Hooray Henley for the perfect weekend

By Elle Jackson, October 17, 2008

Even if we are still choosing to take our main holidays abroad, lots of us are taking weekend breaks in the UK. And with accommodation of the quality offered by chains of chic boutique hotels and the grander country house properties, you can understand why.

One of the "boutique" brands to have revolutionised our weekending habits is the upscale Hotel du Vin chain, sister brand to the Malmaisons.


Israel: Hot happenings for Succot

By Lydia Weitzman, October 8, 2008

There's plenty to lure you away from the poolside in Israel this month.

It can be tough going to Israel for Succot. Firstly, you have to pull out those summer clothes that you have packed away having hardly worn them this year. It may be mid-October, but in Israel you can be pretty sure of warm days, albeit cooler nights in the succah.

Then, you have to get over any lingering guilt feelings about flying off to the sun while the topics of the day with friends and family are the impending chilly British winter and the credit crunch.


Bold and beautiful in the Baltics

By Andy Mossack, October 3, 2008

Pastel-pretty Riga is rich in Jewish history. Go, before it gets as popular as Prague.

You know of course, begins the shammas of Peitav, Riga's only surviving synagogue, "that this shul did not get burned down by the Nazis only because the church next door is so close.

"So instead, they used it as a stable for their horses." My gaze followed his pointing finger towards the fabulous gold-embossed Ark: "Luckily, we managed to hide the Ark and all the Torah scrolls before they got here."


Nappy days in Israel’s Red Sea paradise

By Juliet Errington, October 3, 2008

After 10 months of changing nappies and recovering from the shock of parenthood (that it is a darn sight harder than they let on in the movies), my husband and I decided to take the plunge and book our first family holiday abroad.

Since every new parent we knew said we should expect to wait about 20 years before a holiday became as restful as it was pre-baby, we prepared ourselves for the worst - early-morning wake-ups and food and babysitter issues. But I am thrilled to report that our week in Eilat was just the ticket for a couple with a baby in tow.


Top break with toys, tinies and teddies

September 24, 2008

Almost exactly a year ago, my husband and I announced the birth of our darling first-born daughter in the JC. I'm therefore delighted to use the same paper to announce our latest arrival. But this time we're adopting - and it's a bear called Huggie.


Borneo: Where the wild things are

By Kate Wickers, September 19, 2008

We ogle the orangutans and other beasts in Borneo

I decided that my three small boys - Josh, seven, Ben, five, and Freddie, two -were far too fidgety (not to mention noisy) for a safari. But I liked the idea of a holiday that involved wildlife and adventure. Borneo, which instantly conjures up images of headhunting tribes, vast jungles shrouded in mist and, of course, the original wild man himself, the magnificent orangutan, was the obvious choice.


Gibraltar: A new look at a Rock legend

By Jeannine Williamson, September 12, 2008

We discover that the little bit of Britain on the Med has new cool cred

Dominated by a towering and unmistakable mass of limestone, Gibraltar might not seem the most obvious choice as a romantic hideaway. But it was where John Lennon and Yoko Ono chose to tie the knot, Sean Connery got married twice - in 1962 and 1975 - and fellow James Bond actor Roger Moore honeymooned. And whilst some people might also consider it an odd choice as a holiday destination, its inherent quirkiness is all part of its charm.


Free flights, cruises and walk awaydays

By Lucy Miller, September 4, 2008


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).


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.