Paul Nicholls: My Life In Travel

'I wasn't much of a fan of spicy food until those tiger prawns in Kerala'


First holiday memory?

A beach on the Costa del Sol with my parents and sister. A huge jellyfish had been washed up and it was the first time I had seen one. I was about four and quite scared.

Best holiday?

I went to Barbados about two years ago with my girlfriend. Even though there wasn't much to do, it was so relaxing and peaceful. Because it is a relatively small island I didn't really feel the need to go out and explore.

Favourite place in the British Isles?

At one point it was Newquay (right) - I used to go with my mates during the summer when I was about 16. Now it's Croyde in Devon; there are just a couple of pubs and a beautiful beach and it's not overrun by tourists. I love the drive along the coast from Barnstaple.

What have you learnt from your travels?

I have just got back from India where I was doing a documentary about Hinduism for Channel 4 and got to travel all over the country. I felt privileged to see how a different culture lives, in a way you perhaps wouldn't if you were a tourist. After filming I spent a week in Kerala with my girlfriend, which was amazing, too.

Ideal travelling companion?

My girlfriend.

Beach bum, culture vulture or adrenalin junkie?

I used to like sitting on a beach but now I find that a bit boring. I like to have a wander, depending where I am.

Greatest travel luxury?

A cheap DVD player that I bought in Barbados. It's good for evenings when I just want to relax.

Holiday reading?

I love reading when I'm travelling. I've just got into Hunter S Thompson's work, which is insane stuff.

Where has seduced you?

A Greek island, which unfortunately I can't remember the name of. There were no sandy beaches so there were hardly any tourists. It felt very untouched and natural.

Better to travel or arrive?

It depends. If it's long-haul I hate it because I'm not keen on flying.

Worst travel experience?

On a plane when there was a lot of turbulence; it was dropping and people were screaming. That was pretty scary. Being in a car in India for about 10 hours driving along a road that wasn't really a road was pretty awful too.

It was really hot and the road was bumpy - it felt as if the journey would never end.

Worst holiday?

I once planned to go to Cuba with some friends, but we couldn't afford it so we ended up going to Corfu. The resort was full of 16-year-olds. It was awful.

Worst hotel?

The apartment in Kavos, Corfu. It didn't smell particularly nice. There were a few creepy-crawlies running around, too.

Best hotel?

The hotel I stayed at in Kerala, which I can't remember the name of. We had a villa with its own pool just by the beach. It was beautiful and really cheap.

Favourite walk/swim/ride/drive?

I like walking on Hampstead Heath - it's a stunning place.

Best meal abroad?

My girlfriend and I stayed on a houseboat in Kerala, which toured the backwaters. We stopped off at a man's house and he cooked the most amazing tiger prawns. I wasn't much of a fan of spicy food before that but I loved it.

First thing you do when you arrive somewhere new?

If there's a beach I usually have a dip in the sea.

Dream trip?

I'd love to drive across the States and see as much as possible and also to go on safari somewhere in Africa.

Favourite city?

Venice. I was only there for one night, but I loved it. It's a stunning place and the coffee's great.

Where next?

I don't know at the moment. It depends on whether I get any work that can pay for a trip. I would like to go back to Barbados.

Paul Nicholls stars in 'Phaedra' at the Donmar Warehouse. Booking until 3 June (0870 060 6624; www.donmarwarehouse.com)

Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Travel
ebookHow to enjoy the perfect short break in 20 great cities
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
  • Get to the point
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

    Guru Careers: MI Developer

    £35 - 45k: Guru Careers: An MI Developer is needed to join the leading provide...

    Recruitment Genius: Fitness Manager

    £20000 - £22500 per annum: Recruitment Genius: This leisure organisation manag...

    Recruitment Genius: Visitor Experience Manager

    £25000 - £28000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: Delivering an inspiring, engagi...

    Recruitment Genius: Learning Team Administrator

    £17500 - £20500 per annum: Recruitment Genius: They are looking for a great te...

    Day In a Page

    General Election 2015: Chuka Umunna on the benefits of immigration, humility – and his leader Ed Miliband

    Chuka Umunna: A virus of racism runs through Ukip

    The shadow business secretary on the benefits of immigration, humility – and his leader Ed Miliband
    Yemen crisis: This exotic war will soon become Europe's problem

    Yemen's exotic war will soon affect Europe

    Terrorism and boatloads of desperate migrants will be the outcome of the Saudi air campaign, says Patrick Cockburn
    Marginal Streets project aims to document voters in the run-up to the General Election

    Marginal Streets project documents voters

    Independent photographers Joseph Fox and Orlando Gili are uploading two portraits of constituents to their website for each day of the campaign
    Game of Thrones: Visit the real-life kingdom of Westeros to see where violent history ends and telly tourism begins

    The real-life kingdom of Westeros

    Is there something a little uncomfortable about Game of Thrones shooting in Northern Ireland?
    How to survive a social-media mauling, by the tough women of Twitter

    How to survive a Twitter mauling

    Mary Beard, Caroline Criado-Perez, Louise Mensch, Bunny La Roche and Courtney Barrasford reveal how to trounce the trolls
    Gallipoli centenary: At dawn, the young remember the young who perished in one of the First World War's bloodiest battles

    At dawn, the young remember the young

    A century ago, soldiers of the Empire – many no more than boys – spilt on to Gallipoli’s beaches. On this 100th Anzac Day, there are personal, poetic tributes to their sacrifice
    Dissent is slowly building against the billions spent on presidential campaigns – even among politicians themselves

    Follow the money as never before

    Dissent is slowly building against the billions spent on presidential campaigns – even among politicians themselves, reports Rupert Cornwell
    Samuel West interview: The actor and director on austerity, unionisation, and not mentioning his famous parents

    Samuel West interview

    The actor and director on austerity, unionisation, and not mentioning his famous parents
    General Election 2015: Imagine if the leading political parties were fashion labels

    Imagine if the leading political parties were fashion labels

    Fashion editor, Alexander Fury, on what the leaders' appearances tell us about them
    Phumzile Mlambo-Ngcuka: Home can be the unsafest place for women

    Phumzile Mlambo-Ngcuka: Home can be the unsafest place for women

    The architect of the HeForShe movement and head of UN Women on the world's failure to combat domestic violence
    Public relations as 'art'? Surely not

    Confessions of a former PR man

    The 'art' of public relations is being celebrated by the V&A museum, triggering some happy memories for DJ Taylor
    Bill Granger recipes: Our chef succumbs to his sugar cravings with super-luxurious sweet treats

    Bill Granger's luxurious sweet treats

    Our chef loves to stop for 30 minutes to catch up on the day's gossip, while nibbling on something sweet
    London Marathon 2015: Paula Radcliffe and the mother of all goodbyes

    The mother of all goodbyes

    Paula Radcliffe's farewell to the London Marathon will be a family affair
    Everton vs Manchester United: Steven Naismith demands 'better' if Toffees are to upset the odds against United

    Steven Naismith: 'We know we must do better'

    The Everton forward explains the reasons behind club's decline this season
    Arsenal vs Chelsea: Praise to Arsene Wenger for having the courage of his convictions

    Michael Calvin's Last Word

    Praise to Wenger for having the courage of his convictions