10 chocolate-box villages near London to visit this winter
The colder months in London can be a lot of fun, what with all the twinkling light shows and vast ice-skating rinks popping up, not forgetting the dazzling pantomime performances. It’s also the ideal time to get out into the proper countryside, though (and not just wander around the Heath). So where should you head on your next festive day trip?There are plenty of relaxing country walks, picturesque seaside towns and secluded areas of outstanding natural beauty within easy reach of the city. But there are also loads of gorgeous, sleepy villages – many of which wouldn’t look out of place on a Christmas card.We’ve collected ten of the prettiest ones you can easily visit, taken from the book ‘Escape London’ by Yolanda Zappaterra. You may have experienced their period charm in a film or TV show, but nothing beats a leisurely stroll through their winding streets, followed by a well-earned pint by a roaring pub fire.This article includes affiliate links. These links have no influence on our editorial content. For more information, click here.
The 94 best hotels in London
Need a place to stay in London? We’re here to make it easy for you. Even now, a wealth of new hotels are opening – which we reckon is a testament to the fact that London remains one of the most desirable places to visit in the world. Many of the hotels listed below are incredible enough to have made it straight into the Time Out top 20, but our hand-picked list of the best hotels covers locations right across the capital, and every category from blowout luxury (including having your own butler, might we add) to budget basic and brilliant.We’ve listed everything from five-star hotels in Mayfair to incredibly affordable hotels in some of London’s very best neighbourhoods. Plus you’ll be able to check out one or two of the capital's many Michelin-starred restaurants because yep, loads of them call London hotels their home. But if spending a small fortune on food isn’t your bag? There’s also an ever-increasing number of good-value food options for budgeteers, too. Throw great design and architecture into the mix, plus superb bars, world-class hospitality and the opportunity to have a home-from-home in the best city in the world and, well, you’re laughing. Basically, you’re totally spoilt for choice. So, read on, decide where to stay in London, and ready yourself for a hotel visit like no other. Enjoy! Looking for even more options? Check out London’s best Airbnbs. Keen on a steamy night in? Check out London's best hotels for sex. Who makes the cut? While we might not stay in ever
16 of the most beautiful hidden beaches in the UK
While many of the best beaches in the UK are well known – and well known for a reason – there’s just something about smaller and more discreet sandy spots that can elevate a day out to a whole other level. These hidden beaches are perfect for a day of relaxation and rejuvenation – far from the crowds, crying kids and ice cream vans. And although sharing these off-the-beaten-track treasures may seem contradictory, we’d argue that they are secrets simply too good not to spill. Our list of the best hidden beaches in the UK is filled with peaceful spots for a day of doing absolutely nothing, and we couldn’t be happier about it. Sound good? We thought so. Grab your sun cream, pack up a towel and pick a good book, then head to these gorgeous spots spread across the entire UK. Lush. RECOMMENDED:🏊 The best wild swimming spots in the UK🦦 Where to spot rare wildlife in the UK📸 The UK’s most Instagrammed villages🪂 The best extreme outdoor activity breaks in the UK🚴 The most beautiful bike trails in the UK
The best hotels in Brighton
Brighton's breezy access from London and its proximity to the rolling countryside of the South Downs has made it an easy go-to for city escapees for decades. And while its myriad pleasures, from chips on the pier to ice cream on the beach, via antiques shopping and trawling for vintage in the Lanes, are readily available on a day trip, it's better to make a night of it. Stay at one of Brighton's best hotels and you can kick back with a cold drink in one of the city's excellent pubs and head to a club and party into the small hours without having to make the mad dash for the last train. Whatever your budget, these are the places to spend the night in the UK's coolest seaside city. Recommended: the best Brighton AirbnbsRecommended: the best hotels in Brighton
The 13 best hotels in Madeira
From landing on its famously tricky runway to hurtling down a polished hill in a wicker basket or venturing onto a glass platform almost 600 metres above sea level, Madeira really is jam-packed with thrills and fun. Add in crisscrossing walking trails across hills and mountains via a centuries-old irrigation system, a breathtaking coastline that mixes natural volcanic pools with both beautiful beaches, magical laurel forests, bountiful nature reserves, a great food scene and a gorgeous climate that fills the island with all sorts of fantastic flora, you've got a bucket-list holiday hotspot. The hotels here reflects the many facets of the island, from sleek contemporary ocean-facing beauties to old-school old town spots set in, you guessed it, old schools. Add in Art Nouveau villas, a funky collaboration with famous local boy Cristiano Ronaldo and James Bond-style cliff-top eyries and you really do have something for everyone – which nicely sums up Madeira itself.
