Famous flyer: Chloe Dallimore
Actress Chloe Dallimore Photo: Kurt Sneddon
What was your best holiday?
When I was eight, I went with my family to Fraser Island, when it was still very untouched. There were brumbies running wild and it was an awe-inspiring, idyllic place. I was lucky enough to go back in 2012 to revisit my favourite haunts. It's changed a lot but it's just as magical, and it was a fantastic trip down memory lane. I remembered my father fishing on the Maheno shipwreck while mum and I waded into the shallows, then seeing my father running down towards us because all he could see from up on the shipwreck were shark fins criss-crossing. Thirty years later, the Maheno has rusted hugely and there's no more fishing, so it's interesting to see what nature has done to the environment but also the wonderful conservation measures that have come into place to protect it.
The best hotel you've stayed at?
On the way to joining one of the boutique cruise lines I sometimes work for, the cruise had forgotten to organise my flight to join the ship so they put me up at Le Meridien in Bora Bora while they sorted it out. I was in this beautiful bungalow over the sea, diving into the water and swimming with tiny turtles, and because it was the off-peak season I almost felt I was there on my own. Heavenly.
What do you need for a perfect holiday?
To be adaptable. Travelling throws up so many obstacles and changes to plans, you need to be open to all options. Sometimes, what seems like a disaster can lead you to discovering places you never expected to see.
What do you always take with you?
My currency converter app. Often for work we're going between countries so I need to very quickly know the exchange rate so I don't buy something for $1000 when I think it's $10!
What's your best piece of travel advice?
I always look for where the locals are hanging out. That's where you'll find the best value for money and often the most interesting food and wares. And it can take you off the beaten track.
Where do you want to go next?
I did a gig last Christmas on another boutique cruise from Bali down the west coast of Australia, and on the way we stopped at Ningaloo Reef. I thought the Great Barrier Reef was great but holy moly, Ningaloo is an undiscovered gem. I spent a few hours there, which was so not enough time, but we drove up to the Vlamingh Lighthouse and looked out over the vista and the gorgeous, sweeping beaches, and swam in water that was like a deliciously lukewarm bath. The next time a show goes to Perth, I'll absolutely be hiring a four-wheel drive and heading there to camp on the beach.
What was your worst holiday?
My grandfather passed away three days into a 10-day trip I did to Thailand. I remember looking out at this idyllic view at breakfast with this beautiful buffet, sitting on Skype talking to funeral directors on the other side of the world. We can travel so easily but it's those situations that remind you just how far away you are when you travel internationally.
What was your worst experience on holiday?
I was working in South Korea - the producer had organised me a 30-day visa but I was going to be there for five months, so she had to extend my visa. To do that we had to fly to Japan, which we did, before coming back and finishing off the five months. But as I prepared to leave Korea at the airport some officials approached me and said: "Your visa requirements aren't complete, you need to come with us." I was marched into the immigration offices and questioned for 45 minutes. I felt totally helpless. And for the first time in my life I thought: "I could disappear and no one would ever know where I'd gone." After much toing and froing they let me go, but they never did tell me what I needed to have done. It will be with great trepidation that I next visit Korea.
Biggest packing mistake?
I was doing the launch of The Producers in Sydney and was flying back to Melbourne with our head of wigs, who suggested I take my wig and wig pins - which are about five inches [13 centimetres] long - back myself. When I got to Melbourne airport, I was approached by a very serious-looking guy who said: "You have suspected ammunition in your suitcase." They took me off for questioning, and it turns out on X-ray those wig pins had looked like pieces of metal you'd put in a nail gun!
Worst hotel you've stayed in?
It was in Thailand. When I walked in I started a game with myself called "find the thing that works". The mirror was so tarnished you could barely find a spot to put your make-up on, the tap would only work on a certain angle, there was something wrong with everything. Thankfully, I only had to stay one night.
Anything you avoid on holiday?
Crowds and tourist haunts. Sometimes you can't avoid them - if you're in Paris you're not going to avoid the Eiffel Tower - but there are other places they try to guide tourists towards to spend money that aren't necessarily the best or most interesting.
What do you hate about holidays?
Security checks when you come home. I had one of the beautiful airport sniffer dogs when I arrived back to Melbourne from the US recently go berserk over my handbag. It turned out to be my silk eye mask, which I'd taken with me from Australia and which they cut up and discovered was filled with linseed. They gave me a very stern talking to.
Chloe Dallimore plays Morticia in The Addams Family, which opens in Sydney at the Capitol Theatre on March 10.
As told to Nina Karnikowski