My life in travel: Andrew Strauss

'I find safaris incredibly relaxing. It's hard to be thinking about home there'

Former England cricketer, Andrew Strauss, is offering coaching at SportFest, in collaboration with Super Skills Experiences, from 2–3 August at the Wormsley Estate, Buckinghamshire (sport-fest.co.uk).

First holiday memory?

Kruger National Park. I lived in South Africa as a child and we went on safari in our car. The thing I remember most is looking for wildlife out of the window. If either my sisters or I spotted anything, we would get a prize.

Favourite place in the British Isles?

I haven't done a huge amount of travelling here – summers in England have usually been spent playing cricket – but I do love the Highlands of Scotland, for the beautiful, remoteness of it. It's completely timeless. In the summer, it stays light so long and you get beautiful colours.

I also love being at home in Marlow in Buckinghamshire. There's been so much time in the past 15 years spent touring, that home is a pretty good place to be.

Best holiday?

Phinda game reserve in South Africa, with my family. We had our own guide and it was just an incredible experience, staying in a beautiful safari lodge with a pool. The kids loved going out looking for insects and we all saw incredible wildlife. We had breakfast by the lake one morning and just over the other side of the waterhole, we spotted some lions, which was a special thing to be able to do with my kids.

What have you learnt from your travels?

Travelling on cricket tours has made me appreciate how lucky I am. There are so many people who can't even dream of going on holiday. It's hard being away from home sometimes, but it's good to have the means and the opportunity to do so. New Zealand, Australia and the West Indies were some of my favourite stops. However, they almost blend in to one another because you're working, but you do get a couple of days off to explore.

Ideal travelling companion?

My family and my golf clubs. We once went to a resort called Zighy Bay in Oman, which is a stunning hotel, one of the best I've ever been to. Everyone had their own private villa on the beach, with an incredible mountainous backdrop. If I was going away with my clubs, I'd take them to Quinta do Lago in Portugal, which has great courses and is also good for the kids.

Beach bum, culture vulture or adrenalin junkie?

None of the above. I prefer seclusion and escapism in places with beautiful scenery, somewhere off the beaten track. Safaris sum it up for me: you're sitting down with a fire going, watching the sunset and you're completely remote – I find it incredibly relaxing. It's hard to be thinking about what's going on at home when you're in that environment.

Holiday reading?

I'm a big non-fiction person, so any books on history, sports and psychology. I'm reading a good one by Malcolm Gladwell at the moment, called David and Goliath, about underdogs. I've loved his previous books, such as Outliers, so he's a really interesting guy to read.

Where has seduced you?

For my wife's 40th birthday we went to a tiny hilltop village in Italy called Casperia and stayed at a beautiful little B&B called La Torretta. The scenery was extraordinary and it was just a great, fun few days. It showed me the authentic Italian lifestyle.

Worst hotel?

In Cuba, about 10 years ago. It was a beautiful place, but the hotels definitely needed some work. The five-star we stayed in was probably more two-star. When you're going to Cuba you know what you're getting: it was great to see some of the old American cars and the whole place was a bit ramshackle, which is part of the appeal, but the hotel didn't live up to what it said in the brochure.

Best hotel?

The Oyster Box in Durban, South Africa. It's an old, colonial-style building right on the beach with beautiful views. It had a cinema room with popcorn for the kids and was just tastefully done.

Favourite drive?

Through the mountainous terrain in St Lucia, from the airport down to Rodney Bay, past stunning views of the ocean and rainforest. At times, you feel like you're in Jurassic Park.

Best meal abroad?

A restaurant called El Tinars in Girona. Some friends recommended it and the quality of the food was outrageously good. They served tapas and authentic Spanish food. Everything about it was fantastic and flavoursome.

In terms of a location, the Cliff in Barbados is up there, too. To be perched on the edge of a cliff, listening to the sounds of the waves, with great service and fantastic food, is pretty special.

Where next?

Having spent lots of this year in Australia, I'm looking forward to summer in the UK.

PROMOTED VIDEO
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Arts and Entertainment
film

News
Mock the tweet: Ukip leader Nigel Farage and comedian Frankie Boyle
peopleIt was a polite exchange of words, as you can imagine
Arts and Entertainment
Steven, Ella Jade and Sarah in the boardroom
tv
Life and Style
fashion
Life and Style
Britons buy more than 30 million handsets each year, keeping them for an average of 18 months
tech
Arts and Entertainment
Benedict Cumberbatch is reported to be in final negotiations to play Doctor Strange for Marvel although the casting has not yet been confirmed
film
News
people
Arts and Entertainment
Alloysious Massaquoi, 'G' Hastings and Kayus Bankole of Young Fathers are the surprise winners of this year's Mercury Music Prize
musicThe surprise winners of the Mercury Prize – and a very brief acceptance speech
Arts and Entertainment
TV Presenters Ant McPartlin and Dec Donnelly. Winners of the 'Entertainment Programme' award for 'Ant and Dec's Saturday Night Takeaway'
musicAnt and Dec confirmed as hosts of next year's Brit Awards
Arts and Entertainment
Orson Welles made Citizen Kane at 25, and battled with Hollywood film studios thereafter
film
Travel
ebookHow to enjoy the perfect short break in 20 great cities
Life and Style
fashion

