Hi, thanks for visiting my webpage. I'm passionate about travel and have a wide range of experience having visited many beautiful places around the world.
I am fortunate to live on the lovely Gower peninsular, Swansea, South Wales but that doesn’t stop me from wanting to explore further afield.
As an independent Travel Counsellor I can make your holiday and travel dreams come true and take away the hassle of arranging your leisure or business trip.
I can arrange all your accommodation needs and book any transport requirements. In addition I can arrange any transfers to and from transport hubs, sightseeing trips and everything for your holiday itinerary whether it is in the UK or anywhere in the world.
I have travelled widely throughout the world visiting many places in Europe including; France, Spain, Belgium, Holland, Greece, Hungary, Turkey, Italy, Canary Islands, Portugal, Madeira and further afield including; USA, Canada, Caribbean Islands, Cape Verde, Morocco, Iceland, Thailand, Vietnam, Cambodia, Hong Kong, Singapore, Cook Islands, Tonga, Fiji. In addition I have travelled extensively around Australia, New Zealand and Wales! I have also enjoyed various breaks throughout the UK and taken a number of cruises.
Let me save you precious time and money surfing the web and provide you with some top travel tips from my personal travel experiences. Why not take a few minutes to have a look at my blog page if you want some ideas. I can discuss your requirements at any time online or by telephone as I’m not restricted to traditional working hours, so whatever time of day or day of the week I can be available to talk about your plans.
Travel Counsellors are the only travel agency to be awarded the Queens Award for Enterprise and have been voted "Best Travel Agency" by readers of The Guardian and The Observer newspapers, four out of the last five years. In addition to our bespoke service everything you book with me is 100% financially protected by either ATOL or Travel Counsellor Financial Trust. Every penny you spend with me is safe.
I will always provide you with an outstanding tailor-made personal service. I care about all my customers and go the extra mile to ensure you get the best possible holiday when you book with me. All this comes at no extra cost to you. Importantly, with me it’s personal.
“The world is a book and those who do not travel read only one page.”
Augustine of Hippo
Sent in by Annmarie Jenkins
Port Talbot , 22 February 2018
I was so happy with the service I had received from Christina Reed, she provided me with many quotes to suit my requirements in order to give me the best possible deal. She answered my queries promptly and resolved an issue very quickly. I was so amazed that she sent my family a lovely plaque to count down the day until we go to Disneyland Paris, such a thoughtful gesture, I have never ever received this kind of service before. I will definitely be booking my next holiday with her and will definitely be telling people about this excellent service.
Sent in by Janet Murphy
Clydach, 21 February 2018
Absolutely brilliant service from Christina, everything thought of and everything explained in full. I will definitely use this service again and highly recommend to my friends and family
Sent in by Owen Williams
Swansea, 20 January 2018
Excellent personal service and willing to go the extra mile to make things work.
Sent in by Claire Havard
Swansea, 09 January 2018
Christina has been amazing during our booking for Florida. She has the patience of a saint and is very helpful and knowledgeable. We would definitely use her again and recommend her.
Sent in by Louise Howe
Baglan, Port Talbot, 22 December 2017
I have never used a TC before but she was so knowledgeable and friendly that I couldn't book anywhere else! Her attention to detail was amazing and I felt like her only customer. She talked me through all my options for our Florida holiday, of which there were many, and made sure I had the right package for my family. She then added flights, car parking and a hotel stay to our holiday and we had a full itinerary before I knew it. The payment facility was easy and it was comforting to have the full details all on the user friendly app. Christina patiently and enthusiastically answered my (many!) questions over the 18 months between initial booking and departure and personally delivered my tickets and details of everything I needed before we left. After checking us in (a massive relief as I'm not IT minded) she tracked us to arrival at MCO and made sure we arrived at the hotel. Before our return journey she was in touch to arrange printing of our boarding passes via the concierge service. I am absolutely astounded at the attention to detail and high level of customer service I have received from Christina - what an ambassador for your business! I have been happy to send a few of my friends to Christina for their holidays and I would not book with anyone else in future.
Sent in by Lucy Roberts
Swansea, 06 December 2017
Amazing service from a very helpful lady!! Would recommend Christina to anyone booking a holiday!
