Australia & Pacific
After travelling and living around the world, I now operate my own travel business as part of Travel Counsellors from Harrogate, North Yorkshire. Times have changed from my ‘back packing’ carefree holidays to more discerning family holidays with my husband and two boys.
I have a passion for travel and believe that everyone should push their own personal boundaries to explore the world. So, whether you’re interested in going on a cruise for the first time, or want some help arranging a trip to visit a friend in the UK, then I would like to be of assistance.
I believe that, like many of my trips your holiday should be unforgettable. Everything will be tailored to suit you and I’m able to suggest additional options which I think you’ll enjoy. The personal contact I have with you through the booking process makes sure we miss nothing. It’s like having a friend book your holiday for you. All you need to provide is the idea, even if it is vague!
We can meet at a time and place to suit you which can be very handy if time is of the essence. You will find that I have an honest ‘tell it how it is’ approach to planning an itinerary, and will suggest sights, excursions and accommodation.
With my knowledge and Travel Counsellors amazing software you can sit in the comfort of your own home and book your holiday. Our high standards of service and competitive pricing you will ensure you’ll never want to search online or visit a high street agency again.
If you’re interested in contacting me, to discuss your travel plans for the future, business travel or simply to get some expert, often first hand advice, please don’t hesitate to call or email.
Whatever your holiday needs I'm here to help you, so please either fill in and send the form below or simply give me a call and I can get things started for you:-
Sent in by Andrew Wilson
Ripon, North Yorkshire, 26 November 2018
Very helpful and knowledgable through out the booking process. I have not even been yet and I am loving it!
Sent in by Ruth Grenfell
Sharrow, 22 November 2018
Donna just always knows how to craft the perfect holiday for us! It's an art x
Sent in by Peter Westmoreland
West Yorkshire, 14 November 2018
Donna has provided brilliant service in sourcing and booking our flights to Australia with stop-overs and hotels. She responded quickly to our request for information and found flights at a very good price.
Sent in by Judith Brown
North Yorkshire, 12 November 2018
Dear Donna, Oh how we enjoyed Beachcombers Victoria Hotel in Mauritius. You made sure the flights worked for this old lady and the rooms were excellent. All the wonderful food and drinks were well sampled. Excellent choice for a wedding!! Thank you again for all your help Judith.
Sent in by Jill Feasey
Harrogate, 15 June 2018
Thank you for looking after my families travel needs over the past few years. When my daughter decided to study in Boston US you took the sting out of it. Arranging for us all to travel and help her settle to her odd trip home and always having that return flight on hand.
Sent in by Diane Calvert
Isle of Harris, Scotland, 15 June 2018
What can I say apart from a huge thank you for planning our Iceland self drive around us. We had a fantastic holiday and all the logistics worked out great. I don't know how you do it! It worked out to be about 1200 miles altogether with Geoff doing most of this. I did help out on the longer journey past Vik but found it quite a challenge. He was happy to drive so I left him to it. My highlight of the holiday was Glacial Lagoon and the Zodiac boat trip. Magic! Worth waiting nearly 50 years to see my icebergs. On the boat trip from Reykjavik, we saw Harbour Porpoises, 3 Minke whales and lots of dolphins. The dolphins decided to put on a display for us which was brilliant. We also went on a city walk of the city which I would highly recommend to people. It’s a free 2 hour walking tour and you pay what you think it was worth at the end. We had an excellent guide, thank you for arranging that. When asked about his highlight, Geoff’s answer was ‘everything’. Thanks again for all your help, planning etc. It really made the holiday so much easier for us.
Sent in by Ruth Grenfell
Sharow, 15 June 2018
We came home last night after a perfect week in Kriopigi. It really is the best possible place for fairytale views, glorious weather, delicious food and the hotel was just right for us. At the hotel, everything was spotlessly clean and the staff were kind and helpful without being intrusive. Definitely one to go on the list of places to revisit. The pool is lovely and the poolside bar delightfully tempting! Thank you for arranging another tailor made holiday just for us and once again getting it spot on!
Sent in by Nick Stafford
Yorkshire, 15 June 2018
Just to let you know we have returned safe and sound from our whirlwind business/leisure trip around Chinese cities. The trip has been faultless, so thank you to you and your associates for excellent value for money. I will catch up in detail later, for now we need to get through the jet lag!
Sent in by Andrew Lewis
Staffordshire, 15 January 2018
Wow, what can I say, thank you so much for our break! It was exactly what we needed. We have had such a relaxing time and it has recharged our batteries as requested. Thank you so much for listening to our spec and for your recommendation and service. Thank you again.
