British TV presenter and wine expert Olly Smith would raise a glass to the Greek islands.
“I grew up on Jersey which is a brilliant tourist destination in its own right.
“Living there was an absolute treat and I used to love swimming, surfing and all the other fantastic watersports. But for most of my childhood holidays we’d get on the ferry and then drive across Europe to my uncle’s place near Zurich.
“My dad used to love it and we’d tootle around Lake Brienz and Interlaken. We’d climb mountains as a family but I do remember discovering two things about my dad he couldn’t go on chair-lifts and he hated Alpen!
“I’m a big fan of James Bond and we went to the top of the Schilthorn to the revolving restaurant that features in On Her Majesty’s Secret Service.
“I used to take one pebble from every glacier we visited. I still do that when I go to vineyards and bring back something that typifies the place.
“The first big trip I took on my own was when I was 19. That was with my girlfriend, who became my wife. We went to find film locations from The Big Blue so that took us to Amorgos.
“I remember very distinctly that we had £280 to last us three weeks. It was one of those holidays that changed our lives. I fell in love with Greece and we’ve been back to the Greek islands every year since.
“Sophie and I got married and that love of travelling in that corner of the world has stayed with us.
“Alonissos in the Sporades is the most magical place. It’s a little hard to get to and there’s not a huge number of facilities, but the reward is the beaches and the incredibly clean water.
“Back in the heyday of the Greek Empire it was one of the big centres of fine wine. There are only a few domestic vineyards now but back in the day the natural harbour was used to send wines all over the Empire.
“Swimming there with the kids while thinking about the rich history is absolutely mesmeric. Our big, indulgent holiday was to Moyo Island in Indonesia.
“Sophie and I started our love affair together camping in Amorgos. But while she still loves it I’ve become less good at sleeping in a field. So we compromised and went glamping in the Amanwana resort.
“It was the most incredible experience as the tents were more like palaces. The food and the service were magic. We went on one trip inland in an old Second World War Jeep to a deserted waterfall.
“Swimming in the plunge pool, I told Sophie that this was our heaven spot. I said that this was where we’d meet when it’s all over and could spend our eternity together.”
Olly Smith is a British TV presenter, wine expert, columnist and author. He’s known for his wine columns and has also written three books, the most recent being Behind Enemy Wines.
His brother is British comedian Will Smith. Jersey-born Olly and wife Sophie have two daughters, Ruby, 9, and Lily, 7. His latest TV appearance is Last Taste of Summer which has just started on This Morning.
It can be seen on ITV’s popular show Wednesdays in September.