News The third test flight of the commercial spaceship took it to a record 71,000 feet

The firm hopes to take first ever tourists to space later this year. Onboard cameras were able to capture its rocket-powered engine, the first time it has been used

Get me out of here: Edinburgh, Saint Lucia, South Africa

Now... Edinburgh by train gets one-third cheaper when you book East Coast advance fares through the capital's official website, Winterinedinburgh.com before 2 Nov. It covers travel from London King's Cross (from £23 return), York and Newcastle from 12 Nov to 20 Dec and again from 3-11 Jan.

Sir Richard Branson's Virgin wants all 12 slots out of Heathrow that BA was forced to give up when it took over BMI

Branson reaches for the sky as he bounces back from rail snub

Virgin boss to end British Airways' monopoly with new short-haul service

David Cameron frustrated by slow recovery pace

Prime Minister David Cameron today admitted that he was frustrated by the slow pace of recovery in Britain.

Get me out of here: Austria, Barbados, Las Vegas

Now: Lap up lakeside views and mountainous scenery in Austria this summer. Thomson has a week's stay at the Strandhotel Margaretha, on Lake Wolfgang, for £485pp, including flights from Gatwick to Salzburg on 9 June and transfers. (thomsonlakes.co.uk).

Simon Kelner: Virgin Atlantic's idea is verging on the unbearable

It was an exchange which made me realise why I am not rich and powerful. I was telling a friend of mine – a young, wealthy and successful individual – that I thought there was something luxurious about a trans-Atlantic plane journey. You could sit, watch a movie or two, have someone serve you drinks and food, maybe take a little nap and – most satisfying of all – no one could get hold of you.

Simon Kelner: Virgin Atlantic's idea is verging on the unbearable

It was an exchange which made me realise why I am not rich and powerful. I was telling a friend of mine – a young, wealthy and successful individual – that I thought there was something luxurious about a trans-Atlantic plane journey. You could sit, watch a movie or two, have someone serve you drinks and food, maybe take a little nap and – most satisfying of all – no one could get hold of you.

Hot lips: The best red lipsticks

1. Lipstick in Pleasure Me Red

Some 1.5 million people are due to fly out of the country this weekend

Gridlock at airports set to hamper Easter getaway plans

Cuts to immigration staff threaten to leave hundreds of thousands facing long delays

Barbados, Cape Town, Las Vegas

Now... Barbados Bliss

British Airways Holidays has a week's break at the Dover Beach Hotel in Barbados (room only), a short drive from Bridgetown. The deal includes flights from Gatwick on 3 Sept for £674pp. Britishairways.com

Stellar views: The legendary Star Ferry

48 Hours: Hong Kong

The night skies are lighting up all over the Chinese city-state as residents welcome the dawn of the Year of the Dragon. Matthew Bell reports.

Unless you really head off the beaten track, you'll find most islands offer an easy experience for families

The Caribbean: Come on in, the water's lovely!

Sandy shores and warm weather make the Caribbean the perfect family playground

Lost weekend: Caramel Lounge at the Bellagio is the place for short and sweet shots

The Hedonist: Las Vegas

What to see and where to be seen

Travel Challenge: A Californian fly-drive holiday

Each week we invite three companies to offer us their best deal for a specific holiday. Today: a two-week road trip in California. Prices are per person, based on two people travelling together. Each includes car hire, room-only accommodation and flights from Heathrow on Monday 5 March.

Wildlife spotting: A giraffe in Nairobi National Park

48 Hours In: Nairobi

Warm days and wildlife on your doorstep make Kenya's capital an appealing place in which to escape winter. Richard Trillo reports.

BA tightens its Heathrow grip with £172m BMI buy

Deal is screwing the travelling public, says Branson after Virgin Atlantic's rival bid fails

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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
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
Diana Krall: The jazz singer on being friends with Elton John, outer space and skiing in Dubai

Diana Krall interview

The jazz singer on being friends with Elton John, outer space and skiing in Dubai
Pinstriped for action: A glimpse of what the very rich man will be wearing this winter

Pinstriped for action

A glimpse of what the very rich man will be wearing this winter
Russell T Davies & Ben Cook: 'Our friendship flourished online. You can share some very revelatory moments at four in the morning…'

Russell T Davies & Ben Cook: How we met

'Our friendship flourished online. You can share some very revelatory moments at four in the morning…'
Bill Granger recipes: Our chef serves up his favourite Japanese dishes

Bill Granger's Japanese recipes

Stock up on mirin, soy and miso and you have the makings of everyday Japanese cuisine
Michael Calvin: How we need more Eric Cantonas to knock some sense into us

Michael Calvin's Last Word

How we need more Eric Cantonas to knock some sense into us