Sent in by Mark Higgins
Edinburgh, 12 January 2018
What a fantastic time my son and I had at Disneyland Paris. Time is precious so from parking on airport to hitting the park before the hoards Travel Counsellors sorted it all. Even booking a restaurant for us. Splendid!
Sent in by Nick Stafford
Ripon, 12 January 2018
After forgetting my Kindle on a business trip to Milan, Donna just left me with the message don't worry I will sort it'. Apparently there was another Travel Counsellor going out there and she collected it and got it back to Donna who promptly returned it. What a fantastic big little company. #TCworldwide
Sent in by Elizabeth Barnett
Norfolk, 12 January 2018
Yet another short flight booked by Donna. Only flight only and I know it would be cheaper on the internet, but would it? I have my bags, check in done by Donna and my private taxi waiting all from one phone call to her.
Sent in by Nick Brading
Nottingham, 12 January 2018
As Christmas draws in and the airports are full, delayed flights and weather disruptions its great having Donna on board getting all my business team #homeforchristmas!
Sent in by Toney Kite
Stafford, 12 January 2018
Thankyou for organising the trip to Lapland it was a wonderful experience and wonderful memories to return for ever. Many many thanks for all your support in organising the trip very much appreciated.
Sent in by Rebecca Birkinshaw
Derbyshire, 21 September 2017
Just wanted to let you know that we had the most fabulous time in Dubai. Everything went smoothly, I managed to cram three films in on the way there, and having control of the remote, bliss! The transfer to the hotel was seamless. The Ramada Plaza apartment (Room 2405) was massive, with (in case we took one) an extra bedroom for our hired help! There was also a birthday cake for Luke, he was very impressed. And we had a beautiful view of the Marina, amazing in the day, spectacular at night all lit up! The tour was very good also. It gave us an idea of where everything was situated, and a bit of history too. We managed the beach one day; I think we’ve agreed we can’t do that type of heat! We braved the tram and the metro to the Dubai Mall, went up the Burj Khalifa, saw the dancing fountain. I still cannot comprehend how huge the Mall was, totally beyond big enough! That night we were all absolutely knackered with the distance we’d walked! The Wild Wadi water park was amazing, three of us braved the slide that had the floor that dropped away, I eventually stopped shaking! We had such a good experience. I am more than pleased that you managed to find us a half board deal, it is expensive and I think we would have been conscious at the expense of eating out if we had to factor that into our budget, luckily fun stuff like ice creams and drinks were not off limits. Thanks to Emirates for the wine and whiskey on the return journey, having been very economical with our alcohol intake we were more than ready for a glass without thinking we had to savour it, not that we have a problem, honest! So all in all a great time from the flight onwards, and thank you so much for your help in making it happen. I look forward to bothering you with our future adventures!
Sent in by Nicholas Brading
Ripon, 19 September 2017
Great personal service, fast response to business travel and always available to advise on travelling issues.
Sent in by Dorothy Forster
Oldham, 18 September 2017
Donna has arranged many holidays for us. We simply tell her where we want to go and the date. Donna will also give us advice about the best way of arranging things.We have no complaints about the Travel Counsellors nor Donna
Sent in by Shelagh Parker
Ripon, 12 September 2017
I have just got back from the States where we were doing a big birthday celebration trip, which was part road trip and part internal flights. I would like to say a big thank you to Donna who helped us plan the trip, then did all the bookings (flights, car, hotels) and made sure we had all the correct documentation and vouchers, so all we had to do was turn up at the airport, get on the plane, kick back and enjoy ourselves. Nothing was too much trouble for her. Everything went smoothly and we had a fabulous time. Looking forward to planning our next trip with you Donna. Thanks again.
Sent in by Barbara Wilson
Oldham, 11 September 2017
Donna is extremely helpful and knowledgeable.....she goes the 'extra mile'!
Sent in by Andrew Kingscote
Harrogate, 11 September 2017
We were pleased to be able to discuss our plans with Donna before booking our river cruise, and also to talk over our experiences on our return. The holiday itself went very well, and the organisation could not be faulted. It is very reassuring to know that Travel Counsellors team are available in the background should problems arise, although fortunately this was not the case with us.