Los 10 mejores hoteles de Londres
Al crear esta lista de los mejores hoteles de Londres hemos considerando una gran mezcla de factores: desde el diseño, la ubicación o los servicios a otros menos tangibles, como el ambiente o la historia. Todo ello lo encontraremos en este listado: desde un cinco estrellas en Mayfair a una opción de bajo presupuesto; de un hotel chic y barato en Camberwell a un B&B de Bloomsbury a pocos minutos del British Museum. ¿Estamos ante la lista definitiva de los mejores hoteles de Londres? Eso creemos. Una enumeración clara y minuciosamente pensada para que disfrutes de la capital al máximo, una ciudad que ofrece, además, los restaurantes más 'cool' o los más baratos Londres, los mejores bares y algunos de los museos que no debes perderte.
London's best hotels with pools
London's best hotels with pools are a brilliantly fun range, from the sybaritic to the sporty, basements to rooftops, perched over the Thames or way up in the sky. While those attached to luxury hotels are generally the most spectacular, if it is just a swim you’re after, the chains are always worth a look; Hilton London Bankside, for example, has a 17m heated swimming pool (with a bubble pool for added fun), and the Novotel London Paddington’s 11m underground pool is fine for a quick morning dip. Looking for more options? Check out London’s best Airbnbs
The 12 best hotels in Hoi An
The central-Vietnam town of Hoi An may be like a Disney version of this enthralling country, its impossibly sweet streets lined with the arresting architecture left by its various Asian occupiers and lit by multi-coloured lanterns swinging in the breezes from the river, but it’s a must-visit if you’re touring the country. And as you’d expect of somewhere that’s been an important trading post for centuries, so very experienced at welcoming visitors from around the world with all its unique things to do and see, there are a huge number of lodging options, at price points that run from cheap and cheerful to more than what many Vietnamese earn in months. Styles are equally wide-ranging. Want to stay in a centuries-old Old Quarter wooden town house? You can. At An Bang beach amid a laidback scene of cyclists winding their way through bright green rice fields to town? Plenty there. In a serene spa-based riverfront resort learning how to make lanterns? Lots of choice. Staying with a family who will teach you how to propagate orchids and take you to the market for the weekly shop? All these and more made our list; read on to find the one that’s perfect for you.
The best hotels in Venice
Deciding where to stay in Venice depends on what you’re visiting this extraordinary city for. If you’re determined to take in as many of the main tourist sites, you might want to make San Marco your base; if you're in town for the Biennale you’re best staying in Castello; and if you’re travelling with young ones then one of the lagoon’s islands should offer everything you need. To assist with your choice, this list of the best hotels in Venice should help you get it right. Recommended: The best hotels in London
Ten perfect country pubs within reach of London
London has loads of amazing bars and pubs. More than you can drink at in a life time (we assume), so leaving the city to visit a pub almost sounds like madness. Yet, hard as it is to accept, there is life outside London and some of it is absolutely stunning. As 'Escape London', a book by Yolanda Zappaterra illustrates, a short train ride could land you in lush greenery, perched at a pub bench where pints cost a fraction of those in the capital and everyone smiles at you. Here's a selection of ten of the finest to start you off.
