The Big Six: Villas in Ibiza

From a luxury villa that offers a decked terracs overlooking the sea to a whitewashed townhouse on a quiet corner of a quiet cobbled street inside Dalt Vila...

Hideaways in Crete

The Big Six: From beautiful stone farmhouses to pastel-coloured cottages

Rustic retreat: the lounge

Room Service: Serenity and style in the Algarve

Fazenda Nova, Portugal

Pour it on: It's even possible for a watering can to embrace chintz. Wild & Wolf watering can, £34.95, wildandwolf.com

iStyle: Chintz charming

Laura Ashley is celebrating its 60th birthday by looking back to the 1970s. It couldn’t have come at a better time. Patterns, florals and faux Victoriana are big again, says Trish Lorenz

Claissical review: Ariadne auf Naxos - You know what will see off Jerry? A jolly old sing-song

First seen as part of a 1912 double bill, Ariadne auf Naxos was revised and reshaped as Europe plunged into the carnage of the First World War. Strauss was profoundly relieved when his son, Franz, was declared unfit for military service. But his librettist, Hugo von Hofmannsthal, had already served as a reservist when the now familiar version of their backstage comedy on high and low art premiered in Vienna in 1916, four days after the assassination of the prime minister in the dining room of a hotel a few minutes' walk from the opera house.

Aerial picture of Lago Epecuen village, some 600 km southwest of Buenos Aires

The 'real life Atlantis': Eerie photographs capture Villa Epceun - the Argentinian town that spent 25 years underwater

Eerie images have captured a deserted village once dubbed the “real life Atlantis” after it spent over 25 years under water.

Police at the gate to Down Hall Country House Hotel in Hatfield Heath

Woman found dead in hotel pool was celebrating her birthday

Tests shows 22-year-old and boyfriend drowned at hotel but what happened is a mystery

The 10 metre pool at the four star Down Hall Country House Hotel was open to guests but unsupervised. The couple, who had checked in together, were found in their swimming costumes

Two guests found dead in Essex hotel pool 'drowned'

Staff dived into the water to save them but they could not be resuscitated

Chic villas in Corfu

The Big Six: from clifftop locations to freshwater pools and rustic interiors

The Big Six: Costa Rican hideaways

Private reserves, colourful casitas and boutique retreats

The Hajj is a particular target for fraudsters because of the costs and complexity involved

Holiday scams leave British travellers £1.5m out of pocket

Rising problem of online fraud sees thousands of tourists paying for fake hotels, flights and trips

The slump in country house sales began with the financial crisis in 2008

An Englishman's home is his chateau: Potential bargains for Brits as bottom falls out of French second home market

A second home in the country is a luxury the French can no longer afford - cue an invasion of British bargain hunters?

Paperback review: Ashenden By Elizabeth Wilhide

The many lives of a country house that spans the centuries

Saul Sanchez, 48: “He is a very simple man. You know it because he liked to come here and just be with us. He is just a normal person who would eat and drink with us”

'The Slum Pope? He is bigger than that – he is for all the poor people'

Before becoming Pope, Jorge Mario Bergoglio won the hearts of the slum people ministering to the poor and sick

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Day In a Page

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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
Blundering Tony Blair quits as Middle East peace envoy – only Israel will miss him

Blundering Blair quits as Middle East peace envoy – only Israel will miss him

For Arabs – and for Britons who lost their loved ones in his shambolic war in Iraq – his appointment was an insult, says Robert Fisk
Fifa corruption arrests: All hail the Feds for riding to football's rescue

Fifa corruption arrests

All hail the Feds for riding to football's rescue, says Ian Herbert
Isis in Syria: The Kurdish enclave still resisting the tyranny of President Assad and militant fighters

The Kurdish enclave still resisting the tyranny of Assad and Isis

In Syrian Kurdish cantons along the Turkish border, the progressive aims of the 2011 uprising are being enacted despite the war. Patrick Cockburn returns to Amuda
How I survived Cambodia's Killing Fields: Acclaimed surgeon SreyRam Kuy celebrates her mother's determination to escape the US

How I survived Cambodia's Killing Fields

Acclaimed surgeon SreyRam Kuy celebrates her mother's determination to escape to the US
Stephen Mangan interview: From posh buffoon to pregnant dad, the actor has quite a range

How Stephen Mangan got his range

Posh buffoon, hapless writer, pregnant dad - Mangan is certainly a versatile actor
The ZX Spectrum has been crowd-funded back into play - with some 21st-century tweaks

The ZX Spectrum is back

The ZX Spectrum was the original - and for some players, still the best. David Crookes meets the fans who've kept the games' flames lit
Grace of Monaco film panned: even the screenwriter pours scorn on biopic starring Nicole Kidman

Even the screenwriter pours scorn on Grace of Monaco biopic

The critics had a field day after last year's premiere, but the savaging goes on
Menstrual Hygiene Day: The strange ideas people used to believe about periods

Menstrual Hygiene Day: The strange ideas people once had about periods

If one was missed, vomiting blood was seen as a viable alternative
The best work perks: From free travel cards to making dreams come true (really)

The quirks of work perks

From free travel cards to making dreams come true (really)
Is bridge the latest twee pastime to get hip?

Is bridge becoming hip?

The number of young players has trebled in the past year. Gillian Orr discovers if this old game has new tricks
Long author-lists on research papers are threatening the academic work system

The rise of 'hyperauthorship'

Now that academic papers are written by thousands (yes, thousands) of contributors, it's getting hard to tell workers from shirkers
The rise of Lego Clubs: How toys are helping children struggling with social interaction to build better relationships

The rise of Lego Clubs

How toys are helping children struggling with social interaction to build better relationships
5 best running glasses

On your marks: 5 best running glasses

Whether you’re pounding pavements, parks or hill passes, keep your eyes protected in all weathers
Joe Root: 'Ben Stokes gives everything – he’s rubbing off on us all'

'Ben Stokes gives everything – he’s rubbing off on us all'

Joe Root says the England dressing room is a happy place again – and Stokes is the catalyst
Raif Badawi: Wife pleads for fresh EU help as Saudi blogger's health worsens

Please save my husband

As the health of blogger Raif Badawi worsens in prison, his wife urges EU governments to put pressure on the Saudi Arabian royal family to allow her husband to join his family in Canada