Best known for his day job as an English rugby union player, we recently caught up with Danny Care to talk about family holidays and making the most of some downtime from the busy life of an international rugby star.
Like many of us, it seems that rugby players are real last-minute holiday people – though more out of necessity than choice. “With international touring you never know where you’re going to be or when your season is going to finish,” Danny said, “so it’s always quite a last minute booking frenzy for all of us to see when and where we can go on holiday”.
Danny seems happy with doing things the “book it and go” way as he puts it, but says that his wife Jodie is more of an advance planning kind of person. It was holidays that brought the two of them together, when a lads’ holiday to Thailand collided with her adventurous trip around the world.
“She was travelling around Asia and Australia and I met her in Thailand, about a week into my holiday. It was a bit of a mad few weeks, but that’s got to be my stand out favourite holiday – two weeks in Thailand, a week in Bali, and then came home with a girlfriend who turned out to be my wife! So a pretty special one”.
When it comes to other places to get away, Danny’s choices all feature sun, sand and sea. “We try and mix it up and go somewhere different every time we go away – partly because my work schedule means we don’t get to go away that often. We’re heading off to Cyprus soon for a getaway near Paphos, but in the past we’ve been to Antigua, the Maldives, Dubai and Bali as well as Thailand”.
Most of us don’t have to worry about paparazzi cameras while we’re away on holiday, but Danny’s luxury honeymoon to Dubai last year was always bound to be a proper celeb experience – even members of the royal family had attended his wedding, which was featured on the cover of OK! Magazine. “It was the first time we’d been on holiday without our son” Danny said, “it was weird because of that but nice at the same time – we couldn’t have asked for much more from the trip, it was perfect”.
Holidays in the Care household are all about experiencing new things, but that doesn’t mean there isn’t plenty of time spent relaxing by the pool as well. With a two-year-old son in tow, making sure that holidays are fun for everyone is key.
“We do the usual head to the hotel and get in the pool, but it’s whatever our son wants to do as well. With kids you can’t really plan what’s going to happen – we have been to Dubai with Blake too, and thought he would sleep the on the overnight flight, but ended up being glad we’d brought toys to keep him entertained! And then he slept for hours during the day on the way back. You’ve just got to go with the flow when you’re holidaying as a family and not try and plan too much”.
Aside from a stash of toys for entertaining the little one, Danny says his other holiday essentials are a good book to read by the pool and, like most of us, his phone – “to keep in touch with the world”.
We don’t all have an excuse like being too busy training hard to plan our holiday in advance, but if snapping up those last minute deals is good enough for Danny Care, it’s good enough for us. What essentials do you pack for a family holiday in the sun?