10 unusual days out within easy reach of London
Seen all the alternative attractions and weird museums that London as to offer? We highly doubt that, but either way there’s plenty more to see when you leave the confines of the M25. Maybe it’s the drizzle, maybe it's the island mentality but there are some seriously weird and wonderful curiosities dotted around the UK, both natural and man-made. Good news is, a number of these sites are close enough to visit from London. In fact, you’ll have time to marvel and still get back in time for dinner in London. Here's ten of the strangest, most out-of-this-world places you can see in a day trip from London, taken from the book 'Escape London' by Yolanda Zappaterra. RECOMMENDED: our full guide to great day trips from London
The best hotels in Oxford
Oxford has plenty of appealing places to spend a night or two. There are cosy pubs, high-tech boutique hotels and stately Georgian beauties; residences in the heart of the city and relaxing riverside retreats. The famous university town has overnight options to suit all pockets and tastes. So whether you’re there to explore the movie locations, architecture, food or art, or checking out your next education, career or home move, you’ll be well-served when it comes to accommodation, as our list of the top ten hotels in Oxford shows. Heading to the capital? The best hotels in London
Listings and reviews (18)
On the Bab
Time was when street-food fans queued around the block of Marylebone’s On the Bab, with foodies flocking to try its imaginative takes on Korean staples – the bao filled with spicy bulgogi beef or pork in particular. But at this bright Soho branch, the queues are round the corner at the stalls of the nearby Rupert Street food market instead, where prices are half those of On the Bab’s. Still, there are advantages to eating in the small two-floored restaurant, especially if you grab a ground-floor window bench. From there you can watch the lovely staff skilfully put together those filled bao and other favourites, like Korean fried chicken, bibimbaps, soondubu jigae (spicy tofu and seafood stew) and, exclusive to this Soho branch, the vegetarian dubu bab (tofu with fermented chilli sauce and Asian vegetables). Served up in an array of attractive Muji-style aluminium pots and dishes, the food all looked amazing, but turned out to be flawed in too many ways. The chicken, billed as ‘coated in crispy batter’, was more soggy than crispy. A side of kimchi was on the small side for £3. And while the tofu-laden dubu bab was generous in size, it lacked any depth of flavour. Worse still, the bibimbap – a mix of sizzling rice, meats and egg – was served, not in a hot stone bowl as is traditional, but a stone-cold one. Disappointing.
Happy Lamb Hot Pot
With its stylish decor, plush banquettes, tasteful lighting and smartly turned-out staff, this topnotch hotpot spot is a welcome addition to New Oxford Street, its DIY dining experience a fitting mirror to the area’s status as a seemingly permanent building site. You choose your broths – you can have up to three – and make your selection from a wide range of raw ingredients. You then cook the latter in the former at your table in a fun and sociable dining experience which improves with numbers; the more of you there are, the more ingredients you get to try. And a veggie broth option (admittedly a little closely placed to the non-veggie ones) means plenty of choice for everyone. This being an Asian restaurant, though, carnivores definitely get the best choice. On a generous platter of beef and lamb the meat was delicately sliced and beautifully presented; cooking in seconds, adding depth to the broth, which in turn was soaked up by the two types of tofu we also added to the pot. And from a five-fungi mushroom platter we gave the likes of wood ear fungus, oyster mushrooms and enoki a good long soak in both veggie and meat broths, again turning them into moreish flavour sponges. A vegetable and noodle platter was good value and had a generous selection of leaves, also enhanced by cooking in the broth, while some probably unnecessary spring onion pancakes were delicious; more sensible plain boiled rice provided a perfect foil to everything. It’s not all perfect. Service was a li
Back in the day, non-Chinese-speaking fans of the country’s regional cooking could only ponder the meaning of the linguistically off-limits items on the tantalising Chinese-only menu. You’d end up looking on in envy as far more interesting dishes than those you’d ordered came out of the kitchen. So it’s encouraging to find more and more dual-language menus appearing in Chinese restaurants, particularly when they’re in local neighbourhood joints like Islington’s friendly and welcoming Sichuan House. Sure, you’ll get mainstream staples like (free) prawn crackers, duck and pancakes, or sesame prawn toast, but you’ll also find Sichuan classics of tripe, offal and the mouth-numbingly joyous ma po tofu. Can’t take the heat? The staff are happy to turn it down a tad. One highlight was a bright dish of dry beans and minced pork: the deep fried and crispy green beans and pork were shot through with a tickling, subtle heat and lip-smacking saltiness: just the thing to team up with a bottle of cold Tsing Tao beer. Equally impressive was a braised pork hotpot with preserved vegetables, the fat of the thinly sliced belly pork melting in the mouth, cut with the slight sourness of the pickled vegetables. A more traditional Cantonese dish of lamb with ginger and spring onions was as good as you’ll find anywhere in Chinatown, so pleasing a table of mixed tastes and varying degrees of adventurousness is perfectly possible. Having gained entry into the once forbidden menu of regional China, t
