My happy place: readers' travel tips

Nigel Goddard Paul Wilson Julie Speed My happy place is Shell Bay in Dorset. This place that we visited perhaps only once a year with its empty expanses of beach, backdrop of sand dunes, crystal clear sea with yachts in the distance, is magical in my memory. Liz Tucked away in the curve of the Pagasitic Gulf on the Greek mainland lies the port town of Volos where my husband and I lived and married 20 years ago and from where, according to myth, Jason and his Argonauts set sail. Here, under the shade of an enormous planetree, you can stare across the Aegean to the Sporades beyond and then, if it’s the weekend, take the narrow-gauge railway train called Old Sooty back down through the mountain to Volosafterthree too many ouzos. Jo Our happy place is the bar in a small village, Mons La Trivalle, in Haut-Languedoc, southern France. Travelling there, through vineyards, cicadas in the background, and the Caroux mountains rearing up as we reach our destination, fills us with joy. There’s the table we will sitat, exchanging greetings with the owner and locals, drinking rosé or pastis, coffee on market days or lunch on Sundays, watching the world go by. Tessa Bucknell Translating as Kissing Steps, this city-centre space epitomises Copenhagen’s inspired approach to urban design. It’s a deceptively simple layout of wide wooden steps leading down to the cleaned-up harbour, surrounded by containers which open into bars and a stage. Sipping cocktails, listening to low-key DJ sets and egging each other on to jump into the harbour remains one of my favourite family holiday memories of recent years. Nick Arriving once more at the tiny bar at top of the walled village of Allerona, close to Orvieto, ordering the first drink and sitting at an outside rickety table is to know pure happiness. Few tourists make it here and, in winter, cold will permeate the stones but in my mind, arriving with endless blue skies, it’s perfection. Lin Leftley I often revisit memories of lazy days at Da Adolfo – a mid-price beach restaurant a short hop from Positano main dock (look for the boat with the red fish sign). Da Adolfo is a local institution, its reputation earned not only for the seafood and homemade pasta but for the bubbling atmosphere. A five-hour canoe ride leaves you entirely cut off from the rest of the world, and the welcoming people of the fishing villages will give you a glimpse of their daily lives. Kevin Perry Last year for Vesak Day (the Buddhist national holiday) I finally hiked up Mount Bromo in East Java, Indonesia. The sound and sight of endless rollers coming in off the ocean, the salty breeze, the bald eagles, the camp fires and starry nights, the purity and isolationsharedwith friends ... although I live far away, that place will always be my spiritual home.