Sent in by Karen Julian
Pontardawe, Swansea, 07 November 2017
Christina was absolutely fantastic, very patient as we had so many changes to quote for before actually booking. Would certainly recommend her and would definitely use her again.
Sent in by Margaret Elliott
Carmarthenshire, 23 October 2017
I have already introduced a couple of people to Christina and will carry on doing so as chances arise. She is the most helpful, but non intrusive, lady I have had the pleasure to know and deal with.
Sent in by Gavin Thomas
Neath, 28 September 2017
First class service
Sent in by Rhian Rees
Swansea, 28 September 2017
Christina has been so helpful in every way. She provides that personal touch which you don't get when you visit a travel agent. I would highly recommend her to anyone
Sent in by Andrew Reed
Swansea, 28 September 2017
The one to one service from Christina was first class in every respect and no more expensive than any high street travel agent.
Sent in by Jayne Clarke
Swansea, 07 September 2017
Christina has been brilliant in helping us book our holiday.
Sent in by Siziwe Turner
Yeovil, Somerset, 21 August 2017
The service I received from Christina was exceptional and outstanding. She showed dedication, and care and I was very impressed with the service.
Sent in by Gaynor John
Port Talbot, South Wales, 07 August 2017
Christina offers professional and friendly service and. always goes the extra mile! .Would definitely recommend her ...Brilliant service
Sent in by Joanna Howard
Wellington, New Zealand, 02 August 2017
Outstanding service! Christina certainly goes that extra mile to ensure everything is perfect and takes any worries away to make the booking all so easy!
Sent in by Paula Harding
Mumbles, Swansea, 13 July 2017
I would recommend Christina my travel counsellor to my friends. And family she has taken all the hard work out of looking for my holiday and making it stress free. Thank you .
Sent in by Winifred Bowden
Swansea, 10 July 2017
Patience of a saint!! Fantastic service :)
Sent in by Martin Thomas
Ammanford, 25 June 2017
Well what can I say other than what a great experience. Christina was knowledgable, very helpful and nothing was too much. I would definitely recommend her and will be booking again with her. She made my experience completely none stressful and felt special in what she did for us Finally the app is excellent payment easy and straight forward and secure. All round superb experience.
Sent in by Julia Perry
Neath, 19 May 2017
Infinite patience with me changing my mind, and the dates.
Sent in by Catherine Bellamy
Swansea, 10 May 2017
I found Christina to be very professional and efficient. She offered me offers that kept within budget. She was on point as to what I wanted from a holiday.
Sent in by Lyndsey Connor
Pontyclun, 05 May 2017
Excellent attention to detail, only too happy to help and nothing was too much trouble - fantastic service! Already recommending her
Sent in by Louise Connick
Bristol, 01 May 2017
It was a group booking. Christina was very flexible as the booking came in 2 parts. She was very accommodating. Great service. Thanks
Sent in by Margaret Elliott
Kidwelly, Carmarthenshire, 06 April 2017
Christina is knowledgeable and answers any questions that one may have. If she doesn't know anything, she knows a man/woman who does, and gets back to you as soon as. She is a NUMBER ONE lass.
Sent in by Tim Harrison
Milford Haven, 17 March 2017
Great service from Christina in arranging our jolly boys outing to Mallorca. Will recommend to others and will use Travel Counsellors again.
Sent in by Lucy Roberts
Swansea, 17 March 2017
Excellent advisor and goes above and begin to help you! Would recommend and have recommended Christina to my friends and family!
Sent in by Stella Howard
Swansea, 01 March 2017
Professional, answered all my queries, gave me good advice. Happy to book my holiday with this lady and Travel Counsellors again.
Sent in by Bernadette Williams
Swansea, 16 February 2017
Fab service, very pleased with Christina.
Sent in by Anna-Marie Edwards
Llanelli, 04 February 2017
Thank you so much Christina Reed, Travel Counsellor!!! You have made my daughters year by getting Ed Sheeran tickets!!! Fabulous and reliable service provided and very reasonably priced!! I will definitely being using your services again! X
Sent in by David Rees
Swansea, 03 February 2017
First class service throughout - as always. Would not hesitate to use again or recommend to others.
