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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
Seven Cities of Italy
Burgundy, the River Rhone & Provence
Prague, Budapest and Vienna
Lake Garda
Minoan Crete and Santorini
Prices correct as of 15 May 2015
Greece debt crisis: What happened to democracy when it’s a case of 'Vote Yes or else'?

'The economic collapse has happened. What is at risk now is democracy...'

If it doesn’t work in Europe, how is it supposed to work in India or the Middle East, asks Robert Fisk
The science of swearing: What lies behind the use of four-letter words?

The science of swearing

What lies behind the use of four-letter words?
The Real Stories of Migrant Britain: Clive fled from Zimbabwe - now it won't have him back

The Real Stories of Migrant Britain

Clive fled from Zimbabwe - now it won’t have him back
Africa on the menu: Three foodie friends want to popularise dishes from the continent

Africa on the menu

Three foodie friends want to popularise dishes from the hot new continent
Donna Karan is stepping down after 30 years - so who will fill the DKNY creator's boots?

Who will fill Donna Karan's boots?

The designer is stepping down as Chief Designer of DKNY after 30 years. Alexander Fury looks back at the career of 'America's Chanel'
10 best statement lightbulbs

10 best statement lightbulbs

Dare to bare with some out-of-the-ordinary illumination
Wimbledon 2015: Heather Watson - 'I had Serena's poster on my wall – now I'm playing her'

Heather Watson: 'I had Serena's poster on my wall – now I'm playing her'

Briton pumped up for dream meeting with world No 1
Wimbledon 2015: Nick Bollettieri - It's time for big John Isner to produce the goods to go with his thumping serve

Nick Bollettieri's Wimbledon Files

It's time for big John Isner to produce the goods to go with his thumping serve
Dustin Brown: Who is the tennis player who knocked Rafael Nadal out of Wimbeldon 2015?

Dustin Brown

Who is the German player that knocked Nadal out of Wimbeldon 2015?
Ashes 2015: Damien Martyn - 'England are fired up again, just like in 2005...'

Damien Martyn: 'England are fired up again, just like in 2005...'

Australian veteran of that Ashes series, believes the hosts' may become unstoppable if they win the first Test
Tour de France 2015: Twins Simon and Adam Yates have a mountain to climb during Tour of duty

Twins have a mountain to climb during Tour of duty

Yates brothers will target the steepest sections in bid to win a stage in France
John Palmer: 'Goldfinger' of British crime was murdered, say police

Murder of the Brink’s-MAT mastermind

'Goldfinger' of British crime's life ended in a blaze of bullets, say police
Forget little green men - aliens will look like humans, says Cambridge University evolution expert

Forget little green men

Leading evolutionary biologist says aliens will look like humans
The Real Stories of Migrant Britain: An Algerian scientist adjusts to life working in a kebab shop

The Real Stories of Migrant Britain

An Algerian scientist struggles to adjust to her new life working in a Scottish kebab shop
Bodyworlds museum: Dr Gunther von Hagens has battled legal threats, Parkinson's disease, and the threat of bankruptcy

Dying dream of Doctor Death

Dr Gunther von Hagens has battled legal threats, Parkinson's disease, and the threat of bankruptcy