What was your greatest holiday?

My first holiday with my now-husband in Sri Lanka. We stayed on the Galle Face Green along with 12 international cricket teams there for a tournament, so there was lots of player-watching and … a marriage proposal on the last day.

And the worst? A cruise from Sydney to New Zealand; three days and nights of stormy waters and sleepless nights but all forgotten when we woke up at the entrance to Milford Sound.

If we bump into you on holiday what are most likely to be doing? Reading a book in the shade, eating local food or having a drink on the water at sunset.


If we could teleport you to one place in New Zealand for a week-long holiday where would it be? Golden Bay in summer to swim, eat blueberries and read.

How about a dream holiday internationally? Baltimore, Maryland, for a week-long retreat with mindfulness meditation teacher Tara Brach.

What's the dumbest thing you've ever done travelling? In the 90s, arriving in Bangkok after a late night in Sydney, a friend and I agreed to treat ourselves to a proper hotel, instead of a backpackers, only to choose the infamous Grace Hotel in Bangkok, where the guests were predominantly business and Middle Eastern men searching for a good time in the city. It was a very strange night for two Irish girls.

What's the best travel tip you've ever been given? Be prepared for the climate at your destination — not landing in balmy Asia in woolly tights and Doc Martens as I did as a naive 21-year-old.

Aisle or window? Window for short flight, aisle always for long haul.

What was the most memorable meal you've had while travelling? In First Class travelling from Sydney to LA. I had just gone from nursing to medical sales rep and the company had forgotten to book my flight for training in Milwaukee so had to book me First Class.

My friends and I planned what I would wear and blow-dried my hair. No idea what I ate as I was so nervous.

What's the best thing you've brought back from a trip? A fiance.


Favourite airport at which to land? George Best International Airport Belfast, nearly home.

What's the next trip you've got planned? Three nights in Waipu to recharge and enjoy some McLeod's beer.

Deirdre Doran is the founder of the natural skincare company Agnes&Me.