Sent in by Norma Morgan
Bridgend , 17 January 2017
I have traveled extensively over many years, and booked through agents, independently. But never have I experienced, such personal, genuine intrest in our needs before. Christina has already made the build up to our trip, very exciting and stress free. I have already recommended her to friends and family. Thank you
With independent access to thousands of travel suppliers around the world, I've got an eye for added value. Take a look through my latest selections below. But even if nothing particularly catches your eye - don't worry! Let's chat and I'll take the hassle away from tailoring a perfectly personalised holiday just for you.
Contact me on 01792 825340
I absolutely live and breathe travel and I love to write about my experiences! Please take a look through my posts - you might find your own holiday inspiration.
28 November 2017
I was very lucky to attend an educational trip to Mexico in November and visit two beautiful hotels, The Grand Velas in Riviera Maya and Chable in Yucatan. I would thoroughly recommend a stay at either of these resorts. On arrival at the Zen Ambiance we were greeting very warmly by Emma Gomez and Bibiana Vicencio who both looked after us extremely well during the whole experience. The suite was very well appointed, spacious with high quality furnishings. The minibar had a very good selection of beverages and snacks, together with the Nespresso machine. The cleaning standards and turndown service...
14 September 2017
You may be thinking of taking a cruise for the first time or indeed be an experienced cruiser that is thinking about trying another line, hopefully the below guide will give you a small insight as to what each cruise line has to offer and of course you can always call me for more advice. P&O CRUISES P&O cruises have 7 ships in their fleet: the newest being their flagship Britannia. They are known for offering guests Strictly Come Dancing at Sea and for their celebrity chef Food Heroes on-board ships. They offer the most cruises out of Southampton, including lots...
26 May 2017
We took the Santander Ferry from Plymouth on a sunny May afternoon and enjoyed a short cruise to Santander in Northern Spain arriving early afternoon the following day. The Brittany Ferries ‘Pont Aven’ is the largest and newest of the ferry fleet and though the sea was a little choppy in the Bay of Biscay the passage was quite smooth. We really enjoyed. After docking in Santander, we headed directly for San Sebastian, about an hour and a half drive along the north coast of Spain. We arrived in a surprisingly bustling town centre and found our way to the lovely...
25 April 2017
We embarked on a 4 night, mid week short tour of North Wales leaving Swansea on Monday morning and winding our way through mid Wales to Llandudno. Stopped off in Lampeter for a coffee and later at lovely Betwys y Coed in Snowdonia. We checked into our B&B a short walk from the prom’ in Llandudno and enjoyed a 3 course meal before strolling to the promenade and along the pier! Very unseasonal biting cold weather but stopped for a nightcap in the former theatre! A bright sunny but cold morning and we drove firstly up to the Great Orme....
19 February 2017
We set off from Mojacar, Almeria on a clear sunny morning hugging the lovely, interesting coastline to the Cabo de Gata National Park stopping for a look at Agua Amarga before cutting back inland across the top of the national park through completely unspoilt countryside; real pre-tourism Spain. Our next stop south of Almeria City was Aguadulce that had a great beach and small pretty marina. Then onto Roquetas de Mar, a busier resort with long stretch of sandy beach and bustling town with international stores. We then followed the coastal road much of it good dual carriage-way to Almunecar...
12 December 2016
December 12th and we set off from Mojacar, Andalucia, on a trip that has been on our bucket list for a long time. In the south of Spain, a group of old towns and cities with Moorish/Arab origins and history forms what has become known as ‘The Golden Triangle’ due to the wealth of beautiful buildings, architectural and cultural treasures. The first stop on our Golden Triangle tour is the home of the fantastic Alhambra Palace in Granada. We are lucky with the cold but sunny weather and the city is silhouetted against the Sierra Nevada mountainsides covered in...
02 December 2016
We visited the city of Almeria on a fresh sunny day in December 2016 travelling the short distance from Mojacar by car. It was relatively easy to reach the town centre by road and we found a large underground car park near the bullring, Plaza De Toros. The bull ring is quite an imposing building at the end of Avenida de Vilnes and though closed was worth a little wander around. You could easily imagine the atmosphere on an event day. We first went to the Tourist information office at Plaza de la Constitucion, a nice plaza in the old...
