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Blog Categories: Travel

Wowcher’s Guide To: Cruises

We do a lot of cruise deals here at Wowcher, so to gain an insight into these so-called floating hotels, we asked our expert Hannah for her tips on what to really expect on-board…

If your idea of cruising equals a fear of being trapped on a boat with your Gran and all her mates, think again. While the older generations love to sail the seas, there are also plenty of young people who have cottoned on to this value-for-money, 24-hour food and drink culture too. And why wouldn’t you?

Today, everyone’s after a bargain. Primark’s always rammed, you can never find a table in Maccy D’s and don’t get me started on the bartering found at car boot sales (you want my Abercrombie hoody for 10p? I don’t think so). So when you come across a holiday deal that says it’s only a few hundred pounds for a week’s accommodation, all your meals, activities (if you choose to take part), nightlife and lots of picture-perfect places to see in one go, you’re thinking where’s the catch, right?

Forget the horror stories, it’s time to dispel a few myths about cruises… Read more

Off The Beaten Track In Barcelona

Here at Wowcher, we’re all about thinking outside the box and nothing changes when it comes to our summer holidays. We like to maximise our beach breaks and city vacations by getting a real flavour of the area and exploring hidden gems as well as the major tourist attractions. Bustling Barcelona is one of Spain’s most culturally-rich hot spots for beach bathing, nightlife and history – but again, we strive to bring you the freshest and most exciting excursions…  Read more

Wowcher’s Guide To Stockholm

Built over the course of 14 islands, the archipelago city of Stockholm is a mirage of unrivalled shops, world-class restaurants and design hotels aplenty. A multi-ethnic mecca, Sweden’s cutting-edge capital exemplifies Scandinavia’s penchant for the contemporary. Innovative bars intermingle with traditional Swedish bakeries, clothing boutiques lie beside antiques stores. With a plethora of places to experience and things to discover, the question is, where to begin?

Explore
A vibrant meeting of the modern and the majestic, Northern Europe’s best-preserved medieval city features a multitude of enchanting sights. A nature enthusiast’s paradise, the island of Djurgården is no exception. Once the king’s private hunting ground, today it features Skansen, an open-air museum celebrating Swedish history, and the awe-inspiring Rosendal Palace. Take a picnic and enjoy the numerous Instagram opportunities that await.

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Wowcher Takes a Bite of the Big Apple

Image by Suzie Boswell

Image courtesy of Suzie Boswell

New York, New York… It barely needs an introduction, but now that Frank Sinatra is stuck in your head grinning and clicking in an inviting manner, he and those ‘little town blues’ can be hard to ignore. That’s why we’ve rounded up the best bites, sips and sights of The Big Apple ready for your next trip across the pond.

Food, Glorious Food
Some call it the city that never sleeps. But from personal experience, the city that eats and eats and eats is far more fitting. New York is a culinary playground for the hungry and is forever fusing cuisines, perhaps owing to its diverse demographics. Many gastro mishmashes have made their way to menus – bacon and maple syrup, fried chicken and waffles – you name the questionable combo, they’ve done it (and probably served it on a bed of pancakes with a blob of ice cream).

But New Yorkers aren’t limited to breakfast, lunch and dinner. No, the most important meal of the day is undeniably brunch. The best part about this jolly compromise between breakfast and lunch is that it’s completely acceptable to quaff cocktails like there’s no afternoon, evening or tomorrow, and many brunch joints (such as East Village café Sidewalk) will even serve unlimited refills. From Bellinis to Martinis, the cocktails scene starts flowing at 9am and ends at… well, never. So when you’re feasting on eggs benedict, remember it’d be rude not to invite Bloody Mary along. Read more

Wowcher’s Top 5 Places To Go in Marrakech

Through a tumbling criss-cross of never-ending souks, where slender cats swoop down from stalls, and there’s a roar, and a rattle, and a ring at every corner, you know that here, within the whirring madness, you’ve made it to Marrakech. But the question is, where to explore first?

Jemaa el-Fnaa
Learn the lingo, and arm yourself with some nifty Arabic phrases – la shkran translates as no, thank you – that’ll be gold dust in a square filled with persistent sellers. Tempted by the funnel-shaped spices and medicinal Argan oil? Resist the urge, as goods in the square are not government controlled – and are often diluted. For a little extra, you can buy 100% naturally sourced Argan oil straight from the High Atlas Mountains.

Jemaa el-Fnaa, while infamous for its snake charmers and storytellers, is also home to dizzying orange juice stalls. I met a Slovenian tourist who stocked up on three a day for only 12 dirhams (12 MAD-£0.86p). For more fresh food, you can find cheap eateries littered about the bazaars: lively places where local couples and travellers come to chat over the steam of sugared mint tea. On the menu are traditional meat and veg dishes slow-cooked inside piping tagine pots, but you can get anything from a morning coffee to lentil soup here with ease.

