Writing features, reviews and articles for major publications for 20 years. A travel specialist, she also covers lifestyle, the arts, education and global issues and presents videos and podcasts.
By the fourth week of homeschooling three children aged 4, 7 and 8, I was tense, uptight and losing my temper at the slightest dropped pencil. I had been getting up at 5am most mornings to write before the kids came bounding down at 7.30am, but was beginning to resent my creativity being squeezed into this pocket of the morning. When I discovered that Arvon were offering an “at home” version of their famous writing retreats, I felt something I hadn’t felt in a while: hope. I booked onto a fiv...
Ride an amphibious vehicle to visit an island castle
Majestic Elizabeth Castle – named by Sir Walter Raleigh, who was governor of Jersey between 1600 and 1603 – sits proudly on a tidal island in the middle of St Aubin’s Bay. Depending on the tides, it's usually possible to walk there and ride the amphibious vehicle back or vice versa. Arrive before midday to watch the fascinating historical reenactment that includes musket demonstrations and the firing of the noonday cannon. Stay overnight in...
Why you’ll love it
Prepare to fall hard for this compact city on the coast of the Basque country. Stroll down historical streets lined with belle époque buildings — remnants of its heyday in the 19th century, when it was a favourite destination for British and Spanish royalty — and wander down the promenades of the city’s three urban beaches. But don’t let those sandy stretches distract you from the city’s primary passion: gastronomy. San Sebastian is a mecca for foodies
From the dramatic cliffs, remote islands and atmospheric towns of the Wild Atlantic Way to the fairytale castles, craggy mountains and placid lakes of the Ancient East, Ireland is a land where beauty is matched by variety. In the words of Johnny Cash, the Emerald Isle is rendered in “40 shades of green”, contrasting with a similar spread of blues and greys. The weather changes frequently here, making even the same landscape look different from one minute to the other.
Why you’ll love it
Milan, Italy’s northern metropolis, is everything you want from a city. It’s got historical clout in its prestigious art galleries, gothic cathedral and one of the world’s most-famous opera houses, and yet it’s full of the buzz of the new; whether it’s the open studios of contemporary artists, up-and-coming fashion or furniture designers or innovative cuisine, which brings together flavours from all the other regions of Italy and embraces international influence.
The largest of the Channel Islands, Jersey is just nine miles by five miles, which means you can bask in the morning rays while munching on a breakfast butty on the east coast, spend the majority of the day enjoying watersports in the south and still have time to head west to watch the sun set over the Atlantic breakers in St Ouen. From pebbly coves to golden sand beaches, Jersey has a beach for every hour of the day.
Whether it’s in a camp setting or over the phone, it’s vital to reach vulnerable families during times of need – helping them feel engaged and supported
"I spent a lot of time pretending to be a dinosaur" How play helped one family survive the lockdowns
When their family dynamics changed, Mary and Ben found creative new ways to entertain their children – keeping both themselves and the kids happy and learning at the same time
“That was so scary! I didn’t know where to look!” My nine-year-old daughter was fizzing with excitement as she tried to re-establish her land legs after being catapulted 20 metres in the air. “Let’s go again!”...