Maldives - All
Hello and thanks for taking the time to visit.
I'm Ian, based in Liverpool as your personal travel agent, I will ensure that every aspect of your holiday experience will be catered for, hassle free and enjoyable throughout. I gain great pleasure from ensuring my customers return with stories and memories that they will treasure for a lifetime.
I have had a passion for travel all my life, having visited most continents, including most of Europe and having lived and worked abroad in beautiful Thailand, where I have specialist travel knowledge, as I do with Namibia and South Africa, both of which I have travelled extensively. I still have a number of travel destinations to tick off my wish list and I try to combine my love of travel with some travel writing to document these adventures with pride. Travel continues to enrich my life and I love to share this passion with others.
As a Travel Counsellor, you are my number one priority. My business is making sure the whole travel experience is an enjoyable one from the very start of the process until you arrive safely back at home. I will always go the extra mile to ensure that your expectations are exceeded so each and every holiday is a truly happy memory and you can be safe in the knowledge that everything you book through me is 100% financially protected.
As my priority, my business runs around your needs, and as such I am available at whatever time suits you. Simply give me a call or drop me an e-mail and I will respond to you as soon as possible to discuss your requirements and your holiday can begin. I can help with large group bookings, weddings, honeymoons and cruises, as well as tailor-made holidays to your exact requirements. Whether it is a short UK break, an all-inclusive beach escape, a European city break or a round the world trip of a lifetime, I can cater to your needs.
Ask me about our honeymoon gift registry service, a fantastic and modern way to let your guests contribute to the honeymoon of your dreams. Best of all, I do all of the hard work for you so you can focus on your big day! Or if you are planning on getting married abroad, let me take the stress away from you with our fabulous wedding services. I can deal with everything from the legalities, travel, accommodation for all guests, to the colour scheme.
I will provide you with the customer service that you deserve.
Whatever your holiday needs I'm here to help you, so simply give me a call or send me an email with your contact details on and I can get things started for you:-
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.
14 November 2018
Our drive from Hermanus to Oudtshoorn was the longest of the trip so far at around four hours, but once more it was a drive filled with stunning scenery, particularly crossing a number of mountain ranges as we headed further inland. Oudtshoorn itself is particularly famous for ostriches and these are visible from the outskirts of the town and throughout, but I would be lying if I said that these were the main reason for our visit, as we had primarily decided on this destination due to the chance to meet one of my favourite animals - the meerkat! The town...
14 November 2018
With our Winelands hangovers subsiding we set off on the next leg of our journey, back down towards the coast and the town of Hermanus. World famous for whale watching, and land-based whale watching at that, we were excited to see what it had to offer. The drive itself was picturesque, just over an hour and via some beautiful mountain passes, we arrived at our guesthouse right on the harbour, the Auberge Burgundy. It was in a prime spot a stone's throw from the shore where the whales were due to come out and play, putting on a show for those...
14 November 2018
The drive from Oudtshoorn to Plettenberg Bay was relatively serene but probably my favourite drive of the whole trip, with ever changing scenery and every kind of terrain you could imagine crammed into the journey of just over two hours in total. On arrival we found our guesthouse to be a little off the beaten track, down a small and curious dirt road and just set back from the main town of Plettenberg Bay itself. The guesthouse, Lairds Lodge and Country Estate, was without exaggeration, one of the best places I have ever had the pleasure of staying. The estate was...
14 November 2018
So the final drive was another four hour effort but we set off nice and early in order to ensure we would arrive at our private game reserve, Pumba, just as check in was open so that we would not miss a second. Sure enough the arrival was interesting in itself, a slow drive along a dirt road as we began to spot the first few animals in their natural habitat until we pulled up alongside the imposing lobby of the water lodge ready to check in. Pumba Game Reserve is one of the most highly rated safari destinations in the...
