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My life in travel: beach destinations to dream about

Plans to go abroad are uncertain for this year, but you can still create that sense of wanderlust at home. Here, three creatives who travel for their art share the places around the world that most make them think of summer

By Megan Murray

Summer is a time for escapism. And with its arrival comes all the usual thoughts of sun, sea, and sand. This year, however, things are a little different. As we sit on a seesaw of travel restrictions, flying to far-flung locations is more likely to be mental than physical. But you can still dream big about what your future summer plans might be.

When visualising the perfect sunshine break, a travel photographer's perspective is invaluable. So, we asked three women from the creative industries to share their favourite beaches to escape to this year, or next.

Here, Lucy Laucht, Nina Brooke and Renée Kemps describe the places that epitomise summer for them. Drawing on their experiences, they recall the sights, tastes and memories that make these destinations worth dreaming about.

Ischia, Italy – Lucy Laucht, travel photographer

'Ischia, a small island off the gulf of Naples, will be the first place on my list when I next travel. I've been fortunate enough to go to Italy for work over the past few years and, for me, it has a magic alchemy that makes all the senses sing.

'One of my favourite things about Ischia is the scent of jasmine that carries in the air. This, mixed with sun on hot skin, is heavenly. The food is also incredible - think pasta, pasta, and more pasta. I'd recommend trying the Scialatielli at La Baia, Mezzatorre.

'While you're in Italy, you should also visit Praiano, which is a little cove tucked away near Positano on the Amalfi Coast. It's smaller and less crowded, and much better for people-watching.'

Follow Lucy Laucht at @lucylaucht, view more of her work on her website here and use the code SPIRITOFSUMMER until the end of July for a 10% discount on her art prints.

Kleine Knip, Curaçao – Nina Brooke, ariel seascape artist

'My mum is from an island in the Caribbean called Curaçao and so I spent a lot of time there as a child. There's one beach that, no matter how much I travel, has always stayed incredibly special to me and stands out as being extremely beautiful. It's called Kleine Knip and has perfect crystal-clear, turquoise water. Seriously, it doesn't get more crystal-clear and turquoise than this. The sea temperature is lovely, so you can stay in it all day, and the sand is so white. You'll find lots of turtles on this beach, and I just love following them around and seeing where they go.

'Knip is a small place, but there's a big community feel. The smell is like tropical air mixed with a local snack, which is like a pasty with sweet and salty pastry wrapped around chicken and amazing spices. There's often someone serving them in the car park or on the sand under a huge straw parasol, too.

'Curaçao is a special place for me, because it inspired a lot of my early paintings. When I started painting aerial seascapes, I created them from memories and imagination. It was really fun and interactive - much more abstract. I'd take a bunch of photos on the beach, go home to England, and then transport myself back mentally.'

Follow Nina Brooke at @ninabrooke, view more of her work on her website here and visit her solo exhibition at the New Craftsman Gallery in St Ives from 14 August to 4 September.

Schouwen-Noordstrand, Holland – Renée Kemps, travel photographer

'There's a little hidden beach on the Netherlands' North Sea island of Schouwen-Duiveland, called Schouwen-Noordstrand, which is really special in summer.

'I first went to this beach after I was born and I've been every summer since. It's a place where you can feel calm and connected to nature. Being there reminds me of summertime, salty skin, wet hair, cycling with no shoes on, picnicking, and being in the sea from sunrise until sunset. It's what I long for during the year.

'Whenever I'm there, I cycle to De Zoete Kers - a little farm shop where they sell the plumpest cherries, which have been picked straight from the trees outside. There's also a lovely tea garden called Het Kaslokaal. You can sit in the sun with a glass of wine and enjoy homemade farm-to-table food. To buy the freshest fish that's been caught the same morning, go to Proef Zeeland. I'd also recommend trying any local ice cream - it's the best.'

Follow Renée Kemps at @renee_kemps, view more of her work on her website here and watch out for her upcoming photography book which is due to launch in Autumn this year and explores the relationship between bodies, architecture and nature through intimate, poetic imagery.