News

’Ndrangheta, the Italian crime syndicate that has overtaken Cosa Nostra as Italy’s most powerful mafia organisation, moves in mysterious ways.

Postcard from... Naples

A senior church figure in southern Italy has added another transgression to the list of sinful activities: environmental destruction.

Fringe festival fixture Lucy Porter

My Edinburgh: Lucy Porter, part of the Fringe festival furniture

I first came to Edinburgh when I was 18 to serve on the Perrier Awards panel, and was inspired to try stand-up myself. In the intervening 22 years the press initially dubbed me a a 'fresh face', then 'a rising star', then an 'established name'. This year I was described as a 'permanent fringe fixture'. Like the rain, the sweaty venues and the panpipe players outside Waverley station, I have become part of the festival furniture.

Italy bus crash: Burst tyre may have caused coach to plunge from viaduct, killing at least 38

Premier Enrico Letta cancels Greece trip, after 'huge tragedy'

Mark Cavendish (centre) sprints to win the final stage of the Giro d'Italia in Brescia

Giro d'Italia: Mark Cavendish is first Briton to win points jerseys in all three Grand Tours

A year after losing the Giro d'Italia's points classification by a single point – and with it his chances of a Grand Slam of victories in the category in all three Grand Tours – Mark Cavendish bounced back with a vengeance.

Postcard from... Naples

In Italy, particularly in the southern city of Naples, it might make sense swapping the greeting “buon anno” – happy new year – for “lucky new year” or “safe new year”, as the ritual, idiotic use of DIY fireworks brings an avalanche of serious burns, mutilations and general chaos.

Blast targets Nato Afghan base

A bomb has exploded in an insurgent attack on a US-led coalition base in eastern Afghanistan, say Afghan officials.

Policemen lead Michele Zagaria away after he was dug out of a bunker built under his home near Naples

Mafia boss found in bunker after 16 years at large

Italy's most notorious Mafia fugitive was captured by police yesterday after 16 years on the run.

The Big Six: Italian country inns

Napoli offer Manchester United £1m to play friendly

Napoli president Aurelio De Laurentiis today revealed he has offered Manchester United one million euros to play his team in a friendly.

Mafia's toxic dumping 'increases cancer rates'

Widespread dumping of toxic waste by Mafia clans in the southern region of Campania is causing a dramatic increase in birth defects and cancer, according to a group of US and Italian scientists.

Sun, sea and silence as Capri's police outlaw noisy gardeners

The island of Capri, exquisitely beautiful but a bit on the prim side, was never going to rival Ibiza, Mykonos or Ayia Napa, in the hard-partying stakes.

Pompeii: Life and death in the shadow of Vesuvius

A blockbuster exhibition of artefacts salvaged from the volcanic eruption that decimated the Roman city of Pompeii 2,000 years ago opens in New York today.

Queen of the underworld: Mary Beard is bringing the ancient city of Pompeii to life in a BBC documentary

Around lunchtime on 24 August AD79, the inhabitants of Pompeii on the Bay of Naples saw an astonishing sight: a column of smoke bursting into the sky from Vesuvius, the huge volcanic mountain that looms over the bay. According to an eyewitness, Pliny the Younger, writing 20 years after the event, the cloud reached nine miles in height (it resembled a fir tree, he said) and dropped burning ash upon the town.

Hamsik could leave Napoli

The agent of Napoli’s Slovakia midfielder Marek Hamsik has admitted that there is a chance that his client could be tempted away from the San Paolo in the near future.

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Independent Travel
Pompeii, Capri & the Bay of Naples
Dubrovnik, the Dalmatian Coast & Montenegro
Burgundy, the River Rhone & Provence
Lisbon, Oporto and the Douro Valley
Lake Garda, Venice & Verona
Spain
Prices correct as of 23 January 2015
Greece elections: In times like these, the EU has far more dangerous adversaries than Syriza

Greece elections

In times like these, the EU has far more dangerous adversaries than Syriza, says Patrick Cockburn
Holocaust Memorial Day: Nazi victims remembered as spectre of prejudice reappears

Holocaust Memorial Day

Nazi victims remembered as spectre of prejudice reappears over Europe
Fortitude and the Arctic attraction: Our fascination with the last great wilderness

Magnetic north

The Arctic has always exerted a pull, from Greek myth to new thriller Fortitude. Gerard Gilbert considers what's behind our fascination with the last great wilderness
Homeless Veterans appeal: Homeless in Wales can find inspiration from Daniel’s story

Homeless Veterans appeal

Homeless in Wales can find inspiration from Daniel’s story
Front National family feud? Marine Le Pen and her relatives clash over French far-right party's response to Paris terror attacks

Front National family feud?

Marine Le Pen and her relatives clash over French far-right party's response to Paris terror attacks
Pot of gold: tasting the world’s most expensive tea

Pot of gold

Tasting the world’s most expensive tea
10 best wildlife-watching experiences: From hen harriers to porpoises

From hen harriers to porpoises: 10 best wildlife-watching experiences

While many of Britain's birds have flown south for the winter, it's still a great time to get outside for a spot of twitching
Nick Easter: 'I don’t want just to hold tackle bags, I want to be out there'

'I don’t want just to hold tackle bags, I want to be out there'

Nick Easter targeting World Cup place after England recall
DSK, Dodo the Pimp, and the Carlton Hotel

The inside track on France's trial of the year

Dominique Strauss-Kahn, Dodo the Pimp, and the Carlton Hotel:
As provocative now as they ever were

Sarah Kane season

Why her plays are as provocative now as when they were written
Murder of Japanese hostage has grim echoes of a killing in Iraq 11 years ago

Murder of Japanese hostage has grim echoes of another killing

Japanese mood was against what was seen as irresponsible trips to a vicious war zone
Syria crisis: Celebrities call on David Cameron to take more refugees as one young mother tells of torture by Assad regime

Celebrities call on David Cameron to take more Syrian refugees

One young mother tells of torture by Assad regime
The enemy within: People who hear voices in their heads are being encouraged to talk back – with promising results

The enemy within

People who hear voices in their heads are being encouraged to talk back
'In Auschwitz you got used to anything'

'In Auschwitz you got used to anything'

Survivors of the Nazi concentration camp remember its horror, 70 years on
Autumn/winter menswear 2015: The uniforms that make up modern life come to the fore

Autumn/winter menswear 2015

The uniforms that make up modern life come to the fore