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Travel Ideas

Where in the world would you rather be? Discover travel ideas and inspiration with stories from our Travel Experts. With new articles every day, you'll never run out of ideas!

European Journeys: Slovenia by Suzuki

We were hoping for a Lada, but the equally boxy Suzuki would have to do. Slovenia was never really Eastern European anyway, so why should the roads be full of Soviet cars? Sure, there was General Tito's Socialist experiment called Yugoslavia, but the tiny country surrounded by Croatia, Italy, Austria and Hungary has always been defiantly Central European. Ljubljana locals. Credit: Carol Atkinson. Leaving a European capital can be challenging as you negotiate trams, weaving Vespas ... Continue Reading

A Slice of Pai: Kicking Back in Unspoilt Northern Thailand

There’s a wee village in the north of Thailand, not too far from the Myanmar border, that’s not so much a well-kept secret  ̶  because it does attract plenty of tourists  ̶ but well-kept in general. Pai (pronounced ‘Bai’) has kept its soul and it has kept its subtle charm; despite tourism being its mainstay, it has managed to avoid many of the cringe-worthy trappings that see so many Thai hotspots merge into one bilious, bucket-fuelled haze. Copy of Pai_1Pai, northern Thailand. Credit: Anna King-Shahab.... Continue Reading

Beach Life: Kailua, Hawaii

As a holiday destination, Honolulu has so much going for it: great shopping (with one of the lowest sales-tax rates in the United States), excellent restaurants and bars, and, at the centre of it all, the gigantic crescent of white sand, warm water and beautiful bodies known as Waikiki. But what Honolulu doesn't specialise in is peace and quiet, which is why a day trip to Kailua makes so much sense. A quick 30-minute drive from the city, Kailua is the laid-back younger sibling to Honolulu's ... Continue Reading

Twenty Four Hours in Madrid

Spain's capital city is full of world-class museums, awe-inspiring architecture and superb places to eat and drink. Don Rowe shares his perfect day-long itinerary.     Spanish hot chocolate comes dark and thick and nowhere better than at Los Artesanos 1902. Located near the base of Calle de San Martin, Los Artesanos has been serving madrileños for 113 years. The small churrería bustles with square-shouldered, slightly dour waitstaff in gold-embroidered whites. In the ... Continue Reading

The Flower of Scotland: Being Charmed in Edinburgh

The Fringe Festival is Edinburgh in a nutshell: three weeks of comedy, craziness and brilliant creativity , it perfectly embodies the city's idiosyncratic charms. But the wily old Scot is more than the Fringe, the world's largest annual arts festival. Michael John Oliver went exploring.     "That there," a kilted piper pointed, "Is a dormant volcano." "That just looks like a hill," I said. I arrived in Scotland's capital on the last weekend of its Fringe Festival. ... Continue Reading

Brighton, the Day Trip Destination Londoners Love

The southern English town of Brighton has been a popular day trip from the capital for almost two centuries. From the moment the London to Brighton railway line opened in 1841, Londoners were queuing up for the chance to escape the city streets for a few hours, to wander Brighton's waterfront and breathe in the sea air. And still they come in their thousands. Welcome to London-by-the-Sea.    GETTING THERE  As one of London's most popular commuter satellites – it's where ... Continue Reading

Cycling Atlanta’s BeltLine, a new green route through one of America’s most car-centric cities

The roads of Atlanta are wide and clogged, and its public transport system is much maligned. It’s a car city. But, slowly, in a vast circle around the city, a regeneration project is helping put people back on foot and on bikes. The BeltLine is not just changing the way the city moves, but the way the city looks. Greg Bruce went exploring. My hotel had loan bikes and the road outside had a dedicated bike lane running the few hundred metres to Piedmont Park, which then segued into the ... Continue Reading

5 Great Historic London Pubs

When I lived in London, I struggled to keep up with the locals' unwavering passion for the pub: Pub lunches (with a pint). “A quick one” after work. Sunday afternoon sessions that turned into Sunday nights, then nipping into the local for a nightcap on the way home. It was exhausting. The pub is as much a part of London life as urban foxes and complaining about the Tube. I say, if you're going to spend so much time inside one, it might as well be somewhere beautiful and interesting. ... Continue Reading

Drumroll please. Sydney’s Best Restaurant is…

The Sydney Morning Herald Good Food Guide just announced its annual Sydney Restaurant Awards, including Best New Restaurant, Chef of the Year, Best Bar Food, Best Cheap Eat and the big one, the coveted Restaurant of the Year. Love good food? Here's where you need to eat on your next visit to Sydney.     Best New Restaurant There's been a restaurant at the Sydney Opera House for years, but Bennelong is a new approach to dining at the Sydney landmark. The white tablecloths ... Continue Reading

What to Eat, Drink, See and Do in Sao Paulo, Brazil’s Party Capital

There’s a saying in Brazil: you visit Rio de Janeiro for the beach, and Sao Paulo to party. Always an outlier, I flew from my home in Rio to the New York of South America to go to Topshop, there finding cheap capris, floor-length acrylic winter coats, and an overwhelming sense of disappointment. Onto Plan B – art and eating – and Brazil’s cultural capital quickly redeemed itself. By day, a well-planned metro connects museums and galleries with dedicated shopping suburbs and ... Continue Reading