13 November 2018
For our recent honeymoon we took the adventure of a lifetime by exploring South Africa and the famous Garden Route specifically. The trip was so jam-packed with memories that I have decided to split the trip into several different blogs to allow me to focus on each individual area. Let me begin... Our honeymoon began in the incredible city of Cape Town, a place I had long wanted to visit and certainly a place that did not disappoint. From the moment you arrive you can't fail to be impressed with the stunning horizon, with the imposing Table Mountain overlooking the city...
13 November 2018
Having picked up our car from Cape Town we began the drive around an hour outside of the city to the Winelands where we would be staying for two nights. Stellenbosch is the larger of the Winelands towns, being a University town, and a little livelier, but there are also towns such as Paarl that you can stay. We opted for Franschhoek, knowing that we prefer the sleepier, quainter village feel, and we were delighted that we did. On arrival you feel the sleepy, frozen in time atmosphere. The charming architecture on either side of the quiet, village streets contrast with...
08 June 2018
Madeira is a hugely popular destination for many UK travellers seeking some sunshine on an island filled with lush greenery, bohemian bars and cafes as well as crystal seas lapping onto sandy beaches. This popularity may not appeal to everyone, so why not take a trip to Porto Santo instead? Part of the archipelago that includes Madeira, Porto Santo is one long beach which extents to a bit of island off it. Along its nine kilometres of soft white sands, you’ll find just a handful of hotels and restaurants, making Porto Santo one of the last ‘undiscovered’ resorts in Europe....
08 June 2018
The UAE have long been a growing market in the travel industry. Dubai is the headline maker and Abu Dhabi isn’t far behind, with their imposing and decadent hotels, man-made beaches and super-fast developments. However, their neighbour Oman can offer a very different and amazingly beautiful side to the Emirate States. The variation Oman can offer is its true unique selling point, with huge contrasts throughout the country especially in comparison to the other Emirates which, while stunning in their own way, cannot offer some of the natural beauty found in Oman. The first place to visit is undoubtedly the...
08 June 2018
Think of Florida and no doubt Mickey Mouse and Co along with thrill rides, water parks and huge crowds are the things that most come to mind. While Orlando certainly has a lot to offer and is an unbeatable entertainment destination, there is so much more to Florida than theme parks and cartoon characters if you are willing to don your adventure cap and hit the road. The Florida Keys are a string of tropical islands stretching out off the Southern tip of Florida towards the Caribbean. Once home to Ernest Hemmingway they are awash with sunshine, views, rum and a...
08 June 2018
The capital and largest city in Slovenia, you would be forgiven for not believing those facts while taking a stroll around this gorgeously quaint city. Filled with sprawling green spaces and cobbled narrow streets, back alley bars and underground cafes, this still feels like a step back in time despite its capital city status. I first visited around 15 years ago and fell in love with the place. With car traffic restricted in the city’s centre, only pedestrians and cyclists can enjoy the views over the glistening Ljubljanica River that flows through its heart, giving a real air of peace...
08 May 2018
The Jamaican Tourist Board invited me to visit their fascinating island at the heart of the Caribbean recently and boy was I glad about it. This is a place I had been planning on visiting for quite some time and with a packed itinerary we managed to see plenty to make me want to go back again someday. Flying Club World with British Airways into Kingston was the perfect start to the trip, with spacious bays, fabulous on-board entertainment and top-quality service we arrived fresh despite the nine-hour journey. Bags collected in no time at all, there was a short trip...
29 January 2018
Many people see a holiday as a time to relax, switch off your mind and soak up the sun away from the travails of day to day life and these types of holidays are fantastic. However, there is an increasing trend in experiencing more in a holiday, adding a sense of independent adventure and seeing worth in the journey as well as the destination. This is where a 'road trip' becomes the perfect escape and with their ever-growing popularity, I will take a look at a few ideas to inspire you for your next four-wheeled (or two-wheeled) escapade. Route 66...
04 September 2017
Italy has long been seen as one of the world’s most romantic nations, so it is no surprise to find that it is also one of the most popular destinations to both get married in, and visit for a honeymoon. As a Travel Counsellor, I am able to help organise both the wedding abroad and the honeymoon itself, so I have great experience in understanding what makes this beautiful country so popular. The food, wine, culture, terrain and even the language itself provide a stunning backdrop for the most romantic of retreats for any couple. Italy has so much variation to...