You can spot the larger, newly relocated Bun House by the gang of people outside looking with wonder at the creations inside: perfect creamy-white closed Cantonese steamed buns prettily stamped with a Chinese character. These help to identify the bun’s filling, among them lamb, pork, beef, chicken, fish and veg. If you can’t read Chinese, the wall menu also makes clear which is which, and the dessert bun comes in its own holder – handy for both identification and catching creamy custard drips. Because there are only so many buns one can eat, the small but well-though-out menu takes in a selection of small dishes and rice pots too, as well as beer and tea. The buns are as you’d expect – fluffy, light dough wrapped around delicious morsels (ie, more filling, please), but added sides make the whole into a fine lunch. A rice pot of chicken, ginger and spring onions was almost as good as homemade, and chilli tripe, while looking like something out of ‘Alien’, offered a deep and delicious fermented black bean flavour. Sides of smashed cucumber and picked daikon were perfect accompaniments in a space cutely taking its design cues from Hong Kong tea rooms of the 1960s. Before you leave, be sure to order Bun House’s pièce de résistance, an exploding custard bao of ridiculously rich and messy intensity. It’s the best thing here.
You don’t really go to the Blackstock Road expecting bistros or wine bars, so Top Cuvée is a welcome addition to the area, and was already doing a lively trade on the cold autumn weeknight of our visit. Outside, lashing rain obscured the view of the Arsenal Tavern opposite (no bad thing), inside, the space was warm and cosy, with a friendly, easy-going vibe (a very good thing). And the short but well-planned menu was even better. Choosing from charcuterie and an appealing range of small plates, we were treated to well-timed courses that worked well both as individual dishes and as a rounded menu. A creamy celeriac-and-apple remoulade with candied walnuts offered a delightful mix of sharp and sweet, ahead of a generous plate of smoky tenderstem broccoli with almonds and paprika. And the salsa verde accompanying a mackerel fillet was more than a match for the depth of flavour of the fish. There were, sadly, a few duff notes; a veggie cassoulet was bland and a bavette steak tough and underseasoned, but on a street where options aren’t limited, this one, capped off with a good (if pricy) wine selection, is still a winner.
You can’t book, it’s always rammed, you have to pay in cash and you’re virtually in your neighbour’s lap. But this hybrid Korean/Japanese stalwart next to Finsbury Park station is always worth the effort for its food range and quality. Despite a huge menu that makes dining here lots of fun – as you try to figure out what everyone else is having, from sushi, sashimi, tempura and donburi to bibimbap, stewpots and deopbab – dishes are always dependable, and often standout. Tteokbokki, flat slices of fish cake and rice sticks in a spicy red gochujang sauce, was well-balanced, the thin soft rich-flavoured fish cake nicely complementing the firm, densely satisfying rice sticks. And the portions of kimchi, edamame beans and agedashi tofu were all generous and top-notch. But the tonkatsu bento box comprising a breaded pork cutlet, small pieces of deep-fried chicken, pickled veg, meat dumplings and rice was keenly priced but let down by the dry meat. Prices aren’t as low as they once were, and dishes might not always be the best example of each type, but staff and service are warm and welcoming. And you’ll almost certainly have eaten at least one dish that will ensure you leave sated and happy.
If you’re arranging to meet friends at Diyarbakir on Green Lanes’ Grand Parade you’ll need to be very specific about the location, given that there are two, both claiming to be the original, about 100 yards away from each other. The real deal is this one, at number 69, whose old-school character and decor make it a more staid affair than its blingier namesake. It claims to have been here for more than 20 years, and the functional furnishings certainly feel like they’ve been here for at least that long, but then functional is par for the course with standard kebab joints. Luckily, Diyarbakir does much more than kebabs. Our mixed platter of mezzes was delicious, fresh and plentiful. Once we’d made inroads into it, along with a couple of beautifully balanced salads and slices of soft warm bread still smoky from the barbecue, we were questioning the wisdom of having ordered two main courses. The grilled chicken wings served with a fresh tomato chilli sauce were perfectly cooked and, even better, perfectly seasoned. And a daily stew special of lamb and melt-in-the-mouth white beans in a tomato sauce, served with a pile of white rice and bulgar to sop up the juice, was a bargain at £8.50. Of course we weren’t able to finish it all, but we had a fine lunch of leftovers the next day, and all for less than £40.
