From arriving at the airport to her love of all things Danish, we talk to travel photographer Claire Menary about the destinations she loves and where she hopes to head to in 2021.
What does travel mean to you?
Travel means adventures and exploring; it means something new and exciting. Travel allows you to relax; to give your mind—which is so confined by daily routine and work—a chance to switch off. Travel allows you to experience and to enrich your life through those experiences. And travel brings a lot of joy to a lot of people. It’s incredibly important and such a privilege.
What are you most looking forward to about travelling in 2021?
I think just the ability to travel is an exciting prospect for 2021! Travelling this year posed so many risks and restrictions, it made it feel impossible to do safely, so just to have the possible glimmer of hope that we might be able to travel *hopefully* normally at some point next year is amazing. I don’t think any of us will ever take holidays or travelling for granted again!
Describe a moment, that you only experience when travelling, that you can’t wait to experience again?
I love airports. Aside from the destination itself, the airport excitement is an experience I love when travelling. The knowing that you’re going to soon be where you’ve been counting down the days to going. The getting on the plane, settling into your seat and checking out what movies they have. Even better—that feeling when the plane touches down at your destination’s airport, knowing you have finally arrived and the next few days/weeks of adventure are about to begin. I love those moments.
Which European destination is first on your list and why?
At this point, I will go anywhere! I would really love to visit Iceland - I’ve wanted to do a winter break there for so long. I’d also love to explore some more of Italy but maybe I will wait until things warm up a little. I’d happily go back to Paris at any given opportunity too—I just love the city so much. For my 30th, my boyfriend and I went on a road trip around France so there are a few spots that I’d like to return to—and a few French antique markets I need to visit! We both became a bit obsessed with visiting every antique shop possible and France is the place to go for markets!
Which long haul destination are you longing to explore and why?
I would love to return to India which I briefly visited a couple of years ago. We only spent around 10 days exploring India and that definitely is not enough, so it’s been on my list to return to for quite some time. It’s such a fascinating country and it really opens your eyes to a culture so different to your own. It’s such a beautiful country too - from a photographer’s perspective, it’s overwhelming!
Name a place that you love so much, you’d happily return to time and time again.
I absolutely love Copenhagen so would happily visit a few times a year if I could, to enjoy all the different seasons. It’s as beautiful in summer as it is all twinkly & festive around Christmas time! It’s such an interesting city with cool people and it’s all just very low-key and relaxed. I love nothing more than getting a cinnamon bun from Skt Peders and just wandering the streets and exploring the city’s different areas. Copenhagen also has some great shops and museums, and there’s lots of day trips you can do from Copenhagen - so there’s always something to keep me busy when I go. Not to mention the street style is so cool - I want to be a Danish girl when I grow up!
Claire travels with the Clifton cases in black and the Chelsea weekender. Follow Claire @ClaireMenary and read the next interview in our series, The Joy of Travel, with Bola Odusina here.