Where to go in April 2019?

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Where to go in April 2019?

Enjoy the month of April and visit several destinations that are just perfect at this time of year. From Morocco to Vietnam, from Washington to Osaka, your springtime journey promises to be unforgettable.

Where to go in April 2019?

Between land and sea in Casablanca

Springtime in Morocco is delightful. In Casablanca, the thermometers hover around an average temperature of 25°C – the perfect conditions for visiting this mythical white city. For a truly authentic experience, book into one of the blue-shuttered rooms at the Hôtel Central, right in the heart of the medina. Once you have rested, make your way to the coast road overlooking the Atlantic Ocean. A wild seascape stretches ahead of you for several kilometres. Stop off at La Sqala and try a traditional chicken tagine. For more surprising flavours, why not go to Le Cabestan, a favourite hangout for locals and lively both day and night. This restaurant offers tuna tataki with black truffle or perhaps a swordfish carpaccio marinated in citrus juice.

While Casablanca is bursting with meeting places and cultural venues with a myriad of restaurants, art galleries and other lounge bars, its ocean coast effortlessly lends itself to boardsports such as surfing or bodyboarding. On the city's beaches, for example Ain Diab, thrilling watersport sensations await. Never done it before? This place has no shortage of schools offering classes and courses; Casa Surfhouse is one to look out for.

Hôtel Central Casablanca
20 place Ahmad El Bidaoui
20300 Casablanca
Morocco
+212 522 26 25 25
www.hotelcentralcasa.com/en/

La Sqala
Boulevard des Almohades
20250 Casablanca
Morocco
+212 5222-60960
www.restopro.ma/sqala/

Le Cabestan
Phare d'El Hank
90 boulevard de la Corniche
20000 Casablanca
Morocco
+212 522 39 11 90
www.le-cabestan.com

Casa Surfhouse
Boulevard de l'Océan Atlantique
20052 Casablanca
Morocco
+212 662 10 04 36
www.casasurfhouse.ma/

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Where to go in April 2019?

Osaka and its blooming gardens of cherry blossom

The start of April coincides with one of the most beautiful spectacles of nature you will ever see: flowering cherry blossom or sakura. In Osaka, these famous flowering trees are everywhere and it is really worth stopping off for a one-of-a-kind break. To marvel at this springtime phenomenon, head to the gardens of the Mint Museum where a multitude of cherry trees are in full bloom.

Make the most of your stay in this fascinating city and stroll around its futuristic architecture and secular buildings. If you are a history buff, you will enjoy exploring the ten floors of the History Museum which tells the story of this city. From the top floor, you can see Osaka Castle and its park, and decide to make this your next stop. An urban oasis stretching over 100 hectares, this green haven is home to a vast orchard of plum trees and hundreds of cherry trees.

Not far from there, you stop off for the gourmet delights of Miumiu, the place to go for sukiyaki udon, a dish shared with friends made from traditional thick noodles, beef and raw vegetables in a typical sweet sauce. At the end of the day, you will be delighted to head back to your room at The Flag Hotel with its signature elegant minimalism, located in Namba, a lively district in the south of Osaka.

Osaka Castle
1-1 Osakajo
540-0002 Osaka
Japan
+81 (0)6 6941 3044
www.osakacastle.net/english

Mint Museum
1-1-79 Tenma
530-0043 Osaka
Japan
+ 81 (0)6 6351 8509
www.mint.go.jp/category/eng

Mimiu Honten
4-6-18 Hiranomachi
541-0046 Osaka
Japan
+81 (0)6 6231 5770
www.mimiu.co.jp/en/

Hotel The Flag Shinsaibashi
1 Chome-18-30
542-0083 Osaka
Japan
+81 (0)6 6121 8111
en.hoteltheflag.jp/

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Where to go in April 2019?

Blooming blossom in the heart of Washington

At the start of April, the area around the Washington Monument is a fairy-tale vista of white flowers. The capital of the USA also has its own sakura and even hosts a special event in its honour, the National Cherry Blossom Festival, commemorating Japanese culture. In one of the most iconic places in Washington, hundreds of cherry trees have been growing since 1912, the year that Japan gave them as a gift to the United States. This year, the festival draws to an end on 13 April with a huge parade combining a host of artistic performances, including bands, dancers and gigantic balloons.

Make the most of your stay and discover this symbolic city which is so much more than the country's political heartland. Are you travelling with the kids in tow? Then they will love the International Spy Museum, which opened its doors in 2002. Archive films, the stories of retired spies, gadgets of all kinds… there is plenty to fire their imagination!

Washington is also a trendy, vibrant capital. You make your home for a while at the Monaco boutique hotel whose main building is designated a National Historic Landmark. Its neoclassical style marrying luxury and charm is guaranteed to win you over. If you fancy a drink, head to Georgetown, a new up-and-coming neighbourhood. The Sovereign bistro, with its Flemish roots, offers an extensive selection of Belgian beers as well as delicious bowls of perfectly seasoned mussels.

Washington National Monument
2 15th Street NW
Washington DC 20560
United States of America
www.nps.gov

International Spy Museum
800 F St NW
Washington DC 20004
United States of America
+1 202 393 7798
www.spymuseum.org

Kimpton Hotel Monaco
700 F St NW
Washington DC 20004
United States of America
+1 202 628 7177
www.monaco-dc.com/

The Sovereign
1206 Wisconsin Avenue NW
Washington DC 20007
United States of America
+1 202 774 5875
thesovereigndc.com/

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Where to go in April 2019?

Hanoi – strolling through stunning scenery

April, between the dry season and rainy season, is a particularly good month to visit eclectic Hanoi. The capital of Vietnam is a melting pot of legendary, colonial and popular history, and embarking on your exploration requires all your senses to be on full alert.

You are staying at the Essence Palace Hotel, perfectly situated in one of the must-visit ‘36 Streets' which make up the historic heart of the city. Time stands still as you pass through the imposing doors of the hotel. From your room's large terrace, you can gaze out over the urban hustle and bustle below, with the volume turned down low. When you wake up, give in to temptation and try a coffee… with egg. The combination may sound a bit strange, but it is smooth and exquisitely sweet.

But if you want to get to know the real Hanoi, it is time to go and lose yourself in the hurly-burly of the old town's streets, with honking horns, stalls of all kinds and open-air kitchens. After this intoxicating walk, you will come to the Temple of Literature which has been honouring the teachings of Confucius since it was founded in 1073. The temple was built around five inter-linking courtyards, each celebrating their own history, and the place exudes a deep sense of peace.

If your travels have made you hungry, you will be ready for a break at Cha Ca La Vong. There is no menu there, just one dish, whose recipe has been passed down from generation to generation, cha ca. These are filets of lang, a local fish with firm, tasty flesh, or monkfish, marinated in saffron and grilled over charcoal. The dish is served with thin noodles, peanuts and handfuls of aromatic herbs.

In addition, spring is a particularly good time to explore the mythical Ha Long Bay. Leaving Hanoi, head to the main town on the coast. There, you can step onto a colourful junk boat and discover the green sculptured rocks rising out of the clear emerald waters.

Essence Palace Hotel
27/29 Gia Ngu
Hian Kiem District
10000 Hanoi
Vietnam
+84 (4) 39 26 21 35
essencepalacehotel.com/

Cha Ca La Vong
14 Cha Ca
Hoan Kiem District
10000 Hanoi
Vietnam
+84 24 38 25 39 29
facebook.com/Chacalavong.vn/

Temple of Literature
Quoc Tu Giam Street
Dong Da District
10000 Hanoi
Vietnam
+84 (0)4 35 11 48 55
vanmieu.gov.vn/en