Arrivals/Departures: Fancy a bit of a fry-up? Go take a hike
Sunday 21 October 2001
Mould is something most sensible travellers try to avoid, but at this time of year, the British countryside sprouts fungus quicker than you can say porcini risotto and discerning foodies and ramblers are heading for the woods. There are 3,000 kinds of mushroom in the UK, and the annual harvest is becoming less associated with sandal-and-sock wearers and more with the idea that you don't have to travel to the Continent to find a good bit of fungi to fry up. This year's exceptionally mild and damp conditions should mean a bountiful crop, but get there quick before the first frosts scupper the best-laid dinner plans. The National Trust (0870 458 4000; www.nationaltrust.org.uk) organises a number of guided fungi forays nationwide.
Mould is something most sensible travellers try to avoid, but at this time of year, the British countryside sprouts fungus quicker than you can say porcini risotto and discerning foodies and ramblers are heading for the woods. There are 3,000 kinds of mushroom in the UK, and the annual harvest is becoming less associated with sandal-and-sock wearers and more with the idea that you don't have to travel to the Continent to find a good bit of fungi to fry up. This year's exceptionally mild and damp conditions should mean a bountiful crop, but get there quick before the first frosts scupper the best-laid dinner plans. The National Trust (0870 458 4000; www.nationaltrust.org.uk) organises a number of guided fungi forays nationwide.Armchair traveller
The BG Wildlife Photographer of the Year exhibition opens this week, offering a chance to see the best of the great outdoors under one roof. More than 19,000 entries from 60-plus countries were received, from both professional and amateur photographers, and 115 of the winning and commended photographs are on display. Natural History Museum, London (020-7942 5000), from 27 October to March 2002.Supersonic traveller
The first Concorde flights since the Paris disaster are, according to British Airways, "selling very successfully". Tickets for the first commercial flight to New York, on 9 November, went on sale last Tuesday, and the flight is already said to be more than half full. Fares have risen nearly 10 per cent since British Airways and Air France grounded all Concordes after the crash last July; the airline is said to have spent £17m on safety modifications. A standard return to New York starts from £6,819. To celebrate Concorde's return to the skies British Airways (0845 773 3377, www.britishairways.com/concorde) is offering a special return fare of £2,999 for travel between 10 November and 31 January 2002. (Must book by Monday 22.)Take a holiday from racism
Following the UN World Conference Against Racism, Tourism Concern (the UK's leading campaign group for ethical and sustainable tourism) has dedicated the current edition of its In Focus magazine to the issue of racism and tourism. The magazine looks at the ways in which tourism can reinforce rather than alleviate race inequality. Under particular discussion are the regular searches at customs, harassment at border controls and general hassle experienced by many ethnic minorities while on holiday in Europe. Michael Lomotely, Tourism Concern's outreach worker, says: "For me, as a black Briton, the holiday experience is never that simple. Racism can rear its ugly head each time you travel – there's no holiday from it on holiday." In addition, the magazine looks at the glaring disparities of earnings within the travel industry (for example, between black and white workers in Kenya's national parks) and the displacement of indigenous communities to make way for commercial development. For further information and subscription details contact Tourism Concern (020-7753 3330, www.tourismconcern.org.uk).Doctor on-line
Drugs delivered to your door? No, not a programme pioneered by Amsterdam city council but by E-Med, the on-line medical centre that has just launched a new service allowing you to order your anti-malarial medication online and have it delivered free of charge. Founded by Dr Jules Eden, a London-based GP and resident doctor at LBC radio, the service offers 24-hour online consultation and, where needed, can refer you to a qualified network of English-speaking doctors around the world. Go to www.e-med.co.ukThe big bang: cancelled
The National Campaign for Firework Safety has called for this year's Bonfire Night celebrations to be cancelled as a mark of respect to those affected by the events in the US and Afghanistan. The campaign is urging people to donate the money that they would have spent on buying fireworks to victims of the tragedy. So far, according to national tourist offices, no major events have been called off but if you do decide to go ahead with celebrations, current fireworks display listings can be found at www.visitbritain.co.uk. However, it's probably advisable to call ahead to check for last-minute cancellations.
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