Posted January 25, 2011 by BookingBuddy
Tenerife is such a hit with visitors that you may find it near impossible to enjoy any elbow room at one of its more popular beaches. The largest of the Canary Islands, Tenerife offers eager holidaymakers white sandy beaches, as well as lush humid forests, craggy mountains and surreal volcanic vistas. Hike up Mount Teide for panoramic views around the island – the volcano is Tenerife’s highest peak, and is surrounded by national park.
Masca – Masca is a tiny village perched on the northwestern tip of Tenerife. Located in the shadow of the Teno mountains, the little village is slowly becoming a popular sightseeing spot. Visitors traipse here for the splendid views – you can see all the way to the island of La Gomera from here. Explore the quaint little plaza, go for a walk and see the abandoned houses clinging on to the hillsides, or hike through the lush green forests here.
Hotel Tigaiga – Located within the lush confines of Taoro Park, the Hotel Tigaiga is a comfortable, family-run hotel that will have you feeling right at home. All rooms come with balconies that enjoy views to Mount Teide or over Taoro Park. Soak up some sun by the outdoor swimming pool, enjoy or stroll through the cactus garden, or test your brain power in a game of giant chess.
Los Abrigos – Los Abrigos have their very own fishing boats in order to ensure the restaurant serves up fresh, top quality seafood every day. The mixed grill is great for sharing – it’s filled with lightly cooked prawns, shellfish and squid, and served with lemon to help bring out the flavour. Fish is available grilled, lightly battered and fried, or steamed. You can also enjoy large plates of steamed and grilled shellfish, as well as a chunky seafood stew.
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Posted January 19, 2011 by BookingBuddy
Hop over to the island of Lanzarote for a stimulating break. Your flight will get you to Arrecife Airport. From there, it’s only a short journey to the historic town of Arrecife. The island is often associated with sunburnt tourists and drunken partygoers, but wander away from the egg-and-chip establishments and you’ll find a serene island filled with wild, volcanic landscapes.
Almacen de Sal – Housed in a former salt warehouse, the Almacen de Sal serves up tasty, seafood-focused dishes in beautiful surroundings. Start with some stuffed peppers, or tender baby squid cooked in their ink. Those of you wanting a break from seafood may want to go for the duck cooked with orange, Segovian style roast lamb, or a Galician beef chop.
Timanfaya National Park – An otherworldly landscape greets your sight as you step into Timanfaya National Park. The dramatic, seemingly lifeless landscape here was formed as a result of volcanic eruptions in the mid-18th century. Stroll along the footpaths and discover rare plant life, or hop on a camel for a bumpy but unique journey. The El Diablo restaurant serves food cooked by natural geothermal activity.
Nautilus Bungalows – The bright, cheerful rooms at the Nautilus Bungalows help get you into the holiday mood as soon as you check in. The bungalows are great for family holidays as they come with a full kitchen and spacious living room. Facilities include a supermarket in the grounds of the resort, as well as two swimming pools and a mini-golf course.
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Posted January 18, 2011 by BookingBuddy
Escape to Gran Canaria for a funfilled holiday in the sun! The third largest of the Canary Islands, Gran Canaria is home to beaches, sand dunes, historic towns, and nature reserves. Visit Las Palmas for a vibrant city break, or head to one of the smaller villages to enjoy a slower pace of life.
Taboga – See the spectacular dunes of Maspalomas from your balcony here at Taboga. Located in lively Playa del Ingles, the hotel offers 24 airy self-catering apartments – each fitted out with a full kitchen and comfortable living room. Room rates start from £50.
Roque Nublo – The monolithic Roque Nublo stands on a mountain peak overlooking Gran Canaria, and has been an emblematic landmark of the island for thousands of years. Hike out of Tejeda to reach the rock – it sits nearly 2000 metres above the town, and at that height, the views are spectacular.
El Herreno – Join the locals here for some tasty Canarian food. This popular restaurant also has plenty of tapas dishes on offer. Try the ubiquitous papas arrugadas – wrinkly potatoes served with lashings of fiery mojo sauce. Roast pig trotters are another specialty, as well as snails, cheese and seafood.
Check here for Gran Canaria travel information.
Posted January 12, 2011 by BookingBuddy
Enjoy an adventurous holiday with a flight to Fuerteventura. The island is popular with surfers, who are drawn to the strong winds and warm waters here. Don’t forget your camera – the black sand beaches and ethereal volcanic landscapes provide ample photo opportunities.
La Vaca Azul – Named for the eye-catching blue cow on its rooftop, La Vaca Azul is popular for serving up fresh fish and seafood dishes. Enjoy the fish of the day, so fresh it practically swims onto your plate, or order off the menu. There are plenty of tapas dishes, as well as several kinds of paella here too.
Ajuy – Drive along the west coast of Fuerteventura to discover the village of Ajuy. This little village is known for its distinctive black sand beach, as well as a number of dramatic caves that are just calling out to be explored. In the right weather, the wreck of the American Star can be seen behind one of the headlands. Ajuy also has a number of restaurants located by the beach, so you can enjoy a plate of fresh seafood while watching the sun sink.
