Back
You are here:

Meet the team - Far East

Meet our Far East travel specialists; together they have lived, worked and travelled extensively in the region. Whether you wanted to find out what travelling to North Korea is like, to uncover the range of fascinating temples, or to discover the best beachside hotels, our travel consultants can advise on what would suit you best. Plus, it’s likely they’ve already been there – so can tell you first-hand what to expect. 

Close

Amit

Having grown up in a small town in northern India, I was always curious to know what lay further afield. It all started with a trip to Delhi. I was so fascinated by discovering new places that I chose to study tourism management and pursued my Masters in the same field. This led to numerous opportunities to travel extensively within India and abroad. The regions closest to my heart include the Himalayan region of Ladakh, the north-western frontier of Rajasthan, and west Bengal, purely because of their authenticity, colours, magnificent monuments, culture and cuisine. Among my many favourites, I would also include the north-eastern part of India because of its stunning natural beauty and the mighty Himalaya. Outside India, I have travelled widely within the Subcontinent, the Far East, Australasia and the Pacific; however Bhutan is my next passion due to its authenticity, culture and scenic beauty.

My Insiders Tip

Bhutan is a destination little visited, as it is difficult to access and therefore fairly costly, however it is one of the most special places on this planet. Its remoteness, Himalayan location, intense and intriguing culture and values, and spirituality of the local people and of the place make Bhutan a really interesting destination. Bhutan ranks among the most bio-diverse countries in the world. Surprisingly, the warm southern part supports wildlife and vegetation usually associated with a tropical, jungle climate. When flying from Kathmandu to Paro, if you take a seat on the left side of the aircraft, you will have stunning views of Mount Everest.

Favourite Experience

Cruising on Lake Vembanad, through the Keralan backwaters and staying on a private rice barge is an opportunity not to be missed.

My Favourite Place

Though I have many favourite places to visit, I think Ladakh tops the list. This enchanting place is sandwiched between the northern Karakoram mountain range and the Himalaya in the south. Far from the madding crowd, looking out at the mighty Himalayan peaks you feel a sense of control of your own destiny. The vibrant culture, traditional Tibetan architecture, chanting at the monasteries, soaring mountains and clear star-lit skies all make Ladakh an exceptional destination that feeds the soul of a traveller.

My Favourite Hotel

My favourite hotel has to be the Wildflower Hall near Shimla in India. A fairy-tale luxury resort situated at the foothills of the Himalayas, it was originally the estate of Lord Kitchener of Khartoum. The views from all the rooms are breathtaking. The staff are charming, courteous and nothing is too difficult for them. I highly recommend the picnic at The Peak, which is arranged by the hotel.

Order a Brochure Online

Get Asia delivered to your doorstep, and order a Far East brochure here. Order Now >

Discover Far East

Be immersed in the fast pace of its cities, the spirituality of its temples, and the tranquility of its natural world.… Read more
Close

James

I come from a small village of about 60 people in the Peak District and with a thirst for travel, headed to Australia at 22. I spent a year travelling the length and breadth of the country by road. My next adventure was supposed to be a week in Bangkok, but quickly turned into a six-month voyage through south-east Asia, sampling all the wonderful sights and sounds of the Far East.

It was inevitable I would find myself in the travel industry on my eventual return and I know how lucky I am to combine my passion with my career. I’ve hired out surfboards to tourists in Bali, rode like a gaucho through the hills of Argentina, busked in Laos, skydived in Queensland and, more recently, proposed on the summit of Mount Kilimanjaro..

My Insiders Tip

Tanzania holds a special place in my heart. It has an amazing diversity of wildlife, epic landscapes, a colourful culture, delicious food and some of the friendliest people in the world. To me, it’s the ‘best of Africa’ condensed into a single country. This special country became even more memorable after I got engaged at the summit of a very cold Kilimanjaro; my reward after a week long trek to the top! My recommendation is to rise early, the Big 5 are liveliest from 5am. The light is perfect for photography and the sunrises over the plains alone are well worth the early mornings.

Favourite Experience

I met a chap once in Lumphini Park in Bangkok. As usual I was lost and was asking for directions to The Golden Buddha (nowhere near Lumphini Park). He clearly twigged I had recently arrived and asked if he could accompany me for the day to show me some places. He explained he was studying English and would benefit from my conversation. Despite an initial apprehension I decided the very worst case would be I would find myself in his brother’s suit shop and agreed. I was taken to the suburbs where tourists rarely venture and shown the local temples. He explained the Buddhist culture, their rituals and practices. He introduced me to his friends in the monastery. We prayed a little together. And then he took me home to his wife who made the most amazing fish suki while we got drunk on Thai whisky and swapped tales of our homelands. Not once was money ever asked for. For me that gentleman defines Thailand and its people.

My Favourite Place

For most of the year, Calgary is a sleepy city. The annual Calgary Stampede lasts for two weeks and the city comes alive. As a self-appointed British cowboy, I’ve been several times and it’s my favourite time to visit. Streets are lined with live music, a variety of local cuisine and offices are shut so all can celebrate. You can watch some of the best bull-riding, saddle bronc – the rider has to stay on a bucking horse – and nail-biting barrel racing. Each evening local Canadian music and talent acts perform, which is followed by an impressive firework display.

My Favourite Hotel

My hidden gem is La Maison Minervetta in Sorrento. I’ve always had a passion for Sorrento, and the Maison epitomises everything great about the place. It is set high on the cliffs where you can sit in the comfort of your suite, watching the sun set over the bay of Naples. The hotel is small and cosy with 13 bedrooms, and has a wonderful homely feel – particularly at breakfast where owners and guest mingle over what’s to come in the day ahead. The decor is a mish-mash of traditional and modern art which makes it a stand-out option in Sorrento and the attention to detail, particularly in the rooms, is outstanding. Most importantly, however, it has a wonderful courtyard style decking where you can sit with a spritz in the Italian sunshine and watch the fishing trawlers hard at work in the Bay of Naples, possibly catching something for your dinner.

Order a Brochure Online

Get Asia delivered to your doorstep, and order a Far East brochure here. Order Now >

Discover Far East

Be immersed in the fast pace of its cities, the spirituality of its temples, and the tranquility of its natural world.… Read more