by thehotels. The nightlife is fairly laid back and many bars close atmidnight. After dark entertainment usually consists of relaxeddrinks and drawn-out meals. However, those wanting to dance thenight away can make the short trip to one of the other nearbyresorts, such as Playa de las Americas, which offer more of a partyscene. The proximity of Puerto Santiago to such nightlife hubsallows visitors the best of both worlds: the peaceful, quiet resortatmosphere, and the fun Tenerife nightlife.

Things to be aware of in Puerto Santiago

The ocean currents around Tenerife can be very strong andswimmers should be cautious and pay attention to warnings fromlifeguards.



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The charming Mediterranean holiday resort and fishingtown of Kalkan is situated on Turkey's Turquoise Coast, and issought after by a crowd more in search of atmosphere and charismathan mere fun and sun.

Narrow twisting streets, historic Ottomanarchitecture, shuttered windows, and white-washed houses, as wellas sweeping views over the harbour and sparkling bay, are all partof its unique character.

The genuine friendliness of Kalkan locals is awelcome change from the hassle experienced in most holiday towns.Untouched by mass tourism, Kalkan is small, unspoiled and laidback,but still has plenty to offer.

Holidaymakers can enjoy beautiful beaches, boatcruises, and watersports, or take in ancient Lycean history. Kalkanalso boasts the highest number of restaurants and bars per squaremetre on the Turkish coast, and is renowned for its rooftopvenues.

Shopping in Kalkan

Kalkan's Thursday market is a great place to pick up souvenirsand mingle with the locals to get a true reflection of Kalkan life.Gold and silver jewellery, Turkish kilims (handwoven rugs), and atraditional blue-coloured glass 'evil eye', said to ward off evilspirits, are the main buys when enjoying a little retail therapy inthe streets of Kalkan. Many of the shops stay open till at leastmidnight. Other popular purchases are tailor-made suits and otherclothing.

Dining in Kalkan

There is a high concentration of restaurants in Kalkan, most ofwhich are peppered around the centre of town. There are over 100restaurants ranging from trendy and market eateries to locallokantas (tavernas), and even rooftop restaurants, which offerbreathtaking views over the harbour and serve a variety ofcuisines, including traditional Turkish, locally caught seafood,and many classic Mediterranean favourites, while local meze(similar to tapas), cheese, and trout are popular features onrestaurant menus. There are a number of eateries offeringinternational cuisine, but visitors should note that they come withan international price tag.

Activities in Kalkan

Kalkan's nightlife will keep all types of visitors busy. Withplenty of restaurants, cafes, bars, and nightclubs to enjoy, thetown comes to life after dusk. Travellers can head to one of themany rooftop terrace bars for sundowners, listen to a gypsy bandwhile sipping on the local aniseed drink, 'raki', smoke a hookahpipe and recline on Ottoman-style cushions, or enjoy the localladies putting on a belly dancing show.

Things to be aware of in Kalkan

Kalkan can often be packed with British tourists and the mainbeach is shingle, so shoes are advised for beach excursions.However, water depth drops off close to the shore, meaningtravellers won't have to walk over the pebbles for long.

Playa Blanca


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The quiet holiday resort of Playa Blanca is situated in the verysouth of Lanzarote and is named after the surrounding white sandybeaches. The resort has undergone a lot of construction andupgrading in the last few years, which, contrary to expectation,hasn't ruined the Spanish charm of this resort but rather added toit by giving tourists an extensive array of holiday accommodationto choose from in Playa Blanca. Despite the extensive growth overthe last few years the old fishing village, in the centre, retainsits charm and has escaped much of the commercialism that hasblighted larger resorts. There is a good selection of cafes, barsand restaurants in Playa Blanca, along the promenade, but the mainattractions are the nearby beaches. Some of the best beaches in theCanary Islands are just four miles (6km) away at Papagayo. Theresort is mainly geared towards families and couples. Those wantinga more lively nightlife will need to make the 18 mile (29km)journey to Puerto del Carmen.

Shopping in Playa Blanca

There are good supermarkets in Playa Blanca that sell all thewell-known brands, and holidaymakers will find that although thechoice is not as good as in Puerto del Carmen, there are a fairnumber of electrical duty-free stores and other shops gearedtowards tourists near the harbour. For designer clothes mosttourists in Playa Blanca head to the stylish Marina Rubicon. It ispossible to get good bargains in the electrical duty-free stores,but shoppers should remember that they can't take purchases back tothe shop once they've left the island. They should check everythingworks and that all batteries, cables and plugs are included; thatthere is a European guarantee, not an Asian one; and that allelectrical items have a CE stamp. The busy Sunday Market in Teguiseis worth the journey for the most dedicated shoppers; as well asthe usual tourist souvenirs and holiday gifts, a variety of locallyproduced goods are on sale, from pottery to tablecloths.

Dining in Playa Blanca

La Bocaina and Casa Pedro top the list of highly recommendedrestaurants in Playa Blanca. While La Cocina de Colacho, El Hornode la Aguela and Romantica all garner rave reviews from touristsand locals alike. There's a huge choice of eateries on the mainpromenade, which at night bustles with activity. The promenadeoverlooks the beach and harbour and the lights of Fuerteventura canbe seen on the horizon. Restaurants serve anything from Chinese,Indian or Italian to seafood and local dishes. Some restaurantswill not accept credit cards.

Activities in Playa Blanca

The nightlife in Playa Blanca is fairly limited, withentertainment after dark mostly restricted to the shows organisedby the hotels. There is a kids disco and some sedate live music insome of the bars and restaurants, but those after some seriouspartying will need to head to Costa Teguise or Puerto del Carmen,half an hour away by car.

Things to be aware of in Playa Blanca

While water is safe for cleaning teeth and washing food, it isvery high in mineral content and can cause bad stomachs. Bottledwater should be used for drinking. There is still some developmentgoing on in Playa Blanca and it is worth checking if there is abuilding site outside your accommodation before booking.


St Anton


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St Anton is a popular holiday resort destination forBritish skiers and snowboarders, who are attracted by thefirst-class skiing and the incredible apres-ski. St Anton is linkedto the neighbouring resorts of Lech and Zurs and makes up theArlberg ski area, the largest linked area in Austria with more than300km of piste. The area offers extensive skiing for intermediateand advanced skiers and some of the best off-piste skiing inEurope. The resort's south-facing slopes can get slushy by the endof the day, particularly in spring, and partly for this reason thecollection of bars on the slopes above St Anton get packed byaround 3pm.

Shopping in St Anton

Shopping along St Anton's pedestrianised main street is quitelaid-back, with plenty of cosy bars and cafes where shoppers canrest their feet. St Anton's shops tend to be expensive but thequality of merchandise is good. There are numerous ski shops, aswell as jewellers, antique stores, and clothing boutiques.

Dining in St Anton

Dining out in St Anton is a diverse and satisfying experience,with everything from burgers to vegetarian meals on offer atestablishments that keep cooking until well after midnight. Forfive-star dining in St Anton, try the luxury hotels such as Raffl'sSt Antoner Hof or Alte Post. Exhausted skiers wanting a hearty mealcan seek out traditional Austrian fare. Some of the best in StAnton is served up at the Sporthotel, where a variety of sausagescan be savoured with an accompaniment of potatoes and sauerkraut,all reasonably priced. Game and dumplings also appear on most StAnton menus. Fondue can be enjoyed at the Montjola, one of theoldest restaurants in the area.

Activities in St Anton

The club and bar scene in St Anton is very lively, and lessexpensive than some of the other European ski resorts. Thelegendary Krazy Kanguruh Bar on the mountainside, and theMooserWirt Bar, are both usually packed with skiers andsnowboarders after a day on the slopes. Alcohol flows freely to thetune of rock and hip hop in St Anton. The night is long at thenumerous other discos and clubs, but for those seeking somethingmore sedate there are quieter, more sophisticated bars in the StAnton hotels.

Things to be aware of in St Anton

St Anton's south-facing slopes can get slushy by the end of theday, particularly in spring, and the lower beginner slopes can getquite crowded.

Skiing in St Anton

St Anton is the largest ski resort in the Arlberg skiarea, which also includes Lech, Zurs, and the village of StChristoph and St Jakob. The combined Arlberg ski area offershundreds of miles of groomed runs and ski trails for skiers andsnowboarders.

The most prominent point in St Anton is the Vallugasummit from which runs one of the best and longest intermediate skislopes in Europe, taking skiers all the way down to the valleyfloor. There are many more choices for intermediate skiers onholiday in Lech and Zurs, which also offer some of the bestoff-piste skiing in Europe.

Thanks to the Flexenbahn cable car, it's now mucheasier to get from St Anton to Lech and Zurs. Due to theirnorth-facing slopes and position at the end of the valley, Lech andZurs offer reliable snow and comparatively uncrowded slopes.

The best skiing for beginners is in St Christoph orRendl. There are two ski schools in operation, run under the sameumbrella, both employing hundreds of instructors and guides with asolid reputation for excellent tuition and service.

St Anton is also known for having some of the bestsnowboarding terrain in Austria, with a vast array of naturalobstacles, steep powder fields, and drop-offs providing thrillingfree-riding. Gampen, Kapall, and Rendl are recommended for boardersand Rendl has a terrain park.

Koh Pha Ngan


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The beautiful little island of Koh Pha Ngan is a fantasticholiday destination in the centre of the Gulf of Thailand, about 35miles (55km) from the mainland, and is home to 10,000 or so peopleand hundreds of thousands of coconuts. Coconut exports and fishinghave long been the mainstay of the locals, but in recent yearstourism has become increasingly important, as visitors flock in onferries, lured by the island's magnificent beaches and the worldrenowned monthly Full Moon Party.

The site of Koh Pha Ngan's legendary parties is thecrescent-shaped beach of Haad Rin on the island's south-eastcorner, which is besieged by up to 30,000 people from around theworld at full moon each month. As dusk falls thousands of lamps arelit on tables along the beach and the music is cranked up, sendingparty-goers into a frenzy under the rising orb of the moon.

Visitors on holiday in Pha Ngan generally stay in one of about200 thatched bamboo bungalows that line the island's beaches andare let out for a pittance. Those after more luxury can choose fromthe many holiday resort hotels. Wherever visitors stay, the holidayis wiled away pleasantly with snorkelling, swimming or relaxing onthe white sands.

Facilities in the Koh Pha Ngan town of Thong Sala are limited,but there is a bank, a police station, a clinic and pharmacy.Motorcycle taxis can be waved down or mountain bikes hired toexplore the more remote beaches, though some beaches can only bereached by sea. Water taxis are available in the town.

Shopping in Koh Pha Ngan

On Koh Pha Ngan, most shops and kiosks are in Thong Sala andHaad Rin, and stock a range of cheap clothing and novelties, mostlyaimed at holiday backpackers. Local handicrafts are plentiful,particularly batik. There are some photo shops and smallsupermarkets, including a couple of 7-Elevens.

Dining in Koh Pha Ngan

There are plenty of storefront restaurants along the streets ofKoh Pha Ngan's main town, Thong Sala, and along the beachfront atHaad Rin, and they're ideal for a quick and tasty meal. Most servea mix of Thai and western dishes, but street vendors are thecheapest option for local snacks. One of the most popular gatheringplaces on the island is the Outback Bar on Thong Sala's mainstreet, which has a vast menu, pool tables, and a large screen TVshowing satellite news and sports events. Another popular eatery isthe Same Same restaurant at Ban Tai, which offers basic favouritessuch as burgers, pizza, pasta and steaks, as well as Thaidishes.

Activities in Koh Pha Ngan

While on holiday, most nights in Koh Pha Ngan's remote bungalowresorts are fairly peaceful, with a few beach bars playing music toserenade the incredible sunsets. At full moon, however, Haad Rin isthe place to be, when a dozen or more sound systems blast, and thebeach becomes packed with thousands of hedonistic party animals.Along with visiting top class DJs, the entertainment is enhanced byjugglers, fire-eaters and frenzied dancers of all descriptions,while beach traders keep everyone fed and lubricated. The notoriousPha Ngan Full Moon parties are the ultimate experience.

Things to be aware of in Koh Pha Ngan

Mosquitoes can be a nuisance during the dry and rainy seasons,so visitors should be sure to pack plenty of mosquitorepellent.



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The holiday resort of Protaras on the southeast coast of Cyprushas all the trappings of the larger and more frenetic Ayia Napa,itself a few minutes' drive away. However, it's far more familyfriendly and boasts the best beach on the island: Fig Tree Bay.

