A local’s guide to Córdoba, Spain: 10 top tips

This ancient Andalucían city boasts world-famous Moorish architecture, beautiful courtyard patio houses and a revitalised riverside full of cafes and bars

The Mezquita-Catedral is the attraction everybody talks about, because it’s incredible. Originally a mosque, built in the 10th century, it later became a cathedral. Being local I don’t pay to get in, but anyone can get in for free by showing up at 8.30am while they’re preparing for the service – although they push you out at 9.20am. There’s a tower with a nice view, though it’s best to stand inside in a corner, in front of one of the hundreds of columns, and take in the whole space. Córdoba is one of the warmest cities in Europe, so this building, which stays very cool, is a good place to be.
Calle Cardenal Herrero 1, ¤10, under-10s free, mezquita-catedraldecordoba.es

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Travel | The Guardian

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Banksy’s subversive art draws tourists and locals in Paris

British graffiti artist Banksy, known for his politically charged sketches on walls from London to New York to Gaza City, has descended on Paris, painting a series of murals that are sparking debate among residents and tourists.


Reuters: Arts

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A local’s guide to Edinburgh: 10 top tips

The Scottish capital’s big draw is its festivals but the quieter corners are alive year round – with stylish cafes and bistros, moody bars and thriving art spaces

Dovecot Gallery and Tapestry Studio

The Infirmary Street Baths, built in 1885, were the first public swimming baths to open in the Scottish capital, with the aim of improving public health. Today, the Dovecot Gallery occupies the old Ladies Baths space, while the Dovecot Tapestry Studio is in what was the main pool. Dovecot Gallery will appeal to anyone with a passing interest in contemporary art, but craft and textiles enthusiasts are especially well catered for. Exhibitions showcase art forms such as weaving and jewellery, and summer’s major show is Liberty Art, Fabrics & Fashion (28 July-12 January 2019), exploring 140 years of Liberty London. The tapestry studio, which makes tufted rugs, is not open to the public but can be observed from a viewing balcony.
10 Infirmary Street, dovecotstudios.com

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A local’s guide to Poznań, Poland: 10 top tips

Polish musician Daga Gregorowicz reveals the rebellious side of her home city, with its buzzing bars, street art and excellent, cheap restaurants and local cafes

Under the tourist radar and just the right size to explore, Poznań is full of surprises, from cafes in hidden courtyards to riverbank summer pop-ups. Its bourgeois facade masks its anarchic, rebellious side, and it has friendly people, an entrepreneurial spirit and artistic vibe. I also appreciate its intimacy whenever I return from tours, and its flat, bike-friendly geography giving the sense that everything is nearby, including the countryside. With all that, I think Poznań – halfway between Warsaw and Berlin – might be the best starting point for tourists new to Poland. After all, this is where our country was founded, back in the 10th century.

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Travel | The Guardian

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A local’s guide to Vilnius, Lithuania: 10 top tips

‘Vilnius, the G-spot of Europe: Nobody knows where it is, but when you find it, it’s amazing’ … a bold claim from a recent tourist ad that went viral

The poster produced by two students referring to Lithuania’s capital as Europe’s G-spot really sums the city up: it is not where you thought it was. It is not in eastern Europe, not even in central Europe, but the capital of a Baltic state in northern Europe.

Founded in 1323 by grand duke Gediminas, who attracted Jewish and German tradesmen and merchants with generous tax exemptions, for centuries it became a destination for those fleeing religious persecution (there was even a Scottish Calvinist community in Vilnius) or tough trade guild regulations. The city’s coat of arms features Saint Christopher, the patron saint of travellers.

