Paralympian and broadcaster Tanni Grey-Thompson on the joys of Rwanda, Sydney, Bondi Beach (and the hell of being detained by Homeland Security in the U.S)

Tanni Grey-Thompson checks in to our travel Q&A

This week Paralympian and broadcaster Tanni Grey-Thompson checks in to our travel Q&A. 

She talks about her most memorable trip, her favourite Paralympic city, a holiday from hell – and more.

MOST MEMORABLE TRIP?

Going to Rwanda with a charity 12 years ago. It’s extraordinarily green, the people are friendly and the country is trying to rebuild. The Kigali Genocide Memorial is very moving.

EARLIEST HOLIDAY MEMORY?

We did a lot of day trips as a family. I remember us doing brass rubbing at Wells Cathedral in Somerset.

FIRST TRIP ABROAD?

Going to Brittany on a family holiday aged ten. We stayed at a farm and seemed to have cauliflower with everything. We even took a load back home with us, although the customs officer almost made us empty them out.

FAVOURITE PARALYMPIC CITY?

Sydney. The transport is accessible and I love going on the ferry to Manly. The weather’s a big part of it for me, too.

TOP TIP FOR VISITORS?

You’ve got to go to Bondi even if there are nicer beaches. The Royal Botanic Garden is also lovely.

Tanni Grey-Thompson’s favourite Paralympic city is Sydney. Pictured is Bondi Beach

HOLIDAY FROM HELL?

My husband has the same name as an escaped criminal in America and was once detained by Homeland Security. It was scary, but the only thing our daughter Carys was worried about was getting to Disney World.

CAN’T TRAVEL WITHOUT?

My wheelchair. I always panic that my day chair is not going to make it to the other end of a flight. Once it ended up in another country.

PLAN TO DO ANY SIGHTSEEING IN TOKYO FOR THE PARALYMPICS?

As a broadcaster I’ll be in ‘a bubble’ so the opportunities will be limited. As long as I eat some Japanese food, I’ll be happy.

  • Tanni is covering the Tokyo Paralympics for BBC Radio 5 Live and Channel 4.  

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