Andrew Flintoff's reizende leven

Cameron House, on Loch Lomond. It’s on the lake and has great restaurants: de
Cameron Grill, for Scottish steaks, the Boat House , which overlooks a
little boatyard, and Martin Wishart, which has a Michelin star. Er is een
spa, which my wife likes.

What’s your idea of a dream trip?

I’ve been to Tanzania, where I lived as a Masai, to Australia to live with
Aborigines, and to the jungles of Borneo. When our three children are older,
I’d love to take them to all those places.

Where is your favourite destination?

India – I’ve always felt at home there. Delhi and Mumbai and the Taj Mahal are
all incredible – but it’s the people I love. Indians are so interesting and
accommodating and friendly. The best hotel I’ve stayed at there is the
Rambagh Palace in Jaipur: its architecture is unbelievable.

Do you travel light?

I take the same Timberland holdall wherever I go, stuffed with all my gear. Of
a Louis Vuitton weekender my wife bought me. I’d never have a bag that you
wheel; they get in the way.

Which items do you always pack?

A satellite phone, to keep in touch with my family; a mosquito net; a head
torch, so I can use my hands to make a fire or put up a tent in the dark;
and a rag a cameraman gave me – for washing, tying things and putting on my
head when it’s hot.

Great cities?

For a weekend, Miami. I broke my ribs in Tampa, and spent a few days
recovering at the Delano hotel. It’s a bit funky for me, but relaxing, en
Nobu is within walking distance. I also love New York – it’s buzzy and full
of life, like London, although after a few days you want out. We were taken
to The Carlyle, where Woody Allen plays sometimes . It was great, listening
to jazz and drinking vodka martinis. We stayed at the Waldorf: a waste, als
we were out so much. For a family break, Dubai: the hotels are
child-friendly, you can guarantee the weather and there’s plenty to do.

Your favourite restaurant?

A chippie in Blackpool, The Cottage, which seats 60, surrounded by photos of
snooker players and actors from Coronation Street. My mum used to take me,
and we’d look up at Steve Davis and Vera Duckworth. Nu, my picture is on
the wall. I have cod, chips, mushy peas and a barm cake [the Lancastrian
word for a round, flat soft bread roll].

Where would you go for a celebratory meal?

Zuma in London. Last time, we took the children and they gave us a little
private area where you take your shoes off and sit on the floor.

De meest romantische hotel?

The Al Maha in the desert in Dubai, which has bedrooms like Bedouin tents, maar
more luxurious. The scenery is calm, the food is great, and we did lots of
new things: horse riding, archery, falconry.

Is luxury essential on holiday?

Only up to a point. I’m a bit funny about people doing things for me. I can
carry my own bags, and I hate it when you buy a bottle of wine and they take
it and put it somewhere else.

The most remote place you’ve been?

The jungle in Borneo. It’s wet and hot, and you’re surrounded by trees and
constantly dirty. I slept in a hammock or a cave for a week, eating anything
I could find, which wasn’t much.

Do you enjoy adventure sports?

When I played cricket, I wasn’t allowed to do anything extreme because of
verzekering. As soon as that ended, I went to America for six weeks and did an
extreme sport almost every day: bull riding, the skeleton at Whistler, de
Demolition Derby , kajakken. The more I do, the more I like it.

How about safaris?

Having spent a week alone in the Okavango Delta in Botswana , with lions by my
tent and elephants only 20ft away, the Serengeti and the Kruger seem tame,
with all their signs and roads. The way to explore the bush is on foot, met
a tent and a sleeping bag. That is a real safari.

What is your best piece of kit?

Good boots. The ones I use most are North Face and Timberland, and a pair of
fur-lined snow boots that are heavy but soft. Comfort is important; I’ve
recently designed a range of clothes for Jacamo that is comfortable, niet
cutting-edge.

Your recommended airlines?

It depends who’s paying. I flew to Los Angeles to interview Vinnie Jones and
Piers Morgan for the BBC and spent 11 hours in economy on BA, and the leg
room was fine. In business class, Maagd, BA and Emirates are good. I’ve
flown business class on Kingfisher, which has proper couches.

Most memorable character you’ve met?

A great guy in Botswana, called Newman, who taught me to find food in the bush
– though I was hopeless. I had a Thermos of ice all week. Mind, I had
plenty of pounds to spare, so it was a detox.

Any challenges coming up?

I’m cycling from Greece to London – 1,900 miles in 22 days – with [the retired
rugby captain] Lawrence Dallaglio, to raise money for centres for sick
kinderen, like the one we helped build at Alder Hey , Liverpool. I’ve just
got my bike – a Boardman, as light as a cork – so I’d better get training.

Who books your travel?

Usually ITC in Cheshire, or Elegant Resorts.

Do you offset your carbon emissions?

No – I didn’t know you could.

What do you do to relax?

Potter on my motorbikes. I have a Harley and a Bourget, which I enjoy taking
into the countryside.

Where is your next trip?

To Devon, to do some cricket coaching. The guy who bought my time at a charity
auction is kindly flying me there in a helicopter. I love them: a five-hour
journey takes 40 notulen. After that I’m going camping on Vancouver Island,
looking for wolves and whales. I’ve packed my woollies…

  • Freddie Flintoff is a brand ambassador for the men’s e-tailer Jacamo (jacamo.co.uk)

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