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Painting the Town Red: The Wowcher Guide to La Tomatina!

You know that festival thing in Spain somewhere with the tomatoes? Well, we think it’s a festival, and we think it’s in Spain. Right? Come on, you’ve seen the pictures a hundred times. Well it actually looks like a hoot, and yes it is a festival. In fact, it might be the the most frantic, ridiculous, delicious and nutritious festival you’ll ever go to… Read more

Wowcher’s Guide To Beach Etiquette

Whether you’re snorkelling in Mauritius or enjoying a 99 Flake in Margate, the seaside can be great summer fun or a series of embarrassing mishaps. From vacations to stay-cations, we’ve rounded up the universal code of conduct when it comes to that all-important beach etiquette…

Personal Space
The music, the food, the impromptu Volleyball matches… there isn’t much of a finer time than a trip to the beach with friends. However, there’s nothing worse than when someone treats the coastline as if it’s their very own. We’re talking booming portable speakers, towels taking up too much space and sandcastles built in high traffic areas. Do you happen to be Sir Richard Branson on Neckar Island…? We thought as much, now turn it down – or just get a Mini MP3 Player instead!  Read more

Beyond the Final Whistle! Wowcher’s Guide to World Cup Nations: Croatia

The clear aquamarine waters, ancient fortifications and distinctive red-tiled roofs of the picturesque city of Dubrovnik

The clear aquamarine waters, ancient fortifications and distinctive red-tiled roofs of the picturesque city of Dubrovnik

OK, so the first thing that many of us will associate with Croatia is 1989 Eurovision Song Contest-winning pop act Riva. Whilst achieving a total of 137 points in a Eurovision final is nothing to be sniffed at, trust us when we say there is far more to Croatia than the great keyboard-led melody of Riva’s hit Rock Me.

Sitting between Slovenia and Bosnia & Herzegovina on the stunning Dalmatian coast, Croatia is a place of outstanding natural beauty with vast swathes of practically untouched landscape and the thriving cultural hubs of Zagreb and Dubrovnik. As well as being the birthplace of Real Madrid central midfielder Luka Modrić, Croatia has so much to offer as a place of history, culture and stunning scenery. Here is Wowcher’s guide to one of Southeast Europe’s most intriguing destinations… Read more

Know Your World Cup Opponent – Italy!

Who’s ready for some international sportsball then? Phwoar! Goals! Brazilians! A trophy! Kicking! You get the idea. That’s right, the time has finally come: that magical month or so out of every four years when we all gather round our newly-purchased HD TVs to yell advice at a bunch of professional athletes, all in the name of the beautiful game. Bobby Moore, 66, Wemb-er-ly, come on you England, phwoar!

Our boys are jetting off to Brazil to play in the greatest tournament on earth – bigger than the Superbowl, more fun than the Olympics and with more gratuitous shots of bikini-clad blondes than Crufts – it’s the World Cup, of course. This time around, our brave Lions’ first test on the inevitable route to glory comes in the form of Italy. The rugged, handsome, stylish Italy – pasta, Pavarotti, the Romans, The Godfather, moustaches. Italy.

We’re in no doubt that the team’s wise owl/manager Roy Hodgson has mentally prepared his team for this tough test in the searing Brazilian heat, but we ask are you ready? It’s always important to know your enemy – know what makes them tick, what they get out of bed in the morning for, what they eat, what they drink, and some other stuff. If we really want to cheer on our lads then we owe it to them to suss out this glorious country. So, without further ado we bring you the Wowcher guide to Italy – it’s an offer you can’t refuse… Read more

The Coasts With The Most…

Woolacombe Sands, North Devon

Whether heading abroad is out of your price range this summer or you simply want to experience the beauty of our own fair isle (and we don’t blame you!) we’ve got something for beach bods and party-goers. Here are our top coastline suggestions to give you inspiration for that spontaneous mini break…

North Devon
A stone’s throw from Exmoor National Park, Ilfracombe’s coastline stretches for as far as the eye can see, encompassing the sights and sounds of Devon. Home to the ‘Tunnels Beaches’, these unique attractions were carved into the cliff face in the 1820s and still remain a favourite for children and adults to explore. No trip to the area would be complete without a visit to the nearby Woolacombe Sands, famous for its sand dunes, rock pools and marine life. Those who fancy a little more than bathing on the beach can depart on a boat trip to barely-populated Lundy Island, a unique area voted Britain’s tenth greatest natural wonder and renowned for its flora, fauna and serene jetty and harbour…

Bamburgh Castle

Bamburgh Castle

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