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Holidays - recommendations, queries and words of advice.


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#1 Summit Lover

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Posted 02 July 2012 - 05:41 PM

Have been meaning to start this topic for a while now - a place where you can ask for other people's experiences when considering trying somewhere new and offer some advice/tips about places you have been, from glowing recommendations to 'avoid at all costs!'.

A query from me first - has anyone been to Budapest? And if so, what did you think of it? Any tips - places/restaurants/bars not to miss.... or to avoid? We have already booked to go there in August but would be interested to hear from others in the know.

#2 gekko

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Posted 03 July 2012 - 11:28 AM

I haven't been to Budapest (it's on the list though) so can't comment on that I'm afraid.

Lisbon

I'll make a recommendation though for anyone who wants to visit Lisbon. We stayed in the apartment below for a week back in October and it was fabulous - centrally located but peaceful, ultra-modern and with really helpful owners who took us to the airport at the end of our stay. We booked through Friendly Rentals and all went smoothly so I'd use their booking service again.

http://www.friendlyr...nt-5208-160.htm

Lisbon is a fantastic city. It's very laid back, with great bars and places to eat. I'd recommend a bar called Mahjong in Bairro Alto, which played lots of Depeche Mode and 80s electronica/industrial stuff. They had cabbages hanging from the ceiling for some reason and the owner/manager was really friendly. Whilst we were there, we found Foursquare invaluable when looking for good places to visit/eat/drink (the apartment had free wifi). We saw some good contemporary exhibitions in galleries and took the train out to Sintra, a beautiful historic town with castle and palaces, built on a huge hill.

Really great city so if you haven't been, do consider it.
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#3 Sylvester

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Posted 03 July 2012 - 03:04 PM

I've just come back from a holiday in Turkey including 5 days in Istanbul - it's an absolutely fascinating city with a real "east meets west" feel and there's so much to see! Check out TripAdvisor for all tourist info. It's very hot at this time of year (it was 35-40 deg) but there's usually a wind off the sea that makes it feel cooler. The population is about 14m which means its pretty crowded all the time but especially in the rush hour, and the traffic is unbelievable, but somehow walking round the centre at dusk with the Blue Mosque lit up everything fades away. The people are lovely and friendly and there are the most shopping opportunities I've ever encountered anywhere. Getting about is easy and cheap with the modern tram system. Highly recommended.
aka Pie

#4 Summit Lover

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Posted 03 July 2012 - 06:20 PM

We had a great holiday in Istanbul too - beautiful city. Here's some of my favourite pics:

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#5 belli

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Posted 03 July 2012 - 07:55 PM

Hi SL.
We went to Budapest a few years ago and thoroughly enjoyed it. I'd recommend a trip to the parliament, the castle hill and fishermans' bastion. There's a lovely cafe culture throughout the city.
Even better, there are lots of trips out you can book. We went to the Danube bend, the medieval fortress of Visegrad, the little artist town of Szentendre and Estergom, the old capital of Hungary, with its stunning Cathedral. Didn't make it to any of the spas, but they look wonderful. If you're not of a nervous disposition, the House of Terror on Andrassy Ut shows the history of repression of the Hungarian people from fascists through to end of the the communist era. Macabre, but fascinating.
Enjoy!

And in the spirit of the thread, anyone have tips on do's and dont's in Vegas? We're thinking of going on honeymoon (belatedly) in January of next year.

#6 pupkin

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Posted 03 July 2012 - 09:13 PM

I went to Budabest some years ago and only a couple of things have stuck with me.
One is the visit to the Jewish Museum and Synagogue.
The other is the goose leg and cabbage at Kadar Etkedze ( there is a tick in my guide book) it is at VII Klauzal ter 10.
It was the best thing I ate and was about £2.50. This was about 8 years ago though.

Oh and one more thing don't be tempted to drink the national drink Unicum, it is god awful.