Protaras is actually a town built on a piece of flat, scrubbyland expressly for the purpose of catering for Britishholidaymakers. Just adjacent to the village of Paralimni, Protarasconsists mainly of a grid of restaurants, nightclubs, and shopssurrounded by numerous hotels and holiday apartment blocks. Thehodgepodge of architecture and concrete can get blistering hot inthe summer sun.

While Protaras lacks a genuine Cypriot atmosphere, it has themagnificent golden Blue Flag beach, which stretches for 10 miles(16km) or so, shelving gently into the crystal clear Mediterranean.And further up and down the coast, there is a choice of secludedcoves and inlets for those wanting more privacy.

Shopping in Protaras

The shops in Protaras may look a little tacky, but they provideeverything required by holidaymakers, from beach paraphernalia tosouvenirs. There are several hundred retail establishments in theresort, including supermarkets, clothing stores, and jewellers.

Serious bargain hunters are advised to take a bus or taxi tonearby Agia Napa, where there is an abundance of stores sellingtax-free designer goods. Local jewellery and leather goods are alsogood souvenirs from Protaras.

Dining in Protaras

Protaras has dozens of restaurants and fast food outlets, mainlycatering for the usual tourist fare of pizza, curry, burgers, andthe like. Many local establishments are run by British expats,while the many open-air seafood restaurants are ideal for localfare. For Cypriot specialities, visitors should try Bambos, whichserves a mix of local and international dishes, or the NicolasTaverna, renowned for delectable kleftiko.

Activities in Protaras

The main street of Protaras awakens at night as the many discos,bars, pubs, and clubs turn up the volume, drawing in the crowds andholidaymakers up for a party. Many establishments offer liveentertainment or karaoke, and the clubs feature English deejays andlaser lights. There are only a few nightclubs, and seriousall-night clubbers prefer to travel to Ayia Napa for the evening.Recommended for an entertaining evening of dancing is Sfinx, thebar at the end of the main road.

Things to be aware of in Protaras

Protaras resort is not aesthetically pleasing or scenic, and thenearby village of Paralimni is also far from a quaint, authenticGreek Cypriot town. Young clubbers may be disappointed in thenightlife, which is more family-oriented, but there is the optionof travelling to nearby Ayia Napa.



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Situated on one of the loveliest bays on the Mexican coast, backed by the evergreen vegetation of the Sierra foothills, Acapulco is the Queen of Mexican beach resorts, the loudest and most famous in the country with non-stop energy, high-rise hotels, a glittering nightlife, white beaches and an enormous range of holiday activities. The main attraction in Acapulco is the string of beaches that sweep around the bay, each offering a different atmosphere and ample opportunities for watersports, with calm waters, sun bathing and seafront dining of international quality. The downside of Acapulco city is the shabby, polluted and overcrowded old town area, but it is easy enough to ignore this side of Acapulco with plenty to keep visitors happy along the glitzy holiday resort strip, with its shopping plazas, restaurants and beaches. A famous Acapulco institution since the 1930s are the Quebrada cliff divers, who pitch themselves gracefully from a height of 148ft (45m) into the seemingly shallow water of a narrow chasm in the ocean below after praying at the small rock shrine for safety.

Shopping in Acapulco

One of the pleasures of a holiday in Acapulco is shopping for souvenirs, of which there is a plentiful, varied selection gathered from all over Mexico. Handmade leather goods, locally made textiles, beautiful pieces of silver jewellery, bright and lovely ceramics, and even inspiring paintings by local artists are just some of the things on offer in the markets, stores and beachfront stalls. The older areas of Acapulco have a number of well-priced tailors and quaint souvenir shops. A good spot to indulge in some bargain hunting is the open-air artisan's mall opposite the Plaza Bahia, where it is possible to do a little haggling for arts and crafts. The native-made goods may be appealing, but just as desirable for avid shoppers are the many upscale boutiques selling well known designer labels which pepper the streets of the Zona Dorada (Golden Zone), also dubbed Mexico's 'Sunset Boulevard'. As far as modern malls go, Acapulco's biggest, complete with food court and cinemas, is Le Gran Plaza, situated on the Costera.

Dining in Acapulco

Acapulco's scenic setting around a picturesque bay allows for some magical and romantic dining opportunities in a multitude of restaurants while on holiday. Cuisine of all sorts is on offer, the quality generally very high and the prices reasonable. Some of the best restaurants use a fusion of styles and cuisines to create something unique and special, like the Kookaburra, with its spectacular terrace views of Acapulco Bay, creating delicious French dishes prepared with Mexican ingredients. Mexican seafood is a top favourite with visitors, a fact well exploited by most establishments, like the El Amigo Miguel off the main town square, where delicious shrimp and grilled red snapper medleys are specialities of the house.

Activities in Acapulco

Flashing lights, pumping music and boundless energy are the characteristics of Acapulco's frenetic nightlife, which centres on the clubs and discos of the main strip and Las Brisas. Clubs like the renowned Palladium, where the legendary 'silver man' fire dancer performs in the early morning hours, make Acapulco a hot favourite destination for young spring-break revellers from the USA. Those looking for a more Latin experience head down to Ninas, a traditional Mexican salsa club where the locals burn up the dance floor. For visitors interested in seeing some authentic Latin American Salsa dancing, head to Salon Q, 'the cathedral of salsa'. Disco Beach on Costera Aleman is well known for its popular Friday night foam parties. Mandara up on the side of the mountain, with its panoramic views of Acapulco by night, is one of the best places to end your evening and wait for the sun to rise before another day on the beach. Most of the dance clubs open at 11pm, close at 6am, and charge a fairly steep entrance fee, but this often includes 'all you can drink'. Those taking a break from dancing can enjoy bar-hopping along the Costera, which is lined with numerous exuberant open-air watering holes.

Things to be aware of in Acapulco

There is often an oily layer on the seawater of Acapulco from the use of jet skis. Visitors to Acapulco are strongly advised to avoid the resort during America's spring break in mid-March as hoards of student revellers descend on Acapulco for spring break mayhem and partying.



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Matagorda and its sister resort, Los Pocillos, are just over amile from Lanzarote's large, bustling holiday city of Puerto delCarmen. It is also connected to the larger, more brash resort by apleasant, long promenade walkway with great views over MatagordaBay. This means that visitors who opt for staying at a beach houseor in the quieter environs of Matagorda, a former fishing village,can easily access the more boisterous entertainment and nightlifeof Puerto del Carmen. Matagorda has a gently sloping beach of fine,dark sand, particularly popular for windsurfing. It boasts acommercial centre with a fair choice of restaurants and asupermarket. In general Matagorda is ideal for those seeking apeaceful, relaxing holiday without too many bright lights or theusual beach resort crowds.

Shopping in Matagorda

Holidaymakers can take full advantage of the fact that Puertodel Carmen, Lanzarote and the rest of the Canary Islands enjoy aspecial duty-free tax status. Cigarettes, alcohol, perfumes andpetrol are much cheaper than in mainland Spain and the rest of theEU. Matagorda has a two-storey shopping centre containing asupermarket and souvenir stores, but for a real shopping spreeholidaymakers prefer to descend on neighbouring Puerto del Carmen,which is bristling with a variety for shops from duty-freeelectrical stores and designer boutiques to stalls selling 'touristtat' such as beach buckets, spades, umbrellas and souvenirs alongthe main strip. The nearby town of Teguise hosts a vibrant Sundaymarket, which is fun to visit.

Dining in Matagorda

Most of Matagorda's restaurants are situated in the centralcommercial area around a square, where holidaymakers can browse thedisplayed menus before deciding on their preferred cuisine for theevening. The choice is wide, ranging from Chinese and Greek toBritish and Japanese, with the usual pizza, pasta and grill housesthrown in. Most visitors rate it as a plus that Matagorda lacks thepresence of 'PRs', reps or touts trying to lure diners into theirestablishments. Those who want a more extended choice or a livelierdining scene can simply take a walk or taxi ride to explore thenightlife and restaurants of larger Puerto del Carmen.

Activities in Matagorda

Holidaymakers will find that although Matagorda is not lackingin waterfront pubs and bars, most offering some form of eveningentertainment, generally nightlife in Matagorda is rather low key.Younger visitors looking for a taste of nightlife in Spain or amore vibrant night out opt to travel a short distance to therollicking clubs and bars of 'The Strip' in neighbouring Puerto delCarmen.

Things to be aware of in Matagorda

Holidaymakers seeking bargains in Matagorda in electrical andphotographic goods must be cautious and check their purchasesbefore leaving the shop/stall. Many visitors have been ripped off.It is prudent to ensure that the guarantee on electrical items is aWorldwide or European guarantee as unscrupulous shops may try tosell products with only Asian guarantees to European visitors.



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Aswan, the most southerly Egyptian resort city, and a popularholiday destination, has more of an African ambiance than mostEgyptian cities, due to its numerous Nubian inhabitants, who bringin their own interesting culture and customs. Although every bit astouristy as Luxor, Aswan and its inhabitants are generally far morelaid-back and travellers often report how friendly they are.

A picturesque city, Aswan's attraction as a holiday destinationlies not so much in its historical sites, as in the peacefulness ofa felucca cruise at sunset, a visit to the colourful market (Shariael-Souq), or dinner at one of the floating restaurants on the Nile.Aswan is a perfect base from which to visit the magnificent SunTemple of Ramses II, Abu Simbel, which is one of the most famousattractions in Egypt.

Shopping in Aswan

There is plenty of shopping to be done in the various markets ofAswan, from looking for shoes and clothes to seeking out choicejewellery and leather goods. Sharia as-Souq is a popular market inAswan, where the touts have a reputation for being less pushy thanin most of Egypt. Haggling is the best way to get the cheapestprice, and it is wise to be cautious when buying jewellery, as manyfake pieces can be mistaken as authentic.

Dining in Aswan

There is endless appeal in dining on the edge of the Nile. Aswanfully capitalises on this with numerous riverfront restaurants andeven floating restaurants. There is traditional Egyptian fareavailable of course (and Egyptian fare tends to be cheap andplentiful) but also a lot of international cuisine. The 1902Restaurant, in the Old Cataract Hotel, is reminiscent of an ancienttomb and serves French cuisine and local fish. It played host tosuch dignitaries as Winston Churchill and King Edward VII's brotheron its opening night and is still one of the top restaurants inAswan.

Activities in Aswan

Aswan's nightlife can't compete with Cairo or Luxor's, but thereis plenty of fun on offer nonetheless. Night shows are popular inthe city and the dramatic light and sound shows are a goodintroduction to Egyptian folklore and history. There are regularlive music performances on offer and night cruises on the Nile alsomake for lovely after-dark activities. There are many moreconventional nightlife options though, with bars and pubs and eventhe odd disco to investigate.

Things to be aware of in Aswan

Aswan can become quite touristy and overcrowded during peakseason.



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Richard the Lionheart visited Limassol during theCrusades to free his betrothed from the Byzantine sovereign, andthe subsequent wedding party remains legendary. It's probably whymodern Limassol is still a centre of joie de vivre, with the livelyambience aided and abetted by the fact that Limassol is the centreof winemaking on the island.

Today, it's Cyprus's second-largest city with around200,000 inhabitants. Many people travel to Limassol to enjoy itslovely beaches, sidewalk cafes, and lively nightlife. Visitors cantake an evening stroll on the seafront Akti Olympion, followed by avisit to a traditional bouzoukia tavern for live music. The OldTown radiates from the fishing harbour, with narrow streets linedwith shops and boutiques.

The foothills of the Troodos Mountains lie north ofthe city and offer charming country walks that meander throughfriendly villages. A quick drive to the Kourion, only nine miles(15km) away, also offers historic sites such as the House ofAchilles, the Altar of Apollo, and Curium Beach.

Shopping in Limassol

Travellers in Limassol looking to satisfy their urge to splurgewill be pleased to know that there is plenty to whet their appetitewhen it comes to shopping. There are, of course, the ubiquitouswestern-style shopping malls where stores such as Debenhams andCarrefour will cater to their every need.

The main shopping areas in Limassol are on Agiou Andreou Streetand Makarious III Ave, where everything from clothing and footwearto leather goods and jewellery can be found. Travellers can head tothe cobbled streets of Ayios Andreas and Anexartisias for a morehistoric and traditional atmosphere of trendy little boutiques andspecialist stores that line the streets and lanes away from themodern city.

They should also bargain at the local markets that take placeevery Saturday and scoop up some great buys. Best buys in Cyprusinclude sea sponges and loofas, and these are available at mosttourist shops and markets, though shoppers should be prepared tosplash out on these bathing accessories. Another great buy isLefkara Lace and other lace products. However, for realshopaholics, the centre of Nicosia is the best place to spend a dayindulging in the local wares and goods.

