This jaw-dropping £450m concept for a mega-yacht has been inspired by a shark. The 501ft long & 112ft wide 'Prodigium' features fin-like structures and windows that echo the toothy grin of the marine predator. The vessel,
Plunging prices, free perks and guilt-free relaxation – a staycation in your home city is more of a holiday than you might think, says Alicia Miller
International travel is allowed from tier 3 locations 'if you're going straight to an airport,’ said the transport secretary, Grant Shapps
Crafts and colour expert Momtaz Begum-Hossain uses tea towels lying around the house to update shirts. Hand sewing with a needle and thread, the items are given a new look that can be worn as a shirt or jacket. This fashionable approach to
Language can be a weird and persistent creature. Sometimes, a phrase can take root in human consciousness – even though there is scant reason for it to hang around, and little to support its continued existence. "Elbow Grease" would be one (whoever heard of such a thing?). "Stealing Thunder" would be another (from whom, why, and how?). And then there is "Bermuda Triangle”. Ah yes – "Bermuda Triangle" would definitely be a third. You know what it means, of course. In its two mis-matched words, it is a concept that was dragged from the murky realm of conspiracy theories, wild conjecture and grand leaps into fantasy – but in an era when conspiracy theories, wild conjecture and grand leaps into fantasy had not become the fulcrum of everyday conversation on social media. It describes a three-sided patch of the Atlantic Ocean, shaped by straight lines drawn between the titular British Overseas Territory, San Juan on the Caribbean island of Puerto Rico, and Miami, at the south tip of the Florida peninsula. Here – so wild folklore purports – is somewhere around (definitions of the Triangle’s size differ) 500,000 square miles of water where strange and inexplicable things happen. Planes fall out of the sky. Huge ships slip below the waves. Entire cargos evaporate. Men and women are plucked from the face of the planet, never to be seen again. These disappearances happen at the behest of unseen forces – perhaps even malevolent aliens in space-ships. And the whole thing is wrapped in a blanket of silence – though Someone Somewhere knows The Truth. It is a nonsense, of course. While historical records show that there has been a sizeable number of accidents and losses in the area, the Bermuda Triangle encompasses some of the world's busiest air-traffic spaces and shipping lanes. Shipping lanes across waters which are enormously deep, yet sharp-toothed with reefs and threatening currents. Waters where hurricanes and tropical cyclones are a worry, depending on the time of year. Air-traffic spaces which, pre-Covid-19 at least, buzzed to the near-constant thrum of jet engines. If you have ever caught a plane to Miami or Fort Lauderdale – or anywhere in the westerly parts of the Caribbean, from Cuba, Jamaica and the Dominican Republic to the beach resorts of Cancun and Mexico's Riviera Maya – then you have almost certainly flown through it (and, assuming you are reading this, have lived to tell the tale). By the laws of average and plausible risk, the Bermuda Triangle is no more deadly than any other randomly picked portion of the globe. But that hasn’t stopped it becoming A Thing.
Low waste advocate Kate Bamber makes a healthy smoothie with strawberries, bananas and avocado while trying to avoid waste. To reduce and reuse, the green stems of the strawberries are left on, the banana peels are turned into a fertiliser and
Sadie Whitelocks gets the inside track from Luca Roncoroni, the creative director of Sweden’s famed Icehotel
These are unusual times, and the state of affairs can change quickly. Please check the latest travel guidance before making your journey. Note that our writer visited pre-pandemic. Brazil has 4,655 miles of coast, and a lot of it is beach. The best country in South America for silky sand and warm seas, it’s also one where beach and culture are not oxymoronic. To hang with party-loving Paulistas, aim for DPNY on Ihlabela. South of trendy Trancoso, Le Paxa is an understated, barefoot-chic beauty in the village of Caraiva. Uruguay is no longer an upstart beach destination; at José Ignacio, Bahia Vik is a high-modernist estancia for urban gauchos. On the Pacific coast, surf’s the thing and Mancora in Peru is world famous for its breaks; Arennas has the rollers, sea views and the ceviches. South of Santiago de Chile, Alaia is beach style at its very best: low-slung, high-concept, eco-conscientious. Here's our pick of the best hotels on the beach in South America.
