Television presenter Kirstie Allsopp is this weeks celebrity traveller
MOST MEMORABLE HOLIDAY?
When I was 14, I went to India with my mum. We went to Rajasthan on a coach holiday and it was extraordinary to discover India for the first time with my mum at that age.
There’s a lot of desert and it’s really quite dry, but because of the dry climate, buildings that are thousands of years old have survived and Mughal buildings, the style of architecture that dominates Rajasthan, is beautiful – think of the Taj Mahal and go from there.
I’ve been back six times. Rajasthan is like a continent – the south is very different from the north, which is very different from the west and the hill stations in the mountains. It’s one of those places you can never visit enough.
AND YOUR WORST?
One or two of the houses my parents rented when I was a teenager were probably not the highlights of my holidaying career, but I’ve never left somewhere early, which is probably the most telling thing.
The only place that I wouldn’t go back to would be the Maldives. I was filming Vacation, Vacation, Vacation with Phil Spencer and we had a day off and it was a great day, but I thought it was a bit dull.
Stunning Lake Pichola in Rajasthan
I love markets, and the market in St Tropez every Wednesday and Saturday has the best shopping – I’ve bought tablecloths, baskets, soaps and hats there.
The market in St Tropez every Wednesday and Saturday has the best shopping
I’ve also had fabulous shopping trips in Kenya. There’s a supermarket called Tuskys that we always go to and they have amazing picnic stuff.
I’m not into glamour shopping, I like local shopping, and I always find something I like.
I read an amazing book on holiday a couple of years ago called The Good Girl, by Fiona Neill.
It’s an extraordinary book about the impact of social media on one family and it really changed my attitude towards those things.
HOW DO YOU SPEND YOUR TIME ON HOLIDAY?
I love to swim, so if we’re not by the lake, sea or a river, I book a place with a pool.
I’ve got two sons and two stepsons, so there’s usually a lot of boy-related activity – surfing, waterskiing. They have a JetSurf, which is a surfboard with a little motor, and we’ve taken that all over the world. It’s a bugger to travel with but they love it.
WHERE WOULD YOU LIKE TO REVISIT?
I’ve been fortunate enough to go back to a lot of the places I’ve visited, but I really want to explore America more. I like returning to places I know and getting to know them better.
The famous market in St Tropez
There’s something fantastic about arriving in a place and knowing it already – it’s almost like you prolong your holiday as the learning part is done.
WHERE ARE YOU OFF TO NEXT?
I’m going on a European road trip with my family.
We’re going to drive to Paris, visit family in Italy and see Switzerland in the summer, which we’ve never done before.
● Kirstie Allsopp presents The Handmade Fair (thehandmadefair. com) at The Green at Hampton Court Palace, in Surrey, September 15-17.