Now, the most important thing at Pavlova recipe is to get the egg whites mixture right - so we'll focus on this with the tricks:
First and most important thing to look after is cracking the eggs and separate the yolks and whites to perfection - if the smallest amount of yolk get in the whites then the whites won't whip properly and the chances to get a glorious Pavlova diminishes drastically. It is a good idea to use a small, intermediary bowl for egg white separation: crack and separate each egg white in the small bowl, and only if the white is perfectly clean transfer it in the main bowl.
Also be careful with the bowls and tools: let any trace of grease on the bowls, the spoons, or the mixer accessories coming in contact with the egg whites and the Pavlova will get upset :-)
I also found that the best eggs are the free range ones, and not very fresh if possible!
The vinegar is there to soften the Pavlova center; if there is too much vinegar the entire Pavlova will remain soft. If in doubt put less, and if you eliminate it completely you may end up with a hard, crispy meringue.
The Pavlova base can be made ahead of time and kept one to two days at room temperature, preferably in an airtight container (but never in the refrigerator); start topping it one or two hours ahead of serving time.
Now about variations: of course the fruit can vary from berries, to pears and peaches, to tropicals like mango and pineapple - feel free (and bold!) and experiment with them,
Another interesting Pavlova variation is using lemon curd instead of whipping cream; or use lemon curd and whipping cream, and top it with grilled pineapple pieces!
Of course there are caramel Pavlova variations like this one, or chocolate based Pavlova recipes like this one, but if you are into making a special Pavlova check this gorgeous recipe which combines the classic Pavlova with flavours like Black Forest and Espresso Cream, or maybe this one with a combination of multi-layered Pavlova bases, poached pears, mascarpone based cream and butterscotch sauce!