My life in travel: Ashley Jensen

'My worst travel experience? Ending up in a police station in Havana'

Actress Ashley Jensen appears in All Stars, a new dance film which is released on DVD and Blu-ray this Monday

First holiday memory?

Girl Guide camp in Devon. It rained and we were in army tents that had a very specific smell when they got damp. We all wore our little guide uniforms and had duties to perform, like collecting sticks for the fire and stirring baked beans. I loved it.

Favourite place in the British Isles?

I've just moved to Bath, because it was one of my favourite places. When my husband and I came back from Los Angeles last summer [Jensen lived in the US while filming the television series, Ugly Betty], we bounced into London for a while, but then decided, because we've got a young boy, that we wanted to move.

We chose Bath because I love the architecture, the sense of history and the fact that it's surrounded by beautiful countryside.

Best holiday?

Before I lived in America, my husband and I did a Californian road trip. We took a month, starting off in LA. I love the landscapes of California: one moment you're in the desert, the next you're up in the Napa Valley, or by the water in Big Bear.

Ideal travelling companion?

Louis Theroux would be fun. I love his audacity. He manages to get away with everything. I admire that bold, bare-faced approach and being able to go into any situation. I think you'd find yourself in interesting places.

Beach bum, culture vulture or adrenalin junkie?

Culture vulture. My husband is always telling me: "We're on holiday, we don't need to have an itinerary!" But I always want to see as much as I can. Sometimes, I come back from holiday, needing a holiday.

Greatest travel luxury?

A travel kettle, because I get annoyed at having to pay £4 for a cup of tea or a coffee and a £5 service charge on top. Before you know it, you've paid £10 for a tea bag.

Holiday reading?

Guidebooks and cookery books as well, with recipes of the area I'm in.

Where has seduced you?

Italy. We have a house in Umbria that we bought just before we went to America. That meant we couldn't go there as often as we thought, but now we're back, we're going to start using it more. I love the light, the countryside, the language and the fact that children are accepted everywhere. The Italians get passionate about everything too.

Worst travel experience?

Ending up in a police station in Havana. My boyfriend at the time and I went to what we thought was just a funky nightclub. Actually, it was a brothel. We were having a dance, came back and my bag had gone. We ended up going to the police station in the back of a police car, taken away as though we were criminals.

When we got there, the police were sitting around not really speaking English and drinking rum out of plastic cups. My boyfriend and I just sat there thinking: "We'll laugh about this if we ever get out!"

Favourite drive?

Mulholland Drive at night. If you look over, you see the whole of The Valley and Burbank, which is so flat, with all these twinkling lights. It's reminiscent of so many films you've ever seen. We even used to play the soundtrack to Drive as we went. It takes quite a lot to shut me up, but as soon as we put that music on, I'd be quiet.

Best meal abroad?

We went to a place in Umbria called Castelluccio. It used to have a strong community but now lots of the young people have left. The town is almost deserted, but around that area, black truffles are plentiful. We ate spaghetti al tartufo, which were the best truffles I've ever had.

Favourite city?

London. Having lived away, you see it clearer. There's history, it's exciting and vibrant, and I love the fact that the parks are for the people. You get great swathes of greenery in LA, but it's usually a private golf course for 150 people. London feels very alive to me.

Where next?

Italy with my husband and our son for 10 days. Because we've been several times, I don't feel the need to have my itinerary. I can just loll about, read my cookery books and eat lovely Italian food.

PROMOTED VIDEO
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Arts and Entertainment
Madonna is not in Twitter's good books after describing her album leak as 'artistic rape and terrorism'
music
Arts and Entertainment
Tony Hughes (James Nesbitt) after his son Olly disappeared on a family holiday in France
tv
Arts and Entertainment
The Apprentice candidates Roisin Hogan, Solomon Akhtar, Mark Wright, Bianca Miller, Daniel Lassman
tvReview: But which contestants got the boot?
Arts and Entertainment
Jim Carrey and Jeff Daniels ride again in Dumb and Dumber To
filmReview: Dumb And Dumber To was a really stupid idea
News
people

Jo from Northern Ireland was less than impressed by Russell Brand's attempt to stage a publicity stunt

