These are our favourite places, restaurants, beaches, parks and hotels, locations we’ve travelled to over the years and have no trouble recommending. It’s a list we shall keep updated periodically as we continue our journey and explore.
1. Edinburgh, Scotland: Nice for walking, plenty to see, close to the coast, variety of restaurants, compact.
2. Lisbon, Portugal: Amazing architecture, lovely climate, great squares, economical and efficient public transport.
4. Venice, Italy: Romantic, picturesque, walkable, trafficless and atmospheric.
5. Maastricht, Holland: Charming, tranquil, small, clean and safe with delightful squares and friendly people.
2. Whale’s Tail, Costa Rica: Set in a National Park, with impressive caves you can walk through, great sand and warm seas
3. Los Frailes, Ecuador: Clear water, secluded, perfect waves, clean sand, sea temperature consistently good. All it’s missing is some shelter from the scorching sun and somewhere for refreshments (make sure you bring your own!)
4. Englishman’s Bay, Tobago: Long, intimate stretch of beautiful sandy beach with palm trees and clear green water, just where you’d imagine Robinson Crusoe making his base. There’s a shop and café on site also.
5. Playa del Carmen, Mexico: White, cool sand and crystal clear waters.
1. Napfenyes Etterem, Budapest: So good we ate there every day on our short stay, sometimes twice in a day. Great menu, nice staff. Almost too many delightful dishes, making our choice so much tougher (hence the reason we kept coming back) Rózsa u 39, District VII, Budapest 1077 +36-1-3135555. http://www.napfenyesetterem.hu/
2. Pure Food & Wine, Manhattan, New York: Somewhat pricey, but worth it, if only for the scrumptious desserts. Formal vegan restaurant with raw options. www.oneluckyduck.com 54 Irving Place New York, NY 10003-2314 Tel: (212) 477-1010
3. Terra, Lisbon, Portugal: Fabulous buffet spread when we visited over five years ago. Food is fresh and the ginger juice, though laced with sugar, so refreshing. www.restauranteterra.pt Príncipe Real, Rua da Palmeira 15, 1200-311 LISBOA, Portugal Tel: 213 421 407
4. Tiestos, Cuenca, Ecuador: Delicious food delivered in a large tagine (tiesto). The chef can make almost whatever you like and uses his ingredients so perfectly. A hit every time. Juan Jaramillo 7-34, City Centre, Cuenca, Ecuador
5. Buenos Aires Verde, Buenos Aires, Argentina: Outstanding organic vegetarian nosh, always beautifully presented, fresh and nutritious. Plenty of vegan and raw vegan options. Lovely setting, relaxed atmosphere and genuine staff. There is a menu in English. Try the salads, pizza, deserts and smoothies. Reasonably priced as well, especially when compared to most organic raw food/vegetarian restaurants. Gorriti 5657, Buenos Aires. http://www.bsasverde.com/index_en.html. Open Monday-Saturday 9am-0.30am.
1. El Retiro, Madrid, Spain: Outstanding and in the city centre (near Retiro subway). Has many jogging paths and exercise areas as well as a lake with boats, cycle routes and quieter, shaded areas to sit.
2. Munich Olympic Park, Germany: By the former Olympic stadium, these manicured grounds near the centre of the city were used for the 1972 Games. The park has a lake and river and is perfect for running, cycling, rollerblading or just strolling.
3. Central Park, New York: At the tip of Manhattan, the park has something for everyone in any season, Great for walking, running, playing sports, rollerblading or just to pass some time.
4. Ruislip Lido, Ruislip, England: Close to where we used to live on the west side of London, there’s a lake, a man-made sandy beach, extensive kids play area and path around the water for walking, cycling or running. Great in the mornings, when no-one is awake, the lido also backs on to Ruislip Woods, an expansive wooded area.
5. Cyber Park, Marrakech, Morocco: Clean, educational and close to the famous Medina. Closes around 5pm. It has a calm feel while also providing a great play area for children.
1. Villa de las Aves, Uvita, Costa Rica: Fabulous two-floor house-type buildings with private jacuzzi, kitchens and a communal pool set in grounds surrounded by trees, animals and birds. With delightful owners, too - from Australia and UK, this is a spectacular place within reach of Costa Rica's great beaches. http://www.villasdelasaves.com/
2. Bahia Principe Tulum, Playa del Carmen: Mexico All-inclusive resort hotel close to crystal clear sea water and private white sandy beaches.
3. Mandala, Puerto Lopez, Ecuador: Immaculately decorated – has so much to offer, like a library, games room, restaurant, gardens and music room. http://www.hosteriamandala.info/
4. Hip Hotel, Maastricht, Holland: Super sleek, funky one-time apartments converted into themed hotel rooms at affordable prices. There’s secure parking also, but at a fee. http://www.st-martenslane.com/
5. Intercontinental, Chicago airport: Comfortable, tasteful and sheek. 5300 North River Road, Rosemont. Tel: (847) 544-5300