Holidays

A touch of Parisian style

By York Membery, September 4, 2008

The year 1608 might not mean much to most Brits but it has a special place in Quebeckers' hearts. For it was the year that the French explorer Samuel de Champlain landed in Quebec City - hence the lavish year-long 400th anniversary celebrations.

So what better time to visit a city -- named after the Algonquin Indian phrase for "where the river narrows" - which regards itself as the heart and soul of French Canada (even if Montreal, 140 miles upstream, might beg to differ).

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Spa-studded and stately

By Gerald Jacobs, August 28, 2008

Budapest is dazzling, but there's more to Hungary than just its capital


Just a block or so from the Astoria Hotel, you can see the city has real character. Along the main avenues, groups of people exchange animated gestures and conversation. Down the side-streets, old men sit on doorsteps, their creased, lugubrious faces veiled by cigarette-smoke. Presiding over all this sits the grand, historic synagogue, one of the most magnificent temples of Jewish worship anywhere on earth.

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Tunisia: An island fling in Djerba

By Dana Gloger, August 22, 2008

We find cocktails, culture and a very unusual festival in Tunisia


Given the current state of our summer, it is reassuring to know that in just two and a half hours you could be basking on a beautiful African beach. And given that that beach is in Tunisia, where the temperatures tend to stay high throughout the year, you could top-up your tan any time in the year.

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Israel: Staying on the right track

By Nathan Jeffay, August 15, 2008

We find some great days out by train to lure you away from the poolside


Thanks to Israel's fast-improving rail network, which now transports almost two million passengers a month, tourists with even a minimal sense of adventure can leave their poolside for a great day out without having to suffer sweltering bus stations, drivers on short fuses or baffling road signs.

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The Eastbourne supremacy

By Anthea Gerrie, August 8, 2008

The town is fast becoming cool - and it has nothing to do with the climate


It's God's waiting room. People come here to die," grimaces the young heroine of Angus, Thongs and Perfect Snogging, a new film set in Eastbourne. Hero to heroine: "Really? I heard it was the new Brighton!"

Eastbourne Council could not be more pleased with the line if they had written it themselves, since for years they have been trying to change the view of the resort as the exclusive province of retirees and ageing holidaymakers.

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A taste of vintage California

By Anthea Gerrie, August 1, 2008

We join the Sideways wine trail and discovers some quirkier corners of the US riviera

 

When a quirky little film called Sideways garnered an Oscar and a cult following for its portrayal of the joys of flirting amidst the California vines, it started a whole new branch of the tourism industry.

Since the film came out in 2004, Los Angeles party people have been heading north 100 miles to Santa Barbara County to socialise over weekend wine-tasting and a good meal in one of the restaurants featured in the film.

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Gleneagles: The hotel that will suit your kids to a tee

By Suzanne Baum, August 1, 2008

We find that Gleneagles's stuffy reputation is unfounded

 

Staying at one of the world's best hotels with two, lively, accident-prone boys in tow is not everyone's idea of a relaxing break. Especially when the hotel in question is Scotland's renowned Gleneagles, a five-star deluxe property once associated with stuffy opulence and elitist golfers.

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The perfect Bordeaux blend

By Seth Sinclair, July 25, 2008

We raise a glass to the charms of France's Bordeaux region

 

Having introduced viniculture to the Bordeaux region, the Romans regarded the fruit of the vine as so sacred that the theft of a grape was punishable by the slicing off of an ear. I kept this in mind as I held a bunch of ripening Merlot grapes. I chose a plump one to taste, but glanced down the row of vines first, just in case. Standing guard at the head of each row was not a centurion, but a single rose bush.

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Get some kip at the best airport hotels

By Anthea Gerrie, July 25, 2008

Starting the summer holiday with an early-morning flight?


The opening of Heathrow's newest terminal may have been a sorry affair but the new Sofitel at Terminal 5 aspires to break all previous records for luxury accommodation at a British airport.

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Top ideas for summer getaways

By Kate Collins, July 25, 2008

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