Ventura Highway: Road-Tripping America’s West Coast by RV

Plenty of us dream of driving California's legendary Pacific Coast Highway between Los Angeles and San Francisco. But few do it as Tim Lambourne did, in an enormous and lumbering RV named Rae Ventura.     Once a year they gather, near Nevada on the Northwest side of America, in a place where otherwise intelligent people wouldn’t normally gather. It’s an arid, hot, dusty place, a place that makes Breaking Bad’s desert scenes feel lush. The gathering, which you might ... Continue Reading

Yorkshire: England’s Godzone

In Britain, they call it God's Own Country (that's right, we're not the world's only Godzone), and when you're standing on a high ridge surveying a Peak District panorama, or striding over the dramatic, windswept moors, it's hard to disagree. The United Kingdom's largest county stretches over a great swathe of north-east England, and while it's known to most as a place of outstanding natural beauty, it's also home to an array of impressive castles and stately homes, world-leading museums and ... Continue Reading

England and Wales: The Rugby Fan’s Pool-Stage Travel Guide

It's only a few days until the biggest six weeks in global rugby kick off at Twickenham, the unofficial home of the English game. Our boys' pool-stage matches are in London, Cardiff and Newcastle upon Tyne, and thousands of Kiwis will be there to support them. London With just three days between New Zealand's two London appearances, you'll need to plan well to make the most of your time in the capital. Compile a list of your can't-miss sights, and stick to a schedule. There'll be some hard ... Continue Reading

Where to eat authentic Fijian food in Fiji

It may sound utterly ridiculous, but there really is more to holidaying in Fiji than lounging by a pool with an oversized cocktail garnished with tropical fruit. Chances are if you’re flying into Nadi, you’ll have a night or two in Denarau to do exactly that, with a stint at one of the hundreds of island resorts in between. For a very long time, holidaying in Fiji did not equate to great eating. Slowly but surely though, the traditions and produce of this island paradise are being ... Continue Reading

A LAX Layover, Two Ways.

Los Angeles Airport has a reputation as one of the most despised airports in the world to spend a few hours, but there’s no need to hate. Greg Bruce explores two ways to have a good time at LAX.   Outbound: It was 2pm when I walked out of Los Angeles International Airport (otherwise known as LAX), 90 minutes before I needed to be back for my connecting flight to Atlanta. It was the right amount of time for a burger. In-N-Out Burger is famed for many good things. Among them: ... Continue Reading

Night of the Locust: A punk rock show in Tijuana, Mexico

Tijuana is known for its cheap drinks and loud music, but its hardly the first place you'd expect to find cutting-edge punk rock. Duncan Greive went looking for weirdness in this most famous of party towns, and found it in a nondescript bar on the Avenida Revolucion. On a Friday night in Mexico, I watched the All Blacks gradually submit to South Africa. The game didn’t start until midnight, local time, and I’d filled the evening with tequila and beer alongside some college students ... Continue Reading

The Don’t Miss Dish: Fugazzeta pizza, Buenos Aires

With two-thirds of Argentinians claiming some Italian ancestry, it's no surprise that the country is loco for pizza. But on its long journey from Naples to Buenos Aires, pizza has undergone an exceedingly cheesy transformation, finds Catherine McGregor.   Everyone knows you go to Buenos Aires to eat beef. Juicy, fat-marbled beef served straight from the parrilla (grill) is as much a part of Argentinean culture as tango and red wine. But while you wouldn't know it to read some ... Continue Reading

You say bagel, I say beigel: Brick Lane Beigel Bake, London’s greatest bagel store.

The East End is less a location than a state of mind. Anyone can cross its borders (the City's gleaming towers to the west and the drab River Lea to the east, though the precise boundaries are up for debate), but that doesn't mean you've arrived. You go to East London; you're born in the East End. For many years I lived in the heart of the putative East End, not far from the pub where Ronnie Kray shot George Cornell at point-blank range one winter's night in 1966. Every morning I'd pass ... Continue Reading

How to do Summer in New York

Six weeks ago, Catherine McGregor abandoned New Zealand’s rain and cold for the New York heat. Here's what she's learned so far about spending summer in the city. It's really, really hot We're still recovering from a recent fortnight of unbroken 30+ degree temperatures, including a couple of days at over 35. Even when the mercury dips slightly, the thick mid-summer humidity can make walking more than a few blocks a sticky-shirted nightmare. Free events are everywhere From Memorial ... Continue Reading

A Beginner’s Guide to Oktoberfest

Sixteen days of beer, bratwurst and Bavarian babes: what's not to like? Oktoberfest started life as a party to celebrate Crown Prince Ludwig's marriage to Princess Therese von Sachsen-Hildburghausen more than 200 years ago, and grew into the world's most famous beer festival. Despite it's international renown, Oktoberfest retains a distinctly local character: you'll see people of all ages wearing traditional Bavarian dress and singing the same folk songs their parents and grandparents sang, as ... Continue Reading