Sent by Christoph Lingg
Vaduz, Liechtenstein 1/3/2020 2:43:00 PM
Based in Earlsfield
Hi my name is Dan and I am a Travel Counsellor in London.
I have successfully worked in the travel and leisure industry for over 15 years and it is something that really ticks a lot of boxes for me.
Discovering new places, meeting different people and cultures are important for one’s personal growth. Ever since I started working in the industry my eyes have been opened to a huge world out there to explore and helping people discover and book trips to those far off lands gives me a great sense of satisfaction in that I might have helped someone discover something new in this world.
I started working in the travel industry in the cruise sector which brings to the table another exciting world of opportunities to see several parts of the world in one holiday. It is a unique type of travel that allows a customer to experience several destinations and cultures in one holiday. This was closely followed by the tailor making of unique holidays, custom made for the travellers so if there is something that you would like to experience more of then that can be arranged.
Although it sounds cliché I would never book a holiday for someone that I would be averse to taking myself. One should always put themselves in the customers shoes and imagine, as best as you can, what they want to do and how they want to do it.
I am originally from Southern Africa and have lived in the UK for the past 15 years so my knowledge of that particular area is excellent as it is somewhere that I still describe as my second home and am well travelled in, even working at the mighty Victoria Falls in a safari lodge for 18 months. As well as Africa I have also travelled Europe extensively, there are many places that I still want to travel to and one of the most frustrating things about working in travel is not being able to go on the holidays you book.
One’s work is a reflection of a person’s personality and the enjoyment and success I have achieved in travel holds me in good stead so don’t hesitate to call for a chat to see what adventure I can help you go on next.
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.
27 June 2019
At the beginning of 2018 Eurostar announced that a new route would be opening between London and the Netherlands ( Rotterdam and Amsterdam ). A lot of people have done the route from London to Paris or Brussels but this was new ground and probably appeals to those who do not enjoy flying, prefer not to have to drive too far and even those who prefer the more environmentally friendly holiday of which there is a growing army. I decided I wanted to see this route for myself so managed to get a great deal with Eurostar. Rotterdam The Eurostar passport control took just 15 minutes to get through for my train which left at 8.30am from London Saint Pancras station, the train boarding was smooth, I had pre booked seats, loads of space to move about and put your luggage, free wifi, and the Eurostar went direct to Rotterdam. The total journey time from walking out of my house in South West London to getting off the train in Central Rotterdam was 4 hours door to door. After reaching Rotterdam I took a leisurely stroll through Rotterdam canals. Public transport is good value, I paid 5 euros a day for a travel card booked in advance. Rotterdam is a very modern city compared to Amsterdam, it was basically flattened by the German Luftwaffe in the early stages of World War 2 and has been rebuilt since with some very bizarre architecture which adds to its charm. Being the largest port in Europe if you’re a maritime enthusiast you can’t go wrong here, I have never seen so many ships before in my life!! In the evening I had drinks at Café de Witte, which had some good revues and is located on a trendy street, Witte de Withstraat, that has several other bars and cafes on it. For those who enjoy tasting the local brew I would recommend the Hijs IPA as a start it was a winner for me. Rotterdam’s public transport system is very modern and efficient. There was no overcrowding on the Metro and you had trains come through once every 3-4 minutes. Sightseeing around Rotterdam was the order of the day, during which time I went around the cube-house which was built in the early 80’s as an alternative to your traditional architecture. I had lunch on the canal, once again trying a bit of the local brew before proceeding on another wander around the city. The Natural History Museum, is not particularly big so only took me an hour to get around. A short walk from the Natural History Museum is the Euromast, one of Rotterdam’s most famous sites. Standing at 184m It offers great views of the harbour below and there is a great restaurant halfway up to enjoy a meal or a coffee and to take it all in. I would definitely recommend going here. The previous day I decided that I would leave the Maritime Museum till last, which was a mistake, definitely get this in earlier in your trip. It takes a good 3-4 hours to get through and gives a great account of the Dutch maritime history, where things are going in the future and also has an excellent exhibit on oil rigs and how they operate. Utrecht In the afternoon, a little later than expected I hopped onto a train to Utrecht. Utrecht is one of the fastest growing cities in the Netherlands. It has the biggest train station as well as one of the biggest universities. The city is also very young with a lot of new developments as the population grows, it is within easy commutable distance of Amsterdam, the Hague and Rotterdam adding to its appeal. Due to my late arrival I only had a chance to meet an old school friend in the city centre. Utrecht is the most “Dutch” city I have visited, there are not a load of tourists like in Amsterdam while at the same time there are not a lot of foreign workers passing through like in Rotterdam. The Dutch are very hospitable and you very rarely get one who is looking miserable with life generally you are greeted with a big smile. The central canal is great and various boat tours go down it or you can rent canoes and do the route at your own pace with a host of swans thrown in for good measure. Brussels An early start as today I had to hop on my train to Brussels. The trains all efficient and on time, lots of space on board so can really stretch legs. Being all within the EU you do not have to pass through passport control. I stayed in St Gilles, which is a trendy area of Brussels that has reinvented itself over the past few years according to the locals I chatted to. I had a meal in the local market square - Market Parvis Saint-Gilles. The was a very old style market square with small metal coffee tables and chairs similar to what you would find in Paris or many French cities, the weather which up until now had not been good, took a turn for the better and a beautiful sunset over the local church was to be seen. Brussels is home to the European Parliament so you have a lot of people who work for the EU here and a cosmopolitan society exists. Although Brussels is in the Flemish area of Belgium the spoken language in the city is French. I didn’t use public transport once in Brussels as the city is not big and very easy to navigate by foot and there are some wonderful views of the city to be seen whilst on a wander through the city. Belgian chocolates and waffles are a must!!! I visited the famous Manneken Pis as well, one of the most concerning names I’ve ever heard for a statue especially considering what it is doing. Although the current version is just over 50 years old the original dates back to the early 1600’s. Some great art museums are in the city centre and I would really recommend them. The Royal Museums of fine art contains some stunning works of art from down the centuries from landscape to portrait to more modern art there is something for everyone. A ticket to all of the museums cost me just 15 euros and I spent a good 4 hours in the museums, try and get an audio guide as you get a good run down of the art and the history behind it. After a good week away I returned back to London via Eurostar which was just a 2 hour journey, once again the train was not busy with plenty of space to stretch out. My total journey time door to door was 3 hours. I got in some great sightseeing, met some interesting locals, enjoyed some great cuisine and had a good chill away from the hustle and bustle of London. Eurostar opening this route is a step in the right direction and with the popularity of this route increasing which I am sure it will in years to come other European cities being added to the list cannot be far off.
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