If you’ve never been to Tobago, here’s a tip. At its southwestern tip of Crown Point, in a row of food shacks run by indomitable local women, you’ll find some of best food on the island. It’s especially welcome if you’re waiting for a flight from the international airport, which is about a ten-minute walk away. But I digress. Notwithstanding its decidedly more urban and grungy setting opposite St Joseph’s Hospice on Mare Street in south Hackney, the Caribbean Kitchen took me back to that row of beach shacks as soon as I walked through its door. For starters, there was the service. Warm, welcoming, familiar and utterly charming, the women who make and serve the food here are unflappable even in the heat of the mid-lunchtime takeaway rush, when the queue snakes from the back-wall counter past the trestle tables to the front door. Then there’s the menu. Lunch specials like jerk chicken or jerk pork, calaloo and saltfish with dumplings, stew chicken and ital (vegan) sweet potato greens and chickpea curry all come as generous portions, with a hefty bowlful of rice and peas plus a token nod to healthy eating in the shape of a small side salad. Meanwhile, properly Caribbean sides like mac ’n’ cheese, coleslaw, plantain and fried dumplings can be added for around £2 each. Drinks are properly Caribbean too, with a homemade sorrel that’s amazingly good. But it’s the food that really does it. Flavours of scotch bonnet meld subtly with spices in perfectly cooked and presented dishes, all
A decidedly utilitarian Chinatown stalwart, Four Seasons doesn’t really do a red-carpet welcome (you’re required, for instance, to have your whole party there before you’re even allowed in). But once settled, you can expect professional, courteous service and a table for as long as you want. Plus some very fine Cantonese staples. Because while other London restaurants are exploring myriad different aspects of Chinese regional cuisines, Four Seasons continues to plough its Cantonese furrow: and it’s as good as it gets. The menu features the usual dishes – among them sweet and sour, lemon, and black bean sauces – but the go-to dishes here have to be those three pillars of Cantonese cuisine: roast duck, char siu pork and crispy pork. All are pure meaty succulence and flavourful intensity, and served in generous portions. There’s a delicious soya chicken too, which, like the duck, is available as a boneless option, meaning no faffing around trying to debone your dinner with chopsticks... instead, you can focus on those flavours. And what flavours! The meats are as good as anything you’ll get in Chinatown, and need to be eaten with just some steamed rice and a pile of vibrant green choi sum to make you feel that life – and food – really doesn’t get much better than this. By all means try some spring rolls and dumplings while you’re waiting, and add in a deep, rich hot pot of aubergine and minced pork to balance the simplicity of the meats, but leave plenty of space for the main at
Please note, Fayre Share has now closed. Time Out Food editors, February 2019. The punning name says it all really – Fayre Share is a bright, breezy space, making much of the fact that all the dishes are offered in four sizes to encourage sharing. A bit gimmicky? So is the food. Veggie dishes were the meal’s strength. There was a delightful starter of grilled mixed courgettes with goat’s curd and a side order of mixed, vibrant greens, cooked to perfection. But a simple menu of favourite British dishes – shepherd’s pie, sticky wings and ribs, roast chicken, steak, sea bream – offered many dishes that missed the mark, particularly the meats. A pork chop billed as ‘grilled’ came slathered in an intense herby sauce that managed to muddy all the robust flavours of an otherwise beautifully cooked Barnsley chop. Scraping the barbecue sauce off a pile of ‘hot and sticky’ wings and ribs, which were neither sticky nor hot, revealed pale flabby meat on overcooked wings and fatty, tough ribs. The dessert menu offered some fun touches – among them Arctic roll and chocolate rice pudding. Add in attentive service on the right side of friendly and there is every chance that Fayre Share will eventually become, as its website claims, ‘food worth gathering for’. For now, this jury is out.