04 September 2017
Honeymoons are a huge part of the wedding experience in the modern world, with so many options to choose from and destinations to research, where would your dream destination be? As a Travel Counsellor, I am able to build the perfect honeymoon for you, whether it is a secluded break in the Lake District or a multi-centered trip taking in a number of resorts, I am able to take care of every last detail, giving you more time to focus on the wedding. There are many popular honeymoon destinations, and Thailand is certainly one of those, ever popular for so many reasons,...
04 September 2017
Times have certainly changed since the days when a stag or hen party meant a gathering of likeminded friends in a local pub or a night on the town. These days stag and hen parties are just as much a part of the wedding as the reception itself, and for many, this means planning them in the same meticulous manner. This has led to stag and hen parties becoming big business indeed. Specialist stag and hen companies exist in the UK and beyond, taking the pressure of the best man and maid of honour, whose traditional role involved the planning of...
04 September 2017
When discussing honeymoon destinations you cannot ignore the quintessential destination for many couples, that of the Caribbean. Encompassing a wide variation in culture, style and geography, the Caribbean remains consistent in providing a luxurious, sun-kissed and unerringly romantic destination no matter where you choose to stay. Seclusion, tranquility, sultry nights tempered by cool ocean breezes, the Caribbean defines romance and honeymoons. The Caribbean and honeymoons amplify one another; each makes the other better, it did not invent the honeymoon but has perfected the concept. So where else could I start than the classic Caribbean destination, Jamaica? It is true what...
09 June 2017
Barcelona is renowned for many things with culture high on the agenda, but with my recent visit I would be lying if I said that I partook in much of what this stunning city has to offer. This was because the reason for travelling there was as part of a group of twenty plus gentlemen involved in a stag party. While it may not be the type of travelling I am used to I can safely say that this city is perfect for such a venture, offering sunshine, music, beers and a warm welcome from the locals. Staying at the Barcelona...
16 May 2017
Marrakech is always somewhere that has fascinated and intimidated me in equal measure. I love the idea of exploring different cultures that put me out of my comfort zone, but a holiday should also allow some time to reset, relax and unwind. As much as I looked forward to exploring this historic city, I also doubted whether I would be able to find the time to relax in a place where the pace of life is unwaveringly hectic. My expectations would be proven quite wrong, but arriving into the city did little to dilute them. Hustle and bustle of people milling...
09 March 2017
Having lived in Thailand for a long period of time, I feel as well placed as anyone to offer a few of my top tips for making the most out of any trip there. Although these tips could essentially be applied to pretty much anywhere in the world, I know how valuable they can be in one of my favourite places on the planet - Thailand. Tip 1 - Learn some of the language: The Thai language may sound pretty complicated to our Western ears, but when it boils down to learning it there are only a few basics that you would...
23 November 2016
Last weekend saw nearly 1500 Travel Counsellors descend on Manchester for our annual conference and once again it did not disappoint! Hosted at the old GMEX to give you an idea of the scale of the event, it was a weekend to inspire, reward and catch up with fellow Travel Counsellors to share stories and advice. All of which serve to show what a very special company this is. As a company we all share the same ethos, to care for our customers more than anyone else. To come together as one big family at this time every year creates a fantastic...
05 May 2016
Cruising is one of the fastest growing markets in the travel industry and is something I have learned a great deal more about in recent years, determined to make sure my customers have all of the information they need to choose the right cruise, and importantly, the right cruise line, for them. While on our US trip we were staying in New Orleans, one of the home ports for hugely popular cruise line Carnival, so it was with no hesitation that I booked us on a four night cruise to Cozumel in Mexico on board the Carnival Triumph. Arriving at...
02 May 2016
New Orleans. The city needs no introduction. An iconic and historic city that has long been on my bucket list for so many reasons and one that absolutely exceeded my expectations in every possible way on our visit. We had six nights in New Orleans on this trip, 3 nights either side of a 4 night Carnival cruise sandwiched in between and we managed to see so many aspects of this fascinating place in such a short space of time. I had always wanted to visit New Orleans, having studied American history in part of my history degree I knew much...