Dining in Limassol

Restaurants are varied in Limassol and there is something foreveryone. Everything from expensive tourist traps to places popularwith locals is on offer. Both moussaka, an eggplant andpotato-based dish, and kleftiko, a traditional hearty lamb meal,are ubiquitous, as too is the simple and affordable kebab. Thereare budget establishments and more upmarket venues, while westernchains such as McDonalds, KFC, and Burger King are all present.

Things to be aware of in Limassol

Those who are looking to explore ancient ruins and learn aboutthe fascinating history of Cyprus may be disappointed whentravelling to Limassol. It's more renowned as a holiday destinationof lovely beaches, buzzing nightlife, and luxury resorts, thoughthose who remain interested in the country's intriguing past canvisit places such as the acropolis of Kourion.

Coral Bay


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Around 4 miles (6km) north of Paphos, Coral Bay is the perfectlocation for those keen on a traditional Mediterranean holiday ofsoft Cypriot sand and poolside co*cktails. Travellers can relax inthis gorgeous location as the warm deep waters of the Mediterraneanstretch off to a dreamy horizon.

There's something for everyone, with boats lazily driftingacross the sea, jet skis flying over the waves, and scuba divingtrips to discover the secret world beneath the blue surface of thisBlue Flag beach. On dry land, visitors can be equally pampered atthe various coastal hotels or explore the surrounding landscape onvarious hikes and excursions around the Akamas Peninsula.

For those who are more culturally inclined, there are many ruinsto explore that illustrate the rich ancient history of nearbyPaphos. Roman villas are begging to be discovered while the largenecropolis of the Tombs of the Kings should always be on thebucketlist when travelling to Cyprus.

Shopping in Coral Bay

Shopping in Coral Bay is not about sprawling shopping malls andextravagant boutiques. Instead, retail therapy is confined more tothe charm and magic of small arts and crafts stores, andtraditional markets.

Dining in Coral Bay

There are numerous restaurants and eateries in andaround Coral Bay, with dishes sure to oblige every palate. Whetherit's the fresh seafood found at Molos or the unique interiors ofthe Armonia Restaurants, there's a veritable feast of options andguests will be satisfied with the glut of both local andinternational menus. Various bars offer ideal co*cktails andbeverages to watch the sun set on the gorgeous Mediterraneanwaters. One may feel transported to another time and place, whetherit's on the broad terraces of the Dionyssos Bar or socialising inthe Odyssey Bar and Nightclub.

Activities in Coral Bay

There isn't much of a nightlife in Coral Bay, but what isavailable sits mostly on Coral Bay Avenue, affectionately known as'The Strip'. Bars stay open quite late, with closing time sometimeswell after midnight. While there aren't massive parties,entertainment is still varied and enjoyable, ranging fromtraditional Cypriot music to modern dance shows and band sets.

Things to be aware of in Coral Bay

Those wishing to learn about and discover the ancient history ofCyprus won't find it in Coral Bay. Indeed, this resort is all aboutMediterannean fun in the sun, coupled with luxury and relaxation.However, the city of Paphos is only 6km away and contains thePaphos Archaeological Park, complete with the necropolis called theTomb of the Kings, as well as the acropolis of Kourion.



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Paros is one of the larger islands in the Cyclades and its maindrawcards are good sandy beaches, traditional fishing villages anda vibrant nightlife. Its main port, Parikia, is home to a ruinedVenetian castle and an impressive Byzantine church that havedazzled travellers for many generations. Windsurfing, kite surfingand scuba diving are its most popular watersports. Holidaymakerswill also find a lively jazz scene, clubs around the town'swaterfront and superb beaches at Naoussa on the north coast, whileLefkes in the centre of the island has a number of tavernas alongits pretty winding streets.

Paros' many ferry connections are perfect for exploring famousislands and attractions nearby, such as Antiparos, which has aninteresting chapel cavern and more lovely beaches.

Shopping in Paros

Paros was famous during the Classical Age for the white marblequarried within its borders. Today, souvenir hunters may find somebeautiful marble work on the island, as well as shells, leatherwork, embroidery and wooden sculptures. Parikia is the best placefor shopping on the island and has the usual tourist shops andgrocery stores, and lovely art in the town's galleries.

Dining in Paros

While Paros has a good variety of places to eat out, the bestestablishments are traditional and seafood is often the bestchoice. Visitors can easily find a place to smash plates withlocals if the mood takes them.

Activities in Paros

Though Paros is too relaxed for its nightlife to compare todestinations such as Mykonos, its summer season is fairlyaction-packed. Bars, clubs and traditional Greek music and dancingare on offer, and Naoussa village and Santa Maria Beach areparticularly popular for their party scenes.

Things to be aware of in Paros

Paros can get very crowded and may not suit those seeking peaceand relaxation.



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The Maldives resort island of Bandos is located in the North Malé Atoll, a convenient 20-minute boat ride from the airport. An idyllic setting for a tropical holiday, white sand beaches and crystal-clear lagoons ring lush vegetation while palm trees sway in the breeze.

There is plenty to do in Bandos for active holidaymakers, including scuba diving, sailing, windsurfing, and game fishing. The resort has facilities that include tennis and squash courts, swimming pools, saunas, gyms, and a salon and spa.

The nightly entertainment is perhaps not lively enough to satisfy younger vacationers looking for a party. Yet Bandos is a great destination for romantic getaways and honeymoons and hosts weddings frequently. It's both peaceful and beautiful, making it ideal for families too.

Shopping in Bandos

Bandos has a boutique outlet, a souvenir shop, and a jewellery store at the resort. Visitors should be able to find all they need for their stay but the shopping is still limited. Those who want to experience the Maldivian markets should take a boat ride through to Malé where there are ample shopping opportunities and souvenirs will be far cheaper than at the resort.

Dining in Bandos

Bandos has several good restaurants, from buffets to 24 hour eateries. There are also several bars which serve seafood, snacks, and drinks, made all the more special because visitors can dine under the stars. For those with a more discerning palate, there are even some marvellous fine dining restaurants for those special occasions. The restaurants cater for all dietary needs, although guests are encouraged to inform the resort of their special needs before their arrival to ensure that they are well catered for.

Activities in Bandos

Nighttime entertainment is limited at Bandos, which caters mainly to couples and those seeking a peaceful island retreat. There are nightly events like karoake, live music concerts, buffets on the beach, cultural shows, traditional dance lessons, discos, and movie screenings, but there is no clubbing scene. Those looking for a party on holiday would have a better time elsewhere.

Things to be aware of in Bandos

Bandos is primarily a family resort and some guests complain that the children at the resort can be disruptive.



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The Tatras is Poland's beautiful alpinerange of towering peaks, rocky cliffs and glacial lakes, dottedwith numerous little villages preserving a traditional highlandlifestyle. The region's largest town is Zakopane, Poland's premiermountain resort. The winter sports capital of Poland, Zakopane issuperbly situated at the foot of the Tatras with immediate accessto the ski slopes in winter. The charming town has a laid-backfairytale atmosphere, the steep streets lined with traditionalwooden cottages made from roughly cut logs and the 'Zakopane-style'architecture featuring delicately carved patterns and intricatewoodwork decoration. The region is popular for outdoor activitiesand one of the more popular holiday attractions is the trip to theexquisite glacial lake, Morskie Oko.

Shopping in Zakopane

Shopping in Zakopane is centred on the main street, Krupowki,which is lined with restaurants, shops, stalls and streetperformers, creating a fun, traditional atmosphere. Popularsouvenirs include items such as oscypek (smoked goat's cheese) andciupagas (long, thin traditional axes). There are plenty of skistores where visitors can buy or hire equipment before hitting theslopes.

Dining in Zakopane

Zakopane boasts a variety of restaurants and there should besomething to cater to all budgets and tastes. Tuberoza, whichserves up traditional eastern European fare on Pilsudskiego street,is one of the most popular restaurants in the town, and theTrattoria Adamo offers a tasty range of Italian food. There areplenty of fun bars for après ski drinks.

Activities in Zakopane

Zakopane has a vibey nightlife with numerous bars and a fewgreat dance clubs. Some of the night spots are uninspiring touristtraps but the big clubs attract party people from as far away asWarsaw. Krupowki street is the main drag, but it is worth exploringa bit to find less touristy options.

Things to be aware of in Zakopane

The popular ski slopes can get crowded and the ski liftinfrastructure is rather old-fashioned.

Skiing in Zakopane

Zakopane's slopes are fast becoming legendary within Europe'sskiing and snowboarding community. Featuring good snow conditions,splendid views and a real youthful energy among its staff members,your experience at Zakopane is guaranteed to be fun and rewarding.The most popular slopes at Zakopane ski resort are Kasprowy Wierch,Nosal and Gubalowka, and tourists are warned that they will bebetter off purchasing their ski passes in advance, to avoid longqueues on the popular downhill courses. The slopes are best forbeginners, with a number of ski schools operating, but there are afew rewarding runs for the more advanced. Cross country skiers willbe delighted with the picturesque trails in the forests surroundingthe town.



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Germany's top winter sports destination, Garmisch-Partenkirchen is a busy centre that has retained the charm of the older town of the twins, Partenkirchen. The pride of the city is the Olympic Ice Stadium and the larger Olympic Ski Stadium, which were built for the 1936 Winter Olympics and are still put to good use by winter sports enthusiasts. The area is picturesque and scenic, both in winter and summer. In summertime it is a popular spot for hiking and mountain climbing expeditions. A tourist office assists visitors in making the most of their visit and seeing the local attractions.

Shopping in Garmisch-Partenkirchen

There are more than 450 shops in Garmisch-Partenkirchen, including some trendy boutiques, sports equipment outlets, and plenty of tourist shops selling local handcrafts like traditional Bavarian costumes. Visitors should not struggle to find souvenirs and anything else they might require on a ski holiday.

Dining in Garmisch-Partenkirchen

Garmisch-Partenkirchen is consistently ranked highly for its restaurants, bars and nightlife and the resort is full of charming German architecture and has an old-world feel which makes it atmospheric. There's a lot to choose from for apres-ski drinks and socialising and there are facilities to entertain teenagers and children as well.

Things to be aware of in Garmisch-Partenkirchen

Some of the ski lifts are a bit old but generally the facilities are good.

Skiing in Garmisch-Partenkirchen

Garmisch-Partenkirchen is not the best place for novices, but intermediate and advanced skiiers will find plenty to enjoy with both classic and glacial runs in the area. There are about four black pistes, 25 red pistes, 10 blue pistes and three green pistes to enjoy and with pistes above 2,500 metres snow is assured throughout the season.



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The crescent-shaped island resort of Kuramathi in the Maldives is located on Rasdhoo Atoll, 35 miles (56km) from the airport in Malé. Seventy of its nearly 300 villas are set up on stilts above the turquoise waters of the Indian Ocean, offering amenities like wifi, air-conditioning, and in-room Jacuzzis. Kuramathi is popular for honeymoons, and hosts many weddings, but is actually a very child-friendly resort with programmes and facilities for children and teenagers. Kuramathi is a large resort and has a dozen restaurants and bars to choose from, and a number of activities, including scuba diving, sailing, windsurfing, wake boarding, waterskiing, tennis, sunset cruises and a full-service spa. Kuramathi has won several travel awards and should please anybody looking for an active Maldives holiday.

Shopping in Kuramathi

Kuramathi is one of the larger Maldives resorts and has more in the way of shops and facilities than the smaller resorts. There are a few boutiques on the island where visitors can buy souvenirs and gifts and indulge in a bit of retail therapy.

Dining in Kuramathi

Kuramathi has three main buffet-style restaurants, some á la carte restaurants and six bars. There is also a coffee shop and the option of dining privately on the beach or in a pavilion. The range of cuisine should cater for all dietary needs and preferences.

Activities in Kuramathi

This large resort has more in the way of nightlife than many other resorts in the Maldives, with lots of nightly entertainment in the various bars and restaurants. Kuramathi hosts beach discos under the stars, a lot of live music concerts, and fun activities like movie nights. There is plenty of opportunity for socialising should you so desire, but it is also possible to get away from the organised entertainment if you want a more peaceful and private experience.

Things to be aware of in Kuramathi

Kuramathi generally receives rave reviews from guests, but it may be too big and crowded a resort for those seeking privacy and romance.

Equator Village


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Seenu, or Addu Atoll, is the southernmost atoll in the Maldives. The capital of Seenu is Hithadhoo and is the second most populated city after Malé. The local Addu people distance themselves from the inhabitants of the capital and are strongly independent. Seenu is the best base from which to visit the traditional island communities and catch a glimpse of their lifestyles while on holiday.

