Mike Manning has been splitting his time between Salem — as Ava Vitale has conjured up her dead son Charlie Dale as a figment of her imagination — and Bay City, where he plays Caleb McKinnon. In real life, he does a bit of traveling, too. The Daytime Emmy-winner sat down with Soap Hub to talk about his favorite travels.
Mike Manning Enjoys Scuba Diving While Traveling
Soap Hub: Where is your dream place to visit?
Mike Manning: I’ve always wanted to go to Ireland and Scotland. Part of my family comes from that region of the world, and I remember my grandfather talking about it when I was younger. In fact, I have a trip planned there in a couple weeks. I’m spending New Year’s Eve at the Hogmanay Festival in Edinburgh, Scotland, and then after that, I’ll head over to Dublin, Ireland. I can’t wait.
Soap Hub: What has been your favorite place you’ve visited so far, and what inspired you to go there?
Mike Manning: I love scuba diving, so my favorite place that I’ve visited so far has got to be Bali, Indonesia. I traveled there several years ago for the diving and fell in love with the island. On one of the dives, I saw giant Manta Rays swimming above me, casting large shadows on the ocean floor. And then, a couple hours later, we explored a shipwreck. I find it difficult to disconnect sometimes, but something about swimming 60 feet below the surface of the water, listening to nothing but your own breath and heartbeat, really calms me down. That entire experience was magical.
Soap Hub: When you travel, do you stick to a schedule and plan everything you want to see and do, in advance, or do you show up with little idea and just go with the flow?
Mike Manning: I sort of do both. When planning a trip, I’ll look online at what other travelers say they enjoy about a certain place, or I’ll ask around to see if friends have visited there before. I like to approach travel with a loose plan, and then once I’m there, I let myself meet people and talk to locals and get pulled in different directions depending on what sounds fun.
Soap Hub: Do you stick to tourist areas, or do you immerse yourself in the local traditions/cultures?
Mike Manning: Of course, there are some places a person needs to visit depending on where he/she is traveling. I mean, you can’t go to Paris and not walk near the Eiffel Tower or explore the Louvre, but apart from the “must-see” attractions, I try to meet locals and walk off the beaten path, to experience the culture first-hand. I typically aim to get the touristy stuff out of the way early in the trip, and then I try to explore a place on a deeper level.
Soap Hub: Can you speak any languages fluently? Have you ever traveled somewhere where English wasn’t the primary language? If so, how did you navigate in the city and ask questions?
Mike Manning: For a semester of school, I lived in Monterrey, Mexico, as part of an exchange program. I lived in a giant apartment building with dozens of students in the program; I think there were 60 of us from 15 or so different countries. One of my roommates was from Portugal, two others were from Switzerland, the students across the hall were from France, others were from Germany, Spain, China….
We were a diverse group full of different languages, customs, traditions. I loved it. Because of that, my Spanish is pretty good. I’ve forgotten a little bit, but when I go back to Mexico or to, Colombia or Spain, or other Spanish-speaking countries, I try to speak as little English as possible.
Check out Manning on Season 7 of The Bay, currently streaming daily on Popstar! TV.
The best place for true soap fans to be is our Facebook groups. Have you joined? If you love soap spoilers, gossip, and fans as dedicated as yourself, check out Days of our Lives Fans, General Hospital Exclusive, The Young and the Restless Fans, and The Bold and the Beautiful Fans.