prague_uk

A totally overlooked Art Nouveau masterpiece, secrets of the castle alchemists, the message in the hidden palindrome on Charles Bridge, the Kabbalistic mysteries of the Jewish ghetto, a thief’s shrivelled forearm hanging in a church, a statue revealing its intestines, the largest wind tunnel in the Czech Republic, a fragment of the Great Pyramid of Cheops in a pet cemetery, a clock that runs backwards, a house/museum painted blue to meet the needs of the partially blind musician owner ...

Unmissable for lovers of architecture, from Baroque to Art Nouveau via Cubism, and the European capital of alchemy and esotericism in the 17th century, Prague offers a myriad of little-known marvels.

Martin Stejskal, historian, philosopher, artist and internationally recognised specialist on the city where he has spent his life, opens the doors to one of the most secret and captivating capitals in the world.

An indispensable guide for those who thought they knew Prague well, or who would like to discover the hidden face of the city.

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dublin_uk

Discover the inner sanctum of Freemason’s Hall, see Napoleon’s toothbrush, marvel at a hoax plaque hidden in plain sight on O’Connell Bridge, try George IV’s footprints for size, venture into a Georgian time capsule on Henrietta Street, cross the bridge beneath which William Rowan Hamilton had his ‘Eureka’ moment, explore a ‘museum’ flat preserved exactly as it was almost 100 years ago, tune into the world of vintage radio in a Martello Tower, spot Dublin’s subterranean river, or post your thoughts in a mystery letterbox.

Dublin offers endless opportunities for getting off the tourist grid - for peering into the city’s fascinating past and present. All you need to know is where to look… and who to ask for. Secret Dublin - An Unusual Guide is an indispensable resource for those who thought they knew everything about the city, or who want to discover its hidden treasures.

Skip the crowds and clichés, and really get beneath the city’s skin…

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Chernobyl-en-BD

On 26 April 1986, reactor number 4 at the Chernobyl Nuclear Power Plant exploded. The accident released at least 100 times more radiation than the bombs dropped on Nagasaki and Hiroshima in Japan, and is considered to be the worst nuclear accident in the history of humanity. It is classified as a level 7 incident, the highest level on the International Nuclear Event Scale. The only other incident to be categorized at this level is the Fukushima Daiichi nuclear disaster of 2011.

In the days, months and years that followed, over half a million civilians and military personnel (“liquidators”) were involved in the decontamination process to avert a potential second catastrophe.

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Forbidden_places eng

Head off to explore the filming location of 12 Monkeys, Michael Jackson’s hometown turned ghost town, Berlin’s 1936 Olympic Village, deconsecrated churches, forgotten castles, deserted train stations, prisons and mental asylums, a cemetery of rusted locomotives, abandoned steel factories, phantom metro stations, and more.
For 10 years, Sylvain Margaine has traveled the world in search of these forbidden and forgotten places.
An exceptional photographic report.

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Private Island en

Around the world, the owners of private islands have chosen to rent out their properties, delightfully fulfilling many childhood fantasies in the process. After seven years of research we have compiled a list of thirty exceptional islands, each of which is well worth the trip for just a few days, a week or even longer.

Whether a tropical island in the Pacific, Asia, South America, the Caribbean, or the Indian Ocean, a lighthouse on the coast of Croatia, Norway or France, or an island in a lake in Canada or the United States, these places are not just the incarnation of a multimillionaire’s dream.

They are open to the public – they are open for you.

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amsterdam UK

Discover the historic location of Rembrandt's famous "Night Watch", the origin of the invention of cognac; homage to prostitutes; decypher facade stones; make love quite legally in the open air; visit magnificent interior courtyards; ski in the heart of the town, or become an adept of "boat-in" - the Amsterdam version of « drive-in » - and eat a pizza in your own boat.
Away from the crowds and the stereotypes, Amsterdam still keeps her treasures so well hidden that they only reveal themselves to the inhabitants and to travellers who know how to wander off the beaten track.
An indispensable guide for those who think they know the Netherlands capital well or for those who want to discover the other face of the town.

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barcelone-en

The secrets of Gaudí and the Sagrada Família, a taxi-ride in the nude, a fantastic model railway network below the central station, a mysterious hand, an extraordinary dissection hall, an unsuspected anti-aircraft shelter, a deadly kiss, a museum in the back shop, some very special toilets, romance in love hotels or helicopters, ants and scorpions on the menu…
Night and day, Barcelona only reveals its secrets to those residents and visitors who know how to stray off the beaten track. But you have to know where to look…
An indispensable guide for those who thought they knew Barcelona well, or who would like to discover the hidden face of the city.

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bars-UK

Dine in the home of a perfect stranger, enjoy your meal on an extraordinary, little-known terrace looking out on the Parc de Monceau, eat lunch at a restaurant that’s totally invisible from the street, have a drink at a bar next to a man taking a shower in a glass box, join a band of artistic squatters for an afternoon barbecue, visit a Royalist bar, catch up with a moveable feast, get unbeatable value for money at a hostelry school, and experience numerous other timeless venues and atmospheres….
Beyond the traditional Parisian restaurant, the French capital is full of wonderful unusual places.