The main resort, Equator Village, offers a variety of watersports including scuba diving, deep sea fishing, sailing, and snorkelling, and a number of land-based activities like squash, tennis, bicycling, volleyball, and more. The resort has a coffee shop, disco, and spa. What sets Equator Village apart is its unique cultural aspect.

Shopping in Equator Village

There is a souvenir shop outside the hotel but Equator Village is not a shopping destination. Those keen to trawl the local markets can ask for advice on where to go at the reception, and enjoy an authentic Maldivian shopping spree.

Dining in Equator Village

Although very scenic, this resort doesn't have the culinary scope of many of the luxury resorts in the Maldives. There is one main restaurant which serves international staples and various Asian cuisines, and room service is only available if guests are sick. There is also a bar which is perfect for relaxing co*cktails.

Activities in Equator Village

Like the restaurant scene, the nightlife at Equator Village is simple and understated, the main entertainment consisting of a disco dance once a week.

Things to be aware of in Equator Village

Equator Village is not a luxury resort and gives more of a taste of the 'real Maldives' than most, which appeals to some visitors and displeases others.



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With an enduring Bohemian quality, golden beaches and alaid-back atmosphere, Dahab is an excellent holiday destination,particularly for backpackers and scuba divers. The destination hasboth budget accommodation and fine hotels catering for the moreluxury-seeking guest, and its array of seafront restaurants offeropen-air dining alongside the lapping waves.

Dahab lies on the deepest section of the Great Rift Valley thatextends down through Africa, making for dramatic underwater scenerywith steep drops, valleys and canyons. Most of the diving isaccessed from the shore, reached by taking a pick-up truck to thebeaches stretching in either direction of the town. Some of thesuperb diving and snorkelling sites nearby include the Blue Hole,one of the best in the Sinai region, and the Canyon, but onlyTEC-divers are allowed to dive the deeper sections of suchformations.

Shopping in Dahab

Travellers should bargain hard to get classic Egyptian souvenirssuch as hookahs, carpets, lamps, cotton shirts and silverjewellery. They should also watch out for papyrus paintings madefrom banana leaves. In general it's best to settle on 50 percent ofthe opening price and, if in doubt, stroll to the next stall wherethey will most likely sell the same merchandise. Bedouinhandicrafts such as embroidered fabrics are good buys in Dahab. Agood place to pick up general supplies is Ghazala Supermarket atthe southern end of Masbat.

Dining in Dahab

Dahab has a wide range of good quality yet inexpensiverestaurants. Seafood is the key ingredient, freshly caught andserved simply. The Bedouin-style restaurants on the beach are verypopular as guests sit at low tables with cushions close to thesand.

Activities in Dahab

Dahab is not really known for its raucous nightlife. Mostevenings are spent by the waterfront restaurants, or in the resortbars where live Bedouin music is common.

Things to be aware of in Dahab

The Blue Hole is considered one of the most dangerous dives inthe world and unless the diver has completed technical divetraining it should not be attempted. Travellers should watch outfor scams relating to accommodation and transport. Taxi driversroutinely overcharge so it's always best to agree on a price beforedeparture. Although Dahab is considered safe, the Sinai regionoutside of the major resorts can be dangerous.

Golf del Sur


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Situated on the south coast of Tenerife and very close to theReina Sofia Airport, Golf del Sur, as its name suggests, isprimarily a golfing holiday resort. There are several wonderfulgolf courses on offer, including a 27-hole championship course, andfairways dominate the lush landscape; however, non-golfer's willfind plenty to occupy them, including the usual sun, sand and surfthat attracts visitors to Tenerife. There is a beautiful coastalwalk running the length of the resort's shoreline, with plenty ofpicturesque view points and benches along the way. San Blas, acharismatic little town very nearby, has a bustling commercialcentre consisting of three squares ringed with restaurants, bars(including karaoke bars) and shops, and there is also tennis,adventure golf and bowling on offer. For those seeking more action,the resort is close to the ever-popular Playa de las Americas andLos Cristianos resorts, which are accessible by bus. Hiring a caris also an excellent way to explore the surrounding areas and takein what Tenerife has to offer.

Shopping in Golf del Sur

Like everything else at the resort the shops are dominated bygolfing needs, but San Blas has some interesting shops, and thelarge and popular neighbouring resorts also boast all the usualsouvenir shops and holiday boutiques.

Dining in Golf del Sur

Restaurants in Golf del Sur and San Blas include sometraditional Canarian eateries and plenty of international fare forforeigners. While in Golf del Sur, holidaymakers should be sure totaste the culinary pleasures of The Lobster Pot.

Activities in Golf del Sur

Golf del Sur is not a party resort but it is a lively one withsome great bars and one nightclub, Taboo's, which plays a mixtureof dance and house music and is frequented by a refreshing varietyof people. The golfing clubhouses also do a booming trade,especially in the peak summer months.

Things to be aware of in Golf del Sur

Planes taking off and landing at the nearby Tenerife SouthAirport can be a bit noisy for visitors.

Bretton Woods


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The largest of New Hampshire's ski resorts, Bretton Woods islocated in the White Mountains and consistently ranked among thetop East Coast resorts. A very popular choice among skiiersnationwide, Bretton Woods is visited time and time again and is alocal favourite. Offering visitors lots to see and do, apart fromthe obvious skiing, Bretton Woods is a great ski resort for peopleof all ages and skill levels.

Shopping in Bretton Woods

Bretton Woods' shops cater to visitors' every need. Whether it'sgolfing gear, snowboarding or skiing apparel that's been forgottenand needs purchasing or just memorabilia, it's not hard to find atthe resort. TreeTop Sports has everything any sports man or womanmay need when out on the slopes, and much more. There are shops foressential items too.

Dining in Bretton Woods

There are a variety of dining options for those visiting theresort. Restaurants such as the Latitude 44 Restaurant, theSlopeside Restaurant and Pub, and Lucy Crawford's Food Court areall popular choices as they are located in the Bretton Woods SkiArea. Further out at the Omni Mount Washington Hotel is Stickney'sRestaurant, which is a great place to enjoy a meal after a day ofactivity. Booking at Stickney's is essential.

Activities in Bretton Woods

As there is no real town in Bretton Woods, there are limitedapres ski offerings and those available are focused in the hotels,particularly the iconic Mount Washington Hotel, which is nearby andhosts events and activities for all ages.

Things to be aware of in Bretton Woods

There are limited apres ski offerings at Bretton Woods, whichmay be a disappointment for those looking for entertainmentthroughout the evenings.

Skiing in Bretton Woods

The 464-acre park of Bretton Woods has a total of 102 trailswith nine lifts, making it an incredibly large resort capable ofsatisfying visitors' skiing needs. The trails are fairly evenlymixed for all skill levels, with great facilities for beginningskiers.



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Known as the 'Pearl of the Carpathians' for its beautiful mountain scenery, the winter ski resort of Sinaia is nestled in the Prahova valley surrounded by the snow-covered peaks of the Bucegi Mountains, a stunning holiday retreat. It is also the setting for Peles Castle, a beautiful creation in the German-Renaissance style and considered to be one of the finest castles in Europe. With the construction of the castle as a summer residence for King Carol I, the little hamlet became an exclusive aristocratic resort and today is filled with holidaymakers who come to walk or ski in the mountains.

The Sinaia ski resort has more than 20 ski slopes served by nine ski lifts. The longest ski slope is two and a half kilometres. The resort offers great skiing, for beginner, intermediate and expert skiers; there are six blue runs, four red and 11 black. The highest ski slope starts at an altitude of 6,500 feet (2,000m), while the lowest one starts off at 2,800 feet (850m) above sea level. Sinaia ski lifts operate from 8:45am until 4pm on every day of the week except Mondays. Ski equipment is available for renting at Sinaia for those that do not have their own equipment. Using the ski lifts costs two euro and skiers have to purchase all their tickets at the start of their day on the slopes. The resort also boasts other attractions such as a 17th-century monastery with original frescoes, and the small Pelisor Palace.

Shopping in Sinaia

Shopping in Sinaia is limited to a selection of handicraft, jewelry, souvenir and clothing stores. The town has a selection of open air markets where tourists and holidaymakers can shop for mementos and trinkets. For visitors taking a break from the slopes, head to the Monastery Open Air Market, the Peles Castle Marketplace or the Democracy Market, which all sell a selection of handmade goods, souvenirs, postcards and artisan objects. The town also has a number of food markets, such as Unirii Market and the Monastery Open Air Market, which are great for photographic opportunities or a quick snack. Shoppers can also choose from the small boutique shops scattered throughout the town.

Dining in Sinaia

Sinaia has a selection of restaurants ready to cater to the many skiers and sightseeing visitors to the town. Most of the restaurants are concentrated in the central area of the town, although there are one or two eateries a short walk from the centre. Bistro La Teleferic is great for a warm meal after a day on the ski slopes while the unique Forest Restaurant cascades down the hill behind the Ioana Hotel. Cucina Sofia offers excellent Italian food, while Taverna Sarbului has a great selection of local Romanian cuisine.

Activities in Sinaia

Nightlife in Sinaia tends to be concentrated around Casino Maxim. The Casino was built 1912 and designed by architect Peter Antonescu. It has a selection of gambling facilities as well as a bar. There are also a couple of pubs in the centre of town. Visitors can drop in at the Old Nick Pub for a post-slopes drink or the Irish House for a Guinness. The main street through the centre of town also has a selection of nightclubs and late night drinking spots.

Things to be aware of in Sinaia

One of the only negatives associated with Sinaia is related to skiing. The Sinaia ski resort still uses an antiquated and impractical method of paying for ski passes. Visitors must buy all their tickets at the beginning of the day and hand in one ticket each time they use a ski lift. This involves guessing how many times you will use the ski lifts in one day. Also, keep in mind the ski resort does not offer as many modern conveniences as those in Western Europe.

Skiing in Sinaia

Sinaia offers excellent high-altitude skiing opportunities, situated at an elevation of 6,500 feet (2,000m). The slopes can be accessed from town via a cable car to Cota 1400, and then by cable car or chairlift to Cota 2000. The pistes at Sinaia are located on two sides of the mountain, with the most difficult (and spectacular) slopes on the east side toward the city. The west side, facing Sun Valley, has runs well-suited to beginner and intermediate skiers. Sun Valley also has some good cross-country skiing trails, originating from the Dorului Hut at the end of the chairlift line. The ski season in Sinaia starts in December and can last until May, though snow is often unreliable toward the end of the season.



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Nissaki is a small village on the northeast coast of Corfu. Thequiet resort is situated among the pretty coves beneath MountPantokrator and is ideal for family holidays or couples seeking anescape. Swimming and snorkelling are popular activities inNissaki's clear water.

Shopping in Nissaki

Nissaki has a couple of gift shops and supermarkets. Visitorswill find a wider choice of shopping at the nearby resorts ofKassiopi or Ipsos, which are only a short bus trip away.

Dining in Nissaki

There are a handful of great family-run restaurants that servetasty local dishes. Visitors can expect good service and a warmwelcome.

Activities in Nissaki

There are a few tavernas within the village. Visitors who want alivelier evening can head to the larger resorts of Ipsos orKassiopi, which are a few miles away.

Things to be aware of in Nissaki

Travellers who want a livelier nightlife may prefer one of thelarger resorts in Corfu.

Banyan Tree


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Banyan Tree is a luxury boutique resort located on Vabbinfaru Island, 45 miles (72km) from the airport in Malé. The lush tropical interior and sandy beaches of the island are surrounded by coral reefs that provide scenic settings for scuba diving and snorkelling.

Banyan Tree is an eco-friendly resort, and offers marine biology and conservation lessons in addition to more conventional activities like dolphin safaris, spa treatments, canoeing, sailing, fishing, waterskiing, and windsurfing. A quiet and secluded resort, Banyan Tree doesn't offer much in the way of nightlife, but has some child and family-friendly programmes. It primarily attracts couples looking for a romantic retreat.

Shopping in Banyan Tree

Banyan Tree has a shopping gallery which works in partnership with locals to offer visitors beautiful souvenirs, including things like aromatherapy oils, ceramics, clothes, and hand-crafted goods. The shopping is limited but the goods are of a high-quality. Those who want to go on real Maldivian shopping sprees should take excursions to Malé to enjoy the sprawling markets of the capital.

Dining in Banyan Tree

Banyan Tree offers a number of dining options, including a selection of private dining treats that allow guests to eat romantically on the beach or at their villa. At the main restaurant, there is local Maldivian fare and quality international cuisine to enjoy, while fresh seafood dinners are always available.

The open-air bar serves divine co*cktails, light meals and snacks. All dietary needs are accommodated, and if you have special needs it is best to notify the resort in advance to be sure they cater for you properly.

