Need a hygge? Try Copenhagen for a happiness fix

With its startling architecture and world class food the Danish capital is all about enjoying the good life … at a price. Our writer is also struck by the story behind a statue – and it’s not of a mermaid

From friendly locals to Harry Potter’s house: a brief guide to Lavenham

The Suffolk town’s beauty apparently saved Andrew Lloyd Webber from thoughts of suicide. What makes it so special?

10 of the best eccentric attractions in Europe: readers’ travel tips

Weird wonders, including a prowl around Amsterdam’s cat museum, a truly deep Transylvanian theme park and ‘Stalin’s World’ in Lithuania, have made readers embrace the quirky.

Julian Worker has written a number of travel books including

Travels through History : France

Travels through History – The Balkans: Journeys in the former Yugoslavia

Travels through History – Northern Ireland and Scotland

From Georgia to Grimsby: campaign seeks to save Europe’s neglected heritage sites

An initiative led by Europa Nostra has shortlisted at-risk cultural landmarks and aims protect seven of the most endangered

Julian Worker has written a number of travel books including

Travels through History : France

Travels through History – The Balkans: Journeys in the former Yugoslavia

Travels through History – Northern Ireland and Scotland

Kraków’s Lenin Steelworks: a rare view of a socialist realist gem

The interior of the plant in Kraków’s utopian socialist new town is preserved in all its 1950s glory, a fascinating window on Soviet-era design

Beaghmore Stone Circles

Excerpt from the book Travels through History : Northern Ireland and Scotland  Belfast and the Causeway Coast has been rated best region in the world to visit in 2018 by Lonely Planet. In September 2017, Scotland was voted the most beautiful country in the world by a respected travel company, Rough Guides

Taking the A505 westwards from Cookstown in County Tyrone, I found my right-hand turning to the Beaghmore Stone Circles after about 15 minutes. Having just visited the Giant’s Causeway, I was expecting to be one of many visitors to these Bronze Age relics. The drive through the countryside afforded wonderful views of the Sperrin Mountains, though I had to be careful as the road was narrow in places. After about four miles, I saw the sign pointing into a field. There were two other cars. The sun was out and the wind was blowing from the south-east. According to the information board, this area had Northern Ireland’s darkest sky, meaning there was little light pollution here, even in this modern age of 24-hour street lighting, car headlights, and planes flying overhead.

In a way, the fact about the darkest sky might have applied whenever the Beaghmore Stone Circles were created. For anyone expecting a Stonehenge-size spectacle, please read your guidebooks before you travel. Beaghmore has hundreds of stones, arranged in 7 circles, 10 rows, and a dozen cairns, but none of them are more than three feet in height.

The stone circles are in pairs, apart from one, which is filled with over 800 small, upright stones. This individual circle is known as the Dragon’s Teeth and is thought to represent a comet. The alignments of the circles correlate to movements of the heavenly bodies and three of the rows point to sunrise at the summer solstice.

Making light work: grand designs at Bodø’s Stormen library and cultural centre

This Norwegian town, hastily rebuilt after second world war bombing, now has a vibrant and innovative arts centre in pride of place on its waterfront