LIBBY PURVES, broadcaster: Sailing in Holland one year, it had been raining solidly all week, and our two-and-a-half- year-old announced he was going home alone, because he couldn't stand it any more.

LESLIE THOMAS, author: Lido di Jesolo near Venice, about 20 years ago. It was incredibly crowdedand the hotel had beds like trampolines. On the very first day I was swimming with my family when all of a sudden we realised we were heading into a slick of raw sewage.

AMANDA REDINGTON, GMTV travel presenter: Bali, four years ago. We ended up in a beach shack which had no electricity or water but seemed idyllic. That night I woke up with a start, burning all over. My husband found a box of matches, lit one and found I was covered in ants from head to foot. We both started screaming and ran naked out of the hut into the sea.

TED ROGERS, comedian: Tenerife, 20 years ago. There was nothing to do except swim - no radio or television or even a phone. It was like being in prison. We were booked for two-and-a-half weeks but we arrived on Monday and were on our way home on Friday.

JOAN WYNDHAM, writer: The worst thing about most holidays is getting caught short in peculiar places. My worst was in the mountains of Macedonia after a meal of goat. The peasant lady took me to a deep ravine. There was a swaying bridge thrown across it with a hole in the middle, and she indicated that I was to go to the middle of the bridge and squat over the hole, 200 feet above a raging torrent. While I was squatting there, swaying in terror, she very politely turned her back and put her fingers in her ears.

DANNII MINOGUE, singer: Ibiza. I was expecting loads of sunshine and tropical beaches. When we got there it poured with rain non-stop for two weeks and I got really ill on the local food. A total disaster.

MARGARET SYMINGTON, vicar's wife: Camping in France. Iwas on my way back from having a shower when it started to rain down hailstones as big as golf balls. I was bruised black and blue and ran for the tent. But the wind was so strong that once I got inside it started to take off. I can't remember much about the rest, I was rather knocked out.

JUDY WEST, secretary: Gran Canaria. Our apartment was utterly disgusting - there weren't enough beds and I ended up sleeping on a revolting sofa which one of the many pregnant cats roaming around then chose as her favoured place to give birth. On the way home, having spent two weeks cooped up with the friend I went with, we started to bicker and pick faults. Finally, on the plane, we had a massive argument. He's now an ex-friend.

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