Activities in Banyan Tree

Banyan Tree hosts weddings and themed parties for guests upon request and the resort can hustle up a lovely festive atmosphere, but generally Banyan Tree is not known for its nightlife. Those in search of a clubbing scene or raucous party resort will be disappointed. Sunset cruises, live music concerts, and traditional dancing nights are held regularly and the night-time entertainment is fun and laidback.

Things to be aware of in Banyan Tree

Request rooms away from the bar and closer to the dive centre, which is the quieter side of the resort.



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Ranked among the top ski resorts in the eastern United States,Attitash encompasses both Attitash and Bear Peak mountains with atotal of 68 ski runs. Known for the variety in terrain that itoffers, Attitash is a wonderful place to experience the snow andski. A popular choice among skiiers, and located in the heart ofthe White Mountains, Attitash offers varied winter and summeractivities suitable for the whole family.

Shopping in Attitash

Attitash has a few good shops to enjoy, but for those in searchof some ski or snowboarding apparel, they need not look furtherthan Attitash Sports, which is a full-service ski shop offeringjackets, snowpants, helmets, goggles, backpacks, and much more.There are two Attitash Sports shops, one in the Main Base Lodge,their flagship store, and another at the Adventure Center. Visitorsneed not worry should they forget their gear, Attitash has themcovered.

Dining in Attitash

There are a few restaurants to choose from, although there is agreater selection of restaurants and meal options a mere 15 minutesaway in Jackson or North Conway.

Activities in Attitash

Apres ski options in Attitash are fairly limited, though thereis the Ptarmigan's Pub, which offers two full bars, dining, andlive music every Saturday afternoon.

Things to be aware of in Attitash

Apres ski options are limited and serious party animals might beleft disappointed.

Skiing in Attitash

The runs are fairly evenly divided between beginner,intermediate and advanced, meaning they cater to skiers of allskill levels. Snowboarders will enjoy the terrain park, which hasover 1,700 feet (518m) of ramps, jibs, table tops and air hits, and10 rails.



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Lindos is a holiday resort centred on a small, medieval villageof cobbled streets and white-stuccoed houses. Once the island'scapital, it has lots of character and a pleasant combination ofancient and modern attractions. A series of steps lead up to theAcropolis, where visitors will find historic gems such as the DoricStoa, propylaean ruins, the sanctuary of Athena and the Byzantinechurch of St John. Lindos also boasts some of the few sand beacheson the island, and a number of bars, clubs and restaurants.

Shopping in Lindos

Lindos is a labyrinth of winding, picturesque streets, wherevisitors can get happily lost for hours browsing quaint littleshops. The area is great for souvenir shopping and some simpleresort stores cater to tourists.

Dining in Lindos

Lovely rooftop bars and restaurants characterise the town'sdining scene, and sunset meals are a must. Restaurants cater to anumber of tastes and budgets.

Activities in Lindos

Lindos has many bars though the party scene is toned down.Visitors who prefer peaceful, music-filled nights will enjoythemselves.

Things to be aware of in Lindos

Younger travellers who are set on partying may be disappointedby the fairly sedate nightlife. The area can get very crowded insummer, like all popular Greek resorts.

Rhodes Town


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Rhodes Town has treasures from Ancient Greece and Byzantineoccupation, such as its Venetian-styled Byzantine mosque, theMosque of Suleiman, and its Turkish baths. The new town's bars,nightclubs and tavernas are popular with visitors, as is the longstretch of beach.

Shopping in Rhodes Town

Rhodes Old Town offers some exciting shopping, with the area'scharming old streets complementing the traditional wares on offerin shops and stalls. Traditional jewellery and pottery, antiquegoods and modern souvenirs are popular purchases, as are foodstuffssuch as good Greek wine and traditional Greek olive oil. Rhodes NewTown has plenty of high-end and designer shops.

Dining in Rhodes Town

Visitors will find everything from the quaintest traditionaleateries to Starbucks, and can indulge in fine dining or keepthings budget-friendly.

Activities in Rhodes Town

This is one of the most popular islands in Greece and its richnightlife features bars, dance clubs and bouzouki clubs,particularly in Rhodes New Town. Faliraki resort also has a famousparty scene and is very close to Rhodes Town. Its atmospheric OldTown has many great restaurants and venues offering traditionalentertainment.

Things to be aware of in Rhodes Town

Rhodes Town gets crowded during summer. It's also infamouslylabyrinthine, so navigation can be a little confusing.

Cala San Vincente


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Cala San Vincente (also known as Cala Sant Vicenç) is a lovely,small holiday resort set in what is still essentially a fishingvillage. Situated on the northeastern coast, about three miles(5km) from Pollensa, Cala San Vincente boasts spectacular scenery,charming old houses and three beaches. This is not the place tocome for all-night parties or massive hotel complexes, but suitsthose seeking to relax and enjoy the character of the area. It isespecially suited to mature travellers and those with olderchildren, as there isn't much on offer for young kids ortwentysomethings looking for a party. The main beach is CalaBarques, where holidaymakers can expect to share the space withlocal fishermen repairing nets, as well as their equipment, andthere are also several beachside restaurants and bars on offer.Tucked around a rocky hillock is the tiny and often crowded CalaClara beach. A little bit further on is the popular swimming beachof Cala Molins, whose sand is imported each year. In general, thewater is warm and crystal clear, perfect for swimmers, and theviews are spectacular.

Shopping in Cala San Vincente

There is not much in the way of shopping on offer in Cala SanVincente besides the basics, but the nearby town of Pollensa offersa greater selection and a lovely Sunday market, as well as severalhistoric buildings. There are also regular buses to Inca and PuertoPollensa.

Dining in Cala San Vincente

Cala San Vincente is one of the smallest resorts on the islandand also one of the most resiliently authentic. Tourism doesn'tseem to have had much of an impact on the village and the selectionof restaurants is not impressive. However, there are some charminglocal eateries and seafood restaurants, and some of the hotels havegood restaurants.

Activities in Cala San Vincente

There is no nightlife to write home about, and after-darkentertainment is mainly limited to drinks and dinner. This tranquilatmosphere will delight some but won't suit those in search of aparty.

Things to be aware of in Cala San Vincente

Cala San Vinvente offers little in the way of amenities forchildren. There are few places to shop without going toneighbouring resorts.

Cocoa Island Resort


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COMO Cocoa Island is a private holiday resort, located in the Baa Atoll, and is a perfect juxtaposition of traditional Maldivian style with modern comforts. Its spa offers a range of therapeutic beauty treatments and relaxing massages. The resort has beautiful sandy beaches and a range of watersports like swimming, kayaking, scuba diving, and snorkelling, along with dolphin viewing and sailing.

A host of other recreational activities can be enjoyed on the island, including yoga, meditation, hiking, and more. A fairly small resort on a private island, Cocoa has 33 suites built above the water. The resort is most popular for couples and small groups of adults, but it does welcome families as well.

Shopping in Cocoa Island Resort

There are no real shopping facilities at the resort, just the bare minimum of souvenirs and local handicrafts. The Maldives aren't really a popular shopping destination and if guests want to go on a spree the only real place to do it is in the capital, Malé, which is conveniently close to the Cocoa Island Resort.

Dining in Cocoa Island Resort

Cocoa Island has a fine-dining restaurant, a good bar, great room service, and allows guests the option of dining romantically on the beach. Although the resort doesn't have the variety of restaurants that some others do, the food is of a high-quality and shouldn't disappoint.

Activities in Cocoa Island Resort

Cocoa Island is not a party destination and the nightlife is limited. Each villa has speakers and a dock for music so guests can listen to music to their heart's content. There are some live music and dancing events for evening entertainment.

Things to be aware of in Cocoa Island Resort

If you are travelling with kids, be sure they are competent swimmers because the accommodation on Cocoa Island is all directly over the water. There is no real nightlife to speak of.

Mount Washington


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After Whistler Blackcomb, the MountWashington Alpine Resort on Vancouver Island is the second busiestrecreational winter holiday destination in British Columbia. It hasan average snowfall of 30ft (9m) that usually lasts from earlywinter until after Easter. The resort has about 50 marked ski runs,snow tubing, cross country skiing, snowshoeing trails and asnowboard terrain park.

The resort is also set in a spectacularlocation, looking out across the Strait of Georgia with vistas ofthe Sunshine Coast and the peaks of the Coast Mountains. NearbyComox Valley hosts many of the holiday visitors to Mount Washingtonin its variety of hotels, motels and B&Bs, all of which offerspecial ski packages during winter months. The ski resort islocated 20 miles (32km) northwest of Courtenay on Vancouver Island,about three hours' drive from Victoria.

Shopping in Mount Washington

Shopping in Mount Washington is very limited, with only a fewstores at the resort concentrating on general goods and sportingsupplies. Those in search of fashion brands and luxury items may bedisappointed.

Dining in Mount Washington

There are a few restaurants in Mount Washington, with optionsincluding sushi, sandwiches, steaks, burgers, and other mainstreamfare. Be sure to try the local coffee from Beavertails, which isrenowned.

Activities in Mount Washington

Mount Washington doesn't have much of a nightlife, with only twoor three bars to choose from. These venues can get busy on weekendsbut overall the resort is geared more toward families than youngsingles looking for a party.

Things to be aware of in Mount Washington

Mount Washington is a small resort with no real village, sothere is a lack of shopping, restaurant, and nightlife options.

Skiing in Mount Washington

Mount Washington is one of Canada's best ski resorts in terms ofthe runs available, with its nearest competitor being Whistler onthe mainland. It is known for reliable snowfall, with an average of30 feet providing a blanket of powder to glide on. The resort hasslopes catering for a range of difficulties, varying from gentlebeginner runs to challenging black diamonds and professionalruns.

Koh Lanta


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Koh Lanta is a popular resort area in southern Thailand.Consisting of two islands, Koh Lanta Yai and Koh Lanta Noi, almostall of the tourist development is on Koh Lanta Yai, which is oftenreferred to as simply Koh Lanta.

The island is a great place for travellers looking for a beachholiday away from the parties and crowds of phu*ket, and is popularwith slightly older tourists who populate the resorts and bungalowsthat line the beaches.

There are plenty of things to see and do on Koh Lanta, includingexploring the Khao Mai Kaew Caves on foot or elephant-back,visiting the orchid nursery farm at Long Beach (Pra Ae Beach), andsunning on the beaches of Klong Dao, Kor Kwang, and the beautifulKantiang Bay. Visitors can also get a taste of the culture of KohLanta by visiting Lanta Old Town and the Sea Gypsy Village.

Shopping in Koh Lanta

Koh Lanta is not as popular with shoppers as perhaps Bangkok orphu*ket, but all the essentials travellers need and more areavailable on the island. The most popular shopping spot on theisland is the night market near Saladan pier. This market sportseverything from locally made clothes to delicious treats out of ahot wok. Many cafes and small shops cater for quick purchases andstreet vendors are popular around the pier for curios and trinkets.Travellers will also find the odd bargain on locally producedgoods.

Dining in Koh Lanta

A fairly large island compared to many of thesouthern Thai outcrops, Koh Lanta has a good variety when it comesto restaurants. From the luxurious eateries in the top resorts, tothe lonely street vendor operating from their mobile cart, the foodaround Koh Lanta is delicious no matter the location or facility.It seems that everyone is a chef on Koh Lanta, as around everycorner one finds a sizzling wok cooking beautifully freshingredients or blending together some of the islands freshly pickedmangoes, bananas and coconuts for a brilliantly refreshing smoothieon those scorching tropical days. But Koh Lanta is not all aboutthe street food, although it is almost always surprisingly good andremarkably cheap. The island also offers some very fine eateriesthat serve up both wonderful local and international cuisine. Andthe best thing about a good restaurant on Koh Lanta is that theview is more often than not a breathtaking vista of the bright blueAndaman Sea.

Activities in Koh Lanta

As one of Thailand's more 'family friendly' islands,Koh Lanta is not known for its all night parties, such as visitorsmight find on its near neighbour, Koh Phi Phi. However, this doesnot mean that Koh Lanta does not have any nightlife to speak of, asmany of the beaches, including Phrae Ae (Long Beach) and Klong Dao,are lined with seaside bars that serve as perfect spots for asundowner to watch the magnificent Koh Lanta sunsets, and oftenbegin to come to life after dark. If visitors are looking for moreof a club scene, Saladan Pier would be a good bet, as would variousplaces along the northwest coast of Koh Lanta.

Things to be aware of in Koh Lanta

Although the roads are negotiable, the many potholes and dirtpatches can be dangerous when exploring the island by scooter.

