Student

For some language courses, a year in Paris is usual. But if you're reading Arabic, you have to travel a little further afield, as Rosie Collington found out

Travel Challenge: A half-term family holiday in the sun

Every week we invite competing companies to give us their best deal for a specified holiday. Today: a holiday in the sun for February half- term. Prices are for a family of four (with two children under 12) and require no time out of school.

Ospreys raise glass to James' singular double

Scarlets 14 Ospreys 21

Simon Calder: A serene spot to mark a true moment of madness

"Only 15 miles from London, the picturesque Esher venue offers outdoor event space as well as flexible indoor facilities with ample parking" – so trills the publicity for Sandown Park racecourse.

The Traveller's Guide to the Red Sea

Blue skies, golden sands and a rainbow of dazzling colours beneath the surface make this body of water the ideal winter warmer. Matthew Teller dives in

My Life In Travel: Frank Gardner

'I dodged pirates and went skinny-dipping in Thailand'

Griddled prawn and asparagus salad

Serves 4 as a main

Undeterred pirates hijack four more ships

Undeterred by US and French hostage rescues that killed five bandits, Somali pirates brazenly hijacked four more ships in the Gulf of Aden, the waterway at the centre of the world's fight against piracy.

The Complete Guide To: Petra

Retrace the footsteps of Roman generals, nomads and Indiana Jones as you explore the ancientmonuments of Jordan's desert.

World's ships held to ransom by pirates' growing greed

The 1,000 or so Somalis creating chaos in the Indian Ocean are living like kings, and there's little anyone can do to stop them

Family travel: 'Where's best for baby-friendly winter sun?'

Q My husband and I are looking for a winter sun destination for us and our two-month-old baby in early December. We are desperate for a beachside activity-based holiday, with watersports, tennis and golf (if possible). However, I am struggling to find a crèche that will take a baby that young. Surely there are other young mums like myself out there who are keen to line up a postnatal activity break? Can you suggest some hot, baby-friendly beach and activity destinations? L Cameron, via email

Fried chilli prawns with pea shoots

Serves 4

Elissalde manages to cramp Geraghty's style in the sunshine

England tiro runs himself into ground as French limp home

Sailor to recreate Phoenicians' epic African voyage

On the ancient Syrian island of Arwad, which was settled by the Phoenicians in about 2000BC, men are hard at work hammering wooden pegs into the hull of a ship.

Russian police head to London for Litvinenko investigation

Vladimir Putin is sending a special squad of Russian police to Britain to investigate the killing of former spy Alexander Litvinenko.

How to improve holidays with children

Hey Mum, let's rough it in the wild
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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
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
'I'm gay, and plan to fight military homophobia'

'I'm gay, and plan to fight military homophobia'

Army general planning to come out
Iraq invasion 2003: The bloody warnings six wise men gave to Tony Blair as he prepared to launch poorly planned campaign

What the six wise men told Tony Blair

Months before the invasion of Iraq in 2003, experts sought to warn the PM about his plans. Here, four of them recall that day
25 years of The Independent on Sunday: The stories, the writers and the changes over the last quarter of a century

25 years of The Independent on Sunday

The stories, the writers and the changes over the last quarter of a century
Homeless Veterans appeal: 'Really caring is a dangerous emotion in this kind of work'

Homeless Veterans appeal

As head of The Soldiers' Charity, Martin Rutledge has to temper compassion with realism. He tells Chris Green how his Army career prepared him
Wu-Tang Clan and The Sexual Objects offer fans a chance to own the only copies of their latest albums

Smash hit go under the hammer

It's nice to pick up a new record once in a while, but the purchasers of two latest releases can go a step further - by buying the only copy
Geeks who rocked the world: Documentary looks back at origins of the computer-games industry

The geeks who rocked the world

A new documentary looks back at origins of the computer-games industry
Belle & Sebastian interview: Stuart Murdoch reveals how the band is taking a new direction

Belle & Sebastian is taking a new direction

Twenty years ago, Belle & Sebastian was a fey indie band from Glasgow. It still is – except today, as prime mover Stuart Murdoch admits, it has a global cult following, from Hollywood to South Korea
America: Land of the free, home of the political dynasty

America: Land of the free, home of the political dynasty

These days in the US things are pretty much stuck where they are, both in politics and society at large, says Rupert Cornwell
A graphic history of US civil rights – in comic book form

A graphic history of US civil rights – in comic book form

A veteran of the Fifties campaigns is inspiring a new generation of activists
Winston Churchill: the enigma of a British hero

Winston Churchill: the enigma of a British hero

A C Benson called him 'a horrid little fellow', George Orwell would have shot him, but what a giant he seems now, says DJ Taylor
Growing mussels: Precious freshwater shellfish are thriving in a unique green project

Growing mussels

Precious freshwater shellfish are thriving in a unique green project