Sent in by Nick Bramley
York, 11 September 2017
I have used the services of Donna for a number of years, including for sourcing full family, long-haul, multi-site solo and business travelling requirements. She is an absolute pleasure to deal with, but also, with a wealth of experience, her ability to find short-cuts, improvements to potential plans and to interpret a "travel brief" to get the best possible solution are consistently impressive too. She adds genuine value and I have had the pleasure in recommending her to a number of contacts - all of whom are grateful for the support she now provides them. Donna is a superb example of service and skill. Call her, you will not be disappointed.
Sent in by Claire Lupton
Harrogate, 04 September 2017
Fabulous holiday..... we have laughed so much . Sad and happy to return home
Sent in by Rachel Lyes
Leeds, 04 September 2017
We just wanted the say a huge thank you! Our holiday was excellent the house in France was fabulous and far better than the pictures depicted. It was a beautiful old spacious French farmhouse- we honestly couldn't ask for any better and are so grateful for your assistance at such late notice too!!! I will be recommending you to others as it was truly so helpful to us. Thank you !
Sent in by Donna Alexander
Pickhill, 04 September 2017
I just wanted to blow my own trumpet after yet another wonderful 'Clan Alexander' holiday. I dread doing my own holiday as I have no one to check everything. This time I pushed my little boys to their limits with long flights to Bangkok then splitting into a twin center in Hua Hin. Just to test my planning skills we had a packed itinerary with something everyday - And I think I pulled it off! Huge thanks to Exo Travel our ground handler in Thailand for helping make dreams come true.
Sent in by Rudi Lane
Belfast, 05 July 2017
As usual the competition trip for the team went away without problems, thanks to Donna and her team. We all travel with sporting guns and put Donna through the mill with our bookings every year. With several stops around Europe and all carrying firearms our bookings are not the norm and I will happily recommend Donna for this type of trip.
Sent in by Charlotte Gosney
Harrogate, 05 July 2017
Just wanted to say what a brilliant time we had in Lisbon. It is such a lovely city. The hotel was perfect, and in a great location, all down to you. I think we will be planning to go back again so that we can explore further afield. Thank you for organising our trip we both loved it. Now need to have a chat about a holiday over Christmas and new Year. If you have any suggestions............. We will leave it all up to you. xx
Sent in by Lorna Wilson
Leeds, 05 July 2017
Just a quick Note to say we had an amazing time in Ibiza. The hotel was fabulous, perfect for chilling with the girls plus lots of Prosecco!!!!! Best celebration ever for our birthdays and a great way to spend time with friends. I’m not on Facebook but I will ask one of them to put on some photos for you! Sat at my desk dreaming about it………………………………………
Sent in by Claire Lupton
Ripon, 05 July 2017
Travelling on business at short notice to Ireland. One of the party lost their passport and Donna sorted this with no problem. Also delivered tickets to my home and stayed for a drink with us - Excellent service
Sent in by Joan Alexander
Edinburgh, 21 June 2017
No matter how diverse the trip Donna always manages to sort it out. Nothing is forgotten. I just book then sit back and enjoy. Just returned from complete tour of the Italian lakes, opera, landscape painting - she included it all!
Sent in by Kenneth Crossley
Harrogate, 21 June 2017
The journeys were to time and most comfortable and speedy thank you for booking the seats and adding the extras to make our journey bearable in our latter years. I hadn't realised how generous was the free catering. Guess who took their own butties? Your restaurant recommendations were splendid. The Dome, the Witchery, the Italian restaurant on Lothian Road, and the Brasserie at the Balmoral, as well as the Fourth Floor at Harvey Nicks, and not forgetting Clarindas, all provided high quality sustenance. We used lots of taxis. Couldn't fathom how to use the tram. And met some lovely people. Thank you once more for your extra ordinary helpfulness once again - I have no idea how you manage it but carry on.
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 01765 618060
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.
04 April 2019
It’s always important to take care of yourself when you are on holiday, whether that’s preparing yourself for a long-haul flight or keeping active throughout your time away. That's why, in time for World Health Day, which this year is on Sunday 7 April, we've pooled together the expertise of our Travel Counsellors to offer a selection of health and wellness tips that you may be able to use on your next holiday. "Some may call me a health freak as I love to exercise daily and eat healthily, so the thought of all-inclusive and over-indulgence does not appeal to me...
09 January 2018
You don’t want to stop travelling overseas just because you now have children and what’s more, you still want quality accommodation, great facilities and a little time for yourselves to relax. Great kids’ entertainment and occasional supervision for your children can be important. Plus, top tips on how to avoid the having a stressful journey with the kids. 1. Pace yourself. Go with the flow and don’t pack in too much. Build in rest days and be realistic about what you might see and do. 2. Travel is great for broadening the mind, even if you’re a five-year-old. Start getting your...