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BXL_v3_uk

A “love hotel” where you can say a prayer, a reconstituted section of the Senne river at Saint-Géry, an extraordinary private museum devoted to plastic, a farm with sheep, goats, and turkeys at place de l’Yser, Masonic secrets in the Parc de Bruxelles, a hotel overlooking the Grand-Place, a surrealistic trip in a lift, a homage to the military pigeon, potholing at Koekelberg basilica, a swimming pool with a panoramic view of the city, a scandalous pavilion in the Parc du Cinquantenaire, an immense vegetable garden at Uccle, an 19th century artist’s studio at Schaerbeek, a camping ground in the heart of the Belgian capital, a forgotten garden-city at Forest...

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Florence UK

Visit a church in a prison, learn how Florence became the centre of hermetism during the Renaissance and where you can still find traces of it today, escape from the crowds of tourists to visit little-known artistic masterpieces, head off to hunt for the 34 plaques displaying quotes from the “Divine Comedy”, fill up your tank at a vintage service station, have your children count the number of bees sculpted on the monument to the glory of Ferdinand I, look for the last wine distributors of the Renaissance, notice the minuscule windows designed to let children look out quietly onto the street, visit superb private gardens that even the Florentines don’t know about, learn how the purple colour of the Fiorentina football team is connected to the pee of a Florentine crusader in Palestine . . .
Far from the crowds and usual clichés, Florence holds many well-hidden treasures that are revealed only to the city’s inhabitants or travellers who know how to step off the beaten track. An essential guide for those who think they know Florence well or for those looking to discover the hidden side of the city.

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cotedazur-en

A game of pétanque played with square boules, an astonishing aerial well, stained-plastic windows, a marble bench built in memory of the Queen of England’s haemophiliac son, the instruments of the Passion of Christ, a cannon that fires cherry stones, a good-luck pig, a mysterious pyramid, a monument to secret agents, an entire village that “moved house”, a gas mask for horses, a statue sculpted by Saint Luke, a chapel showing the dead rising from their tombs, a trapdoor in the nave of a church that opens onto a rushing torrent, a restaurant in an Orient Express railway car, Babar’s beach, Tintin’s Black Island, and Sleeping Beauty’s chateau, a chance to admire the Riviera’s first pair of naked breasts, or spend the night sleeping in a tree ...
The French Riviera is not limited to the clichés of its beaches, private yachts, and luxury hotels.
For those who know how to leave behind the beaten paths, the Riviera is full of surprising details and curious sights. It will even amaze its inhabitants as well as visitors who think they know it well.

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geneve-UK HD

Head off to discover hidden tunnels and a bomb shelter beneath the Old City, follow a secret passage open once a year, admire the cathedral’s Orpheus capital, pray at Calvin’s fake grave, look for the plaque that compares the pope with the Antichrist, visit the secret gardens of the Carouge district, discover why the national monument represents two Savoyard women, learn where Frankenstein was created, sleep in Professor Calculus’ room, and more.
Far from the crowds and clichés, Geneva holds well-hidden treasures that are only revealed to residents and travelers who know how to wander off the beaten track. An indispensable guide for those who think they know Geneva well or who want to discover the hidden side of the city.

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secret-lisbon-UKWhy is the Portuguese coat of arms set at an angle of 17° on the façade of Rossio station? Where in Portugal was The Magic Flute played for the first time and why did Mozart dedicate it to his master Cagliostro? What is the theory concerning the fifth dynasty of Portugal, traces of which are found in the street layout? Where can you find the most beautiful azulejos secreted around the city? Why and how did Lusitania become Portugal (Porto Graal), the place harbouring the legendary Holy Grail? Where can you find the Lisboan serial killer’s head preserved in formalin? Why was the south doorway of the Jerónimos Monastery designed according to Hebrew Kabbalistic principles? What symbols are concealed within the Saint Vincent polytych at the Museum of Antique Arts? Who in fact are the Sebastianists, messianic in the style of Shiite Muslims, awaiting the return of the lost King Sebastian?

Since the Middle Ages, Lisbon has been a favourite site for the development and application of the theories of alchemist kings, masonic ministers, occult poets, followers of hermeticism and the secret knowledge of the Knights Templar, who found refuge in Portugal after they were banned from the rest of Europe in the 14th century. 

Vitor Manuel Adrião, acclaimed historian and philosopher, is heir to all this esoteric knowledge in Portugal. Here for the first time he reveals his incredible knowledge in this truly initiatory guide, with a mind-boggling interpretation of the arcana of a city which some consider is on the way to becoming the spiritual capital of Europe.

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londres uk hd

Mingle with the most impressive handlebar moustaches in the country, pay your respects at the dog cemetery in Hyde Park, visit a masonic temple, take trapeze lessons in a former power station, pray in a floating church, sail on a disused reservoir, discover the stone from which Arthur dreaw Excalibur, admire the sacred penis of a pharaoh, have a game on the City’s last bowling green, examine a cucumber straightener, a stuffed mermaid or a cow’s heart, go stargazing at Greenwich Observatory …
Far from the crowds and the usual clichés, London still reserves any number of hidden treasures for those who know how to wander off the beaten track.
An indispensable guide for those who thought they knew London well, or who would like to discover the hidden face of the city.

