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Caren Clark

Anton and Giovanni reveal why their Spanish adventures were so much fun to film

Giovanni Pernice and Anton Du Beke in white shirts stand against a hilly background in Anton and Giovanni's Adventures in Spain.

Anton and Giovanni’s Adventures in Spain sees Strictly Come Dancing stars Anton Du Beke and Giovanni Pernice head off on their travels once more.

Following on from Anton & Giovanni's Adventures in Sicily, in which Giovanni showed his pal Anton around his native Sicily, now, the new three-part series, airing on BBC One, follows the duo as they visit locations in Spain that mean a lot to Anton, whose mother Conchita is Spanish and who took him on childhood holidays to the country. 

What To Watch caught up with Anton Du Beke and Giovanni Pernice to find out more about Anton & Giovanni’s Adventures in Spain

Anton & Giovanni’s Adventures in Spain looks like a lot of fun. Why did you want to explore Spain?

Anton Du Beke: “Sicily was about where Giovanni came from and this has been a trip down memory lane for me, as I’ve introduced him to Spain. I haven't been back to the north, where my mum’s from, in about 40 years, so I was looking forward to revisiting it and showing Giovanni where I went when I was little. But I also wanted to discover parts of Spain I hadn’t seen. It was exciting.”

Giovanni Pernice: “Yes, I’ve never really been to Spain and this was the perfect way to see it together.” 

Giovanni Pernice and Anton Du Beke learn about Spanish fan traditions in Anton & Giovanni's Adventures in Spain. (Image credit: BBC)

Did you uncover anything surprising about Spanish culture?

Giovanni Pernice: “There’s a specific language with Spanish fans [which they learn about in Seville]. Apparently, people used to just talk by waving them, that was so interesting.”

Anton Du Beke: “It was fascinating. Fans are a wonderful way of communicating, and so romantic. You can tap someone on the shoulder or see them across the room and signal, ‘Ooh, hello!’”

You also strut your stuff with a septuagenarian flamenco dancer in Granada!

Anton Du Beke: “That was amazing. Giovanni fancied a bit of flamenco action, he couldn’t help himself, so he got up there. The old lady was incredible!”

Giovanni Pernice: “Anton and I both knew the dance style and we’d learnt our own ways, but then you go into the specifics and we looked at each other and said, ‘We’ve been doing something wrong all this time!’”

Giovanni Pernice and Anton Du Beke get stuck into some ice cream in Anton & Giovanni's Adventures in Spain. (Image credit: BBC)

And what was it like catching up with fellow Strictly pro-dancer Gorka Márquez in his native northern Spain?

Giovanni Pernice: “Gorka showed us where he is from and we did some surfing together. But watersports are not our thing!”

Anton Du Beke: “Yes, even when we did aqua aerobics in a pool in Benidorm, we struggled with the timing! But we did traditional Basque sports [known as Herri Kirolak] with Gorka and it turns out I’m wiry but strong!”

Giovanni Pernice battles his fear of heights as he and Anton Du Beke tackle the hair-raising Caminito del Rey walkway near Malaga in Anton & Giovanni's Adventures in Spain. (Image credit: BBC)

Anton, the trip culminates with you and Giovanni joining your wife Hannah, your children George and Henrietta, and your mum, to visit her childhood home, where you spent family holidays. How did you find that?

Anton Du Beke: “It was lovely showing my children, who are six, where I used to go at their age. It was emotional for my mum because she’d never been back since her mother died. And it was a funny old thing for me too. You go, ‘Crikey, that was when I was young, and look at me now.’ It’s remarkable.”

What do the two of you love about travelling together?

Anton Du Beke: “We just enjoy spending time together and we’re cut from the same cloth. But Giovanni's much older than I am, of course! It’s a joy. We have such fun.” 

Giovanni Pernice: “It’s beautiful because Anton’s my best friend, I wouldn't do this with anybody else. But Anton spends more time with me than his wife!”

Anton Du Beke and Giovanni Pernice cool off in Anton & Giovanni's Adventures in Spain. (Image credit: BBC)

And where would you like to go next?

Anton Du Beke: “We just like to explore, so we'd love to examine other countries’ rich history but we’d like to go to America, maybe Las Vegas or Hollywood.”

Giovanni Pernice: “We’re open to suggestions. As long as we are together!”

Anton & Giovanni’s Adventures in Spain begins on Monday March 18 on BBC One at 9pm and will also be available on BBC iPlayer.

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