It’s an unprepossessing start. But that’s part of the joy of this Chinese hotpot specialist: a narrow frontage, almost hidden in the seemingly permanent building works on the northern edge of Chinatown, opens to reveal an unreconstructed old-school interior. Little Lamb focuses its attention on one thing: hotpot – and from the crowds here on a Friday night, it clearly does it well. Or, you do it well, as you basically get simmering pots of seasoned broths and piles of raw ingredients that you cook yourself. It’s a fun way of eating made more so by the menu, an A3 sheet on which you tick off your selections. Every dish is listed in Chinese and English – including pork intestine, pig’s blood curd and beef aorta. There’s a choice of five broths, ranging from the healthy-sounding ‘herbal tonic’ through to the ‘hot and numbing pot’, heady with the smell of sichuan pepper. Then you add raw items from a wide selection that takes in thinly sliced pork, beef and lamb, squid and fish balls, and various tofus, vegetables and noodles. Then you start cooking. We ordered one round of dishes, ate those and ordered another, adding in some grilled meat skewers (from £1.50) and special sauce dips. Little Lamb’s prices are a bit higher than other hotpot spots, but so is the quality and service; despite its obvious popularity we weren’t rushed to leave, making it a markedly more sociable and laidback experience than many other restaurants in Chinatown. Kick back with a few Tsing Tao or Tiger bee
You can’t help but smile when you walk into Iznik. That’s largely to do with the rich technicolour interior, created by masses of coloured glass decorations and Turkish knick-knacks, red banquet seating, bright chandeliers and pink brick walls. There’s a surprisingly short menu – the focus here is more on oven-cooked meats and fish, rather than the ocakbasi charcoal grill-based dishes so common in nearby Stokey’s kebab spots. Iznik feels more refined too – elegance was favoured over quantity in the perfectly proportioned plates of juicy little dolma and the smoky, meaty imam bayildi (stuffed aubergine). But it’s the signature salad that really sets Iznik apart from its counterparts, offering a colourful plate of mixed fruits dressed with spices and orange juice that sang with flavour. The mixed grill was also excellent – the lamb chop, kofta and two types of chicken skewer were all beautifully cooked. With perfectly acceptable Turkish house wines, Iznik is a warm, homely choice at any time of the year for a date, a family supper or, on a hot summer’s London night, with a cold rosé, a relaxing supper for two.
Seqüeles de 'Leaving Neverland': censurem la música de Michael Jackson?
El llançament de 'Leaving Neverland' ha generat una onada de controvèrsia. El documental d'HBO, que consta de dues parts emeses als Estats Units el 3 i 4 de març i que a Espanya s'emet a Movistar +, segueix les històries paral·leles de dos homes que durant la seva infància van conèixer a Michael Jackson. Primer escoltem Wade Robson, un australià que va participar en un concurs de ball a 7 anys per conèixer Jackson. Després, James Safechuck, un nord-americà que amb 10 anys va participar en un anunci de Pepsi amb MJ el 1987. Tots dos detallen anys d'abús emocional i sexual que van viure al ranxo Neverland. Reaccions arreu del món Els detalls han provocat un efecte dòmino amb diferents reaccions a escala internacional. La més cridanera la dels representants de Jackson, que han demandat a HBO per 100 milions de dòlars. A Canadà, tres importants emissores de ràdio de Mont-real han deixat de reproduir la seva música. Altres emissores de Nova Zelanda, Austràlia i Països Baixos han fet el mateix. En televisió, el productor executiu de 'The Simpsons', James L. Brooks, va anunciar la seva decisió de retirar l'antic episodi 'Stark Raving tat' en què Jackson interpretava la veu d'un personatge. "Ho sentim clarament com l'única opció possible", va explicar Brooks. L'editor de la secció de Música de Time Out London, Oliver Keen, sosté que continuar reproduint la música de MJ equival a ser permissiu amb les acusacions contra ell. "Les víctimes d'abús infantil necessiten la nostra solidarit