08 September 2016
We arrived in Mojacar in the evening after a short flight from Bristol to Alicante and having collected a hire car at the airport. As usual temperatures were in the high twenties but we acclimatised within a few days and enjoyed the sun and heat. Some of our family stayed at our apartment whilst others stayed at the Valle Del Este Golf Resort, a 20 minute drive away. We were all in Spain for our niece’s wedding that was held at the Valle Del Este Golf Resort so made the most of it and showed our family around the area going...
10 June 2016
We travelled to the village of Porlock, Somerset on a Friday in June for a long weekend to celebrate Mum and Dad’s Ruby wedding anniversary. We stayed at The Cleeve, an old hunting lodge, more than large enough to accommodate the immediate family, 18 of us in a mixture of double and family bedrooms. The house is situated in a great position in its own grounds and five minute walk from the centre of the village. Though the grounds were in need of a little TLC the interior of the house was maintained to a high standard with all necessary...
26 May 2016
We stayed at the Crown and Victoria public house in the quiet and pretty village of Tintinhull on a Friday and Saturday night in May. The village is situated a short distance from Yeovil and a good location for touring around Somerset and the South West. The Crown and Victoria is a typical old West Country coaching house with large car park, country beer garden and ‘cottagee’ feel. The bar areas had been given over to restaurant dining tables and chairs with no comfy chairs to chill in though this didn’t bother us too much as we made the most of...
23 December 2015
Arriving in Singapore from Thailand we took the shuttle bus that only cost S$9 each. Our hotel was located in the Clarke Quay area, central for exploring and has the benefit of lots of bars and restaurants. We stayed in the 4 star Park Regis Hotel that we would recommend. An MRT station (underground railway) is across the road from the hotel together with Central Mall and Clarke Quay. We spent the first day exploring Clarke Quay having lunch in ‘Octotapas’ overlooking the quayside before heading down to Boat Quay for a refreshment stop. Great location on the river to...
19 December 2015
We arrived in Koh Samui to rain, however we had arranged for our hotel to meet us at the airport and within 30 minutes we were in our lovely Movenpick Laem Yai Hotel, situated in the quiet north west of the island. Our accommodation was a really nice pool-access villa and by the time we had settled in ‘happy hour’ arrived, the rain had stopped and the sun was shining; good timing! We have to confess we spent a lovely week relaxing and chilling by the pool and on the beach. The hotel is situated on the beach with only...
02 December 2015
We entered Cambodia by coach at it’s border with Vietnam, a six hour coach journey from Ho Chi Minh City to Phnom Pen. We stayed at Hotel Le Grand Palais, which, was of Moorish design and very nice. A very good meal was served in the dinning room before we ‘retired’ to the rooftop bar for a nightcap, by this time the temperature had lowered to an almost bearable humid 30 degrees and we soaked up the atmosphere taking in the night-time city views. Our excellent guide, Kim, took us to the Kings’s Palace and Silver Pagoda that has a...
25 November 2015
Arrived in Hong Kong (HK) at around 2pm for our pre-arranged transfer with our hotel, Island Pacific. The transfer to Hong Kong Island took around 40 minutes. Taxi from the airport costs around £20. Our hotel room had great views across HK harbour. Depending on the position of your hotel you may be able to watch ‘The Symphony of Lights’ nightly multimedia show that involves more than 40 buildings on both sides of the harbour. If you are on the Kowloon side at Tsim Sha Tsui waterfront or at the Golden Bauhinia Square in Wan Chai (HK Island) you...
12 November 2015
We flew from Hong Kong to Hanoi with Dragon Air, a two hour flight and a 40 minute transfer to our hotel. We stayed one night at the La Belle Vie a three start hotel located centrally. We made our way on foot into the old town, which, was very busy but quite an electric atmosphere. There are apparently 4 million motorbikes in Hanoi and it feels like a lot more! We had an absolutely delicious dinner in a local nearby Vietnamese restaurant called ‘Seasons’. We travelled by coach to Halong Bay (about 4 hours) for a two day cruise....
