In this monthly column, we chat to some of SA’s premier personalities about their travel experiences and favourite local pastimes and haunts.
This week we catch up with singer, actress and presenter LYNELLE KENNED, who can be seen in the new David Kramer musical ‘Orpheus In Africa’, showing at the Fugard Theatre until February 22. Kenned plays the role of Mattie Allen, the fiancé of the titular character (portrayed by Aubrey Poo).
What is your favourite travel destination, and why?
I’d have to say Wales. One of my favorite experiences so far was renting a bicycle in Cardiff and spending a magical afternoon cycling alongside the river Taff to Castell Coch (the Red Castle) in the nearby village of Tongwynlais. It also helps that Welsh people are warm and friendly.
What was your first international trip, and what do you remember most vividly about the experience?
Coincidentally, it was Wales. I was in Matric, travelling with the Stellenberg Girls Choir to compete for the Choir of the World title at the Llangollen International Eisteddfod. I remember rolling green hills and sheep traffic on the roads. It was love at first sight, further enhanced by the fact that our choir walked away as the 2006 Choir of the World champions.
What is the first thing you usually do when you arrive at your destination and you’re trying to get acclimated?
Abandon your attempt at unpacking your suitcase, and just go explore your surroundings. Google Maps has a great feature that lets you search by category for the nearest restaurants, theatres, museums etc. Spend some time walking around and enjoy getting lost.
What for you is usually the best way to soak up the culture you’re in?
Make friends with locals. It’s perfect if you wish to experience the city in the company of someone in the know (straying off the beaten tourist path). Technology makes it easy – the Tinder app comes in handy for meeting people happy to play personal tour guide and culture coach.
Flying – love it, or hate it?
Neither, really. It’s a means to an end. I find reading a good book makes for an enjoyable flight.
What has been your favourite cuisine that you have discovered on your travels?
On a trip to Dublin recently, I treated myself to a six course tasting menu at the Michelin starred Chapter One. The highlight was ending the already splendid meal with a luxurious Irish coffee, made from scratch at your table. Authentic Irish coffee in Ireland – it doesn’t get any better.
You’ve got exactly R48 in your wallet. Where do you go for lunch in Cape Town, and what do you have?
On lunch break at the Fugard Theatre, my fellow cast members and I often pop into Eastern Food Bazaar. Their portions are generous, so if you’re keen to split a meal with a friend, R48 gets you Butter Chicken and naan, a drink, and some change to spare. New York Bagels in Harrington Street is hit as well, and affordable. Gone are the days of pies hurriedly purchased and scoffed at a petrol station.
What is your speciality in the kitchen?
I enjoy cooking when I have the time. My lamb stew and pork belly always hit the spot, but a quick stir fry with fried hake is a winner too.
Describe your ideal night in, and out.
Night in: Dinner with friends, paired with board games and lots of wine.
Night out: Dinner, followed by theatre, and finishing with a nightcap.
What makes life worth living?
Great friends, great shared experiences, and good food and wine.
* Tickets for ‘Orpheus In Africa’ cost from R130 to R220 per person via the Fugard Theatre box office on 021 461 4554; or Computicket.