Former newsreader Judy Bailey hosts a travel show exploring the best of Australia and rates the country as her new favourite destination.
How often do you get away?
Not often enough. My husband, Chris, and I do try to take a holiday offshore most yearsntsG, but the best -aid plans.
Where was your first trip?
To the United Kingdom for our OE back in the mid-70s. Great bonding for a couple of newlyweds. We camped our way round Europe and lived off the smell of an oily rag eating mustard sandwiches and pretending they were ham. It was a magical time.
Why do you travel – business or pleasure?
Both. But for me the business travel is pleasure, too. I’ve just had the time of my life shooting a travel series in Australia. I genuinely find travel a complete joy.
What is your favourite destination overseas?
Difficult to answer as they are all so different, but generally the place I’ve just been – in this case Australia: what a surprising place it is. I do have a special place in my heart, though, for Africa and India.
And here in New Zealand?
It would have to be the Coromandel. The beaches and the bush are glorious. Closely followed by the West Coast of the South Island – I love its wild untamed nature and its moodiness.
Best trip ever?
Again, the most recent. Australia opened my eyes to all sorts of things and challenged me in ways I never could have imagined. A journey for World Vision in India, for which my husband was cameraman, is right up there, though. It was a total assault on the senses. We’re very keen to return.
Crossing the Irish Sea on a ferry in a Force 10 gale. I spent the entire time on deck singing songs very loudly and very badly to try and keep my mind off my terror.
If you could be anywhere but here, where would that be?
At Kangaluna Camp in the South Australian outback, listening to the kangaroo tails thumping about outside my tent. Heaven.
What is the wildest sight you’ve witnessed while travelling?
Without a doubt it was the crocs at Yellow Water in Kakadu in Australia’s Northern Territory. Scarily unpredictable creatures, trust me.
The most heartbreaking?
The intensive care tent at Las Dhure refugee camp in Somalia in 1982. Children were dying in their hundreds. Intensive care for them was a saline drip as they lay on the dirt in the shelter of a World War II army tent – and those were the lucky ones.
Who (or what) is your favourite travelling companion?
My lovely, patient, control freak of a husband. I say patient because I’m always running late and control freak because he always likes to be in charge (I’m good with that).
Where to next?
We are planning a trip to Egypt and Turkey. Me because I’m fascinated by ancient history and him because he hasn’t yet made the journey to Gallipoli.
Anything you’d like to add?
That there really is no place like home and it sometimes takes a bit of travel to make you realise how very lucky you are.
- © Fairfax NZ News