I’ve travelled a lot, but it was great to stay so close

COMMENT: Going above and beyond is all in a day’s work at QA

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I’ve travelled a lot in my 29 years. I was born in Australia, lived on the remote island of Papua New Guinea – which is still one of the most indigenous places on earth – worked in New York City and have generally done my fair share of going off to far-flung places.

People always find it a little odd that I’ve never really travelled or seen anything of England and I’m really not sure why this is.

Maybe it’s because, for me, the idea of a holiday is getting on a plane somewhere and experiencing a totally new way of life.

Well, last weekend I got to experience something very English – a stay on the Isle of Wight.

I kid you not, I don’t think I’ve ever been more shocked about or in awe of a place which, quite literally, is 10 minutes away.

Matt and I decided that we could do with a few days off to unwind, so decided on an impromptu break – how very romantic and spontaneous of us!

We looked at various places – Cornwall, Dorset, Bath, Wales. But I really couldn’t stomach the thought of a long drive, so I suggested the island. We booked two nights at the Enchanted Manor, a beautiful country manor in Niton, over on the island’s far side.

Usually we stay in corporate ‘chains’ when we go away, as you usually know what to expect with these kinds of places. But this time we opted for a tranquil B&B.

I’m glad we did. The Enchanted Manor was exactly that – enchanting. From the fairy and pixie décor to beautiful paintings by world-renowned artist Josephine Wall, the manor was a far cry from our usual choices – and absolutely in a good way!

We spent two days travelling around the island, visiting the Needles (we even went on the chairlift – much to Matt’s horror as he’s petrified of heights), Shanklin and sunbathing on the gorgeous Ventnor beach. It reminded me so much of the Mediterranean.

I highly recommend a trip over there – and a stay at the Enchanted Manor.

Owners Maggie and Ric couldn’t do enough for us and it was absolutely one of the most memorable breaks I’ve ever had – and I didn’t have to get on a plane!