Big Bear


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Located in the middle of San Bernadino National Forest, Big Bearis where Los Angelinos flock when the snow starts falling. Not farfrom the city of San Bernadino and greater Los Angeles, the area isa popular weekend break from the smog and rat race of citylife.

Big Bear's two major ski resorts, Bear Mountain and Snow Summit,offer 33 individual pistes served by 12 ski lifts, and theirposition 4,920 feet (1,500m) above sea level ensures there isplenty of snow. There are a good variety of ski runs, especiallyfor intermediates, and snowboarders are catered for with a terrainpark featuring more than 150 jumps and 80 jibs.

Big Bear is also an all-around resort, however, drawing crowdskeen on fishing, hiking, camping, mountain biking, boating,waterskiing and horseback riding. The city of Big Bear has familyentertainment such as cinemas, bowling, and arcades, and offers amix of restaurants and a buzzing nightlife to keep everyoneentertained.

With so many attractions so close to the greater LA area, it'sno wonder that Big Bear is Southern California's most popular skiresort.

Shopping in Big Bear

Shopping in Big Bear is certainly a must for anyone interestedin a unique shopping experience. Travellers cn take a break fromthe slopes and spend an afternoon strolling around the town in TheVillage, the main shopping hub in Big Bear, browsing thecollections of quaint boutiques, speciality stores and gift shops.Shoppers will find something to suit their taste in a space whereart, decor, fashion and the natural environment are celebrated.

Dining in Big Bear

Big Bear offers a large variety of restaurants for any tired andhungry slope-enthusiast. With both gourmet and home-style options,every diner is satisfied by the many cuisine options includingChinese, Italian, Indian, Thai, American and more. The CaptainAnchorage is very much an establishment, with patrons coming backfor its good food time and time again. For those in search ofdinner and a show, The Cave is the place to go for concerts, comedyand entertaining events scheduled throughout the year. With manyplaces to choose from, visitors to Big Bear certainly won't gohungry.

Activities in Big Bear

Nightlife in Big Bear is comfortable and laid-back. Visitorswon't find high-end clubs, only bars and restaurants offeringentertainment. For anyone looking for a good time apres-ski,chances are Murray's Saloon and Eatery will provide it in the formof pool tables, karaoke and a well-stocked bar. Also firmfavourites among visitors are Nottingham's Tavern as well asWhiskey Dave's. For good craft beer and a chance to unwind, The BigBear Lake Brewing Company is also a firm choice, offering gastropubfood and a comfortable, relaxed environment.

Skiing in Big Bear

Big Bear offers both skiing and snowboarding. Bear Mountainoffers visitors the largest beginner area in the region and alsomore than ample area for advanced skiers and riders. The SilverMountain and Bear Peak ensures some of the steepest terrain. The200 acre 'winter playground,' as they like to call it, offersupwards of 130 beginner to advanced features. Snow Summit alsoboasts a magnificent resort of offerings, giving visitors an idealexperience if in search of a relaxed and laid-back skiingholiday.



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Samoëns is part of the Grand Massif ski domain, which consistsof five resorts: Flaine, Samoëns, Morillon, Sixt and Les Carroz.While there has been recent development in the area, Samoëns hasmaintained its rustic charm. In fact, Samoëns is the only resort inFrance to be designated a historical monument. There are medievalfountains, nine chapels dating back to the 15th century, and manyother shrines and rustic buildings. Samoëns has a long tradition ofstonecutters, and evidence of that is visible everywhere. It is acharming old village with many attractions besides its ski slopesand is delightfully small and uncrowded compared to the main Frenchresorts. It is also cheaper, which is a big draw.

Dining in Samoens

There are more than 25 restaurants in this little resort,offering a variety of cuisines and ranging from expensive tobudget.

Activities in Samoens

There isn't much nightlife to speak of in Samoens, but Covey'sIrish Pub is popular with expats.

Things to be aware of in Samoens

As a smaller resort there are fewer skiing amenities andvisitors cannot ski directly back to the village.

Skiing in Samoens

Skiiers of all skill levels will find something to suit them inSamoëns; the vertical rise is steep, which is great for the moreadvanced but there are gentler slopes for beginners and it is not abad resort for families with varying skill levels. The longest runis the eight mile (14km) Les Cascades, a blue route from GrandesPlatières to Sixt via the lovely Lac de Gers. Experts will enjoythe Gers bowl, with a 2,624 foot (800m) drop of untracked skiing.Eighty percent of the slopes are north facing, so they hold thesnow well.



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Baros is consistently rated among the best luxury resorts in Asia and the world. It is located on a private island in the Maldives, roughly a 25-minute speedboat trip from Malé. The interior of the island is a lush garden of hibiscus and bougainvillaea, ringed by white sand beaches, turquoise waters, and coral reefs.

There are a number of restaurants to choose from and while there is little in the way of nightlife, the resort is known for its excellent selection of wine. Activities in Baros include scuba diving and snorkelling, and the resort has its own spa.

Baros is an award-winning and perpetually popular boutique resort, great for couples looking for a peaceful island holiday. One of the things that sets Baros apart is the superb service from all the staff on the island, while the luxury villas ensure privacy and comfort.

Shopping in Baros

Baros has a small boutique selling souvenirs and local handicrafts but the shopping facilities are very limited on the island. Those keen on an authentic Maldivian shopping experience should take an excursion to the nearby capital to explore the colourful markets.

Dining in Baros

Baros has a range of dining options, all with very accommodating staff that pride themselves on being happy to prepare meals on request for guests. Baros boasts three restaurants and two bars and the resort is particularly proud of its fine-dining establishment. Apart from the great restaurants, guests are welcome to request private meals almost anywhere on the island, making the opportunities for romantic outdoor dining limitless.

Activities in Baros

Like many of the luxury resorts in the Maldives, Baros doesn't market itself as a party destination. Although fun social activities and cultural shows are organised regularly for the entertainment of guests, Baros is ultimately somewhere that people visit to enjoy privacy, peace, and romance. The island has a sedate nightlife.

Things to be aware of in Baros

The lack of nightlife may be a drawback for some and the resort doesn't really cater for children.



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The delightful holiday resort town of Adra, thewestern-most coastal town in the province of Almeria, is surroundedby magnificent beaches and is rich in history, having been foundedin the 8th century. Adra remains a working fishing harbour andearly-rising visitors enjoy the daily dawn fish auctions and diningout at the many tempting seafood restaurants. The clean, neat towncentre with its many squares and parks is split by the attractivePaseo de Natalio Rivas promenade. Sights to see include the Churchof the Immaculate Conception, the Partridge Tower (which houses thetourist office), an historic restored mill, and the town's museum.Adra boasts the Poniente blue flag beach among its stretches ofbeautiful sandy shore, attracting hundreds of holidaymakers eachyear. Adra is a quiet, relatively undiscovered holiday destination,less expensive than the more famous, established Spanish resorts,and is a great option for relaxed family holidays. The little townis said to get more than 360 days of sun a year, making it areliable hub for a beach holiday even outside of the hot summermonths.

Shopping in Adra

Apart from a couple of tourist shops selling suntan lotion andbeach-themed souvenirs, there is no shopping to speak of in Adra.There are, however, frequent markets and the daily ritual ofbargaining over the fishermen's catches. Those who fancy a shoppingspree should make the short trip to Almeria.

Dining in Adra

Head to the tapas bars on Paseo de los Tristes in the towncentre and along the beachfront. This is probably the tastiest andmost authentic food in town. Restaurants are few and far between,and tend to be fairly expensive. Fresh seafood is the speciality.The cost of living in Adra is unusually low for Spain, and it isrelatively cheap to buy fresh produce if visitors don't mind doingtheir own cooking.

Activities in Adra

Adra has no nightlife to speak of, although it is less than onehour away from Almeria where there are some clubs and bars fornighttime revelry.

Things to be aware of in Adra

Although for many the laid-back and down-to-earth atmosphere ofthis sleepy resort town is its main appeal, Adra can be a littlequiet and uneventful for those holidaymakers looking for aparty.



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Nafplion's streets pass by bright flowers and look up at woodenbalconies, and its lively cafes invite travellers to take a breakfrom wandering. The romantic seaport town's relaxed atmosphere,fascinating mosques and gorgeous churches more the make up for itslack of classical ruins.

Shopping in Nafplion

The old part of town has some delightful shops, where itemsrange from touristic kitsch to elevated art. Visitors will enjoysearching the area for souvenirs. Nafplion also has several decentmalls and grocery stores for self-caterers, and markets that offerlocal crafts and produce.

Dining in Nafplion

Visitors will find traditional Greek dishes at establishmentsalong the bustling harbour or in the grand Venetian-style squarecalled Plateia Syntagmatos. Other dining options include fast foodand a variety of international cuisines.

Activities in Nafplion

Nafplion's vibrant nightlife has a fairly broad scene, meaningvisitors can choose between partying and relaxing over sundownersor romantic meals. Some of the town's best establishments lie inthe harbour area or perch dramatically on the cliffs.

Things to be aware of in Nafplion

Although it has been described as a prettier, cleaner andquainter version of Athens, things can get fairly chaotic inNafplion during the summer months, particularly as it's a verypopular weekend excursion for the Athenians themselves.



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At the heart of the Japanese Alps is Hakuba, apopular ski resort only three hours' drive from downtown Tokyo.Hakuba is among the largest skiing resorts in Japan, incorporatingmultiple resorts and ski areas.

It played host to the 1998 Winter Olympics as part ofthe Nagano prefecture, and some of the facilities are still in use,including the Hakuba Ski Jumping Stadium and the Hakuba OlympicVillage Memorial Hall.

With a variety of après ski activities, Hakuba is afun place off the slopes as well. There are a number of goodrestaurants serving both Western and Asian cuisine, and many hotelshave relaxing hot spring baths. The main nightlife area in Hakubais in Echoland.

Hakuba is also a popular summer resort and is a goodplace for outdoor activities like hiking, mountain biking,paragliding, rock climbing, and whitewater rafting. Day tours toMatsumoto Castle are a popular excursion.

Shopping in Hakuba

Although Hakuba has all the souvenir shops and gift stores andconvenience stores that tourists might need for basic holidayshopping, it is not an impressive destination for big brands orfashion shopping and even the ski equipment shops are not exactlyup-to-date with fashionable gear. Visitors should therefore notexpect exciting shopping sprees, but will be able to enjoy somelocal crafts and produce and find some lovely souvenirs.

Dining in Hakuba

There are well over a hundred restaurants in the Hakuba Valleywith plenty of traditional Japanese cuisine to sample and lots ofinternational varieties as well. The best areas to seek out goodfood and ambience are Wadano Village, Echoland, and the area aroundHakuba Station.

There are some upmarket restaurants for a tasty splurge orromantic evening but also plenty of wonderful budget eateries wherevisitors can enjoy simple and tasty Japanese food, internationalpub grub, and other Western favourites.

Activities in Hakuba

Hakuba boasts that it has the best après ski drinks scene andnightlife of all the ski resorts in Japan and there are indeed manybars, pubs and watering holes to choose from. The resorts in thearea attract a young crowd as well as families and the atmospherein the evening is often very festive and sociable. Those in searchof a good party will probably find one. Echoland, Wadano, Happo,and Goryu all have numerous bars.

Things to be aware of in Hakuba

With so many options, the ski slopes can be a bit overwhelmingand it may be difficult to find your way around in thebeginning.

Skiing in Hakuba

Averaging 36 feet (11m) of snow per year, Hakuba is known forits reliable winter weather. The resort has more than 200 runs witha wide variety of difficulty, offering ample skiing options forbeginner, intermediate, and advanced skiers. Over 100 ski lifts andfive gondolas operate daily throughout the season, which runs fromDecember to April, and night skiing is available until 10pm.

Huvafen Fushi


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The island of Huvafen Fushi is an extremely picturesque holiday destination, perfect for keen photographers. Set within its own lagoon, it is ideal for water activities such as scuba diving, snorkelling, sunset cruises, and fishing.

The private resort island in the Maldives caters to the luxury end of the market and is located in the North Malé Atoll, about 15 miles (24km) from the airport. Forty-three modern bungalows surround the lagoon, each one with a private pool along with modern comforts such as plasma TV screens and private bars.

What sets Huvafen Fushi apart as a resort is the special touches: the ocean bungalows have glass floors while the spa features the world's first underwater massage treatment rooms. The island seems to always take luxury and novelty one step further.

Shopping in Huvafen Fushi

There is a boutique at the resort selling some local arts and crafts for souvenirs and things like swimwear and sarongs for those who don't come prepared, but shopping is very limited. As with most Maldivian resorts, guests are encouraged to visit the capital if they want to go on shopping sprees.

