Where the experts holiday: Charlie Raymond, author of career meltdown meets travel memoir, Hired, Fired, Fled

By | Category: Travel tips & opinions

Charlie Raymond, author of Hired, Fired, Fled – one man’s global quest to beat the rat race – shares some of his travel experiences with Just About Travel readers

Charlie Raymond

What do you like to do on holiday?
Sit, drink, watch, and soak it in. That’s as true for up a mountain or by a beach. I also love an adventure, especially self-drive, preferably in southern Africa, cruising the dusty trails in a Land Rover, with a rooftop tent, a fridge-freezer, and an extra long-range fuel tank.

Where did you last go?
Ibiza. Not to pop pills or buy 10 euro water, though. I stayed up in the hills, relaxing, writing, with a cold drink and a stunning view.

Do you know where you’re going this year?
Hopefully Peru. British Airways has opened a new direct route. Plus, my father’s Peruvian and I’ve never been to Peru, so it’s a must visit… hmmmm, should probably mention that first.

Macchu Pichu in Peru

Macchu Pichu in Peru

Of all the places you’ve been to, which was your favourite and why?
I’d love to say somewhere adventurous, like Namibia or New Zealand, but I love Portugal’s Algarve coast. The people are friendly, the food is superb (especially the local fish, but also the Peri Peri Chicken) the colours are warm and sumptuous, the cool Atlantic waters bring fresh winds and, er, the golf isn’t too bad either.

Which destination do you wish to travel to, but haven’t yet been?
Peru, for sure, but even more so, Japan. It’s a place you’ll never visit because you ‘happen to be nearby’; you need to make a huge effort to visit Japan, but everyone who’s been there recommends going. The mix of old/new, east/west, futuristic/traditional fascinates me. And who doesn’t want to visit a country with one vending machine to every 33 people?

In your own country, what would you recommend tourists see that isn’t in the travel guides?
Visit weird and wonderful country events in the UK, such as point-to-pointing, cheese rolling, or bog-snorkelling. In Dorset you’ll find the Badbury Rings point-to-point, which is effectively watching local farmers racing horses around a big field, viewed from a Roman fortified hill, with beer tents and sausage baps for sustenance. You need to get out of the cities to discover Ye Olde England, where the march of time is slowed by winding roads and Tudor pubs.

lake District

England’s Lake District amongst other places

How do you plan your holiday? 
Usually by seeking somewhere I haven’t been to, and then doing everything through my iPhone. Tech is incredible, revolutionising travel, yet I often hanker for a bygone era of buying tickets via a travel agent, then taking off with just a film camera, a wad of traveller’s cheques, and an excited knowledge that I’m en route to complete detachment. One of these days I’ll try it again. (I expect it’ll piss me off within hours.)

How often do you go away?
As much as possible. This is a golden age of cheap airfares. I feel bad about my carbon footprint, but the miracle of fast air travel is too alluring to ignore. Hopefully the airline industry will soon be 100% green, and we can all travel guilt-free.

Who do you travel with?
People less attractive than me is the goal. It makes me look stunning poolside. Sadly those people are rather hard to find.

Where do you see tourism in your country, in 10 years?
Post-Brexit, it looks like it’ll be booming. A cheaper pound means even more Americans coming to the UK, gawping at quaint ol’ Eng-er-land, but also many, many more Chinese, as that nation’s middle class grows into the powerhouse of the travelling world. Expect a Mandarin menu in every pub, as businesses compete for this growing source of income.

Thanks Charlie! Charlie’s first book Hired, Fired, Fled – a career meltdown meets travel memoir, covering 14 jobs worked in 15 years, across four continents – is out now. 

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JAT READER OFFER
Charlie Raymond’s HIRED, FIRED, FLED – a career meltdown meets travel memoir – is available on Amazon for £8.99 in paperback, and £2.99 for e-readers. Message Charlie at hiredfiredfled.com and mention Just About Travel, and he’ll send you a discount code for 20% off.  Be sure to leave a review, and tell a friend!

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