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From forest cottages and Antarctic cruises to Chengdu and Greece in London

Szechuan peppercorns cause a unique sensation

What's the difference between a Szechuan pepper and a vibrator?

Not much, at least according to top scientists from a prestigious university in London, who claim that the sensation caused by eating the unique Chinese peppercorn feels exactly the same as pressing a vibrator to your lips.

Former Public Security Minister Zhou Yongkang is to be investigated

China’s corruption crackdown goes all the way to the top, with former security tsar to be investigated

Member of Communist Party’s most powerful body the latest to be investigated in Xi’s shake-up

Fiery dish: Sichuan sea bass

Sichuan sea bass

Serves 10

Video: Landslide in China sweeps away 28 houses

Dramatic footage has captured the moment a giant stream of mud and rocks poured down the side of a mountain in China.

Heavy flood waters sweeping through Beichuan in southwest China's Sichuan province

Devastating floods in China trigger huge landslide, burying 40

Rescue workers have been called to the scene in a bid to find survivors

The 'New Century Global Centre' building which is the biggest standalone structure in world

World's largest building: The New Century Global Center officially opens in China

The building is so large it is capable housing 20 Sydney Opera Houses and is almost three times the size of the Pentagon in Washington, D.C.

Chinese Passenger jet makes emergency landing after being hit by UFO (unidentified 'foreign object') at 26,000 feet

Large dent and scraped paintwork visible on Air China Boeing 757's nosecone

Forty miners killed in China coal mine explosions

Forty miners have died in two separate coal mine explosions in south-western China, authorities said.

A child gets treatment in a military field hospital in Lushan, Sichuan

Sichuan earthquake: Hong Kong urges aid veto over corruption fears

Politicians in Hong Kong have fiercely opposed a plan to donate money to Sichuan to help with earthquake relief efforts, citing concerns that the local government would misuse the funds.

China police believe missing tycoon was helping fugitive brother

Police disclosed today that a Chinese tycoon whose disappearance threatened to disrupt deals with mining companies in the United States and Australia is being held on suspicion he helped hide a brother who is a murder suspect.

Free Tibet: teenage monks and woman in self-immolation protest for congress

Three teenage Tibetan monks and a woman set fire to themselves to protest Chinese rule on the eve of a pivotal Communist Party congress, activists said today.

Chinese conservationists celebrate birth of seven baby pandas

Seven baby panda cubs have been born at a research and conservation facility in Sichuan Province, China.

Diageo seals deal to flog Chinese luxury spirit in UK at £99 a bottle

The drink that has sealed millions of Chinese business deals is about to go on sale in London, after Diageo agreed a UK distribution deal.

Earthquake leaves four dead in China

A moderate earthquake has toppled houses in a mountainous part of south-western China, killing four people and injuring at least 100, state media said.

Tibetan protester Jamphel Yeshi set himself on fire in New Delhi ahead of Chinese President Hu Jintao's visit to India earlier this year

China cracks down after Tibetan self-immolations

The 33-year-old who died at the sceneis the 35th Tibetan to immolate since March last year

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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
Woman who was sent to three Nazi death camps describes how she escaped the gas chamber

Auschwitz liberation 70th anniversary

Woman sent to three Nazi death camps describes surviving gas chamber
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
'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