"Secret London" received the 1st prize among 300 competitors in the travel guides category at the International Book Fair of Prague

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LondonBarsUK

Discover a secret club frozen in time since 1946, press the champagne button to summon the bubbly trolley to your booth, read the infamous list of house rules of a members' club hidden behind a door with no sign outside, join a louche club in the original dressing and rehearsal rooms of a theatre, sweet-talk your way into a secret bar frequented by the Pogues and John Lydon, find a guide who’ll squeeze you into an intriguing slice of Soho history that's only accessible from a door behind the bar, meet the members of the glorious Handlebar Moustache Club at their pub, go for serious food at knock-down prices in cookery schools, travel back to the heyday of the USSR in a hidden Polish gem of a restaurant, seek out a bar in a converted subterranean public convenience built for the 1908 Olympic Games, eat curry for free in a Sikh temple, frighten yourself in a haunted bar that contains an ancient stone marking the dead centre of the City, go to the oldest surviving Grand Music Hall in the world, have lunch in secret gardens…
100 places with amazing decor, eccentric owners, bizarre food, old-time survivors and more that will please and astonish underground and post-industrial fans, refined gourmets and cocktail drinkers, world food lovers and anyone curious enough to discover the infinite possibilities to have fun in London.
An absolute must-have to finally enjoy the amazing hidden London bar/restaurant/pub/club scene.

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Madrid_UK

Have your favourite pet blessed, visit an underground mine in the centre of Madrid, see the astounding liquefaction of the blood of Saint Pantaleon once a year, meet Spain’s only Catholic exorcist, find out how the king had his medicine made using alchemy, smell the apple odour that wafts once a year from the still-intact body of Mariana de Jesús who died in the 17th century, visit an underground art gallery, dine in a car park...
Madrid is overflowing with extraordinary and little-known places and curiosities. You just have to know where to look...
An essential guide for those who think they know Madrid well or for those looking to discover the hidden side of the city.

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Milan-uk

Discover a canal lock designed by Leonardo da Vinci as well as the secrets of his Last Supper, find out where Mussolini’s hidden bunker lies, marry beneath frescoes by Tiepolo, visit artists’ houses usually closed to the public, see exceptional private collections, admire the sculpture of a young girl shaving her pudenda, look for the boxers carved on the roof terraces of the cathedral, and so much more.
Far from the crowds and the usual clichés, Milan goes unrecognised as one of the Italian cities with the greatest cultural heritage.
Yet it only reveals its hidden treasures to residents and visitors who venture off the beaten track.
An indispensable guide for those who thought they knew Milan well or for those wishing to discover another facet of the city.

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montreal-uk

A giant crane in a supermarket, a portrait of Mussolini in Little Italy, Canada's only Coadaist temple, a monument to the world's strongest man, wrestling in a church, surfing on the Saint Lawrence River, a giant milk bottle, a gas station built by famous architect Mies van der Rohe... and much more.
Far from the crowds and the usual clichés, Montreal only reveals its hidden treasures to residents and visitors who venture off the beaten track.
An indispensable guide for those who thought they knew Montreal well or those wishing to discover another facet of the city.

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New York-uk

Discover secret gardens, decipher ancient riddles on tombstones, visit a disturbed Indian burial ground, observe the stars and planets through a university telescope, frown at a bronze statue of Lenin, harvest mastodon food in Central Park, enjoy the aroma of a roomful of dirt, find a Venetian palazzo above a former stable, spot the forbidden island that was once declared a sovereign nation by a guy in a rowboat, track down a townhouse concealing a subway tunnel, walk under the canopy of a primeval forest, read a memorial plaque to an event that happened in another dimension, fall into a trance before a piece of subway art that flickers and moves, have your bicycle blessed in church.
New York offers endless opportunity to step off the program and peer into the city’s fascinating past and present. Secret New York is an indispensable resource for those who thought they already knew everything about America’s metropolis, or want to begin exploring its hidden places.

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paris-en-V2

A priest who blesses animals, wine-producing firemen, a tree in a church, an inverted phallus at a famous entrance, an atomic bomb shelter under the Gare de l’Est, a real Breton lighthouse near Montparnasse, unsuspected traces of former brothels, a patron saint of motorists, royal monograms hidden in the Louvre courtyard, the presentation of Christ’s crown of thorns, a prehistoric merry-go-round, a sundial designed by Dalí, war-wounded palm trees, bullet holes at the ministry, biblical plants in a priest’s garden, a mysterious monument to freemasonry at the Champ-de-Mars, a solid gold sphere in parliament, a Chinese temple in a parking lot, the effect of the Bièvre river on Parisian geography, a blockhouse in the Bois de Boulogne …
For those who thought they know Paris well, the city is still teeming with unusual and secret places that are easily accessible.

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