Travel Touch base: the portable loos on Aconcagua

The man who pays his way

J K Rowling: The Curse of the Publisher's Hype

And so, this was it, the publishing event of the century: J K Rowling and the Publisher's Hype. The story had everything. The one million pre-orders. The profile in The New Yorker. The adulation! The vilification! You'd never guess that all Rowling did was write a book.

The Big Six: Outback outposts

Berkley River Lodge, Western Australia

Grand American Adventures is offering a group tour of the Appalachian Trail, visiting New Hampshire and Massachusetts, for £1,524

Travel Challenge: New England in autumn

Each week we invite three companies to offer us their best deal for a specific break. Today: a 10-night autumn escape to New England with hotels and flights from Heathrow on 28 Sept. Prices are pp, based on two travelling together.

Second Yosemite National Park visitor dies of rodent-borne illness

A second person has died of a rare, rodent-borne disease after visiting Yosemite National Park earlier this summer and park officials warned past visitors to be aware of some flu-like aches and symptoms.

Romahome comes into its own on the campsite

Romahome R20 Hi

A fun little home from home. Just remember the gas...

Now: The Kasbah Angour is a Moroccan retreat in the Atlas Mountains, with pretty gardens, Berber music nights and walking trails. During September, it has four-nights for £299 per person with full-board and airport transfers. Flights extra. kasbahangour.com

Get me out of here: Morocco, Maasai Mara and Rio

Now... The Kasbah Angour is a Moroccan retreat in the Atlas Mountains, with pretty gardens, Berber music nights and walking trails. During September, it has four-nights for £299 per person with full-board and airport transfers. Flights extra. kasbahangour.com

Postcard From...Languedoc

Travel west along the French rivieria, going past Antibes, St Tropez and Marseilles, and you will find another side to France's Mediterranean coast. Far from the glitz of Monte Carlo, brimming with its tax exiles and Russian billionaires' yachts, here is the less fashionable but "salt of the earth" France. No Brad Pitt, Brigitte Bardot or even Graham Greene here.

Des Campbell was convicted of murdering Janet Fisicaro

Gold digger and cheat, but did ex-policeman kill his wife?

It seems beyond dispute that Des Campbell was a cad who courted and fleeced a succession of wealthy, blonde widows. But whether the former British police officer pushed his third wife over a cliff before jetting off on holiday with one of several girlfriends is the question set to be tested in the Australian appeal courts.

Landscape gardener jailed for four years for 'mowing down' two teenagers that were camping in a field

A landscape gardener who drove his van into two teenagers who were camping in a field in what was an "absolutely terrifying" attack has been jailed for four years.

Looking up: inside one of the Carré d’étoiles cabins

Trail of the Unexpected: Stargazing in France

The galaxy in all its glory can be enjoyed from the comfort of your bed in a luxurious prefab in central France, says Fiona Sturges.

<p>1. Falcon mug</p>
<p>falconenamelware.com, £7.99</p>
<p>These are very trendy and on sale in all of the hippest homeware stores, but a sturdy enamle mug is great for tea (or even red wine) when you're away.</p>

The 10 Best camping gear

From jackets and moonchairs to self-inflating maps and head torches

High winds batter Round the Island competitors as Yves le Blevec triumphs in trimaran Actual

Some classes were cancelled even before the start of the Round the Island (of Wight) Race today as forecasts of brisk south-westerlies brought the reality of over 25 knots and either challenging or exciting races for what had been 1,650 entries and over 10,000 competitors. Injuries were reported to a handful.

Travel Challenge: Family camping in France

Each week, we invite three companies to offer us their best deal for specific holiday. Today: a family camping holiday in the Vendée region of western France at the start of the school summer break. Prices are for two adults and two children. Each includes return P&O Dover-Calais ferry crossing with car on Saturday 21 July and a week's tented accommodation...

