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News & Advice

My Life In Travel: Cathy Tyson

'My dream trip would be travelling from one end of Africa to the other'

First holiday memory?

Going through the Mersey Tunnel and on to North Wales on a double-decker bus with my mum. I remember watching the concrete of the city change to the green and blue of the seaside.

Best holiday?

Probably going to Greece when I was 18 years old. I knew that when I returned home I would be starting my first professional job and for the first time in my life I felt beautiful.

Favourite place in the British Isles?

I have many, from Wales to Cornwall. The North Wales coastline holds many happy memories. I love the Great Orme headland in Llandudno there is a wonderful beach and walks that go on and on.

What have you learnt from your travels?

If you are pleasant to people they are generally pleasant back to you. Also, I've learnt never to let colour or so-called class prevent you going places.

Ideal travelling companion?

Any one of my friends. They make me laugh, are bright and into the arts. We would have things to talk and laugh about, plus we could talk about the men we liked since a couple of us are single the world is still our oyster!

Beach bum, culture vulture or adrenalin junkie?

I'm a culture vulture; although it would be good to learn to do nothing except lie down and breathe.

Greatest travel luxury?

Believe it or not, it is my 19-year-old son. I hope we go away again one day that would be special.

Holiday reading?

There have been times when I have taken work with me on holiday, which made me tense among relaxing holidaymakers. If I'm reading for pleasure, it would either be a Toni Morrison book, or a classic. I'm not into chick lit, although I do judge those books by their cover. I'm usually too busy swimming or engaging with the locals to read.

Where has seduced you?

Trinidad and Tobago in the Caribbean and French Guiana in South America. I love Italy for the historic beauty of the place; Sorrento and Positano are particularly beautiful.

Better to travel or arrive?

To travel. I love all the preparing.

Worst travel experience?

Going to Cyprus in December a few years ago. I thought it would be warm, but it was chilly and Paphos was empty. I did enjoy the mosaics of Nea Paphos, though, which I had all to myself.

Worst holiday?

A holiday in Cemaes Bay in Anglesey with some friends. Their child wouldn't play with mine, so after day two I left silly, but I was super-sensitive back then.

Worst hotel?

A hotel in Birmingham. The walls were Artex-white and as I slept, I dreamt I was in a fridge. I felt chilled all through the night.

Best hotel?

Fortunately, there have been lots. The Malmaison in Manchester was brilliant it made me want to explore the hotel, which I never do. I stayed there for an awards ceremony and won the award, so it was a memorable stay.

First thing you do when you arrive somewhere new?

Have a cup of tea, then a shower, and then go for a walk.

Best meal abroad?

A meal I had with a director in Paris. He paid for me to travel on the Eurostar and met me in Paris, where he dined me French-style. I have forgotten where and what we ate, but the service and surroundings were wonderful.

Favourite city?

Liverpool is a favourite. I love the architecture and its closeness to the sea and great woodland. I also love London's Theatreland and the endless opportunities to better oneself there.

Dream trip?

My dream trip would be on a train, ideally travelling from one end of Africa to the other.

Where next?

I would like to go on an artistic holiday in the sun: perhaps poetry on a Greek island.

Cathy Tyson will star in 'Liverpool Nativity', live tomorrow at 8pm on BBC3