Travel: What's the best way to...

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The Independent Travel
Stay in a five-star hotel for half price? Book an Inter-Continental hotel before 2 September. The chain (0345 581444) is cutting rates, making Madrid available for pounds 104 a room per night including breakfast, tax and service. With an Iberia (0171-830 0011) return for pounds 94, two people can have a luxury weekend for less than pounds 200 each.

Take a tour to Tours? Buy an pounds 89 return ticket from London Waterloo on Eurostar (0990 717273), with a change at Lille. Poitiers is available at the same price. The journey time is six hours or less.

Take a backwards plummeting ride in total darkness? Climb aboard X:/ No Way Out, the latest attraction at Thorpe Park (01932 562633). The rollercoaster opens next Monday, and daily until 27 October. You must be at least 1.4m tall to ride.