Gok Wan picks his three favorite city breaks and one in the UK

WHERE IS the best place to vacation this year? For style guru Gok Wan, it’s here in the UK.

Fashionable New York tops the TV presenter’s list of best city breaks, but few places beat the energetic buzz of Manchester.

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Gok Wan says Manchester is his favorite city to visit in the UKCredit:
The presenter is also a big fan of the Danish city of Copenhagen

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The presenter is also a big fan of the Danish city of CopenhagenCredit: Shutterstock

He says: “I love the people, I love the sense of humor, I love the gay scene there – it’s vibrant and fun.”

Gok shot to fame presenting Channel 4’s How To Look Good Naked and has since traveled the world for work, styling stars such as All Saints and writing Asian-inspired cookbooks.

But the UK has some of the best scenery, attractions and restaurants, he tells me.

His usual hangout in Manchester, Cruz 101 – a roaring nightclub on Canal Street in the gay village – is one of the many places that make his favorite city so special.

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And best of all, you don’t have to spend a fortune to experience it.

Gok says, “Unlike other towns, you don’t need to move from one ward to another.

“It’s really nice to walk around Manchester.

“Go visit the northern quarter, there are great cafes and great restaurants – there are all the vintage stores there.”

There’s also the financial district of Spinningfields, home to Gok’s favorite “special occasion” restaurant, Tattu, which serves pan-Asian cuisine – “It’s pricey, but good if you’re looking to indulge.”

But for those looking to escape the UK, it’s Paris that has Gok’s heart.

Gok says Paris is a city where your dreams can come true

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Gok says Paris is a city where your dreams can come trueCredit:

And having visited the city many times over the last 30 years, he is certainly a pro for the best places to see.

He says, “It’s known for its style, but that’s not just what Paris is — it’s some of the most beautiful architecture in the world.

“It’s just one of those cities where you get lost, where your dreams come to life.”

But if you spot Gok in Paris, it won’t be in a fancy club or an expensive restaurant.

In fact, for anyone planning a trip to the fashion capital, tourist hotspots such as the Eiffel Tower and Arc de Triomphe aren’t even on their must-see list.

Instead, he suggests wandering the side alleys of unexplored areas and spending time in independent cafes among the locals.

He says: “There is this other side of Paris, away from glamour, which is simply effortlessly beautiful.

“Every morning I was there, I would get up and have a coffee at a different cafe, just to soak up the vibe and the community — I’m not talking about the places where you’re going to spend €30 (£26) on a coffee, I’m talking about where locals go for an espresso in the morning.”

Of course, the city is renowned for its shopping, and according to fashion icon Gok, the best place to do so is the lively St Germain district in the city center, near the river.

He says, “It’s not just about what happens after dark. In the daytime there are the most beautiful shops there.”

This region is also home to the famous restaurant Les Deux Magots, which offers all the classics, from snails and foie gras to local cheeses.

Gok says he has visited the city of Copenhagen several times

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Gok says he has visited the city of Copenhagen several timesCredit:

A RELAXED ATMOSPHERE

Gok says, “I’ve been going there for years and I’m obsessed with it. People go there to smoke a cigarette and drink a brandy outside and sit down.

Although Japan is the big destination on Gok’s wish list, for anyone looking for somewhere a little different but still close to home, he recommends Copenhagen for its relaxed atmosphere and “shopping for all budgets”.

He says, “It’s such a bustling city. You have these amazing canals running through it and then you also have Tivoli Gardens right in the center which provides a moment of tranquility.

“But don’t always think you have to jump on a plane.

“We live in this amazing country with amazing museums, art spaces, galleries and shopping.

“Some of my best vacations have been in this country.”

  • CATCH Gok’s Style In The City this morning every Wednesday at 10am from September 7 on ITV. To vote for This Morning in the National TV Awards, go to nationaltvawards.com.

Gok’s three-step guide to traveling light

ONLY reserved hand luggage? Follow Gok’s three-step guide to traveling light. . .

  1. Shop your own closet. Pull out items that you feel attractive or comfortable in and set them aside.
  2. Hang these objects on the back of a door or against a wall and determine which parts are interchangeable. Ask yourself if a top goes with another skirt or another pair of sneakers.
  3. Take a photo of each look and save it to a vacation album on your phone. This means you won’t be overwhelmed. Once on vacation, you can use this scrapbook to decide what to wear that day.
Gok says he likes the relaxed atmosphere of Copenhagen

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Gok says he likes the relaxed atmosphere of Copenhagen1 credit

About James K. Bonnette

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