Extras

Whether you’re trekking to Machu Picchu or taking in the sun - and football – in Rio, take your pick from these inspirational and useful reads, chosen by Stanfords, the travel information specialists

Losing it in Laos: An adventure in Vang Vieng that almost went down the tubes

It's tough to recall after almost 10 years what posed the greatest risk in the flooded cave in which I'd become hopelessly lost: the darkness or the snake that patrolled black pools of frigid water. I was in Laos and a place I would later regret visiting. Vang Vieng used to be a sleepy river village in country known for its calm and natural beauty. Then came tubing. Every day, scores of feckless backpackers in bikinis and boardshorts float down the Nam Song on tractor inner tubes, turning pink as they guzzle cheap beer and leap off rocks. As the activity boomed, so did the number of 'happy' pizzas and vomiting teenagers, helping to turn the town into an ugly scar on the southeast Asia traveller trail.

Jubilation in Jordan: The top of the peak felt like the end-of-the-world - but what a view

The sign said, 'The end of the world'; as did the look on my three-year-old's face. Below us, the dusky pink desert canyons and dimpled, rocky mountains of the Jordan Valley stretched west towards Jerusalem. And somewhere, far, far below the precipice we'd scaled to 'Sacrifice View', a bright blue cap was now swirling away, whisked off my son's head by the sharp wind that greeted us at the summit.

Nicole cooke of Britain kisses her gold medal after winning the woman's road race in Beijing

Cycling: Nicole Cooke bows out with attack on Lance Armstrong

Britain’s former Olympic road race champion has retired

Burnt-out cars at the jetty on the Tasman Peninsula in Boomer Bay

Island fires are a stark warning on how lives can suddenly be at risk

As we swam in the pool of a log cabin resort in the Tasmanian coastal town of Bicheno over the weekend, my family and I relished the 35C temperatures - an uncommon occurrence in this usually mild climate.

<p>1. Reboot Five days from £495, rebootdorset.com</p>
<p>This boot camp serves nutritious food as a core part of the fitness plan. A week's stay includes plenty of exercise and healthy living workshops.</p>

The 10 Best fitness boot camps

Whether you want gentle instruction or need a sergeant-major shouting to get you going, try an exercise break

Ronnie Wood enjoys the show

London menswear shows: These boots were made for walking – the catwalk that is

Fashion finds inspiration from the great explorers, discovers Harriet Walker

Topman Design AW13

Topman Design: eminently wearable

The optical white first stage of Topman Design, the high street brand's premium collection, was almost enough to induce snow blindness.

El Gouna Watersports Complex

Travel in 2013: Holidays for families

The Egyptian Red Sea resort of El Gouna (elgouna.com) will open a “cable water park” in July.

Together again: Jason Donovan and Kylie Minogue

IoS pop review 2: The Hit Factory Live, O2, London

All hail chart royalty and one-hit wonders

Homes, G4S style: Rubbish, rising damp... and 'roaches'

Another shambles as security giant leaves asylum seeker living in squalor

Egyptian Army tanks deploy near the presidential palace to secure the site of overnight clashes between supporters and opponents of President Mohammed Morsi in Cairo

Egyptian military halts Cairo clashes after seven are killed

Egypt's Republican Guard restored order around the presidential palace after fierce overnight clashes killed seven people, but passions ran high in a struggle over the country's future.

Wainwright says: 'My greatest regret is not being nicer to my mother. I could have been a better daughter.'

My Secret Life: Martha Wainwright, 36, singer-songwriter

'We were the odd ones on the block'

Page 3 Profile: Angela Knight, 'Big Six' energy spokeswoman

Defending the indefensible once more?

New Zealand volcano erupts

A New Zealand volcano erupted with a brief blast of dark ash today, forcing the cancellation of flights but causing no significant damage. Schoolchildren and dozens of other hikers who were walking on trails along the mountain's base were safe.

Padgett Powell, author of Edisto

Edisto, By Padgett Powell

Paperback reviews of the week

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Day In a Page

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Homeless Veterans campaign: Donations hit record-breaking £1m target after £300,000 gift from Lloyds Bank

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Donations hit record-breaking £1m target after huge gift from Lloyds Bank
Flight MH370 a year on: Lost without a trace – but the search goes on

Lost without a trace

But, a year on, the search continues for Flight MH370
Germany's spymasters left red-faced after thieves break into brand new secret service HQ and steal taps

Germany's spy HQ springs a leak

Thieves break into new €1.5bn complex... to steal taps
International Women's Day 2015: Celebrating the whirlwind wit of Simone de Beauvoir

Whirlwind wit of Simone de Beauvoir

Simone de Beauvoir's seminal feminist polemic, 'The Second Sex', has been published in short-form for International Women's Day
Mark Zuckerberg’s hiring policy might suit him – but it wouldn’t work for me

Mark Zuckerberg’s hiring policy might suit him – but it wouldn’t work for me

Why would I want to employ someone I’d be happy to have as my boss, asks Simon Kelner
Confessions of a planespotter: With three Britons under arrest in the UAE, the perils have never been more apparent

Confessions of a planespotter

With three Britons under arrest in the UAE, the perils have never been more apparent. Sam Masters explains the appeal
Russia's gulag museum 'makes no mention' of Stalin's atrocities

Russia's gulag museum

Ministry of Culture-run site 'makes no mention' of Stalin's atrocities
The big fresh food con: Alarming truth behind the chocolate muffin that won't decay

The big fresh food con

Joanna Blythman reveals the alarming truth behind the chocolate muffin that won't decay
Virginia Ironside was my landlady: What is it like to live with an agony aunt on call 24/7?

Virginia Ironside was my landlady

Tim Willis reveals what it's like to live with an agony aunt on call 24/7
Paris Fashion Week 2015: The wit and wisdom of Manish Arora's exercise in high camp

Paris Fashion Week 2015

The wit and wisdom of Manish Arora's exercise in high camp
8 best workout DVDs

8 best workout DVDs

If your 'New Year new you' regime hasn’t lasted beyond February, why not try working out from home?
Paul Scholes column: I don't believe Jonny Evans was spitting at Papiss Cissé. It was a reflex. But what the Newcastle striker did next was horrible

Paul Scholes column

I don't believe Evans was spitting at Cissé. It was a reflex. But what the Newcastle striker did next was horrible
Miguel Layun interview: From the Azteca to Vicarage Road with a million followers

From the Azteca to Vicarage Road with a million followers

Miguel Layun is a star in Mexico where he was criticised for leaving to join Watford. But he says he sees the bigger picture
Frank Warren column: Amir Khan ready to meet winner of Floyd Mayweather v Manny Pacquiao

Khan ready to meet winner of Mayweather v Pacquiao

The Bolton fighter is unlikely to take on Kell Brook with two superstar opponents on the horizon, says Frank Warren
War with Isis: Iraq's government fights to win back Tikrit from militants - but then what?

Baghdad fights to win back Tikrit from Isis – but then what?

Patrick Cockburn reports from Kirkuk on a conflict which sectarianism has made intractable