26 November 2014
Robe was beautiful with a gorgeous beach and jetty where we parked up for a while and wandered about before carrying on to Mount Gambia our next stop. In the morning we made our way into town to see a ‘sink-hole-crater-cave-garden-spring’ that was the original settlement centre and water supply for the town. It was quite nice but gutted to find out that there was a nightly light show we could have gone to that would have been really nice. Before leaving Mount Gambia we went to The Blue Lake, Valley Lake and the Mutton Bird Lake, the craters of...
20 November 2014
We arrived after quite a scary flight, amongst the worst turbulence we have experienced whilst coming into land but arrived at Adelaide unscathed and checked into the Adabaco Boutique Hotel at 9.30pm. We dumped our bags off then went in search of food! We were recommended a nearby Italian café, San Georgio that was open till 5am! How civilised and had a very good dinner in great atmosphere but not getting to bed until gone 2am, like a true pair of back packers! After a nice breakfast we went for a walk around and were immediately taken by Adelaide; lots...
07 November 2014
On the road travelling south to the town and region of Margaret River we passed through Bunbury stopping for a short leg stretch on the foreshore; looked like a nice place and looking forward to seeing more of the town when we stay here on our last leg of the south west tour. Next stop Busselton, we parked up near the promenade then walked along the jetty, which, is 1.8km long and a heritage listed site holding the record for the longest timber-piled jetty in the Southern Hemisphere. There is a little train you can catch but after grabbing an...
01 November 2014
Perth!!! Got a taxi from the airport and arrived at Perth YHA, not bad in fairness, quick shower and out to explore the town. Stumbled upon a really nice Korean/Vietnamese café where we proceeded to demolish two Bento Boxes!! The following morning, set out to explore Perth properly. Went to the CBD then down to the foreshore and Barrack Street Jetty where we had a lovely coffee in Barrack Jetty Ice cream parlor/cafe in probably the best position in Perth with gorgeous views across the estuary. The compact CBD that was a great mix of new and old buildings. Walked...
27 September 2014
After a three hour drive our initial experience wasn’t good, as the service and information centre near the entrance to the park was closed. By this time we needed a comfort stop so were glad to reach the first visitor centre in the park, unfortunately this was also deserted but did have toilets we could use. We were intending to sit in the shade and have our picnic but moved on quickly to Bowali Visitor Centre. This visitor centre was really nice and had good displays and information on local culture, wildlife and sights to visit. We arrived at our...
25 September 2014
In September 2014, we flew from Brisbane to Darwin in the Northern Territory. We arrived in Darwin mid-afternoon and headed straight out to explore the town in the tropical 34 degree heat, phew! We set a very leisurely pace to the new Darwin Waterfront development with nice gardens, lagoon, man-made beach, cafés and restaurants. After some refreshments we continued along to the esplanade and watched a lovely sunset from a foreshore lookout point. Finished the day with an obligatory cool down dip in the hotel pool. Hisssssszzz. The next morning we walked to the Botanical Gardens, strolling through the...
04 September 2014
Our first destination in New South Wales was Byron Bay and we drove along the Gold Coast via Surfers Paradise, a well developed stretch of apartment blocks and hotels alongside a golden stretch of sandy beach. Byron Bay was busy but a very different atmosphere to Surfers Paradise with a village-like feel and eclectic mix of small shops, cafes and bars. We stayed for one night in a nice B&B but due to the weather we didn’t see Byron Bay at its best though we could understand its appeal. We drove south from Byron Bay via Grafton enroute to Coffs...
14 August 2014
We arranged car hire for our drive south down the Capricorn Coast to Brisbane. First stop was Sarina Beach, a nice little seaside village and beach that is visited by sea turtles every year to hatch their eggs. After a coffee in a beachfront cafe, we carried onto Yeppoon, where we stayed for a couple of nights. The first night we visited The Strand Hotel, situated on the foreshore, for a pizza, glass of wine and free internet! We woke up to rain and wind the following day so regrettably decided to cancel any plans of visiting Great Keppel Island...
