My Life In Travel: Charlotte Uhlenbroek, Editor

'The pilot practically landed the aircraft blind'

First holiday memory?

I lived in Ghana until I was about five, and I remember going to Busua beach when I was three or four, which was the most beautiful place. It was the first time I encountered waves.

Best holiday?

After a bit of globetrotting, our family moved to Nepal and we often went trekking in the Himalayas. I love the sense of space and the peace; it's a different world. Another great holiday was a road trip across east Africa with my husband and some of his friends.

Favourite place in the British Isles?

I'd love to travel in the British Isles more. I have a special place in my heart for Cornwall, because my husband and I got married near St Mawes. I have a friend who runs a fabulous pub called the Tinners Arms in Zennor. I also adore the Scottish Highlands.

What have you learnt from your travels?

To be open-minded. Wherever you go, people are basically the same, which is reassuring.

Ideal travelling companion?

My husband, Dan. We took a year off in 2004 and spent the year travelling and exploring together, doing a bit of charity work on the way.

Beach bum, culture vulture or adrenalin junkie?

I do love to flop on a beach with a pile of books. I'm also a real history junkie so I love visiting ruins. Dan is very active so we almost always do something, even if it's an adventurous hike or some sailing.

Greatest travel luxury?

I have a basic pack that includes some kind of music, a Leatherman knife, a good book and a camera.

Holiday reading?

I love reading novels, because it's great to switch off from work. I enjoy historical novels; on our last holiday I got hooked on Patrick O'Brian's Master and Commander.

Where has seduced you?

So many places. Nepal seduced me from the word go and still does. East Africa is somewhere I really love, too; I always feel very close to the earth there. The Amazon was also one of the most mind-blowing places I've visited, as was Alaska.

Better to travel or arrive?

These days I prefer to arrive. When I was a child I loved the excitement of going to the airport. Having said that, journeys such as canoeing up the Amazon I could do forever.

Worst travel experience?

We had to land at a bush airstrip in Congo because we didn't have enough fuel. It was dark and there were no lights on the landing strip. The pilot practically landed blind, but thankfully the people who were waiting for us used their vehicle lights to guide us down.

Worst hotel?

There was a bad hotel in Mwanza, Tanzania. At the time, it was the only hotel there and had a disco attached to it that played incredibly loud music. There were bedbugs and no light bulbs or running water. The staff were delightful, though.

Best hotel?

A tiny hotel in Peru that we stayed at when we filmed the Jungle series. It was up in the cloud forest with a stunning waterfall right by it. The forest was hung with lichen, so you felt you were in a magical, alien world.

Favourite walk/swim/ ride/drive?

My favourite walks have to be in the Himalayas. Diving in Papua New Guinea was absolutely stunning, with such a wealth of life. I also did a wonderful ride along the beach in Australia: the sense of space was incredible and the horses loved galloping through the surf.

Best meal abroad?

I love Indian food. The best meals I had in India were in tiny tea-shops where the thalis – a fabulous selection of different curries – cost the equivalent of about 30p. In Goa, we found a place that did the best tandoori fish I've had, accompanied by the most delicious naan bread.

First thing you do when you arrive somewhere new?

If I'm filming and it's daytime, we get on with things pretty promptly. Otherwise I like to take an aimless meander to get my bearings.

Dream trip?

I'd love to travel to central Asia, particularly to the Mongolian steppe – I'm attracted to huge, open spaces. I'd also jump at the chance to go to Antarctica.

Favourite city?

I love Rome. When I was a child, we'd have to stop in Rome, at the UN's Food and Agriculture Organisation, which my father worked for. It's such a beautiful city.

Where next?

I'm off to film chimps in Uganda.

Charlotte Uhlenbroek is editor-in-chief of 'Animal Life', published by Dorling Kindersley on 1 October (£30;

