The film producer and actress recalls growing up on a bus in North Africa, a solo trek in the Himalayas and explains why Kate Moss is the perfect travel companion.
I try to combine work and pleasure
…when I’m travelling, so people will say, “Oh, you’re going on holiday to India?” and I’ll reply, “Actually I’m going to meet some investors in Delhi but I’ll have some down time, too, while I’m there.”
As a child I lived on a bus
…for a while – a very nomadic existence, as my parents were very creative people. We used to travel from London through Europe into Morocco, then drive around North Africa. That’s when I caught the travel bug; I loved the free-spirited sort of camping vibe.
I produce films in locations I’m interested in exploring
Last year we spent a lot of time in Dorset, Weymouth and Newport while filming Two For Joy with Samantha Morton and Billie Piper. I’m planning to head out to Durban in South Africa at some point to work on future projects.
Luxury is not important
…to me when I travel. I want to experience the place and the culture and have that intimacy that travel brings, whether you’re camped by a river or in the Himalayas. Mexico was a case in point; it was amazing. I filmed The Cisco Kid there in a place called Zacatecas. It was like going back in time, with cobbled streets and horse-drawn carriages.
Northern Goa is my haven
I go to a yoga retreat called Ashwem Beach in Panjim, where I can totally switch off and escape from modern life. There’s no Wi-Fi and you can feel yourself decompressing. I take my daughter, Iris, too. Among other things, it teaches her a valuable 21st-century life lesson: we don’t have to live glued to our phones the whole time.
Fort Tiracol in India is amazing
When I go to northern Goa, I take a day trip on motorbike and ferry into the neighbouring state of Maharashtra to visit this ancient cliffside fort, from which you can see dolphins jumping in the sea below. There are always monkeys in the trees and sometimes I spot the odd leopard. It’s like stepping into The Jungle Book.
New Orleans was intense
The first film I produced, Buttercup Bill, was shot there and it felt so anarchic. The humidity was high and we’d be doing night shoots in these little wooden houses with grass up to the windows. There were spiders everywhere and jazz playing and everyone was drinking.
I love solitude on holiday
Last year I went trekking in the Himalayas all on my own. I only went for a couple of days but I had a great time. As I’ve got older I’ve come to enjoy being on my own more.
Sometimes you have to compromise
…when you travel. My boyfriend loves nothing more than sitting on a beach, whereas I can’t bear sunbathing and would much rather be creating something. My family is the same. We’ll go somewhere hot on holiday and they’ll all be sunbathing while I’ll be in a sarong either writing or reading.
Kate Moss and I are kindred spirits
…when travelling. All the close friends I’ve travelled with over the years have been like-minded and wanted to do exactly the same things, whether that was group yoga or getting up early for a swim.
I didn’t expect to enjoy going on safari
…but it was incredible. We took the kids to Tanzania when they were little. I’d looked at the photos in the brochure but didn’t expect the reality to be as mind-blowing. Seeing one animal pull another animal apart is such a primal experience. It was nature in action.
The Ananda Spa in the Himalayas
…is where I go to rejuvenate if I’m feeling really burnt out. I always leave feeling like a different person. If I wanted a more active hotel break I’d go to the Maçakizi in Bodrum. It’s got yoga, a gym, things for the kids to do, the food is great and it’s right on the beach.
Brazil never works out for me
The first time I visited, our rental car flipped over at night so we all had to get out and walk two miles carrying bags and babies. Another time I visited one of its islands with my ex-husband [Jude Law] and we ended up packing our bags and leaving as there were hundreds of paparazzi in the trees.
I’m a rubbish packer
…even after decades of travelling. I try to remember important things like mosquito spray, vitamins and hydration tablets but I always forget something. I’ve been away before, arrived somewhere far flung, and realised I’d forgotten all my clothes.
I’m looking forward to revisiting Iceland
…where I once took the kids to see the Blue Lagoon. This time we’ll go horse riding and snowmobiling too.
Interview by Nick McGrath
Sadie’s film,Two For Joy, is now available for digital download.