World Beard and Moustache Championships held last week

News
video
Arts and Entertainment
Copycat culture: the Chateau Zhang Laffitte in China, top, and the building which inspired it, in Paris, bottom
architectureReplicas of Western landmarks are springing up in unlikely places
Sport
Rolando Aarons watches as his effort finds the corner of the Manchester City goal to give Newcastle the lead
footballManchester City 0 Newcastle 2: Holders crash out on home turf
News
i100
Independent Travel Videos
Independent Travel Videos
Simon Calder in Amsterdam
Independent Travel Videos
Simon Calder in Giverny
Independent Travel Videos
Simon Calder in St John's
Independent Travel Videos
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

ES Rentals

    iJobs Job Widget
    iJobs Travel

    Sales Manager - Commercial Cable & Wire - UK

    £60,000 - £75,000: Recruitment Genius: As a top tier supplier to the major Aer...

    ORNC Visitor Experience Volunteer

    Unpaid voluntary work: Old Royal Naval College: Join our team of friendly volu...

    Junior Application Support Engineer (ERP / SSRS)

    £23000 - £30000 per annum + pension, 25days holiday: Ashdown Group: An industr...

    IT Systems Analyst / Application Support Engineer (ERP / SSRS)

    £23000 - £30000 per annum + pension, 25days holiday: Ashdown Group: An industr...

    Day In a Page

    Isis in Syria: A general reveals the lack of communication with the US - and his country's awkward relationship with their allies-by-default

    A Syrian general speaks

    A senior officer of Bashar al-Assad’s regime talks to Robert Fisk about his army’s brutal struggle with Isis, in a dirty war whose challenges include widespread atrocities
    ‘A bit of a shock...’ Cambridge economist with Glasgow roots becomes Zambia’s acting President

    ‘A bit of a shock...’ Economist with Glasgow roots becomes Zambia’s acting President

    Guy Scott's predecessor, Michael Sata, died in a London hospital this week after a lengthy illness
    Fall of the Berlin Wall: History catches up with Erich Honecker - the East German leader who praised the Iron Curtain and claimed it prevented a Third World War

    Fall of the Berlin Wall

    History catches up with Erich Honecker - the East German leader who praised the Iron Curtain and claimed it prevented a Third World War
    How to turn your mobile phone into easy money

    Turn your mobile phone into easy money

    There are 90 million unused mobiles in the UK, which would be worth £7bn if we cashed them in, says David Crookes
    Independent writers remember their Saturday jobs:

    Independent writers remember their Saturday jobs

    "I have never regarded anything I have done in "the media" as a proper job"
    Lyricist Richard Thomas shares his 11-step recipe for creating a hit West End musical

    11-step recipe for creating a West End hit

    Richard Thomas, the lyricist behind the Jerry Springer and Anna Nicole Smith operas, explains how Bob Dylan, 'Breaking Bad' and even Noam Chomsky inspired his songbook for the new musical 'Made in Dagenham'
    Tonke Dragt's The Letter for the King has finally been translated into English ... 50 years on

    Buried treasure: The Letter for the King

    The coming-of-age tale about a boy and his mission to save a mythical kingdom has sold a million copies since it was written by an eccentric Dutchwoman in 1962. Yet until last year, no one had read it in English
    Can instilling a sense of entrepreneurship in pupils have a positive effect on their learning?

    The school that means business

    Richard Garner heads to Lancashire, where developing the 'dragons' of the future is also helping one community academy to achieve its educational goals
    10 best tablets

    The world in your pocket: 10 best tablets

    They’re thin, they’re light, you can use them for work on the move or keeping entertained
    Lutz Pfannenstiel: The goalkeeper who gave up Bayern Munich for the Crazy Gang, Bradford and a whirlwind trawl across continents

    Lutz Pfannenstiel interview

    The goalkeeper who gave up Bayern Munich for the Crazy Gang, Bradford and a whirlwind trawl across continents
    Pete Jenson: Popular Jürgen Klopp can reignite Borussia Dortmund’s season with visit to Bayern Munich

    Pete Jenson's a Different League

    Popular Klopp can reignite Dortmund’s season with visit to Bayern
    John Cantlie video proves that Isis expects victory in Kobani

    Cantlie video proves that Isis expects victory in Kobani

    The use of the British hostage demonstrates once again the militants' skill and originality in conducting a propaganda war, says Patrick Cockburn
    The killer instinct: The man who helps students spot potential murderers

    The killer instinct

    Phil Chalmers travels the US warning students how to spot possible future murderers, but can his contentious methods really stop the bloodshed?
    Clothing the gap: A new exhibition celebrates women who stood apart from the fashion herd

    Clothing the gap

    A new exhibition celebrates women who stood apart from the fashion herd
    Fall of the Berlin Wall: Goodbye to all that - the lost world beyond the Iron Curtain

    The Fall of the Berlin Wall

    Goodbye to all that - the lost world beyond the Iron Curtain