Suggested Topics
Life and Style
Living for the moment: Julianne Moore playing Alzheimer’s sufferer Alice
A propaganda video shows Isis forces near Tikrit
voicesAdam Walker: The Koran has violent passages, but it also has others that explicitly tells us how to interpret them
Life and Style
love + sex
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Arts and Entertainment
Victoria Wood, Kayvan Novak, Alexa Chung, Chris Moyles
tvReview: No soggy bottoms, but plenty of other baking disasters on The Great Comic Relief Bake Off
Ashley Young celebrates the winner for Manchester United against Newcastle
footballNewcastle 0 Man United 1: Last minute strike seals precious victory
Life and Style
Tikka Masala has been overtaken by Jalfrezi as the nation's most popular curry
food + drink
Benjamin Netanyahu and his cartoon bomb – the Israeli PM shows his ‘evidence’
ebookHow to enjoy the perfect short break in 20 great cities
Arts and Entertainment
80s trailblazer: comedian Tracey Ullman
Arts and Entertainment
Stephen Tompkinson is back as DCI Banks
tvReview: Episode one of the new series played it safe, but at least this drama has a winning formula
Arts and Entertainment
Jeffrey Archer holds up a copy of 'Kane and Abel', a book he says was ripped-off by Bollywood
Life and Style
food + drink
Arts and Entertainment
Fay Weldon suggested authors should tailor their work for Kindle readers
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

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

ES Rentals

    iJobs Job Widget
    iJobs Travel

    Recruitment Genius: Product Advisor - Automotive

    £17000 - £23000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: Due to the consistent growth of...

    Recruitment Genius: Sales Administrator - Automotive

    £18000 - £25000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: An opportunity exists for an ex...

    Recruitment Genius: Renewals Sales Executive - Automotive

    £20000 - £30000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: An opportunity exists for an ou...

    Recruitment Genius: Membership Sales Advisor

    £18000 - £26000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: The fastest growing fitness cha...

    Day In a Page

    War with Isis: Iraq's government fights to win back Tikrit from militants - but then what?

    Baghdad fights to win back Tikrit from Isis – but then what?

    Patrick Cockburn reports from Kirkuk on a conflict which sectarianism has made intractable
    Living with Alzheimer's: What is it really like to be diagnosed with early-onset dementia?

    What is it like to live with Alzheimer's?

    Depicting early-onset Alzheimer's, the film 'Still Alice' had a profound effect on Joy Watson, who lives with the illness. She tells Kate Hilpern how she's coped with the diagnosis
    The Internet of Things: Meet the British salesman who gave real-world items a virtual life

    Setting in motion the Internet of Things

    British salesman Kevin Ashton gave real-world items a virtual life
    Election 2015: Latest polling reveals Tories and Labour on course to win the same number of seats - with the SNP holding the balance of power

    Election 2015: A dead heat between Mr Bean and Dick Dastardly!

    Lord Ashcroft reveals latest polling – and which character voters associate with each leader
    Audiences queue up for 'true stories told live' as cult competition The Moth goes global

    Cult competition The Moth goes global

    The non-profit 'slam storytelling' competition was founded in 1997 by the novelist George Dawes Green and has seen Malcolm Gladwell, Salman Rushdie and Molly Ringwald all take their turn at the mic
    Pakistani women come out fighting: A hard-hitting play focuses on female Muslim boxers

    Pakistani women come out fighting

    Hard-hitting new play 'No Guts, No Heart, No Glory' focuses on female Muslim boxers
    11 best gel eyeliners

    Go bold this season: 11 best gel eyeliners

    Use an ink pot eyeliner to go bold on the eyes with this season's feline flicked winged liner
    Katarina Johnson-Thompson: Heptathlete ready to jump at first major title

    Katarina Johnson-Thompson: Ready to jump at first major title

    After her 2014 was ruined by injury, 21-year-old Briton is leading pentathlete going into this week’s European Indoors. Now she intends to turn form into gold
    Syrian conflict is the world's first 'climate change war', say scientists, but it won't be the last one

    Climate change key in Syrian conflict

    And it will trigger more war in future
    How I outwitted the Gestapo

    How I outwitted the Gestapo

    My life as a Jew in wartime Berlin
    The nation's favourite animal revealed

    The nation's favourite animal revealed

    Women like cuddly creatures whilst men like creepy-crawlies
    Is this the way to get young people to vote?

    Getting young people to vote

    From #VOTESELFISH to Bite the Ballot
    Poldark star Heida Reed: 'I don't think a single bodice gets ripped'

    Poldark star Heida Reed

    'I don't think a single bodice gets ripped'
    The difference between America and Israel? There isn’t one

    The difference between America and Israel? There isn’t one

    Netanyahu knows he can get away with anything in America, says Robert Fisk
    Families clubbing together to build their own affordable accommodation

    Do It Yourself approach to securing a new house

    Community land trusts marking a new trend for taking the initiative away from developers