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El Dorado in the Nevada Desert

Las Vegas - which means ‘the meadows’ in Spanish - was once a sleepy settlement of just 30 souls - now a thriving city famous for it’s casinos and night-life ROBIN NOWACKI finds out more…

LIKE an El Dorado rising out of the shimmering heat of the Nevada Desert – Las Vegas – the once one horse town - has grown over the last eight decades to become a dazzling city of over one million people.

And the way Las Vegas has been built – no expense spared – any architectural dream or fantasy fulfilled - has made it one of the most visually spectacular and unusual cities on Earth.

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You haven’t been to India until you’ve been to the deep South

You haven’t been to India until you’ve seen south India, argues contributor NATASHA WARCHOLAK. You’re more likely to meet locals rather than back-packers, the people are friendlier, the food is fantastic and the area has a magnetic charm….

IF YOU think you have been to India because you’ve partied in Goa or ‘done’ Rajasthan, chance is you are wrong. The country is so big and so diverse that no two trips to the Indian subcontinent are the same. If you can afford to take some time off, it would be worth considering adding South India - the very bottom tip of the country - to your ‘been there, done that’ list.

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Stylish, practical travel

I HAVE been a fan of filofax for a long time - I had a special kids edition filofax as a child/young teen and absolutely adored it (I ran that thing through the mill), so coming into adulthood I invested in a gorgeous pink Finsbury A5 to get myself organised. I used it all through my time at university, and now, nine years down the line I still use it for, quite literally, everything. I use it to organise my daily life (bills, post, birthdays, anniversaries, household budgets) and my work life (interviews, story ideas, meetings, contacts, travel arrangements) - and I don't mind lugging my A5 between home and the office, but when it comes to travelling (and being a travel journalist and a huge fan of weekend getaways this is a regular thing!) it is proving to be a real pain in the you-know-what!

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The city that reveals itself slowly

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Havana is a city of paradoxes, scruffily elegant with as many layers as a Spanish onion. EDDIE LENNON peels them back to reveal a city that is more than a clutch of cliches…

HAVANA is a city many people visit, but few really get to know. And that’s not surprising, for Havana reveals itself slowly. It has as many layers as a Spanish onion.

The difficulty in finding the real Havana is partly due to the fact that, in this scruffily elegant colonial city, the paradoxes are everywhere—and constantly confuse. This is largely a Catholic city, yet is extremely liberal; communist, but surprisingly laid-back; politically stunted, but sensual and hedonistic; poverty-stricken, yet extremely friendly and safe.

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A REFRESHING RETURN TO ROOTS...

Despite obtaining the break from Mother England more than 200 years ago, a number of European traditions took root in Pennsylvania, blossoming here and flowering enthusiastically. The southeast corner of this state is particularly suited to the art of gardening, given its temperate clime and its citizens’ multi-generational talents with agribusiness.

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