Where is it?

Imperia, Italy.

Why do you go there?

We lived in France for seven years, very near the Italian border, so when we needed a day off, we would shoot for there.

It was exactly an hour and a quarter away, and we picked it at random and fell hopelessly in love with it. It's basically an undiscovered 1950s resort. There's about one car park, lots of big Italian families, striped sunbeds, and it's heaven on a stick.

How often do you go?

We used to go every few weeks for a Sunday, when the kids were small – it has lots of good play parks for when you're tired of the beach and it's always lovely to watch the families on the passeggiata, out for their early evening stroll, whilst you have an Aperol Spritz, and the kids steal the little bits of focaccia and fontina they serve with it.

How did you discover it?

All of the Italian Riviera is beautiful, really. We picked Imperia because I liked the name. Last year my husband and I had a few days together and we meant to travel up the whole coast, but just found a place there and stayed the entire time.

What's your favourite memory?

There are only two restaurants in the square, and we picked the one with the most people, obviously, and looked around for menus and there weren't any – they just brought you whatever they were making that day. It was heaven.

READ MORE: Landward presenter Anne Lundon reminisces about a Cambodian island retreat

It's also the last place we visited just before we moved back to Scotland, and that day was so bittersweet. It's hard now: we went so much when the children were small. I feel I can still see the ghost of their tiny footprints in the sand.

Who do you take?

Family. Rent four sunbeds between five, someone is always in the water or wanting to show you the cheap plastic knick-knacks they have for sale.

What do you take?

Sun cream, glasses, a big hat, a bikini, a book and the mood for an extremely large dinner.

What do you leave behind?

The world. Imperia never changes.

Sum it up in five words.

Red, orange, gold and blue.

READ MORE: Crime author Caro Ramsay on why Tyndrum makes her heart sing

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

I have always wanted to go to see the Holy Land and South America. I feel now if we can travel again, we should never take it for granted. I'm also desperate to go to Singapore, where one of my brothers is, and see his family.

Five Hundred Miles From You by Jenny Colgan is published on Thursday by Sphere, priced £12.99, and also available in audio and e-book. Visit