Bahiazul Villas and Club – Located in Corralejo, the Bahiazul resort has over 100 luxury, whitewashed villas to accommodate guests. Enjoy homecooked meals while on holiday - each villa is fitted with a kitchen as well as dining and living areas. There’s also a restaurant on the grounds, and a little supermarket should you need anything.
Check here for cheap flights to Fuerteventura.
Posted January 11, 2011 by BookingBuddy
Top up that fast fading tan with a trip to the sundrenched beaches of the Canary Islands. Lanzarote and Tenerife are the best known islands, but you’re likely to have just as much fun on the lesser known islands too. La Gomera’ unspoilt natural scenery stands in beautiful contrast to the holiday resorts of Tenerife. Visit El Hierro to able to boast to those back home that you’ve been to the ‘edge of the world’.
Reina Isabel Hotel – You’ll be able enjoy the best of both worlds at the Reina Isabel Hotel – Las Palmas’ vibrant centre is a short walk away, while the beautiful Playa de Las Canteras sits right in front of the hotel. There’s also a rooftop pool, and four different restaurants to choose from. Room rates start from £74.
La Gomera – This little island is a nature lover’s dream. La Gomera is covered in lush vegetation and distinctive natural features. Circle the island in a boat to see Los Organos, a dramatic series of pillars shaped like the pipes of a church organ. Hike through the Garajonay National Park for a look at the laurisilva forest, and make your way to the top of Alto de Garajonay for views around the island.
La Tasquita de Nino – Blink and you may just pass by this tiny restaurant hidden in a converted post office. Enjoy an intimate dining experience filled with traditional Canarian dishes – morcilla (black pudding), conejo en salmorejo (rabbit stew), and a selection of tapas, with a side of mojo sauce.
Posted January 9, 2011 by BookingBuddy
Once home to the world-famous artist, Salvador Dali, Costa Brava is a painter’s paradise in the Mediterranean. Along this “Wild Coast,” you’ll find endless beaches, coves, cliffs, and mountaintop vistas, as well as numerous golf courses. Many small villages are found along Costa Brava, which encompasses 37 miles between Blanes and the French border. Get a cheap flight to Girona to enjoy all that the Costa Brava area has to offer.
Pasco’s Balkan Grill: As the only restaurant along Costa Brava specializing in “Balkan Grill,” Pasco’s Balkan Grill in Roses provides a unique experience. The menu is filled with tapas and barbecued meats, made from local ingredients and spices shipped directly from the Balkans.
Aigualclara Hotel Restaurant: This boutique family-run hotel is located in a historic colonial-style building, also known as the “Begur Mansion 1866,” in the center of Begur. Aiguaclara offers double rooms and suites, and has several gathering places for guests to relax, including an Honesty Bar, Reading Room, and a Patio Terrace. An on-site restaurant also provides a great place to grab a drink or a snack during your stay. Rooms start at €85 per night. Be sure to also compare holiday packages in Costa Brava to ensure you've gotten the best deal for your trip.
El Barri Vell, Girona, Spain: The shops in the old quarter of Girona provides something for everyone, as modern shops sit side-by-side with traditional retailers. The pedestrian areas allow for a relaxed shopping experience, and you’ll find all types of establishments, ranging from a perfumery to a designer clothing store, here.
Posted January 9, 2011 by BookingBuddy
Draped along the rugged Mediterranean coast, Barcelona greets visitors with abundant sunshine, friendly people, fantastic food, and its famous nightlife scene. Stroll along the Passeig de Gràcia past breathtaking Gaudí buildings and chic shops, explore the Barri Gòtic 's (Gothic quarter) tight streets, admire the Sagrada Familia's elegant spires, or simply catch some rays on bustling La Barceloneta. Whether you want to party all night or simply relax with a glass of wine and tapas, Barcelona makes you feel at home. Cheap year round flights to Barcelona from the UK make it hard to resist a holiday in this Spanish city.
Casa Delfin: Want to eat like a local? Tucked away in El Born, Casa Delfin is understated, casual, and far enough off the tourist track that you may be the only foreigner there. The restaurant serves tapas and mains at reasonable prices, and everything is full of flavor. Service is friendly and professional. Best of all, patrons can sit outside on the pedestrian Passeig del Born, across from the Mercat del Born. A great place to while away the evening hours with wine and good food. Tapas from around €5, mains from around €10.
Hotel Cram: Barcelona is known for its "design hotels," which emphasize form, often at the expense of function; but while the Cram's curved walls and circular bathrooms may be disconcerting at first, the hotel's location and rooftop plunge pool and deck more than make this a worthwhile stay. Situated just three blocks from the bustling Passeig de Gràcia in Barcelona's quiet L'Eixample area, Hotel Cram provides easy access to Gaudí's Casa Mila, the Plaça de Catalunya, Las Ramblas, and the Barcelona metro. Windows open to L'Eixample's breezy, tree-lined streets, which are busy during the day but quieter in the evening. The hotel offers breakfast (extra charge) on the rooftop deck, and there are plenty of cafes and bakeries nearby. Rooms start at around €120 during high season.