At a stroke: Windermere's Great North Swim

Countyfile; Cumbria - Race to the Lakes for outdoor fun and games

The skies above Windermere will light up this Thursday when Cumbria hosts one of the four opening events of the London 2012 Festival (0845 267 2012; festival.london2012.com), the cultural celebration of the Olympic and Paralympic Games that runs till 9 September. A French group, Les Commandos Percu, will take to the shores of Windermere for On the Night Shift, a free open-air production mixing music and pyrotechnics, which will also mark the arrival of the Olympic torch in the county.

French Groupama team wins second leg of Volvo round the world race

Digging deep in the last 48 hours, the French Groupama team won its second leg in the Volvo round the world race, extended its overall lead, and enjoyed the especially sweet achievement of being first into its home port of Lorient in south Brittany.

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Food blogger and Guardian writer Jack Monroe with her young son
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Aguero - who single-handedly has kept City's Champions League dreams alive - celebrates his dramatic late winner
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Independent Travel
Bruges
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Burgundy
South AFrica
Paris
Northern Corsica
Prices correct as of 21 November 2014
Homeless Veterans Christmas Appeal: Drifting and forgotten - turning lives around for ex-soldiers

Homeless Veterans Christmas Appeal: Turning lives around for ex-soldiers

Our partner charities help veterans on the brink – and get them back on their feet
Putin’s far-right ambition: Think-tank reveals how Russian President is wooing – and funding – populist parties across Europe to gain influence in the EU

Putin’s far-right ambition

Think-tank reveals how Russian President is wooing – and funding – populist parties across Europe to gain influence in the EU
Tove Jansson's Moominland: What was the inspiration for Finland's most famous family?

Escape to Moominland

What was the inspiration for Finland's most famous family?
Nightclubbing with Richard Young: The story behind his latest book of celebrity photographs

24-Hour party person

Photographer Richard Young has been snapping celebrities at play for 40 years. As his latest book is released, he reveals that it wasn’t all fun and games
Michelle Obama's school dinners: America’s children have a message for the First Lady

A taste for rebellion

US children have started an online protest against Michelle Obama’s drive for healthy school meals by posting photos of their lunches
Colouring books for adults: How the French are going crazy for Crayolas

Colouring books for adults

How the French are going crazy for Crayolas
Jack Thorne's play 'Hope': What would you do as a local politician faced with an impossible choice of cuts?

What would you do as a local politician faced with an impossible choice of cuts?

Playwright Jack Thorne's latest work 'Hope' poses the question to audiences
Ed Harcourt on Romeo Beckham and life as a court composer at Burberry

Call me Ed Mozart

Paloma Faith, Lana del Ray... Romeo Beckham. Ed Harcourt has proved that he can write for them all. But it took a personal crisis to turn him from indie star to writer-for-hire
10 best stocking fillers for foodies

Festive treats: 10 best stocking fillers for foodies

From boozy milk to wasabi, give the food-lover in your life some extra-special, unusual treats to wake up to on Christmas morning
Phil Hughes head injury: He had one weakness – it has come back to haunt him

Phil Hughes had one weakness – it has come back to haunt him

Prolific opener had world at his feet until Harmison and Flintoff bounced him
'I have an age of attraction that starts as low as four': How do you deal with a paedophile who has never committed a crime?

'I am a paedophile'

Is our approach to sex offenders helping to create more victims?
How bad do you have to be to lose a Home Office contract?

How bad do you have to be to lose a Home Office contract?

Serco given Yarl’s Wood immigration contract despite ‘vast failings’
Green Party on the march in Bristol: From a lost deposit to victory

From a lost deposit to victory

Green Party on the march in Bristol
Putting the grot right into Santa's grotto

Winter blunderlands

Putting the grot into grotto
'It just came to us, why not do it naked?' London's first nude free runner captured in breathtaking images across capital

'It just came to us, why not do it naked?'

London's first nude free runner captured in breathtaking images across capital