08 January 2018
This October I was extremely fortunate to visit Canada with 23 other Travel Counsellors. Canada has always been on my bucket list and this this trip was amazing. Our base for the first four nights was the Rosedale on Robson Suites. Perfectly located in this beautiful city where nothing is too far away. Being October, we had the pleasure of seeing the city as all the colours were changing, but there isn't a wrong time to visit. Vancouver prides itself as a city that combines the sea and the mountains and it’s easy to see why it is voted in the...
08 January 2018
Top ten tips for avoiding additional stress at your airport during peak travel 1. Long Haul - get to the airport a minimum of 3.5 hours before 2. Short Haul - get to the airport a minimum of 2.5 hours before 3. Check in online 24 hours prior to departure and print off your boarding passes 4. Set off from home earlier - no one can predict the traffic 5. Arrange parking for the Meet and Greet (nearest to the airport terminal) 6. Take plenty of snacks for the car journey and waiting for your flight as well as bottles of water for pre-security 7. Wear...
04 September 2017
A must see in the heart of the Capital of Thailand, Bangkok is The Grand Palace. The Palace is a complex of buildings and has been the official residence of the Kings of Siam since 1782. If the hectic city of Bangkok doesn’t suit, head South. Krabi is the perfect holiday destination for those looking for a relaxing area in southern Thailand. The province of Krabi is less developed and crowded than Phuket, more laid back than Koh Samui, and just one hour and 20 minutes by air from Bangkok. With a range of accommodation from budget to deluxe, this...
04 September 2017
Malaysia is a Southeast Asian country occupying the Malay Peninsula that flaunts the capital Kuala Lumpur, a bustling city full of colonial architecture and the Malaysian Borneo (spoken about previously). It’s known for its beaches, rainforests, misty tea plantations and chill out islands with a mix of Malay, Chinese, Indian and European influences. In Kuala Lumpur see Petronis Towers. Known as the tallest buildings in the world from 1998 to 2004 and remain the tallest twin towers in the world today. The buildings are a landmark of Kuala Lumpur. 20km outside of Kuala Lumpur is Selangor. Here you can visit Batu...
04 September 2017
Cambodia is a Southeast Asian nation whose landscape spans low-lying plains, the Mekong Delta and mountains. Phnom Penh, its capital, is home to the Royal Palace and the National Museum’s historical and archaeological exhibits. including Tuol Sleng Genocide Museum/Prison. Learn about the atrocities that took place here during the reign of the Khmer Rouge, seeing the spots where thousands of innocent prisoners were interrogated, tortured, and killed. In the country’s northwest are the ruins of Angkor Wat, a massive stone temple complex built during the Khmer Empire. So here in Phnom Penh, you will see the intricate 19th-century palace of the...
04 September 2017
Singapore, an island city-state off southern Malaysia, it's a global financial centre with a tropical climate and multicultural population. I have always advised passengers new to travel to include Singapore along with Australia, the Pacific Islands and New Zealand as a great introduction and a safe destination. Often viewed as a transit port by many you miss out on what is on offer by not spending a few days here. Raffles Hotel is a colonial-style luxury hotel. It was established by Armenian hoteliers, the Sarkies Brothers, in 1887. The hotel was named after British statesman Sir Thomas Stamford Raffles, the founder of...
12 April 2017
Arinsal is a village in Andorra, set at an altitude of between 1550 and 2560 metres, close to the border with Spain at Tor, Pallars. In the summer Arinsal is home to walkers and bikers, as well as those who just want to relax in the mountain scenery. In the winter, it offers skiing and snowboarding for beginners, as well as a good selection of runs for intermediates. We have been several times now for my children to learn to ski, for Daddy to do a little off-piste and for mummy to join the Apres Ski wine club! Just 2.5 hours'...
05 April 2017
'A Luxurious Oasis for the Whole Family' was how the Royal Palm was sold and I couldn't believe how they please so many clients with different needs - and all well. Marrakech, that captivating, romantic and enchantingly ancient Moroccan city, is well known for its narrow alleyways, souks and bustling old-world charm. But for travellers seeking a little more space, seclusion and serenity, a short drive out of the city uncovers an altogether more tranquil world. Spread gracefully across 231 hectares of palm groves, olive trees, reflective ponds and manicured fairways, overlooked by the majestic Atlas Mountains, Royal Palm Marrakech – which...