Extras
indybest
Travel
ebookHow to enjoy the perfect short break in 20 great cities
Sport
Scunthorpe goalkeeper Sam Slocombe (left) is congratulated by winning penalty taker Miguel Llera (right)
football
Life and Style
A woman walks by a pandal art installation entitled 'Mars Mission' with the figure of an astronaut during the Durga Puja festival in Calcutta, India
techHow we’ll investigate the existence of, and maybe move in with, our alien neighbours
Arts and Entertainment
Sir Ian McKellen tempts the Cookie Monster
tvSir Ian McKellen joins the Cookie Monster for a lesson on temptation
News
i100
Travel
Tourists bask in the sun beneath the skyscrapers of Dubai
travelBritish embassy uses social media campaign to issue travel advice for festive holiday-makers in UAE
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

    Investigo: Finance Analyst

    £240 - £275 per day: Investigo: Support the global business through in-depth a...

    Ashdown Group: Data Manager - £Market Rate

    Negotiable: Ashdown Group: Data Manager - MySQL, Shell Scripts, Java, VB Scrip...

    Ashdown Group: Application Support Analyst - Bedfordshire/Cambs border - £32k

    £27000 - £32000 per annum: Ashdown Group: Application Support Analyst - near S...

    Recruitment Genius: Class 1 HGV Driver

    £23000 - £27000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: This successful group of compan...

    Day In a Page

    Jeb Bush vs Hillary Clinton: The power dynamics of the two first families

    Jeb Bush vs Hillary Clinton

    Karen Tumulty explores the power dynamics of the two first families
    Stockholm is rivalling Silicon Valley with a hotbed of technology start-ups

    Stockholm is rivalling Silicon Valley

    The Swedish capital is home to two of the most popular video games in the world, as well as thousands of technology start-ups worth hundreds of millions of pounds – and it's all happened since 2009
    Did Japanese workers really get their symbols mixed up and display Santa on a crucifix?

    Crucified Santa: Urban myth refuses to die

    The story goes that Japanese store workers created a life-size effigy of a smiling "Father Kurisumasu" attached to a facsimile of Our Lord's final instrument of torture
    Jennifer Saunders and Kate Moss join David Walliams on set for TV adaptation of The Boy in the Dress

    The Boy in the Dress: On set with the stars

    Walliams' story about a boy who goes to school in a dress will be shown this Christmas
    La Famille Bélier is being touted as this year's Amelie - so why are many in the deaf community outraged by it?

    Deaf community outraged by La Famille Bélier

    The new film tells the story of a deaf-mute farming family and is being touted as this year's Amelie
    10 best high-end laptops

    10 best high-end laptops

    From lightweight and zippy devices to gaming beasts, we test the latest in top-spec portable computers
    Michael Carberry: ‘After such a tough time, I’m not sure I will stay in the game’

    Michael Carberry: ‘After such a tough time, I’m not sure I will stay in the game’

    The batsman has grown disillusioned after England’s Ashes debacle and allegations linking him to the Pietersen affair
    Susie Wolff: A driving force in battle for equality behind the wheel

    Susie Wolff: A driving force in battle for equality behind the wheel

    The Williams driver has had plenty of doubters, but hopes she will be judged by her ability in the cockpit
    Adam Gemili interview: 'No abs Adam' plans to muscle in on Usain Bolt's turf

    'No abs Adam' plans to muscle in on Usain Bolt's turf

    After a year touched by tragedy, Adam Gemili wants to become the sixth Briton to run a sub-10sec 100m
    Calls for a military mental health 'quality mark'

    Homeless Veterans campaign

    Expert calls for military mental health 'quality mark'
    Racton Man: Analysis shows famous skeleton was a 6ft Bronze Age superman

    Meet Racton Man

    Analysis shows famous skeleton was a 6ft Bronze Age superman
    Garden Bridge: St Paul’s adds to £175m project’s troubled waters

    Garden Bridge

    St Paul’s adds to £175m project’s troubled waters
    Stuff your own Christmas mouse ornament: An evening class in taxidermy with a festive feel

    Stuff your own Christmas mouse ornament

    An evening class in taxidermy with a festive feel
    Joint Enterprise: The legal doctrine which critics say has caused hundreds of miscarriages of justice

    Joint Enterprise

    The legal doctrine which critics say has caused hundreds of miscarriages of justice
    Freud and Eros: Love, Lust and Longing at the Freud Museum: Objects of Desire

    Freud and Eros

    Love, Lust and Longing at the Freud Museum