01 August 2014
We flew into Brisbane from Fiji, and transferrd to our hotel, The Urban Hotel, in less than an hour. The Urban Hotel is situated overlooking Roma Parkland in a nice city centre area. We walked through the lovely Botanic Gardens spotting large Ibis birds in the trees and meandered along the Brisbane River to the South Bank area. The South Bank is the ‘arty’ side of Brisbane and home to art galleries, museums and theatres. There is a man-made beach, swimming pool and park area with nice cafes and outside public BBQ. We stopped for a coffee in the local...
31 July 2014
Fiji is an archipelago of more than 332 islands in the South Pacific. We visited Fiji whilst travelling and flew here direct from Tonga. We spent two nights on the north-west coast of Viti Levu near Nadi at Aquarious on the Beach. Whilst there we visited Port Denaru, a gated port with expensive housing, waterways, a Marina, shopping centre and upmarket hotels. Later we departed Port Denaru for three weeks island hopping along the Yassawa Islands, a string of islands stretching north of Fiji into the Pacific Ocean. We travelled on the Yassawa Flyer/Southsea Island Cruisers having purchased a Hopper...
30 June 2014
Situated in Western South Pacific, we arrived in ‘The Kingdom of Tonga’ to be welcomed with the customary flower garland but no singing! The Kingdom of Tonga is the only Pacific island group that has maintained its royal monarchy. The current King still has considerable influence on the running of the country though since 2008 there has also been a partially elected parliament. Tonga is made up of 170 islands we were lucky to visit 3 of them, during our month stay. The Pa’anaga is the currency of Tonga, there are no language issues and most people speak English. Our accommodation...
31 May 2014
The Cook Islands consist of 15 small islands situated in the middle of the South Pacific. They are volcanic in origin and typically have lagoon reefs and lush tropical vegetation. It is said they have some of the best islands and beaches in the world. The islands have been populated by indigenous Maori people for approximately 3500 years before more recent western influence in the past 250 years, particularly the British. Today the Cook Islands form part of the greater New Zealand territory and though the Queen remains head of state they are generally self-governed. We arrived after completing a...
06 May 2014
We stayed for three nights at the Hilton Grand Vacations, Karen Avenue, Las Vegas, situated towards the northern end of the strip. This was excellent value for money and provided all the extras you would expect from the Hilton group. Many people would choose to stay in the centre of the strip but we liked the location of this hotel because we were in close proximity to the strip without being engulfed by the hordes of sightseers. The transport facilities are excellent; the monorail station was adjacent to the car park of our hotel. We caught the monorail to the...
05 April 2014
We flew to San Francisco, the airport is only 13 miles south of downtown San Francisco so we took a shuttle bus to our hotel. San Francisco has an excellent transport network so you don’t need to hire a car to get around the main sights. During our five nights we visited The California Academy of Sciences, the Japanese Tea Garden, De Young Museum/Art Gallery, and Presido Park, all definitely worth a visit. We tried to get tickets for Alcatraz but there was no availability, we were told you need to book two weeks in advance if you want...
14 February 2014
Like neighbouring Tenerife Lanzarote is about a 4 hour flight from most UK airports and again has a good climate all year around. It is the most easterly of the Canary Islands and has the reputation as one of the best locations for windsurfing and other watersports . We have visited here twice in recent years on the first occasion staying in the Club Hotel Riu Parasio, situated in Playa de los Pocillos, only 5 miles from the airport. It is a four star All Inclusive resort style hotel across the road from the beach. The hotel has four swimming...
04 February 2014
We travelled to Paris by Eurostar, it only took 2 hours and was effortless, much nicer than flying in my opinion. Our hotel for our three nights was the Villa Royale Paris, a small boutique hotel in the Pigalle area and a stone’s throw from the nearest metro station. The hotel’s interior is inspired from the world of theatre with deep reds, tassels and tufted velvets. This hotel is ideally situated for exploring the Montmartre, St. Georges and Pigalle areas and of course the Moulin Rouge was around the corner, literally! We booked ahead for our tickets to the evening...
