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Cornwall

Cornwall is beautiful, still wild and full of picturesque walks. It's famous for its dramatic views, charming fishing villages, abundant plants and mild climate (they even have palm trees!) - which makes it a perfect place for autumn or spring getaway. But, most importantly, Cornwall is delicious! Think fresh seafood: crab, lobster, oysters and all, beautifully paired with local, traditional specialites.

Don't miss:

1. cream tea: a traditional afternoon treat comprised of a pot of hot tea, freshly baked scones, homemade jam and clotted cream - local specialty, thick and so fat that it would be classified as butter in the US. The tradition derives from Cornwall and/or Devon and the two counties have contradictory opinions on whether one should top a scone with jam first and follow with clotted cream (Cornwall) or start with cream and put jam second (Devon). Feel free to try both options. I personally think that it actually depends on the thickness of jam.

It won't be challenging to find cream tea, but I liked it best on a meadow with a spectacular sea view at Boscastle Farm Shop, close to a lovely fishing village of Boscastle. They also offer a vast selection of local produce: fruit and vegetables, meat, cheese, preserves, beers and ciders.

2. mussels at The Ferry Boat Inn, a charming pub in a just-as-charming fishing village by the Helford River. It's a bit tricky to get there and even trickier to park, but waterfront tables and mouth-watering selection of seafood will make it up to you (especially if you're not the one driving).

3. pasties: baked shortbread pastry filled with beef and vegetables or lamb and mint. They're everywhere, but I highly recommend Pengenna Pasties. They have three locations, in St. Ives, Tintagel and Bude. You'll find a queue in front of each shop and delicious, filling pasties inside.

4. fresh lobster, oysters or a crab sandwich at Fresh from the Sea in Port Isaac. It's a pleasant little restaurant where you can also buy fresh fish. They have their own fishing boat, so the name is not even slightly exaggerated. They will serve you the daily catch and it will be absolutely scrumptious.

Douro Valley

Douro Valley is at its best off season - I went there last October and would definitely recommend this place for a fall trip. Get ready for postcard-pretty vineyards (famous for they ports, but pretty skilful when it comes to other wines as well), delicious food and picturesque views. Stay in one of the charming vineyards and spend your days on walks in the vines, scenic drives along the river and picnics on the hills.

Moroccan road trip

It was a pleasure to discover that Marocco is so much more than narrow streets of ancient cities and endless dunes of the desert. What I loved most, was the in-between: sleepy villages in the Atlas Mountains, biblical landscapes, parking lots for donkeys, palm orchards and breathtaking mountain views. My plan is to come back for a few weeks and travel on a donkey!

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