Dining in Huvafen Fushi

Huvafen Fushi prides itself on its extensive wine cellar, making it a good choice for those who love their tipple. There are three restaurants on the island and the menus are heavily influenced by Vietnamese, Italian, Japanese and modern Asian cuisine, as well as local flavours. One of their restaurants, the aptly named Raw, serves only raw cuisine, another specialises in seafood, and the third in top quality international meals. All dietary needs are catered for.

Activities in Huvafen Fushi

This is not a party resort and the nightlife is limited to organised cultural events and live music concerts.

Things to be aware of in Huvafen Fushi

The resort has received some poor reviews for service, although nobody can fault it on luxury.

Costa Ballena


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The purpose built holiday resort of Costa Ballena isconveniently located about an hour away from Seville, between Rotaand Chipiona in the centre of the Costa de la Luz. Surrounded byfresh water lakes and pine-covered hills, the holiday resort wasdesigned with the environment in mind and one will not find thetypical high-rise hotel blocks common to many beach resorts here.In fact, visitors to this Spanish resort will find the town's parksand gardens a breath of fresh air when compared to your typicalholiday resort towns. Costa Ballena has been hailed as a one of akind holiday destination in Europe, environmentally friendly whilestill offering a range of exciting holiday activities andamenities. A rather romantic story is attached to the town's name:In ancient times, a large whale (ballenain Spanish) who had travelled all over the worldwas seeking a sanctuary, a paradise in which to end its days, andafter much wandering it chose a spot near the coast of Cadiz, CostaBallena, to die happily surrounded by beauty and harmony.

The town itself comes pretty close to paradise and while onholiday visitors can enjoy beautiful surroundings dotted withlakes, orchards and parks, uninterrupted stretches of beach, andnumerous fun activities and cultural excursions.

Shopping in Costa Ballena

Costa Ballena is not known for its shopping opportunities, butthere are some boutiques and souvenir shops in the hotels and alongthe beachfront, and the little villages surrounding the resort -seemingly quite untouched by tourism - host craft and fresh producemarkets.

Dining in Costa Ballena

The hotel restaurants, where visitors tend to eat, offer theusual international fare and are nothing to write home about.However, there are some more upmarket options and excursions intothe surrounding countryside will unearth glorious vineyards andvillage eateries offering traditional Andalusion food and wine.

Activities in Costa Ballena

Costa Ballena is primarily a family resort and although thereare some beach bars and discos the majority of nighttimeentertainment is organised by the hotels and is likely todisappoint young party animals in search of a clubbing scene.

Things to be aware of in Costa Ballena

Although generally wonderful for families, Costa Ballena's lackof a pumping nightlife may discourage young singles.

Paradise Island


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The aptly-named Paradise Island Resort is located on North Malé Atoll, less than six miles (10km) from the airport. The resort, referred to locally as Lankanfinolhu, is very small, as the entire island is only 3,200 feet (1km) long and 750 feet (230m) wide. The resort uses the space well though, and offers activities like squash and volleyball, and watersports and scuba diving in the crystal-clear waters. Paradise Island also has a spa and three restaurants serving Japanese and Italian cuisine and international staples, and a 24-hour bar with a disco. It is a small, luxury resort most commonly frequented by couples, but families are welcome.

Shopping in Paradise Island

There are one or two shops near the reception but Paradise Island doesn't aim to be a shopping destination; the shops are sufficient to provide cameras and beach gear you may need, and some souvenirs. For a real Maldivian shopping spree hit the capital, Malé.

Dining in Paradise Island

Paradise Island has three main restaurants, a coffee shop and some bars. The dining experience is very scenic, and the chance to have a private meal in a beautiful setting shouldn't be missed. The resort is not as famed for its food as some others, but the selection is more than satisfactory and there's something for everybody.

Activities in Paradise Island

The main bar at Paradise Island has a disco dancefloor and is open 24 hours a day. The resort also hosts various forms of entertainment, featuring lots of live music and some dancing.

Things to be aware of in Paradise Island

Although it's a knock-out destination, Paradise Island is expensive and doesn't offer quite as much as some of the other luxury resorts.



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Conveniently located just a 15-minute boat ride from the airport in Malé, Kurumba's white sand beaches, tropical gardens and coral reefs are a major draw for tourists in the Maldives. The five-star holiday resort of Kurumba is one of the most popular resorts in the Maldives, and the first to open in the country in 1972. The resort was completely rebuilt in 2003, and offers state-of-the-art scuba diving and a spa; other relaxing activities include tennis, sailing, fishing, parasailing and windsurfing.

The accommodation in Kurumba is private and secluded, consisting of luxury bungalows scattered throughout the 48-acre circular island, connected by shaded paths. The island is quiet with little in the way of nightlife, although there are seven excellent restaurants serving everything from French and Italian cuisine to Japanese, Indian and Lebanese.

Shopping in Kurumba

Kurumba doesn't have much in the way of shopping and sells only a selection of souvenirs and gifts. However, the resort's proximity to Malé, where there is plenty of shopping, makes it one of the best resorts for those itching to buy Maldivian crafts.

Dining in Kurumba

Kurumba has an impressive variety of restaurants and bars, offering more than the average resort. A whopping eight restaurants offer guests a selection of cuisines including Japanese, Italian, Indian, Tunisian, Moroccan, Chinese and, of course, Maldivian. There are also several bars and the option of ordering room service, or arranging a private romantic meal somewhere on the island.

Activities in Kurumba

This popular resort has a vibrant nightlife, organising discos, traditional dancing nights, live music concerts, karaoke evenings and much more to entertain guests keen for a party on the beach.

Things to be aware of in Kurumba

The resorts close proximity to the airport is an advantage but also means there is more ocean traffic in the area; the rooms that face away from the airport are generally quieter.

Waterville Valley


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Tucked away in the mountains of New Hampshire, Waterville Valleyis a self-contained village and purpose-built ski resort. Designedin a classic New England village style, there are a number ofquaint inns and accommodation options. A family-friendly resortthat caters to a range of skills in skiing, Waterville Valley is agreat option for those in search of a great skiing holiday in NewHampshire.

Shopping in Waterville Valley

There are some great shopping options in the Valley. JugtownCountry Store offers everything from fine wines and specialty beersto fresh produce, cheeses, and deli meats, while there is also anice cream parlour, a toy shop (Toad Hall Toys), and a book shop(Bookmonger). There are also a few athletic shops such as WhiteMountain Athletic Club Pro Shop, which stock technical gear andaccessories for a number of different activities. What's more isvisitors can purchase some memorabilia at merchandise stores suchas 1829 Outfitters and Dreams and Visions Gifts, which offer allsorts of wearable items.

Dining in Waterville Valley

There are a variety of dining options for those at WatervilleValley. All restaurants are located within walking distance fromvalley lodging. Visitors should ry La Tasse Cafe or the CoyoteGrill, both popular choices, or the Olde Waterville Pizza Company.These are only a few of the options available to skiers of theWaterville Valley Resort.

Activities in Waterville Valley

The apres ski options in Waterville Valley will please all butthe most avid partiers. A family-friendly resort, those after anight of extensive partying won't find it here. A laid backatmosphere is the order of the day.

Things to be aware of in Waterville Valley

For those interested in a range of apres-ski options, Watervilledoes offer a lot. However, the resort prides itself on being afamily-friendly option, so it may not be the first choice for youngpeople in search of a few great bars and a club or two.

Skiing in Waterville Valley

Waterville Valley's 52 trails cater most to intermediate skiers,so it's best that visitors know the basics if they are to make themost of the resort. However, there are some trails for truebeginners, and a more limited selection of expert trails. Visitorswill also find a terrain park for snowboarders and many miles ofcross-country trails.

Shiga Kogen


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Shiga Kogen is located in the Joshinetsu NationalPark in the Nagano Prefecture, a short train ride from Tokyo. Thetown of Yamanouchi sits at the base of the mountain with a windingroad leading up to the ski areas. One of the biggest and mostpopular skiing destinations in Japan, Shiga Kogen is a behemothmade up of 19 interlinked ski resorts in the Japanese Alps.

One pass gives skiers access to all resorts and thefree shuttle transport between them. Shiga Kogen hosted a number ofevents in the 1998 Nagano Winter Olympics and the facilities aregood. There is an impressive variety of terrain and great snowquality.

While most of Shiga Kogen's visitors are Japanese,international visitors are beginning to discover the attractions ofthis ski destination, which is good for families and usually haspleasantly uncrowded slopes. There is a variety of accommodation onoffer and enough bars and restaurants - both Japanese andinternational - to make aprés ski drinks fun and sociable.

Shopping in Shiga Kogen

You would struggle to go on a shopping spree in Shiga Kogen asthe little shops and stores are spread out between the variousvillages and hotels and don't stock an exciting variety of goods.Visitors should be able to find all the basic goods they may needand some simple souvenirs, but that is the extent of the shoppingscene.

Dining in Shiga Kogen

The variety of hotels in Shiga Kogen ensures a wide range ofdining options, with plenty of both local Japanese fare andinternational staples for the less adventurous.

Activities in Shiga Kogen

Shiga Kogen is not known for its nightlife and the resort is notsuited to young party animals, but there is a great variety ofrestaurants and bars and the atmosphere is pleasantly relaxed andfriendly. The best nightlife in the area takes place in the hotspring resort towns of Shibu Onsen and Yudanaka Onsen. Visitorsshould be aware that most of the best restaurants and bars arehidden away within hotels, thus some exploration is needed to findthem.

Things to be aware of in Shiga Kogen

Shiga Kogen isn't popular with Westerners, and the lack ofnightlife may be a disappointment some. The villages are really ajust collection of hotels, with few shops, bars or stand-alonerestaurants.

Skiing in Shiga Kogen

Shiga Kogen is made up of 19 different interlinked ski areas. Itoffers some of the best skiing in Japan for all levels, althoughit's best suited for beginner and intermediate skiers, with milesof gentle cruising slopes. There are some lovely runs though thetrees, but off-piste skiing is banned in most areas. The ski seasonin Shiga Kogen lasts from late November to early May, and nightskiing is available in some areas of the resort until 9pm in goodweather.

Punta Cana


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Punta Cana is the centre of the east coast region of the Dominican Republic, and is becoming a growing holiday destination with several attractions. The 62-mile (100km) stretch of coast where the Caribbean meets the Atlantic offers pearly-white sand sprinkled with thousands of coconut trees, and is largely unspoilt.

The area has beaches and balnearios which face both the Caribbean and Atlantic, and it has been a popular tourist destination since the 1970s. The name Punta Cana refers to the cane palms in the region that has been used as roofing for centuries. Attractions in and around Punta Cana include the Manati Park, with its performing dolphins and sea lions, and an authentic replica of an ancient Taino village. Apart from the beautiful beaches, there are also plenty of activities to keep visitors busy in Punta Cana.

Shopping in Punta Cana

Punta Cana has a variety of fantastic places to go shopping. No matter what you're looking for, whether it's American-style shopping malls or authentic Dominican markets, you're sure to find it while shopping in Punta Cana. It's also important to note that in Punta Cana, many places are cash only. Even places that accept credit cards will likely give you a discount of some kind if you're willing to pay in cash.

Dining in Punta Cana

A holiday in the Dominican Republic would not be complete without a tour of its fantastic restaurants. From high-class venues run by famous chefs to establishments that focus on Asian, French or Mexican cuisine, the resort's diverse restaurants are not to be missed. There are some beatiful venues on the water and seafood is often the food of choice for visitors, since the seafood is more often than not freshly caught and excellently prepared in restaurants around Punta Cana.

Activities in Punta Cana

The Punta Cana nightlife is something truly special to behold for those who would like to see the wild side of the Dominican Republic after sunset. There is a great range of venues for all kinds of visitors, from relaxed beachside bars, to super clubs with a high-class Vegas feel, as is located in the Hard Rock Café in Punta Cana. Each night has something different going on, from shows to live music, so it is best to coordinate your nightly plans with your hotel to make the most of the events that happen in the area.

Things to be aware of in Punta Cana

Service is not always up to standard of other highly reputable resort areas and the built up feel of the resort does detract from the local flavour.



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Located just 30 minutes by speedboat from the airport, Kani is situated on North Malé Atoll. Part of the Club Med resort chain, Kani has 75 suites set up on stilts above the brilliant turquoise water of the Indian Ocean. Fragrant gardens with hibiscus, frangipani and bougainvillea shelter fitness centres, a spa, and facilities for activities like yoga, scuba diving, bocce ball, badminton, beach volleyball, kayaking, sailing, and deep sea fishing. Club Med Kani is an active resort with several bars and restaurants open as late as 1.30am. The family-friendly atmosphere at Club Med Kani extends to programmes and activities for children of all ages. This resort is ideal for active family holidays.