#7 Senor Buckethead

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Posted 03 July 2012 - 09:29 PM

If I had a choice, right now it would be camping in Cleethorpes, the jewel of the Lincolnshire coast...

no but seriously found Turin very worthy of a visit last year and would go again tomorrow - huge former synagogue there Pup - now the cinema museum. Think I saw it described as the Paris of the south - and in a thread elsewhere in the Tavern there was a reference to Clacton as the Paris of the East. Makes you wonder what Paris is (maybe the Clacton of the Ile de France)
Tadpole - my favourite word

#8 belli

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Posted 03 July 2012 - 09:47 PM

I luurve Unicum. Can't find it anywhere over here though!

#9 charlie

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Posted 03 July 2012 - 11:01 PM

Went to Budapest probably around the same time as pupkin & in late autumn/early winter.

Agree that it is worth visiting the Jewish Museum and Synagogue.

Depending on what you like - this is an amazing visit:

http://www.szoborpark.hu/

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#10 gekko

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Posted 04 July 2012 - 08:56 AM

And in the spirit of the thread, anyone have tips on do's and dont's in Vegas? We're thinking of going on honeymoon (belatedly) in January of next year.


My partner went to Vegas last year so I'll get her to post some tips.
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#11 ClaireyM

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Posted 04 July 2012 - 12:18 PM

And in the spirit of the thread, anyone have tips on do's and dont's in Vegas? We're thinking of going on honeymoon (belatedly) in January of next year.

  • If you're lucky enough to win anything, cash in your winner's voucher quickly (you don't get a bucket full of coins from the slots any more). They are time sensitive and some are valid for less than 24 hours! Don't lose out on your winnings!
  • There are no clocks in the casinos (they hope you'll lose track of time and gamble some more) so make sure you wear a watch if you've got plans.
  • Drinks are usually free if you're playing the slots/game tables in the casino.
  • Make sure you see the fountain show at the Bellagio.
  • The gondala ride at the Venetian is overrated.
  • Be careful of the shady characters who frequent the Strip.
  • Wear comfy shoes! You'll be walking a lot. And whatever you do, don't jaywalk. Use the walkways over the Strip.

If anyone wants any tips for travelling in Albania (you may laugh, but it was voted no. 1 in Lonely Planet’s top 10 countries for 2011!), then I'm your woman. What I don't know isn't worth knowing. And even then, I can still find out for you :)

#12 Sidney Ruff-Diamond

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Posted 04 July 2012 - 12:27 PM

I'd give Ulan Bator a miss... it's a dump. Or it was when I was there a few years back (top tip: take a squash ball and length of rubber hose if you go by train. Seriously).

Edited by Sidney Ruff-Diamond, 04 July 2012 - 12:30 PM.

Never eat a piece of cheese bigger than your head.

#13 Summit Lover

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Posted 29 August 2012 - 07:09 PM

OK - back from Budapest. Great city and well worth a visit :)

Best Bits
- The beautiful Danube!
- Stunningly beautiful buidlings - many somewhat delapidated but even in those areas almost every balcony had lots of flowers
- Cheap living, including dining out and drinking in the plentiful bars and cafes
- Castle area (Buda) very impressive and all of the main city areas walkable to fairly easily
- Incredibly rich food, a meat and cheese lover's haven - especially goose liver.

Not so good bits
- It was HOT as HADES. If you go, don't go in August!
- Pavements aren't cleaned much at all, which can become a bit whiffy in the heat.
- Probably a bit tooooo much meat, especially as I am mainly vegetarian by choice.

Couple of pics:

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#14 CityView

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Posted 29 August 2012 - 07:22 PM

Vegas - make sure you factor in a trip to the Grand Canyon. About 4-5hrs drive eachway but incredible. Don't almost run out of petrol at 10pm in the middle of an electric storm in middle of the desert. That's scary.



#15 Dazza

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Posted 29 August 2012 - 07:39 PM

Went to scarborough this summer for 5 days stayed in my mates Penthouse on the Esplanade & loved every minute of it, must be getting middle aged !

Robin hood Bay & whitby nearby as well

Dazza
Your obviously mistaken me with someone who gives a fig