29 March 2017
The journey to Morocco’s Atlantic coast is short enough to make Essaouira and ideal “add-on” destination for visitors to Marrakech, and the drive is a pleasure in itself, with stunning scenery in every direction and surprises around every corner. (Direct flights are available though.) The most memorable of the sights is the bizarre sight of tree-climbing goats, which balance in the branches of argan trees to feed on the nuts that would be otherwise out of reach. Argan trees are unique to this part of Morocco and are used to produce an oil that has many cosmetic and medicinal benefits. En...
28 March 2017
Fifteen years ago, two English brothers, Anwar and Riaz Harland Khan, travelled out of Marrakech and up into the Atlas Mountains. There, in the scenic Ouirgane Valley, they discovered a land of such staggering beauty that they vowed to bring it to the world. Almost immediately an offer was made, accepted, and the dream of L’Amandier was born. We were some of the first travel professionals to be invited to this amazing Boutique Hotel, high in the hills. Anwar Harland Khan admitted that, at the time the land was purchased, he didn’t even know if it had a water supply, and the...
28 March 2017
I was lucky enough to have this trip sponsored by the Moroccan Tourist Board. They wanted to show me all that Marrakesh has so that I can pass my knowledge onto you. I have been before and do love the cultural diversity that is only a short flight away. While the ancient medina, with its bustling charm and exotic aromas, is the main draw of any visit to Marrakech, the city offers far more than just souks and shopping. While some of my group headed off karting I opted for a more cultural experience at Hotel La Maison...
11 January 2017
Dubai had been off my personal radar as I wasn't sure it was for me as I'm not a huge fan of shopping. However, we needed sun! With the help of the Travel Counsellors 'man on the ground' in the UAE, together we put a trip together for my family that wasn't focussed on shopping! (I did take a sneaky peek at the Dubai Mall though!). We stayed just out of town at the Dubai Creek side, with beautiful views over the Dubai skyline and a fantastic hotel that wasn't too glitzy! As with all of our trips, we had a mixture of...
18 June 2016
This trip was all about quality and fun with my friends. As a Club Med Specialist, I was rewarded with a trip out to Turkey along with 2 friends of my choice. And what a choice I made - my best friend and my sister. And we had a blast without the kids! Set against the backdrop of Mount Taurus, right by Antalya, this holiday resort has everything from watersports activities to spa sessions to quiet walks along a spectacular expanse of beach. This is an ideal family destination with something for everyone from 4 months old! The bungalows sit in...
16 April 2016
I don't always travel abroad and not always alone. Here at Travel Counsellors, we like to cover all sorts of travel so when the opportunity came up to help organize our rugby groups tour I jumped at the chance. Alnwick District is situated in the heart of Northumberland, with Alnwick Castle taking pride of place in the town. Under the Normans, and for some time after, the town was the administrative town for the whole county of Northumberland. Today, the district of Alnwick stretches from the North Sea Coast between Low Newton - Amble and south west to Elsdon near Otterburn...
02 October 2012
Paris had never really been on my radar, just another European city I thought. However it was my husband’s wish that for his 40th birthday we visited the ‘city of romance’. Although I had never been I knew so much about the city and knew it was important to arrange a transfer from the airport as it is a long way out of the city centre. The transfer in gave us a chance to see the city and how wrong I was. Stunning buildings and monuments, few cities in the world deliver such excitement and romance in such a compact...
23 May 2011
After visiting and staying at every wonderful Sandals resort on the island I 'gave back' in a big way. Myself and the other travel agents I travelled with swapped our luxury apartments and in my case my butler to volunteer and support the Sandals Foundation Labour Day Project in Whitehouse, Jamaica. The foundation is making every effort this year to work with Jamaican schools in improving the learning environments for the children. We worked on some much-needed improvements on Bluefield Bay Kindergarten & School. (The children and teachers helped too) Taking time out of our stay really made a difference. The...
10 August 2007
Kefalonia, the hidden gem of the Ionian Islands! This amazing island is definitely unique. Even the locals spell it all different ways trying to keep this gem hidden, Cephalonia, Kefalonia, Kefallinia.. whatever... I found it! I am totally in love with this island – When I first started my job as a holiday rep back in the 1990’s I was given Kefalonia as my first ‘posting’. I wasn’t even sure what country it was in, never mind being able to show people around it! I arrived pre summer season ready for Greek Easter and straight away was welcomed by...