Five go down to San Sebastian

By Ivor Baddiel, February 1, 2007

When four friends and I wanted a weekend of eating, culture and, um, eating, we headed to the Spanish gastro capital

What do middle-aged Jewish men want from a weekend break? To my mind, a chance to relax, good food, beautiful surroundings, more food, a bit of culture, yet more food and indigestion tablets.

Which is precisely why myself and four friends chose the deeply Basque city of San Sebastian in Northern Spain when we jetted off for a rare opportunity to get away from our families and creditors.


The right recipe for a great break

By Jeff Barak, June 28, 2006

Not surprisingly, food -and even cooking - formed a major part of our fabulous Italian holiday in Apulia

Theres something very satisfying about eating ones own hand-made pasta in the restaurant of a top Italian hotel.

If only every meal one cooked was served by smiling, attentive waiters on a flower-laden, sun-warmed balcony and washed down with a glass of perfectly chilled white wine...


Marbella, not for adults only

By Charlotte Seligman, May 10, 2006

This exquisite tourist resort on the Costa del Sol is friendly and accessible — even if you have kids in tow

Most people have wonderful memories of their childhood holidays. Mine are of the many summers I spent on Spain’s Costa del Sol at my grandparents’ apartment in the Marbella urbanization of Guadalmina.


Top Tenerife

By Peter Moss, October 23, 2005

The Spanish holiday island proves an unexpected hit

Tenerife. It’s not really a word I’d ever uttered, except perhaps ironically, nor a destination I’d considered, except (you’ll excuse the pun), as a last resort.

A bit, you know, touristy. Frankly, I blanched at the thought; even my passport flinched. I’ve no tattoos, I don’t like beer and I’m not from Gravesend. How would I blend?


Strictly Balearic

By Louise Scodie, January 21, 2005

We go star-gazing in Majorca, largest of Spain’s Balearic Islands

Apparently, Majorca is one of the best places in the world to see the stars. And we’re not just talking celebrities from Coronation Street and Big Brother, some of whom were spotted on the island this summer.

No, cast your eyes upwards on a clear Majorcan night and admire the stunning astronomy on show — you might even spot a shooting star.


Costa lava

By John McShane, July 1, 2004

We find a volcanic corner of Andalucia that is almost untouched by tourism

It seems hard to envisage: clear blue waters lapping against a big, beautiful Spanish beach on a warm autumn day, yet no crowds to mar the peace.

Even more bizarre is to stroll over to one of the charming, slightly run-down beach-side bar-restaurants nearby and discover that it’s essential — unless you already speak Spanish — to take a phrase book.


Good reef

By Jan Shure, May 20, 2004

We dive into the warm blue waters of Australia’s Barrier Reef

‘A slice of paradise between the reef and the rainforest.” That is how the marketing blurb describes northern Queensland, and it really is hard to argue. The day mama nature was distributing her bounty, tropical Queensland was at the front of the queue.


Laud Melbourne

By Jan Shure, April 22, 2004

The city named for our 19th-century PM is well worth a detour

Until 25 years ago (when both superlatives were snaffled by Sydney), Melbourne was Australia’s biggest and most important city.

Stinging from, among other things, Melbourne’s selection as host city for the 1956 Olympics, Sydney set out to become Australia’s first city. (In theory, that honour belongs to the federal capital, Canberra, but like Brazil and Turkey, Oz suffers from its capital being eclipsed by a more famous non-capital city).


Oz 'pitality

By Jan Shure, February 20, 2004

A vast country of jaw-dropping beauty, Australia is the perfect antidote to the jaded tourist

Sleek, stylish, endowed with great natural beauty and architecturally innovative, Sydney is perhaps the most beautiful modern city on the face of the earth.

It is also welcoming, efficiently run, a treasure trove of visual, cultural and gastronomic delights and Australia’s commercial hub.


A taste of Italy

By Helen Jacobus, May 12, 2003

We enjoy heritage, history, healthy food and heart-breaking scenery in a visit to Umbria

Throwing open the tall, shuttered windows in the morning, my eyes were dazzled by sunlight. Through the glass the countryside shimmered in a verdant haze.

Light flooded into the bedroom of the Umbrian villa where I was staying. If music had broken through the silence and credits had begun to roll revealing this was a Merchant-Ivory film, I would have been only slightly surprised.