My life in travel: Dallas Campbell

'The Namibian desert is pretty special – the sand dunes roll on for miles'

Dallas Campbell presents Treasure Hunters, a new two-part series on BBC1, starting on Monday at 9pm.

First holiday memory?

Skiing in the Scottish resort of Glenshee in the Seventies. I don't remember an awful lot because it was a complete white-out, but my main memory is of having one wet sock and it being really cold. It was quite miserable.

Favourite place in the British Isles?

I appreciate Britain much more now than I did when I was younger. In my twenties, travel was all about going outside the UK and having adventures abroad. But now, I fantasize about holidays here. If you really twisted my arm, I'd probably say the Cairngorms, because I lived there for a bit and worked as a ski instructor. It's windswept, wild, rugged and beautiful.

Best holiday

Visiting a friend who was doing an exchange at an American school in Connecticut when I was 18. It was a rite of passage: two 18-year-olds, hanging out, falling in love, and being badly behaved. We hitchhiked around New England and had a mad adventure.

We spent time in New York, too. I remember flying into JFK for the first time being utterly blown away by the scale of it. It was a life-changing experience. I was there for a month and just totally fell in love with the country and the people. I'm still in contact with many of them today.

Ideal travelling companion?

At the moment, because much of my travel is work related, my ideal travelling companion is a brilliant producer who plans everything for me. Someone who gives you a call sheet saying "turn up at this time", "stand here" and everything's done for you. Also the best cameraman in Britain because they make everything look fantastic. A good crew become your family, your friends and your therapists. It's great having that support network.

Beach bum, culture vulture or adrenalin junkie?

I do like a bit of adrenalin. I was filming once and had a seven-hour stop-off in Auckland, New Zealand. We could either sit at the airport or get out and do something, so the researchers and I decided to bungee jump off the Auckland Harbour Bridge. We flew off strapped to some bits of elastic, bounced back, went back to the airport and flew home.

Holiday reading?

I'm a big factual reader so I love popular science books. I write reviews for BBC's Focus magazine, so I have a big stack to read. Right now, I'm reading Adam Roberts's book on the origins of life. Then I also have a pile of books that I should read and haven't, such as The Brothers Karamazov by Fyodor Dostoyevsky.

Where has seduced you?

Namibia. I was there recently filming in the desert. It's pretty special. You've got these incredible sand dunes which roll on for miles and miles. But the country also has the Skeleton Coast, which is windy, with great breaking waves and lots of shipwrecks. I haven't spent a lot of time there, but it's somewhere I'd like to go back to.

Worst travel experience?

I was filming in rural China a couple of years ago. We'd had a really long day and it was very cold and damp. We were in this rickety van and had been driving for five hours – absolutely exhausted, hungry and tired. Finally, we saw the hotel, which looked quite nice. It was only after we checked in to our rooms that we realised there was no glass in the windows.

Best hotel?

The Albatross in Gander, Newfoundland. There was a blizzard and I remember finding this nice little hotel. It was basic but the people were lovely. I've stayed in some posh hotels, but the Albatross sticks in my mind, because they were so charming and made their own fish pie.

Best meal abroad?

On a Brazilian cattle ranch a couple of years ago. At the end of the day, the farmer's wife would cook for everyone. It was all meat and potatoes, vegetables and salad – nothing fancy, but very simple, sturdy stuff and utterly delicious.

What next?

I really want to go to Mars. There are companies that want volunteers to go. I think it would be quite fun – although there wouldn't be much to do.

PROMOTED VIDEO
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Travel
ebookHow to enjoy the perfect short break in 20 great cities
Arts and Entertainment
Under the skin: Sarah Kane in May 1998
theatreThe story behind a new season of Sarah Kane plays
Arts and Entertainment
Preening: Johnny Depp in 'Mortdecai'
filmMortdecai becomes actor's fifth consecutive box office bomb
Sport
Bradford City's reward for their memorable win over Chelsea is a trip to face either Sunderland or Fulham (Getty)
football
News
Lars Andersen took up archery in his mid thirties
video
Voices
Focus E15 Mothers led a protest to highlight the lack of affordable housing in London
voicesLondon’s housing crisis amounts to an abuse of human rights, says Grace Dent
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

    Recruitment Genius: Tour Drivers - UK & European

    Negotiable: Recruitment Genius: This is a fantastic opportunity to join a is a...

    Old Royal Naval College: ORNC Visitor Experience Volunteer

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

    Recruitment Genius: Customer Service / Sales Assistant

    £8 per hour: Recruitment Genius: This airport parking organisation are looking...

    Recruitment Genius: PCV Bus Drivers

    £8 per hour: Recruitment Genius: Do you enjoy bus driving and are looking for ...

    Day In a Page

    Woman who was sent to three Nazi death camps describes how she escaped the gas chamber

    Auschwitz liberation 70th anniversary

    Woman sent to three Nazi death camps describes surviving gas chamber
    DSK, Dodo the Pimp, and the Carlton Hotel

    The inside track on France's trial of the year

    Dominique Strauss-Kahn, Dodo the Pimp, and the Carlton Hotel:
    As provocative now as they ever were

    Sarah Kane season

    Why her plays are as provocative now as when they were written
    Murder of Japanese hostage has grim echoes of a killing in Iraq 11 years ago

    Murder of Japanese hostage has grim echoes of another killing

    Japanese mood was against what was seen as irresponsible trips to a vicious war zone
    Syria crisis: Celebrities call on David Cameron to take more refugees as one young mother tells of torture by Assad regime

    Celebrities call on David Cameron to take more Syrian refugees

    One young mother tells of torture by Assad regime
    The enemy within: People who hear voices in their heads are being encouraged to talk back – with promising results

    The enemy within

    People who hear voices in their heads are being encouraged to talk back
    'In Auschwitz you got used to anything'

    'In Auschwitz you got used to anything'

    Survivors of the Nazi concentration camp remember its horror, 70 years on
    Autumn/winter menswear 2015: The uniforms that make up modern life come to the fore

    Autumn/winter menswear 2015

    The uniforms that make up modern life come to the fore
    'I'm gay, and plan to fight military homophobia'

    'I'm gay, and plan to fight military homophobia'

    Army general planning to come out
    Iraq invasion 2003: The bloody warnings six wise men gave to Tony Blair as he prepared to launch poorly planned campaign

    What the six wise men told Tony Blair

    Months before the invasion of Iraq in 2003, experts sought to warn the PM about his plans. Here, four of them recall that day
    25 years of The Independent on Sunday: The stories, the writers and the changes over the last quarter of a century

    25 years of The Independent on Sunday

    The stories, the writers and the changes over the last quarter of a century
    Homeless Veterans appeal: 'Really caring is a dangerous emotion in this kind of work'

    Homeless Veterans appeal

    As head of The Soldiers' Charity, Martin Rutledge has to temper compassion with realism. He tells Chris Green how his Army career prepared him
    Wu-Tang Clan and The Sexual Objects offer fans a chance to own the only copies of their latest albums

    Smash hit go under the hammer

    It's nice to pick up a new record once in a while, but the purchasers of two latest releases can go a step further - by buying the only copy
    Geeks who rocked the world: Documentary looks back at origins of the computer-games industry

    The geeks who rocked the world

    A new documentary looks back at origins of the computer-games industry
    Belle & Sebastian interview: Stuart Murdoch reveals how the band is taking a new direction

    Belle & Sebastian is taking a new direction

    Twenty years ago, Belle & Sebastian was a fey indie band from Glasgow. It still is – except today, as prime mover Stuart Murdoch admits, it has a global cult following, from Hollywood to South Korea