Journeygirl's Favs

Below are places I have stayed, eaten, shopped, or visited that I'm willing to recommend. They are my top picks for places I've visited while living in Europe from 2010 to present, and I add to them all the time. It is organized by cities, listed alphabetically. Other countries are listed, alphabetically, below Italian cities. Web links are included when available. I am not including a list of sites to visit as I encourage you to read the articles on the main blog for site descriptions and form your own list of sites you want to see and visit! All posts are labeled, so you can search the blog for the city you are visiting, and if I've been there, the postings should pop up.

Hotel: Trulli e Puglia B&B (individual trulli homes for rent, owner Mimmo is incredibly welcoming and helpful, and his energy is infectious; pets allowed, a huge plus for us!)
Eating: (1) Casanova (fantastic - we ordered the mixed antipasti for two and ate for almost two hours on it); (2) La Foggia (Via Gigante Don Francesco, 2; hands down the best, freshest pasta I've eaten in Italy, but Nathan wasn't crazy about his food, so order carefully)
Shopping: Enoteca Tholos (Via Monte San Michele, 23; lots of shops sell wine and liqueurs - Signora Tholos was our favorite, her liqueurs are unbelievable and she'll give you a tasting to see what you like best)

Hotel: Il Giardino dell'arte (love it, love it, love it - quiet hotel  in quiet Anacapri, a 10-15 minute walk to the shopping section of Anacapri and/or bus stop to Capri town, but walk is beautiful among the residential section of town; great little gem); Monte Solaro B&B - fantastic views and stay in Anacapri, up a steep walk but hotel has a shuttle and is very close to downtown Anacapri; a fav
Eating: Ristorante Le Arcate in Anacapri (on the main road in and out of town; a good restaurant with fair prices - we ate here twice on our two day trip); 
Shopping: Corallium (Via Orlando 163, Anacapri - beautiful jewelry and good values)

Hotel: Relais Cavalcanti (near Uffizi, spotless, pretty, great hosts; bed was a little hard for my taste, but this is common in Italy and the pluses for the hotel more than made up for it)
Eating: (1) I Quattri Leoni (Oltrarno neighborhood); (2) Moyo (for cocktails, can make dinner out of the free appies);(3) 'Ino (fantastic sandwich & wine lunch place near the Uffizi)
Shopping: (1) San Lorenzo Market (leather, silk ties); (2) Farmacia di Santa Maria Novella; (3) Le Pietre nell'Arte (this is for the big spenders - amazing, detailed "paintings" made out of marble, just stunning); (4) Pitti Vintage (great place for vintage clothes or shoes, Borgo degli Albizi, 72r); Isor di Rosi Patrizia (beautiful, handmade boxes in all shapes), Via Lambertesca 11,13r

Hotel: Villa degli Dei (Nocelle; one of my favorite hotels and getaway villages; very, very small town - go to this hotel to walk the Path of the Gods and sit on a balcony overlooking the sea - bring your own breakfast)
Eating: Art Cafe (Positano, a fun option for a light lunch, couldn't find a link to it, but with town to your back and sea in front of you, the cafe is to your right on the corner, past all the fancier lunch joints)

Hotel: (1) MDM Luxury Guesthouse (despite sounding like a brothel, this hotel is very nice; rooms are clean and beautiful, but very, very small - euro style; located one block from Metro and two from Vatican); (2) Hotel Daphne (just off Piazza Barberini and in a perfect central location, near to Metro and easy walk to all of central Rome; I did not stay here, but friends with whom I traveled to Rome did, based on high recommendation from friends of theirs - I'm including it here due to the sheer helpfulness and attentiveness of the staff which I witnessed personally and the great location)
Eating:  Armando (by the Pantheon; reservations a must, closed Saturday nights and Sundays)

Hotel: Il Chiostro del Carmine (beautiful, clean, comfortable, 10 minute walk to Il Campo); Fullino Nero agriturismo (despite our landlady's problem with the dog even though dogs are allowed and we'd notified her at the time of booking, plus lots of tension for us on the issue, I still loved this hotel - beautiful apartment and views)
Eating: Boccon del Prete (Via di San Pietro 17; great for lunch or dinner)
Shopping: Siena's Market day is Wednesday, and the market is located just off of the piazza that is the central bus drop-off, Piazza Gramsci

Hotel: Palazzo Guardi (near Accademia Vaporetto stop, clean, beautiful, great location)
Eating: (1) Beccafico (on Campo San Stefano near Accademia bridge; we liked this place so much we ate dinner here twice; the house cocktail is a must try); (2) Ancora (in the piazza over Rialto Bridge; has a nice cichetti spread or alternatively, a lovely and intimate dining area upstairs with great food - this was K's fav)
Shopping: (1) Paolo Olbi, paper (San Marco 3653; my fav paper store among what seemed to be hundreds); (2) Ebru, paper (K's fav, so I want to include it); (3) Rugadoro, masks (Ruga Rialto 1062, San Polo; very unique, patchwork fabric covered); (4) Venetian Dreams, jewelry (Calle della Mandola 3805, San Marco; sells individual beads as well; jewelry is not the huge, statement necklaces you'll see elsewhere - it's just pretty earrings, brooches and necklaces made by hand); (5) Pied a Terre, shoes (near Rialto, odd looking, handmade shoes with a rich, Venetian history and now worn by gondoliers - interesting and unique; the store will also have shoes made for you out of your own fabric)

Kilkenny: Dunromin B&B (nicest owner and comfortable, pretty room, but located about a 15 minute walk outside of town) and ate at Bollard's Pub (good, hearty food, and fantastic pub music in a relaxed setting)
Kinsale: Cloisters B&B (room was beautiful, clean, and modern, great breakfast options, great location right near main part of town), ate at White House (delicious food, lovely decor)
Kenmare: Abbey Court B&B (comfy rooms and in a nice setting on the river, but walk is a bit long into town - 20 minutes or so, only 2 minutes if you want to drive it), pub was Coachman's and it was our favorite pub experience of the trip
Dingle: Coastline Guesthouse (room had pretty bay view, great shower, and good breakfast - about a 10 minute walk into town), ate at Goat Street Cafe (best food of the trip) and went to Benny's Pub, very nice
Galway: We stayed at 7 Cross Street, a boutique hotel (gorgeous room, but very, very loud - pub across the street has a late license, so we were kept awake by heavy noise until almost 3am, then beer keg deliveries began about 6am), no remarkable pub experience for us
Dublin: We stayed at Westbury Hotel (fantastic, beautiful, loved it, loved it, loved it), dinner at Brasserie 66 (fabulous) and another night at the Cedar Tree (Lebanese and delicious), pubs were fine, best was Farrington's, where there was an accordion player who really loves his craft - watching him was more fun than listening.