Every British tour operator has suffered this year, with global travel restrictions putting much of the world out of reach. Even now, nine months on from the start of the Covid pandemic, a quarter of countries – 59 in total – still haven’t reopened their borders. But for long-haul specialists like Expert Africa, founded by Chris McIntyre 26 years ago, the situation has been particularly dire. The Government’s travel corridor list dictates where Britons can go without needing to quarantine on their return home, and, until the addition of Namibia and Rwanda last month, the whole of Africa has been snubbed. Furthermore, thanks to the Foreign Office’s blanket non-essential travel advisory, tour operators are hindered from even offering trips to non-corridor countries. “It’s been a challenging year to say the least,” McIntyre tells Telegraph Travel. “Annually, we usually take around 1,200 guests on high-end safaris, with around half of our clients coming from the UK, a quarter from the US, and the rest from a range of other countries. Since March that figure has fallen by around 80%.” So far in 2020, 27 Atol-protected holiday businesses have gone under – with STA Travel and Shearings the most high-profile losses – but McIntyre believes many more are on the brink. “Over the years we’ve tried to put money away for a rainy day, and we’re currently surviving on that,” he says. “I think other prudent companies have done likewise, which might be why we’ve so far seen relatively few failures. But if it doesn’t stop raining... if people can’t travel properly by next summer, there won’t be many travel companies left.” McIntyre recognises that the Government has faced tough decisions during the Covid crisis, but is scathing about its lack of support for an industry that employs hundreds of thousands of Britons. “I just don’t think the Government cares about travel – they have written it off from the start,” he says. “They think it’s simply foreign currency going out the door, and would rather people go on holiday in Cornwall... never mind the companies that will go bust and the jobs that will be lost.” McIntyre is particularly damning about the absence of any engagement with his industry, pointing out that not a single business leader was asked to join the Global Travel Taskforce, established in October with the goal of revitalising overseas holidays. He adds: “There are other basic ways they could have helped. For example, they’ve hammered tour operators when it comes to offering refunds instead of credit notes, but airlines have not been put under the same pressure. So you’ve got tour operators being ordered to refund customers when much of their money is sitting in airline bank accounts, not being handed back, so they simply can’t.”
A new law has been passed in Italy that prohibits travel between towns and regions this Christmas – a final blow for ski resorts that will likely not be able to reopen this year.
What was the expression the doctor used to resort to when, as a small child, you were led into the surgery for your measles immunisation? “Don’t worry, this won’t hurt a bit.” It wasn’t strictly true, even as the consolatory lollipop distracted your from the plaster being applied to your skin – and it won’t be wholly accurate now. But here we are, nearing the end of a dreadful year, and a sharp jab in the upper arm is a definite reason to be cheerful. Recent weeks have brought increasingly good news about the hunt for a Covid vaccine – from Germany, from the USA, from Oxford. And this time, there will be no need for lollipops. The enormous consolation for the needle-prick will be an escape from the virus that has dogged our lives for a year, a return to normality, and the prospect of travel as we remember it from the vague mists of 2019 – free of PCR tests and quarantine restrictions. When? Pretty soon. In the UK, vaccinations for some groups are to start early next week – with immunisation of the wider populace continuing in the new year. And this brings with it the alluring image of travel picking up again fully just as winter packs its bags – of an April and May when borders and beaches are open, and all those holidays that were dreamed of amid the gloom off 2020 are suddenly possible again. The suggestions in this feature focus on those two months – whether it be for Easter breaks on Spanish shores, a setting off on the longer-haul journeys that have been so impractical of late, or a return to destinations, from America to Africa, that have been closed off since March. Don’t worry, this won’t hurt a bit? Now you mention it, doctor, it won’t hurt at all. Beaches 1. Thailand Our laboratory-brokered breaking of Covid’s chains will not come soon enough for easy travel over the new year. But if you wait for April, you should be able to salute the arrival of a fresh calendar for a second time – and, better still, on a tropical beach. Songkran, the version of New Year celebrated across much of South-East Asia, is particularly lively in Thailand, where it extends to three days – April 13-15 in 2021.
Cradling a pangolin bigger than a basketball, as it unfurls its scaly rudder of a tail, Amos Gwema is enjoying a special moment. Historically revered in Zimbabwe, the prehistoric mammal is too superior to be considered a totem animal, and finding one is a sign of prosperity. But today any good fortunes are in the pangolin’s favour as it prepares to embark on a second lease of life. A month ago, Amos seized the shy, endangered creature from poachers, who were planning to profit from its highly prized scales or sell it for ‘blasting’ – a senseless ritual, where the animal is jetted with water in the belief its plates of armour will transform into dollar notes. After a period of rehabilitation at the Tikki Hywood Foundation in Harare, a non-profit working closely with Amos and his intelligence team, the charismatic pangolin is finally heading back into the wilds of Hwange National Park along with three other females. “We’ve already released 10 this year,” boasts the Principal Intelligence Ofﬁce proudly, as he watches the new releases forage on termite mounds. “So, the probability of seeing pangolins in the future is high.” Although most of his surveillance work is done covertly behind the scenes, Amos is preparing to take centre stage with this year’s Tusk Wildlife Ranger Award.