Travel

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.

Mr Lebedev is charged with hooliganism motivated by political hatred

Key witness against Lebedev 'can't testify'

Lawyers for the key witness in the case against Alexander Lebedev, the Russian businessman and financial backer of The Independent, have said he is unable to return to Russia to testify.

Cambodian officers search the wreckage after the factory collapse

New fears over safety standards as two workers die in Cambodian factory collapse

Taiwanese-owned factory was making sports shoes Asics

Miracle crop, “jatropha”.

How an eco-pioneer from Torquay launched a miracle crop, risked a fortune, and ended up in a Cambodian prison

Gregg Fryett sold a green miracle to his investors – and now they could lose up to £32m

A still image from the popular French reality show Koh-Lanta, the 16th series of which has been abandoned after a contestant died

Second death at French reality TV show as doctor kills himself

Medic leaves note saying he can't look people in face after contestant's death

The current season of Koh Lanta has been cancelled following the death of Gérald Babin

Second tragedy for French version of Survivor reality show as staff doctor kills himself following death of contestant

A doctor working for France's version of the television reality show Survivor committed suicide yesterday, leaving a note saying he had been unfairly criticised over the death of a contestant, the programme's broadcaster said.

Don't claim Irish ancestry because it's St Patrick's Day, just enjoy it!

No one cares how Irish or how un-Irish you are; we can all still celebrate

Khmer Rouge genocide tribunal thrown into chaos as Ieng Sary, one of the three men standing trial, dies

The Khmer Rouge genocide tribunal was today facing fresh turmoil after it was announced that one of the three men standing trial for war crimes had died in hospital.

Police supply crystal meth to bank robbers

At first, police thought the men holed up in a provincial Cambodian bank were holding hostages. Then it became apparent they were drug addicts. Finally, they concluded that it was all an amateurish inside job to rip off the tills.

Sergei Polonsky was arrested on the island of Koh Dek Kuol

Cambodian sailors 'forced to jump into sea' settle case with Russian tycoon Sergei Polonsky

Crew withdraw their accusations after agreeing £12,500 compensation deal

Russian tycoon could be freed after payment deal

A Russian man detained in Cambodia for allegedly threatening and assaulting local sailors could be released after his lawyers agreed to pay compensation to the victims of the attack.

Sergei Polonsky's construction businesses collapsed in 2008

Russian tycoon faces jail after arrest for threatening Cambodian sailors

A Russian tycoon arrested in Cambodia for threatening local sailors is likely to stay in custody until the end of the month at least, and could face up to three years in jail.

Sergei Polonsky (centre) is led away by Cambodian officials

Russian tycoon ‘forced sailors into sea’ in Cambodia

A controversial Russian property tycoon has been arrested in Cambodia after an incident in which he and friends apparently imprisoned several local sailors and then forced them to jump into the sea at knifepoint.

Supporting small businesses in the developing world

The gift that helps poor businesses overseas

An investment in an entrepreneur living in poverty in the developing world could prove to be the most inspiring gift you give this Christmas.

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Mickey Rourke celebrates his victory against opponent Elliot Seymour
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Gordon and Tana Ramsay arrive at the High Court, London
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Actor Burt Reynolds last year
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Johnny Handle, Northumberland, Ted Relph, President of Lakeland Dialect Society, and Sid Calderbank, Lancashire, founder of the National Dialect Day
newsMeet the enthusiasts determined to stop them dying out
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The data shows that the number of “unlawfully” large infant classes has doubled in the last 12 months alone
i100Mike Stuchbery, a teacher in Great Yarmouth, said he received abuse
Arts and Entertainment
The starship in Star Wars: The Force Awakens
filmsThe first glimpse of JJ Abrams' new film has been released online
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Rio Ferdinand returns for QPR
sportRio Ferdinand returns from his three-game suspension today
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The Speaker of the House will takes his turn as guest editor of the Today programme
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Independent Travel
Burgundy
Pompeii, Capri & the Bay of Naples
Lake Garda
Lake Como
Bruges
Paris
Prices correct as of 28 November 2014
Homeless Veterans Christmas Appeal: ‘We give them hope. They come to us when no one else can help’

Christmas Appeal

Meet the charity giving homeless veterans hope – and who they turn to when no one else can help
Should doctors and patients learn to plan humane, happier endings rather than trying to prolong life?

Is it always right to try to prolong life?

Most of us would prefer to die in our own beds, with our families beside us. But, as a GP, Margaret McCartney sees too many end their days in a medicalised battle
Thomas Cook's outgoing boss Harriet Green got by on four hours sleep a night - is that what it takes for women to get to the top?

What does it take for women to get to the top?

Thomas Cook's outgoing boss Harriet Green got by on four hours sleep a night and told women they had to do more if they wanted to get on
Christmas jumper craze: Inside the UK factory behind this year's multicultural must-have

Knitting pretty: British Christmas Jumpers

Simmy Richman visits Jack Masters, the company behind this year's multicultural must-have
French chefs have launched a campaign to end violence in kitchens - should British restaurants follow suit?

French chefs campaign against bullying

A group of top chefs signed a manifesto against violence in kitchens following the sacking of a chef at a Paris restaurant for scalding his kitchen assistant with a white-hot spoon
Radio 4 to broadcast 10-hour War and Peace on New Year's Day as Controller warns of cuts

Just what you need on a New Year hangover...

Radio 4 to broadcast 10-hour adaptation of War and Peace on first day of 2015
Cuba set to stage its first US musical in 50 years

Cuba to stage first US musical in 50 years

Claire Allfree finds out if the new production of Rent will hit the right note in Havana
Christmas 2014: 10 best educational toys

Learn and play: 10 best educational toys

Of course you want them to have fun, but even better if they can learn at the same time
Paul Scholes column: I like Brendan Rodgers as a manager but Liverpool seem to be going backwards not forwards this season

Paul Scholes column

I like Brendan Rodgers as a manager but Liverpool seem to be going backwards not forwards this season
Lewis Moody column: Stuart Lancaster has made all the right calls – now England must deliver

Lewis Moody: Lancaster has made all the right calls – now England must deliver

So what must the red-rose do differently? They have to take the points on offer 
Cameron, Miliband and Clegg join forces for Homeless Veterans campaign

Cameron, Miliband and Clegg join forces for Homeless Veterans campaign

It's in all our interests to look after servicemen and women who fall on hard times, say party leaders
Millionaire Sol Campbell wades into wealthy backlash against Labour's mansion tax

Sol Campbell cries foul at Labour's mansion tax

The former England defender joins Myleene Klass, Griff Rhys Jones and Melvyn Bragg in criticising proposals
Nicolas Sarkozy returns: The ex-President is preparing to fight for the leadership of France's main opposition party – but will he win big enough?

Sarkozy returns

The ex-President is preparing to fight for the leadership of France's main opposition party – but will he win big enough?
Is the criticism of Ed Miliband a coded form of anti-Semitism?

Is the criticism of Miliband anti-Semitic?

Attacks on the Labour leader have coalesced around a sense that he is different, weird, a man apart. But is the criticism more sinister?
Ouija boards are the must-have gift this Christmas, fuelled by a schlock horror film

Ouija boards are the must-have festive gift

Simon Usborne explores the appeal - and mysteries - of a century-old parlour game