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The Fritton Arms, Norfolk: hotel review

Plenty of hotels have a pool, but this one comes with its own swimming lake. And exploring the extensive grounds provides the perfect excuse for tucking into the estate’s excellent fare My weekends away usually involve a lie-in and a fry-up, not shivering at the edge of a lake at 8am, trying to find the […]

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Mash Inn, Radnage, Buckinghamshire: hotel review

This pub with rooms is surrounded by Michellin-starred restaurants, but the food here is good enough to rival the famous names – and at a fraction of the price I went to the Mash Inn with high hopes for dinner. The recently reopened pub makes much of its prime position in foodie country, name-checking illustrious […]

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20 of the best places to stargaze in the UK

The National Parks Dark Skies Festival (18-26 February) is an ideal opportunity to try stargazing in some of the UK’s wildest areas. But here, we’ve also selected stellar sites that are good throughout the year The South Downs became an international dark sky reserve in May 2016, with 66% of the park having bronze-level skies […]

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Top 10 group walks for winter in the UK

Embracing the great outdoors in the dead of winter is a lot easier in a group and with a knowledgeable leader for motivation. We pick the best guided walks around Britain The Ramblers Festival of Winter Walks has been running for more than 25 years. Last year, thousands of people joined hundreds of free, group, […]

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10 of the best women-only activity holidays

Demand for women-only breaks is growing. These activity trips include yoga, surfing, boot camps, and dog-sledding, from Kent to Kilimanjaro Desperately Seeking Adventure runs active trips for small groups of women of all ages – the oldest participant so far was 72. There are two via ferrata trips to Italy: a five-night taster around Lake […]

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Vigo: a city break and a beach holiday

New direct flights to Vigo, on the coast of Galicia, bring the Caribbean-like beaches of the Cíes islands within easy reach. And there’s lots to enjoy in the newly confident city itself, too On the wide crescent of soft white sand that stretched ahead as far as we could see, we spent a lazy afternoon […]

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Let’s go to … Ventnor, Isle of Wight

Get your festival gear on and enjoy live music from March to August, or just make the most of the revamped arts and dining scene in this sheltered seaside haven Why the Isle of Wight?Queen Victoria made it fashionable in the 19th century. Hollywood royalty is doing the same for it today: Benedict Cumberbatch got […]

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The best Romania holiday ideas

Our pick of Romania’s highlights, from buzzing Bucharest to mountain trails and ghoulish castles The capital is in an exciting stage of development, with EU investment resulting in sympathetic modernisation projects and a general buzz around the city. But you can still visit Ceausescu’s obscenely grandiose palace and other communist-era monstrosities, plus medieval churches and […]

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Urban splash: street art in Lisbon

For cutting-edge street art, head to the Portuguese capital, Lisbon. From derelict buildings to art galleries, new graffiti is appearing every daySee a gallery of Lisbon’s fantastic street art Lisbon is an elegant city of pastel buildings with terracotta roofs, jumbled together on steep cobbled streets. So it was a shock to see a 40-foot […]