08 December 2012
Tobago is the smaller of the two islands that make up Trinidad and Tobago and located in the Southern Caribbean. We headed to Tobago for some winter sun and weren’t disappointed. We stayed in the Blue Waters Inn, Batteaux Bay in Speyside located on the north east coast. From our hotel we took a boat trip to Bird of Paradise Island, a nearby nature sanctuary and then went snorkelling in the crystal clear blue waters, ahhh bliss. We visited in December during which time there was a local dingy/raft race even in Charlottesville that was very entertaining. We had...
11 August 2010
We arrived at Arlanda Airport in mid winter and took the Arlanda Express train straight to the central station in Stockholm, this transfer only took 20 minutes. There are plenty of other options including the Air Shuttle, taxis, rental cars or even helicopters! Our hotel for the three nights was the Sheraton Stockholm a four star hotel situated in the heart of the financial district, a two minute walk from the train station and a five minute walk across the bridge to the delightful Old Town. The hotel was excellent, we chose a superior room with a view over the...
21 November 2009
Cape Verde or Cabo Verde is an Island Country comprising of 10 Volcanic Islands located off the North west coast of Africa and approximately a 6 hour flight from the UK. The official language is Portuguese and Crioulo an African – inflected version of medieval Portuguese, French is also widely understood. The currency is Cape Verde Escudo but most businesses do accept Euros. Credit cards are not widely accepted and there is a 3-5% commission charge to use them. A visa is required to enter Cape Verde, which, I can arrange for you. We visited Iiha do Sal (Island of...
28 April 2009
Maderia is a Portuguese island the capital of which is Funchal. The airport is only 8 miles from Funchal so not far for transfers and the journey offers great views of the coast as you approach Funchal. We arrived in Maderia ready for a well earned week on the beach. Our hotel was Pestana Ocean Bay Hotel, located on Praia Formosa beach, we had a balcony room overlooking the Atlantic ocean. From the hotel it took about an hour to walk along the coast into the centre of Funchal but there is a courtesy bus if you’re not...
04 April 2009
Marrakesh Menara Airport is only 3km from the old Marrakesh Medina so transfers are easy , we arranged a taxi transfer with the ‘Riad’ we were staying at in the old city. The taxi cost around £8 but was worth it as the streets in the old city are narrow and very confusing, the taxi took us virtually to the door. Buses run every hour and take around 20-30mins stopping at various bus stops including at Koutoubia mosque and the front of Djemaa el Fna Square this transfer costs around £1 and you can buy a ticket from the driver....
17 February 2009
St Lucia is also part of the Lesser Antilles Islands. We stayed at St Lucian Hotel by Rex Resorts located in Rodney Bay, this had its own landscaped gardens on Reduit beach, which, is regarded as the island’s best beach and has fine white sand. St Lucia is only 27 miles long and 14 miles wide, a lush green island with magnificent rain forests and the primeval looking twin peaks of the Pitons. We were on an all-inclusive deal and had a lovely relaxing pool and beach week, only venturing from the Rodney Bay area to take a full day...
11 December 2008
Barbados is located in the Lesser Antilles and it takes just over 8 hours to fly there from the UK. The currency is Barbadian Dollars. We stayed in the Turtle Beach Hotel that is located on Dover Beach and as the name suggests sea turtle return to the beach every year to lay their eggs. Whilst staying here spotting turtles swimming along was one of my favourite pastimes. We went on a turtle snorkelling boat trip, which, was amazing; getting up close to these large but graceful, gentle creatures was breathtaking. We also hired a car for the day and drove...
18 August 2007
We visited Amsterdam a few years ago for my hubby’s birthday treat. We flew direct from Cardiff to Schiphol Airport, a train station directly underneath the airport has a service taking you straight into Amsterdam, costing around 14 Euro return it takes 18 minutes and runs every 10 minutes, an excellent service. The vending machines to buy the tickets, however, are a bit confusing so if you plan on visiting let me book these for you. We stayed in a lovely boutique 4 star hotel called Hotel Estherea situated on the Singel, one of Amsterdam’s oldest major canals, interesting without...