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A local’s guide to Kraków: 10 top tips

It’s Kraków’s striking medieval old town, one of the finest in Europe, that attracts visitors, but the city’s youthful restaurants, bars and cultural hangouts are well worth checking out, too

Hotel Forum was a monstrous concrete carbuncle of a hotel built during the Soviet era (started in 1978, it took 11 years to complete) next to the Vistula river in the middle of the city. It represented unprecedented luxury in Poland at the time, and featured a swimming pool, mini golf and a casino. But it only stayed open for 13 years – a design fault led to the basement constantly flooding, and it stood decaying and abandoned for many years. The long-term fate of the building is still uncertain, but five years ago, a group of creatives set up Forum Przestrzenie, a contemporary cultural centre with a bar and a good kitchen, which is now one of the hippest venues in the city. Local beers cost about 8zl (£1.65), pizzas from £6.30. Alongside concerts, movie screenings, food and fashion shows, locals come to relax on deckchairs and enjoy the sunset, with Wawel Castle across the river. DJs provide extra ambience. It has a very relaxed atmosphere in a retro setting.
Ul Marii Konopnickiej 28, forumprzestrzenie.com

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A local’s guide to Brussels: 10 top tips

The Belgian capital isn’t all boring Eurocrats: a cast of creative types are busy doing their arty things – often with humour and a social conscience

Veer sharply left by the Chanel store on Boulevard de Waterloo and you’ll find yourself in a tiny oasis among Brussels’ busiest shopping streets. The gardens of the elegant Egmont Palace (now the home of Belgium’s foreign ministry) are a public park, one of the most secret in Brussels. It’s home to a charming little statue of Peter Pan, a gift from the children of Britain to the children of Belgium, and the palace’s former orangery is now a cool, modern restaurant, La Fabrique en Ville, that boasts Brussels’ best terrace for brunch in the sun. Poached eggs and homemade hollandaise on an English muffin is on the expensive side at €13.50, but well worth it for brunching like a king in the grounds of a former palace.

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A local’s guide to Nice, France: 10 top tips

The once-sleepy grande dame of the Côte d’Azur is now its vibrant artistic hub, with cool new bars, restaurants and galleries enlivening its classic sights

Nice is booming, despite and in defiance of the terrorist attack that shattered the Bastille Day celebrations here less than two years ago. Irina Brook, daughter of legendary director Peter Brook, who runs the prestigious Théâtre National de Nice, reveals her favourite art venues, restaurants and bars.

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Travel | The Guardian

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A local’s guide to Chicago: 10 top tips

The city’s bars and music scene are among the most vibrant in the US. And with Lake Michigan beaches to relax on and two new budget flights from the UK, now is the time to go

Traditionally overshadowed by coastal powerhouses New York City and Los Angeles, Chicago is on the rise, with a record 55 million visitors in 2017 – and new direct flights from the UK with Norwegian and Wow making the US’s third-largest city more accessible. While visitors tend to congregate around the downtown and lakefront areas to admire the city’s world-renowned architecture, there’s a thriving music and bar scene that shouldn’t be missed.

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Travel | The Guardian

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A local’s guide to Australia’s Gold Coast: 10 top tips

As the Commonwealth Games get under way in this sunny Queensland city, an insider offers tips on what to see and do – and where to eat and drink – away from the sporting action

Hugging Queensland’s southeast coast for a whopping 70km, the City of the Gold Coast extends far beyond the borders of Surfers Paradise, its hedonistic heart. Once renowned for its tackiness, the “Goldie” has, ahead of the Commonwealth Games, attained a level of sophistication few expected of the city that birthed gold lamé bikini-clad Meter Maids. A raft of swanky new hotels, including The Darling, opened last month, the ongoing refurbishment of Hota, the city’s premier arts hub, and revamped dining and nightlife scenes are among the highlights of a multibillion-dollar facelift. Despite this flurry of development, the vibe remains relaxed. With few must-sees beyond its dazzling beaches, the Gold Coast is a city best explored through your taste buds – one seaside suburb at a time.

