Ben Ross

Ben Ross is Head of Travel at The Independent. He has worked for the paper for over a decade, and began reporting on travel in 2001. Before joining the travel desk full time, he ran The Independent's special projects department. He started his journalistic career at the BBC working for its commercial arm, BBC Worldwide.

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Sam Riley: 'My job is always bursts of activity in between periods of inactivity. There’s no real reason why I should want to do absolutely nothing, I’ve just always been very good at it.'

My life in travel: Sam Riley

I can be easily entertained from breakfast to the pool, to lying in the sun, to waiting until it’s socially acceptable to start drinking

Game on: summer scenery in Saalbach

Playtime in Austria's Valley of Games

From biking routes to imaginative hiking trails, via flumes and a high-ropes course, Ben Ross and his family were won over by this mountain wonderland
High point: Montreux Jazz Festival

5 ways to enjoy summer in the Alps

The fun doesn’t stop in Europe's greatest mountain range when the snow melts, says Ben Ross

Despite next year’s cut in the levy on flying to the Caribbean, the effect on the final bill will be minimal

Like it or not, Air Passenger Duty is here to stay

Something To Declare

Travel special 2014: Breakfast on bed on a rail journey from Hanoi to Hué

Springtime, just before the new century began. As Laos is now the new Cambodia, Vietnam was then the new Thailand, and my girlfriend and I had arrived – with our backpacks – to see what all the fuss was about. The capital Hanoi had dazzled, and we were due to take the train 420 miles down the coast to Hué. We were late, though. We were always late.

In your element: a snow-clad Heavenly, with Lake Tahoe as a backdrop

Slope off to California

The snow is thin on the ground in the Sierra Nevada at the moment, but when it comes, Lake Tahoe is the place to ski. Ben Ross has an early-season preview

Tignes for ski teenies? Just follow the pink bibs

With young children in tow, a family ski trip can leave you feeling snowed under. But help is at hand, as Ben Ross discovers in the French Alps
Tignes spirit: a winter's night in the resort

Tignes for ski teenies? Just follow the pink bibs

With young children in tow, a family ski trip can leave you feeling snowed under. But help is at hand, as Ben Ross discovers in the French Alps

Virtual reality: Thomas and Zoë ski towards the future of travel in the Google House

Traveller's Guide: Tenerife

In the first of a three-part series on the Canaries, Ben Ross examines the largest of the islands, where it's still possible to get away from it all

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Day In a Page

The other Mugabe who is lining up for the Zimbabwean presidency

The other Mugabe who is lining up for the Zimbabwean presidency

Wife of President Robert Mugabe appears to have her sights set on succeeding her husband
The model of a gadget launch: Cultivate an atmosphere of mystery and excitement to sell stuff people didn't realise they needed

The model for a gadget launch

Cultivate an atmosphere of mystery and excitement to sell stuff people didn't realise they needed
Alice Roberts: She's done pretty well, for a boffin without a beard

She's done pretty well, for a boffin without a beard

Alice Roberts talks about her new book on evolution - and why her early TV work drew flak from (mostly male) colleagues
Get well soon, Joan Rivers - an inspiration, whether she likes it or not

Get well soon, Joan Rivers

She is awful. But she's also wonderful, not in spite of but because of the fact she's forever saying appalling things, argues Ellen E Jones
Doctor Who Into the Dalek review: A classic sci-fi adventure with all the spectacle of a blockbuster

A fresh take on an old foe

Doctor Who Into the Dalek more than compensated for last week's nonsensical offering
Fashion walks away from the celebrity runway show

Fashion walks away from the celebrity runway show

As the collections start, fashion editor Alexander Fury finds video and the internet are proving more attractive
Meet the stars of TV's Wolf Hall... and it's not the cast of the Tudor trilogy

Meet the stars of TV's Wolf Hall...

... and it's not the cast of the Tudor trilogy
Weekend at the Asylum: Europe's biggest steampunk convention heads to Lincoln

Europe's biggest steampunk convention

Jake Wallis Simons discovers how Victorian ray guns and the martial art of biscuit dunking are precisely what the 21st century needs
Don't swallow the tripe – a user's guide to weasel words

Don't swallow the tripe – a user's guide to weasel words

Lying is dangerous and unnecessary. A new book explains the strategies needed to avoid it. John Rentoul on the art of 'uncommunication'
Daddy, who was Richard Attenborough? Was the beloved thespian the last of the cross-generation stars?

Daddy, who was Richard Attenborough?

The atomisation of culture means that few of those we regard as stars are universally loved any more, says DJ Taylor
She's dark, sarcastic, and bashes life in Nowheresville ... so how did Kacey Musgraves become country music's hottest new star?

Kacey Musgraves: Nashville's hottest new star

The singer has two Grammys for her first album under her belt and her celebrity fans include Willie Nelson, Ryan Adams and Katy Perry
American soldier-poet Brian Turner reveals the enduring turmoil that inspired his memoir

Soldier-poet Brian Turner on his new memoir

James Kidd meets the prize-winning writer, whose new memoir takes him back to the bloody battles he fought in Iraq
Aston Villa vs Hull match preview: Villa were not surprised that Ron Vlaar was a World Cup star

Villa were not surprised that Vlaar was a World Cup star

Andi Weimann reveals just how good his Dutch teammate really is
Bill Granger recipes: Our chef ekes out his holiday in Italy with divine, simple salads

Bill Granger's simple Italian salads

Our chef presents his own version of Italian dishes, taking in the flavours and produce that inspired him while he was in the country
The Last Word: Tumbleweed through deserted stands and suites at Wembley

The Last Word: Tumbleweed through deserted stands and suites at Wembley

If supporters begin to close bank accounts, switch broadband suppliers or shun satellite sales, their voices will be heard. It’s time for revolution