16 June 2007
The second largest of the Ionian Island again has regular flights from most UK airports, we flew from Bristol. We collected our hire car and drove the 20 miles to Agios Georgios (East) and to our Villa. The Villa was situated on the edge of the village in an elevated position with great views from the infinity pool across the bay and out to sea. There were a few restaurants, taverna’s and stores in the village, enough for us for our two week stay. During our stay we drove all around the island and hired a boat one day...
18 May 2007
I’ve been lucky to visit Venice, Rome and Florence over the last few years but unfortunately for my waist line I love Italian food! There are numerous flights to these majestic cities from most regional airports which makes them great mini break destinations. Florence is the capital of the Tuscany region of Italy, when we visited we flew from Bristol to Pisa and then took a transfer to Florence that was around an hour on a shuttle bus. Florence Airport is situated 4km from the city centre and is only 15 minutes by taxi or 20 minutes by...
14 March 2007
We’ve visited Rome on a couple of occasions the last being for the 6 Nations Rugby, unfortunately Wales lost! On this occasion we stayed near the train station, as we were travelling with a group. The hotel was ok and location central, which meant we could walk from the hotel to anywhere in the city centre within approximately 20 minutes. One tip I would give and I say this for most cities is to take a sightseeing bus tour early in your stay; it’s a good way to orientate yourself around the city and you get to see some great sights...
26 July 2006
The largest of the Ionian Islands has regular flights from most UK airports, we flew from Bristol. Having collected a hire car at the airport we made our way to our Villa in Spartia, which, was to be our home for the week. Spartia is situated south east of the airport, only a small village with two mini marts and one restaurant but very peaceful with a beautiful beach nearby. During our week we explored Fiscardo, a beautiful fishing harbour town with lots of bars and restaurants, and beautiful 18th century buildings to see. Of course we had to...
20 May 2006
I had always wanted to go to Venice and now want to go back!! Marco Polo Airport is the international airport for Venice and only 13km from the centre. There are a number of transfer options available; bus, taxi, train or water bus. On arrival in the city we took the Vaporetto (waterbus) to our hotel stop, the transport system is really good in Venice especially if you love boats!! During our stay we walked all around the city visiting; St Marks Basilica, Doge’s Palace, Rialto Bridge, Bridge of Sighs and the Campanile. No visit would be complete without a ride...
22 February 2005
Just over 4 hours from most UK airports makes Tenerife a handy all year round sun destination. We have visited Tenerife a couple of times and on the last occasion stayed in a self catering apartment near Playa de las Americas. Whilst Playa was a very busy resort area, we hired a car and explored the island visiting numerous coves, beaches, villages and Mount Teide National Park. We also went out on a Dolphin and snorkelling trip and were lucky to see pilot whales and dolphins, it was a great boat trip and Tenerife is known for being one of...
12 April 2003
I visited Reykajvik, the country’s capital a number of years ago. Driving from the airport the land was very barren I felt like I was on Mars. During my time in Reykajvik I took a Whale watching trip from the old harbour, unfortunately I didn’t see any on this trip, never mind I’ll have to go back! Next I took a daytrip to visit the Geysir geothermal area where the Strokkur geyser shoots up to 98ft every 4-8 minutes, it was amazing. It was then onto Gullfoss Waterfall (Golden Falls) that tumbles into a crevice 105ft deep. The last...
10 August 2002
We have relatives in Toronto so have been lucky to have visited there on a couple of occasions. Toronto is the Capital of Ontario and a great vibrant city to visit. The CN Tower is a must with glass lifts taking you 553m above the city with brilliant views from the top but let me book your tickets in advance as the queues can be up to 2hrs long. If you’re feeling brave take ‘The Edge Walk’ the world’s highest full circle hands-free walk on a 5ft wide ledge circling the top of the tower pod. Then having built up...
12 August 2000
The largest of the Dodecanese islands and also the island group’s capital. You can get direct flights from most regional airports. We stayed in a hotel not far from Rhodes Town. The old town of Rhodes is amazing with medieval fortresses, bastions, gates, narrow alleyways, fountains and squares, you can easily get lost. The Street of the Kings is one of the best preserved medieval streets in Greece and is packed with medieval inns. Outside the old town is the ‘new town’ and home to Venetian and modern buildings. Two deer statues stand guard at the entrance to the marina....