Travel

Not for sissies

3 December 2011 11:00 am

Nigeria is not exactly a tourist destination. A colleague chortles over the memory of trying to wangle his way in…

Rumbled in the jungle

26 November 2011 11:00 am

This book is a mess. Simon Mann may have been brought up on John Buchan, educated at Eton and Sandhurst,…

The call of the wild

27 August 2011 10:00 am

Christopher Ondaatje is best known as a member of the great and the good and a generous patron of the arts, notably the National Portrait Gallery. The pieces collected in this book give glimpses of another, quite different life as a traveller and writer.

A well-told lie

13 August 2011 12:00 am

Michael Ondaatje takes a journey into childhood

Heroes of the Ice Age

13 August 2011 12:00 am

Four new books on the great era of polar exploration

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Junk, day and night

6 August 2011 12:00 am

A jeremiad against litter-loutish Britain

Don’t blur the lines

30 July 2011 12:00 am

Did you know that on the Central Line’s maiden journey to Shepherd’s Bush, one of the passengers was Mark Twain? Or that The Picture of Dorian Gray and The Sign of Four were both commissioned by the same publisher at the same London dinner? Or that Harrods dropped the apostrophe from its name in 1921, a full 19 years before Selfridges followed suit? My guess is that you probably didn’t — which is where Walk the Lines comes in.

The last place on earth

23 July 2011 12:00 am

Colin Thubron has called Siberia ‘the ultimate unearthly abroad’, the ‘place from which you will not return’.

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Talking about regeneration

23 July 2011 12:00 am

Iain Sinclair, the London novelist and poet, is always on the move.

Wool of bat and lizard leg

16 July 2011 12:00 am

When Julia Blackburn and her Dutch husband Herman move into an old village house perched on a cliff high above the Italian Ligurian Riviera they become part of a dwindling community in a landscape of forests and deserted villages with roofless ruins almost swallowed up by the riotous undergrowth.

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Good companions

16 July 2011 12:00 am

‘Choose your companions’, says an early Arab proverb, ‘thereafter your road.’ In the 1970s, Hugh Leach’s companion on his travels to Northern Yemen was Freya Stark, and she has become his companion again, in this affectionate hommage of photographs and short, scholarly texts.

The other man’s grass . . .

9 July 2011 12:00 am

Hundreds of thousands of hardy souls are preparing for a few nights under canvas this summer, often facing sunburn or trench foot while giddily jumping up and down in a muddy field as bands maul their better-known hits.

Ways of escape

9 July 2011 12:00 am

When I compiled a list of the top dozen travel writers of the past century for an American magazine the other day, it required some effort not to come up with an entirely British cast.

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Bella vistas

9 July 2011 12:00 am

Many moons ago when I went to Sissinghurst to ask Nigel Nicolson (late of this parish) if I could write about his mother, Vita Sackville-West, he raised his hands, and eyebrows, in horror, ‘Oh! Not another book about my mother!’ These two titles on Italian gardens may provoke a similar reaction, for there has been a recent run of revisiting via Charles Latham’s vintage Country Life photographs, Edith Wharton’s Edwardian musings and Georgina Masson’s 1961 classic, now revived.

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Relics of old Castile

11 June 2011 12:00 am

Christopher Howse describes Spain as ‘the strangest place with which Westerners can easily identify’.

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Elegy for wild Wales

4 June 2011 12:00 am

If you drive West out of Carmarthen on the A40, you pass through a landscape of dimpled hills and lonely chapels and little rivers full of salmon trout.

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Deep, dark mysteries

4 June 2011 12:00 am

For Peter Ackroyd, the subterranean world holds a potent allure.

Very drôle

28 May 2011 12:00 am

It’s nice to know that the trees lining the roads in Paris have microchips embedded in their trunks, that the city council is controlling the pigeon population by shaking the eggs to make them infertile and that the Café Voisin served elephant consommé during the 1870 siege.

Enchanting waters

14 May 2011 12:00 am

This is a book which is sometimes so private that reading it seems very nearly like an act of invasiveness.

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Wheels of fortune

14 May 2011 12:00 am

There are among us a churlish few who consider the term ‘sports personality’ to be an oxymoron.

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The trail goes cold

2 April 2011 12:00 am

For centuries, the history of the far North was a tapestry of controversies and mis- understandings, misspellings, dubious arrivals and equally dubious departures.

Glutton for punishment

26 March 2011 12:00 am

With its vast areas of barely explored wilderness, and its heady mix of the sublime, the bizarre and the lushly seductive, South America would appear to have all the ingredients to attract the travel writer.

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Nostalgie de la boue

19 March 2011 12:00 am

In the late 1960s I grew up in the London borough of Greenwich, which in those days had a shabby, post-industrial edge.

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A reluctant country

5 March 2011 12:00 am

The unification of Italy 150 years ago was a terrible mistake, according to David Gilmour, imposing a national state on a diverse collection of people with little sense of patria. But Barry Unsworth thinks it’s too early to cry failure

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To the holiest in the height

29 January 2011 12:00 am

Charles Allen is impressed by an arduous journey that is both a pilgrimage and a way of mourning lost relatives