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A foraging trip for flavours and peace of mind in Epping Forest

Searching for wild foods in the UK can mean discovering fresh or forgotten tastes. For one furloughed worker it also turned into a life-affirming hobby“It was like pushing my way through to Narnia,” said Steve Woolnough of his secret find on Epping Forest’s western edge. Spotting a sunlit patch of grass, he’d crawled through undergrowth to find himself...

The return of Thomas Hardy's favourite haunt, the King's Arms, Dorchester – review

This newly-restored 16th-century hotel and inn, immortalised by the novelist, had a rocky start due to the pandemic. But, unlike most of his stories, there is hope of a happy endingDorchester is at the heart of what the National Trust calls “Hardy Country” – and he is everywhere. Not that I mind. I’m a big fan of his Wessex novels. And I was pretty...

My most memorable train ride: 10 readers' travel tips

With live music in the carriage, bear sightings and an active volcano in clear view, our tipsters’ rail trips show that it’s often more about the journey than the destinationThe 68-mile trip round Mount Etna in eastern Sicily was full of contrasts: the bleak black landscapes of the lava fields; lush valleys covered in fig, orange, pistachio and olive...

Tell us about your favourite travel discovery of 2020 for a chance to win a £200 holiday prize

Most of us haven’t been abroad this year but great discoveries needn’t be in far-flung places – they could be on your doorstep. The best tip wins £200 towards a Sawday’s stayWhether you managed to safely holiday abroad and found a special place, or you stayed in the UK and happened on a local gem that’s formed part of your lockdown routine, we would...

One woman's charity cycle trip in search of places called Hope

With her job stalled by the pandemic, Helen Proudfoot found plenty of Hopes in Britain, from Scotland to Devon – and also did some fundraisingIt’s been a tough year for the travel industry, but one cycle tour leader decided not to let 2020 get her down – by riding 1,000 miles around the UK in search of Hope.Helen Proudfoot, who works for adventure company...

The BAME women making the outdoors more inclusive

The British countryside remains a distinctly white and often intimidating place for BAME communities. We interview three outdoor enthusiasts seeking to address this lack of diversity The British countryside being the preserve of the white middle classes is a perception that is backed by stark figures, with ethnic minorities often deterred from heading...

Lastminute.com to pay £7m in refunds for cancelled holidays

Booking site to reimburse 9,000 customers after inquiry by UK competition watchdogCoronavirus – latest updatesSee all our coronavirus coverageLastminute.com, the flight and hotel booking site, has agreed to pay £7m in refunds to more than 9,000 customers whose holidays were cancelled because of coronavirus.After an investigation by the Competition and...

Austria set to bow to pressure on Covid risk with ski holiday ban

Country has faced calls from European neighbours over spread of virus at its resortsCoronavirus – latest updatesSee all our coronavirus coverageAustria’s government appears to have bowed to pressure from Germany, France and Italy and will ban skiing holidays over the Christmas break in an attempt to control the coronavirus pandemic, Austrian media is...

'The beauty of the desert in Namibia took my breath away' Jenny Zarins, photographer

Our series on captivating travel photos continues with Jenny Zarins’s image from a horse-riding safari in the Namib desertThis photograph, taken in the Namib desert in 2018, captures a sense of freedom for me, that feeling of vastness we get from spending extended time in the wild. I was on a horse-riding safari: 11 days of being outside all day and...

There’ll be no Christmas cheer for pubs stuck in tier 3

A community-focused Ramsbottom pub that trains marginalised young people slams the ‘inept system’ that is forcing tens of thousands of hospitality venues to remain closed In a normal year in the run-up to Christmas, Glen Duckett, landlord of the award-winning Eagle + Child in Ramsbottom, would be accompanying five or six of his staff on a trip to Angoulême...

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