Where is it?

The island of Gotland, southwest of Stockholm, Sweden. Picture the most idyllic scene from a Scandinavian crime drama and this is it: remote, stunning and peaceful. It was home to Swedish film director Ingmar Bergman who loved the rugged and sparse landscape of the Faro region.

Why do you go there?

My husband's family have had a summer house there since 1980. Many families in Scandinavia have a small place where they can retreat in the summer and I'm just lucky the Johanssons invested on beautiful, unspoiled Gotland.

Over the years, it's been a great escape from our busy lives in London where my husband Jonatan was a Premiership footballer and I had a busy career in television.

As soon as the football season was over, we would jump on a flight to Stockholm and take the ferry to Gotland to completely switch off from our hectic lives. The island is like Ibiza: it has magical and mystical powers.

How often do you go?

Once a year. The family has grown. There are wives and cousins and relatives all eager to spend the summer weeks on Gotland, so it's sometimes a fight among the family to book a free week.

READ MORE: Cookery writer and novelist Sue Lawrence on her favourite island escapes

How did you discover it?

I went for the first time in 2000 and immediately fell in love with the little fisherman's cottage in Valleviken. It overlooks the sea and is a little piece of heaven.

What's your favourite memory of being there?

At one time the house had no water source, so my favourite memories are peeing outside in a "dass", which is a shed with a bucket in it. I also loved washing in the sea in the mornings. It was real summer house living and such a break from our luxuries at home. We've since installed a shower and toilet, but my best memories are from when the house didn't have one.

Who do you take?

Jonatan and our son Junior. We usually meet my mother-in-law there and spend a blissful week doing nothing.

What do you take?

Not much. Although it's a small and remote island, the medieval capital Visby is a vibrant town full of shops and trendy bars and restaurants. I like to shop there and visit local bakeries and fish shops for supplies.

What do you leave behind?

The whole family use the house, so it's always nice to leave something for the next group when they arrive. Be it a pack of cards, a board game or a nice bottle of wine.

Sum it up in five words.

Historic. Unspoiled. Idyllic. Breathtaking. Unpredictable.

What travel spot is on your post-lockdown wish list?

I can't ask for too much for a post-lockdown wish list as hopefully I'll be back on the road for A Place In The Sun soon. I'm so lucky to get to travel round Europe with the show.

READ MORE: Cookery writer and novelist Sue Lawrence on her favourite island escapes

Away from work, I want to try a thermal spa in Reykjavik, go whale watching in Norway and walk round the bustling markets of Hong Kong. Those are all on my bucket list.

A Place In The Sun returns to Channel 4, Monday, 3pm. Watch Animal Park on BBC iPlayer now

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