Singer Cheryl Cole

Cheryl Cole has gone on a New Year’s holiday to South Africa with Derek Hough.

The 27-year-old beauty – who caught potentially-deadly malaria after a trip to Africa with her close pal and rumoured boyfriend in June - is spending time with the Dancing With The Stars professional in Cape Town to mark the turning of a year which also saw her split from husband Ashley Cole amid allegations he had cheated on her with several women.

A source said: “He wanted to make sure Cheryl had a good start to 2011 after her worst year ever.

“Then he just told her to pack a bag as he’d organised a holiday for them.”

Cheryl’s friends have been concerned about her travelling back to Africa so soon after recovering from malaria – a disease spread my mosquitoes – but worries were settled when Derek confirmed the insects in the country do not carry it.

The source added to The Sun newspaper: “Friends warned about going back to Africa so soon afterwards. But Derek did his homework and found Cape Town to be a malaria-free region.”

The pair are staying at a luxury £3,000-a-night villa where they will be able to enjoy a 24-hour butler and a personal chef.

The insider said: “Cheryl can relax and be pampered which is what she wanted.”

Meanwhile, the Flood singer is believed to be taking acting lessons in preparation for a possible judging role on the US version of UK TV talent show The X Factor.

A pal said: “Alongside the acting lessons, she’ll be getting a coach to train her for the judges’ role in America.” - Bang Showbiz