Shopping in Kani

There is a resort shop selling some souvenirs and things like swimwear, but those hankering for Maldivian shopping sprees will have to travel to Malé to enjoy the local markets.

Dining in Kani

Kani has two restaurants and two bars and caters well for the whole family with a good mixture of luxury and simplicity. Every day the resort ensures that some low-calorie meals are prepared for those who don't want to splurge, and all dietary needs are accommodated.

Activities in Kani

The resort is good at keeping visitors of all ages entertained, but it is not a party destination. The restaurants and bars stay open late enough for some nighttime fun and various music concerts and cultural evenings are organised.

Things to be aware of in Kani

This resort is active and can be noisy; it may not be ideal for visitors seeking peaceful and romantic seclusion.



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Furano is the most famous of all the ski resorts inJapan; however, it is still relatively undiscovered by foreigntourists. Furano is known for its light, powdery snow, of which upto 29 feet (9m) falls each year, and equally for its amazingweather, with more sunny days than any other resort onHokkaido.

The Furano Ski Area is divided into two areas: theKitanomine zone, open from mid-December to late March; and theFurano zone open from late November to early May. Both areas have arange of accommodation, restaurants, and après ski options, alljust minutes away from the town of Furano by shuttle.

The town of Furano offers many cultural attractions,including ancient shrines and temples along with theatres, spas,shopping markets and locally-produced cheese, wine, and ice milk.Visitors should be sure to visit the town's many museums, cafes,and galleries.

Shopping in Furano

Furano is comprised of several small farming towns around amunicipal centre. The region is known for its picturesque lavenderfields and vineyards as well as for its powdery snow, and visitorscan enjoy an array of locally-produced goods like wine, carrotjuice, and cheese.

There are a number of hotel shops and grocery stores sellingthis produce but the best place to go shopping for souvenirs inFurano is Ningle Terrace where you can find a charming collectionof craft shops in small log huts. Here you will find local artists,glass makers, and jewellery crafters.

Dining in Furano

There is a wide variety of eating out options in Furano, with afew restaurants a short stumble from the slopes and many differentrestaurants in town. There are plenty of great sushi restaurants,many eateries selling simple international staples, French,Italian, and Chinese restaurants, and a number of pubs and karaokebars to keep holidaymakers entertained.

Activities in Furano

Although there is not much of a clubbing scene, Furano hasplenty of bars, pubs, and restaurants which promise visitors a spotof night-time revelry. The Furano Tourism Association is veryproactive and often organise a number of interesting culturalevents, such as traditional Japanese music performances, which areusually free of charge and allow tourists to interact with localsand enjoy Japanese culture. There are also theatres and artgalleries to be investigated.

Things to be aware of in Furano

There have been some complaints about groups of foreignersbecoming too rowdy on the slopes.

Skiing in Furano

The slopes in the Furano Ski Area offer good skiingopportunities for all levels. The slopes are divided in to twozones: The Furano zone and the Kitanomine zone. There is a familyski area at the base of the Furano zone, and first timers arewarned that there are no beginner courses from the top of theKitanomine Gondola. The Furano Ski School is located at the base ofthe Kitanomine zone.

Arenal d'en Castell


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Arenal d'en Castell is a laid-back, peaceful holiday resort popular with British families and a far cry from the over-developed, bustling resorts of Mallorca. Situated on the northern coast of Minorca (Menorca), Arenal d'en Castell is roughly 12 miles (20km) north of Mahon, the island's capital, and is set in a beautiful horseshoe bay on steep hills that slope down to a lovely beach. This means the resort is not ideal for the elderly, or those with mobility problems, but the beach is a magnificent place to relax and has good swimming in warm, shallow waters. It is one of the larger resorts on the northeast coast and is widely celebrated as having one of the most picturesque resort beaches on the island. Arenal d'en Castell is ideal for families or couples wanting a peaceful beach holiday. The Arenal d'en Castell region is popular for fishing and sailing, and there are a number of water sports on offer for adventurous holidaymakers. Most entertainment is provided by hotels, so there is little in the way of nightlife, other than several good restaurants and a few lively bars. For those seeking more activity, the nearby holiday resort of Son Parc offers the island's only golf course, as well as shopping opportunities, and for the fit, it is within a reasonable walking distance.

Shopping in Arenal d'en Castell

Arenal has a small commercial centre with a few decent supermarkets and gift shops, but it is no shopper's paradise. Neighbouring Es Mercadal has a lovely Sunday market worth exploring while on holiday. Visitors should be able to find everything they need in the way of basic supplies and souvenirs, but designer stores are thin on the ground.

Dining in Arenal d'en Castell

Arenal has a good selection of restaurants, including pizzerias, pubs and seafood restaurants, and a variety of budgets are catered for. There are a number of bars and restaurants along the beachfront, and a snack bar towards the eastern end of the beach which is ideal for sundowners.

Activities in Arenal d'en Castell

Arenal d'en Castell is not a nightlife hub and there are no nightclubs; however, there are some fun bars which stay open until late in the summer months, and many of the hotels offer nighttime entertainment.

Things to be aware of in Arenal d'en Castell

The lack of a party scene may disappoint those in search of a vibrant nightlife.

Las Caletillas


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Las Caletillas is a quiet holiday resort, more residential thancommercial, set on Tenerife's north east coast. The resort isroughly nine miles (14km) from the island's capital, Santa Cruz,and is a stone's throw away from the charming village of Candelariawith its black sand volcanic beach. In fact, the resort and thevillage are almost indistinguishable, and connected by a flatpromenade popular with strollers and joggers. Las Caletillas itselfhas a black pebble beach stretching around three coves, and offersseveral bars, restaurants and souvenir shops. There is not much onoffer in the way of nightlife in Las Caletillas, so don't expect tobe up until dawn.

Playa de Las Teresitas, just up the coast from Las Caletillas,provides a change of scenery and golden sandy beaches for those whoaren't quite comfortable sunning themselves on the remnants of avolcanic eruption. Of course, the bustling Santa Cruz is close byand if one hires a car, there are various areas of interest toexplore on this part of Tenerife, such as the small town of Masca,the historic village of La Laguna with its market and attractivecathedral, or La Orotava (boasting an embroidery school). A greatday out is a trip to the Teide National Park where visitors canenjoy a cable car ride up Spain's highest mountain, the volcanicMount Teide. Although it may not be a hotspot, Las Caletillas isthe perfect holiday destination in Spain for those seeking a moreauthentic Canaries experience and a truly relaxing Tenerifegetaway.

Shopping in Las Caletillas

Las Caletillas is a perfectly self-contained resort with justthe amount of shops tourists might need for basics and souvenirsand the like. There is a supermarket for self-catering supplies.However, those who want a more comprehensive shopping experienceshould venture into the neighbouring village or make the shortdrive to Santa Cruz.

Dining in Las Caletillas

There are a handful of bars and restaurants at the resortit*elf, with a notable, and natural, emphasis on seafood. There ismore choice in restaurants in Candelaria and of course a broadselection in Santa Cruz.

Activities in Las Caletillas

Las Caletillas has some wonderful spots for sundowners and a fewdrinks while listening to gentle live music, but it is not a partyresort and there are no real nightclubs. Tourists won't have to gofar to find a vibrant nightlife though, and can venture intoCandelaria, to Playa de las Teresitas, or into Santa Cruz for moreenergetic entertainment after dark.

Things to be aware of in Las Caletillas

The sea can get a bit rough and the pebbly beach will not be toeverybody's taste.

News about

St. Augustine for foodies
The nation's oldest city has a fresh take on food. St. Augustine, founded in 1565, is attracting food lovers for its farm-to-table cuisine and agritourism opportunities. From the city's signature Minorcan clam chowder, to the blast of flavor from its prized datil peppers, to the harvests of nearby farms, the food scene showcases Florida's history and diversity with modern twists
Minorca Destination Guide (2024)


How many days in Menorca is enough? ›

HOW LONG TO STAY IN MENORCA. Menorca is quite a big island (about 690sqkm), so I would recommend staying on the island at least for 5 days to a full week if you would like to explore it and visit most of the sights at a relaxed pace. Despite its size, driving around the island is quite easy as it is mainly flat.

Is Menorca worth going to? ›

And since it has been declared a protected Unesco Biosphere Reserve, Menorca will happily continue to do so. While much of the island is rolling hills, forest valleys and spectacular coastline, it's blessed with more than just unspoilt nature.

Where is the prettiest place in Menorca? ›

Here's a rundown of the most scenic seaside towns you can find dotted along the island's coast.
  • Es Grau. ...
  • Fornells. ...
  • Ciutadella. ...
  • Cala En Porter. ...
  • Alcaufar. ...
  • Cala Galdana. ...
  • Cala Morell.
Dec 10, 2022

What is the best month to visit Menorca? ›

Menorca: When to Go

Although the weather is glorious, summer (late-June to August) can get very busy on the island, so we recommend spring (April to early-June) or autumn (September to early-October) when it is still warm enough to swim, and walkers and cyclists can enjoy the coastal paths in comfort.

Is Menorca nicer than Majorca? ›

Receiving thousands of tourists every year, Mallorca is also better known across the globe than Menorca. In general, Menorca (or Minorca) is far more quiet and laid back than its larger and more popular neighbor. This means that, contrary to Mallorca, the island won't be crowded, not even in the high season.

Is it expensive in Menorca? ›

Cost of living in Menorca

Prices vary depending on the property's location and characteristics, with coastal areas and urban centres being the most sought-after, with prices ranging from €1,100 to €2,000 per month for a rental.

Why is Menorca less popular? ›

Menorca is considered less popular than Majorca for several reasons, including the following: Marketing: Majorca has been more heavily marketed and is better known, which has led to more tourists visiting the island.

Do I need a car to get around Menorca? ›

If you prefer to leave the car aside and explore Menorca in a relaxed way, public transport is an excellent option. The bus network on the island is efficient and well-connected, allowing you to move easily between the different towns and beaches.

Can you swim in Menorca? ›

From Ladders, to slip ways, to sandy beaches there's so much variety to the swim in Menorca. Some are gentle dips in little coves, others are long distance swims against the backdrop of white cliffs.

Can you walk around Menorca? ›

Camí de Cavalls is a historic hiking trail along the entire coast of Menorca. 185 kilometres divided into 20 stretches let you discover the landscapes and natural spaces that have earned the island Biosphere Reserve status.

Is there a lot to do in Menorca? ›

From scuba diving to wine tasting, horse riding to paragliding, these are the must-do activities on the Balearic Island of Menorca. There's little doubt most travellers to Menorca are drawn here for its dreamy collection of beaches and its family-friendly vibe.

What is special about Menorca? ›

Menorca is known for its rugged coastline, rolling hills, and pristine forests. There are many hiking trails that will take you through some of the island's most scenic areas, and you'll have plenty of opportunities to spot wildlife along the way, especially popular with bird spotters.

How many days do you need for Menorca? ›

Staying for 7 days is great to discover the gorgeous beaches, wild landscapes, unique monuments and delicious local cuisine. If you prefer to go on a short break to Menorca, the peaceful island is also ideal for weekend beach holidays, as it's quite small and easy to access from continental Europe.

Can you drink tap water in Menorca? ›

The water in Menorca is entirely safe to drink, although it may not taste great, so you may prefer to stick to bottled mineral water that's readily available across the island. In the summer season, the sun poses one of the biggest threats to health so avoid the midday sun and use a high factor sunscreen.

Do you tip in Menorca? ›

It is customary to tip in Menorca. Normally a tip of around 10% of the total bill is usually expected. Menorca offers plenty of scope for walkers on the island with a variety of both stunning countryside and coastal walks all offering a wide range of dramatic and varied scenery.

How long does it take to travel around Menorca? ›

How long does it take to move around Menorca? Of course, if you simply drive across the island from east to west, it will take you about 45 minutes. The south is more attractive for tourists, while the north is more desolate and dry. Would you like to know some of the places you can visit while touring the island?

Is a car necessary in Menorca? ›

A common misconception about car rental in Menorca is that it's unnecessary due to the extensive public transit alternatives available. On the contrary, it's wrong. Although the island isn't well suited for road trips, visitors should hire a car for the few days or weeks they are staying.

Is Menorca better than Ibiza? ›

Menorca, a UNESCO Biosphere Reserve, is the go-to for pristine beaches and untouched nature. Ibiza, meanwhile, is a dual-faced gem famous for its electrifying nightlife and serene villages.


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