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Travel | The Guardian

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A local’s guide to Lisbon: 10 top tips

The Serbian-born writer picks the best places in his ‘beautiful, luminous’ adopted city for eating, shopping, walking or just hanging out and soaking up the views

Before I moved to Lisbon, almost a quarter of a century ago, someone told me: “From afar, it looks like a queen. But from closer you see that the old empress’s make-up is smudged and flaking, and that the ornaments fluttering in the wind are not lace, but someone’s laundry drying at the windows. But she’s still is a real beauty.”

I fell in love with Lisbon from the off. The city has since been seriously spruced up and redeveloped, but it hasn’t lost its shabby-chic glamour. It’s a very user-friendly city: not too big, not too small, safe, and not too expensive. Even today, 20 years later, it still manages to surprise me with its beauty and luminosity.

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A locals’ guide to Buenos Aires

With budget airline Norwegian launching direct flights to Buenos Aires this week, local experts show our writer around their city, and also chip in with a few tips of their own

  • Share your tips on the city in the comments below

I’m not usually one for guided tours, but with precious little time and so much to see in this enormous, fascinating city, I signed up for three with TravelLocal. My first guide, Patricia, had that gift of making history come alive: as we strolled down Avenida Corrientes (the “Broadway of BA”), she described how waves of Europeans immigrants have influenced the culture of Argentina, and its cuisine. On the way, we stopped at Pizzeria Güerrin, opened by a Genoese family in 1932 and buzzing at lunchtime with workers standing at tables wolfing down slices of pizza dripping with mozzarella (no thin crusts here – Argentinian pizzas are rated by how much bubbly white cheese the crusty base can withstand). For dessert we moved onto Heladeria Cadore, originally founded in northern Italy in the 19th century. The family moved to BA and opened the ice-cream parlour in 1957. New flavours are added all the time but the dulce de leche and lime are perennial classics.

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Travel | The Guardian

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A local’s guide to Düsseldorf, by music writer Rudi Esch

Home of electro pioneers Kraftwerk and groundbreaking artists like Andreas Gursky, the city on the Rhine is still a melting pot for art, design and music

‘Düsseldorf has a certain flair. It is completely different from Berlin or Cologne or Munich. Lots of things come from Düsseldorf. It’s quite impressive what has been exported all around the world from here since the Seventies; especially considering the size of the place.”

That’s how the late Klaus Dinger, an early member of Kraftwerk who went on to form the groups NEU! and La Düsseldorf, summed up his home town.

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A local’s guide to Sydney

Ringed by national parks and blessed with more than 100 beaches, the best bits of Sydney are outdoors, active and (mostly) free. Here’s how to enjoy it like a local

‘The best things about Sydney are free,” resident Russell Crowe has said. It is arguably the top metropolis on the planet for soaking up the scenery, but Sydneysiders don’t take these God-given gifts for granted. When they’re not out in the surf, swimming laps in an ocean pool, or sailing around the harbour, locals are barbecuing, picnicking, or finding other ways to enjoy the subtropical setting.

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Travel | The Guardian

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Legendary Locals of the Puyallup Valley

Legendary Locals of the Puyallup Valley


Migrating tribes settled along the river in the J-shaped valley lying beneath the majestic mountain known today as Mount Rainier. Tribal traders from east of the mountains called the western valley tribe “generous people,” a word that in English sounds like “Puyallup.” Pioneers found promise in clearing the land, creating the towns of Puyallup, Sumner, and Orting, and donating property for the common good. Agriculture produced hop barons, nationally renowned daffodil bulb growers, and successful berry farmers. Early entrepreneurs spawned multigenerational businesses while doctors, educators, and civic leaders more than fulfilled pioneer dreams. In 1900, a small band of men established an annual fair in Puyallup, which became the Washington State Fair. More recently, benefactors helped to build premier fitness and medical facilities. Citizens from each town continue to participate in community service clubs. Legendary Locals of the Puyallup Valley weaves a story of determined people who have left their mark on this beautiful valley.

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