El Born (la Ribera): This little piece of Barcelona, wedged between the Barri Gòtic and La Barceloneta in Barcelona's old city, is a breath of fresh air in one of the city's most tourist-heavy areas. Simply cross the Via Laietana, and souvenir shops are largely replaced by boutiques, galleries, and, of course, cafes and restaurants. El Born is also home to the Museu Picasso. It's easy, and enjoyable, to get lost here!
Posted January 6, 2011 by BookingBuddy
Menorca may be the little sister to nearby Majorca, but it is charming in its own right. The island is relatively unspoilt and you’re likely to find a gorgeous beach all to yourself! Visit the little town of Torre de’en Gaumes for a look at prehistoric ruins. The pyramid-shaped Naveta des Tudons, outside the town of Ciutadella, is shrouded in myth and legend. The coastal town of Fornells has a range of tasty seafood restaurants to satisfy any hungry stomach.
Es Cranc – Don’t let its lack of sea views and rather plain interior put you off – Es Cranc is said to be one of the best restaurants on the island. Dine with the locals on mixed paella and caldereta de llagosta – a stew made from spiny lobsters.
Sa Barrera – The Sa Barrera hotel is an excellent option if you’re after a relaxing holiday. The beach is only 200 metres away, and there’s an outdoor swimming pool if you’d rather stay in. Visit the restaurant for hearty Italian-influenced dishes, or enjoy balmy evenings with a poolside barbeque. Room rates start from £57.
Naveta des Tudons – Travel a few kilometres from Ciutadella and you’ll spy this imposing stone structure by the roadside. The Naveta des Tudons is one of the best-known archaeological features on Menorca. It was built without the use of mortar, and has been used as a collective tomb throughout the course of its history.
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Posted January 5, 2011 by BookingBuddy
Ringed by sandy golden beaches and warm turquoise waters, Majorca is most people’s ideal holiday destination. The biggest of the Balearic islands, its beaches are often thronged with eager sunseekers escaping from colder climes. However, a little research will reward the patient visitor access to quiet beaches and quaint little towns. Hike through the majestic Serra de Tramunta and take in the island’s lush vegetation, or explore the surreal confines of the Coves del Drac (Dragon Caves.)
Ca’s Curial – Enjoy some well-earned rest when you stay at this charmingly old-fashioned farmhouse hotel, surrounding by magnificent mountain views. Relax by the swimming pool and soak in the scent of the orange and lemon trees, or explore the trails through the Tramunta mountain range. Rooms rates start from £150 and include breakfast.
Es Baluard – Put your tastebuds into overdrive with some ‘New Mallorcan’ cuisine. Es Baluard updates traditional recipes with innovative ideas and fresh, seasonal ingredients. Starters include anchovy ‘cake’ served with orange and vinegar, rabbit and sticky rice, and cream of artichokes with Iberico ham.
Palma de Mallorca – Leave the beaches and discover Majorca’s historical side in Palma. The Balearics’ capital city has a wealth of stunning historical buildings – a reminder of its turbulent past. The Castell de Bellver towers over the bay of Palma, and offers wonderful views over the city. Travel back in time with a trip through the narrow streets of the Old City, or pay a visit to the mills at El Jonquet.
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Posted September 14, 2010 by BookingBuddy
Craving a short break away from your office desk? Why not book yourself on a flight to Madrid? The Spanish capital is a bustling city, and a hotspot on many tourist itineraries. Immerse yourself in Madrid’s rich culture by visiting some of the many museums and art galleries. Head to the Golden Museum Triangle for the Museo del Prado or the Reina Sofia National Museum. Other museums of note include the National Archaeology Museum and the Museo de America. If you’d rather pick up some artefacts instead of looking at them, then the Sol-Salamanca districts might be just right. The streets here are packed with exclusive boutiques and high street chains. El Corte Ingles is the largest department store in Spain, but if you’re after a bargain, you may want to visit El Rastro, the city’s largest flea market.
Hotel Preciados – This hotel is on Calle Preciados, so you’re only a stone’s throw away from Madrid’s main shopping districts, and not far from most of the city’s major tourist attractions. Housed in a striking 19th century building, the hotel’s interior manages to combine old-world elegance with modern furniture and technology. Every room here has a balcony, so you’ll be able to enjoy great views over Madrid any time. Room rates start from £105.
Palacio Real – The huge Royal Palace is the official residence of the Spanish Royal Family. However, the Royal Family do not actually reside it in, only utilising it for official occasions such as State Ceremonies. The Palace is open to the public on other days. You’ll be able to visit the impressive Throne Room, as well as the Imperial Bedroom and Bedchambers. The Royal Pharmacy is also worth a look for its hundreds of carefully labelled medicine drawers.
El Fogon de Trifon – This small restaurant with its rather unassuming exterior is a great place to try out some tasty specialties from Madrid. The city’s ‘typical’ dish is a bowl of callos a la Madrilena, a kind of spicy tripe stew. Add more spice with a plate of clams in chilli sauce, or cool down with some creamy goat’s cheese, served with slightly tart quince paste. The homemade croquettes are stuffed with savoury, rich Jamon Iberico ham, another Spanish delicacy.
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