27 April 2016
I have to be honest, although much of the USA has been on my "hit list" for quite some time, Dallas was not a priority in this part of the world. However, having been invited to the wedding of a friend in the city, we decided it was a great excuse for a big US trip and Dallas was the first port of call. Arriving in Dallas Fort Worth airport we were greeted with traditional Southern hospitality, a true American welcome and this was prevalent throughout our time in Dallas, the people are fantastic. We only had five short days in...
08 April 2016
I had visited Paphos around a decade ago and was eager to discover how the place had changed in the proceeded years when I visited with my partner recently. The city, the third largest in Cyprus, is named as the European Capital of Culture for 2017 and it certainly did not disappoint. We arrived at the beginning of the holiday season which generally starts in April but with it also coinciding with the school Easter holidays this year the destination was still thriving and buzzing with people enjoying the fantastic weather for that time of year. We stayed for a week...
11 December 2015
Namibia is a place I had only ever dreamed of visiting, and I was lucky enough to do so this year. It did not fail to amaze me in every possible way. Bordering South Africa to the North West, Namibia encompasses many different ecosystems and huge expanses of unending road, providing unbelievable views and memories that will last a lifetime. It possesses some of the most stunning landscapes in Africa, and a trip through the country is one of the great road adventures. We stayed for just over two weeks and managed to fit a huge amount into our itinerary without it...
01 July 2015
I recently spent five days in Gran Canaria on an educational trip. For those of you not in the travel trade this involved the tourist board of Gran Canaria showing some travel representatives showing us what the island has to offer, and boy does it have some wonderful options. Many locals call Gran Canaria a miniature continent in one island, such is its vast juxtapositions in terrain and scenery, having seen the island in its entirety and can understand why. Fluctuating between lush, golden sandy beaches, rocky desert, green oasis and domineering mountains there really is so many different angles to...
26 February 2015
I had never visited Hamburg before this action packed weekend. It was something I had aspired to do for quite some time and having a friend now living out there for work reasons this seemed as good an excuse as any to discover what one of the largest cities in Europe had to offer. It is strange to think that this city is indeed one of Europe's largest, you wouldn't believe it to be so leaving the relatively small but efficient airport and peering on the quaint local architecture. It certainly doesn't suggest a thriving metropolis but do not be fooled...
06 January 2015
I was lucky enough to live and work in Thailand for around a year and during that time I fell completely in love with the country. It's people, culture, beauty and the some of its undiscovered gems made it an amazing place to reside. Undiscovered gem is almost literal in the case of the island of Koh Muk. It means "Pearl Island" in Thai and it certainly lives up to its billing. Located a short long boat ride from where I lived in Trang, the tranquil golden sandy beaches and glistening blue sea are a miniature paradise and I visited there...
09 October 2014
It was unseasonably warm for October when I travelled to Krakow for a long weekend of exploration, merriment and culture, and the sun was clearly shining on me with my choice of destination too. I fell totally in love with Krakow from the moment I arrived in the city. Beautiful architecture, wonderful people and amazing history combined with a modern, vibrant city nightlife made for a truly amazing few days. I had heard many things about Krakow from various sources prior to travel, all with glowing reports but from vastly different standpoints. The "culture vultures" told of everything the city had...
01 August 2014
Having never visited Turkey before it was with some sense of excitement and an element of trepidation that we boarded our flight to Bodrum in the Southwest of Turkey. I had some concept of Turkey as being somewhat of a dated holiday destination, overloaded with tourist traps, and I was to be proven very much wrong with this trip. Although there was certainly some aspects of this that were true, the overall experience was overwhelmingly positive and I would happily recommend visiting Turkey to anyone. From the moment we stepped off the plane the sunshine and heat were glorious and welcoming,...
Sent in by Geraldine Lewis
Liverpool, 21 January 2020
We booked with Ian in 2018 and returned to him again this year and again he found us a fantastic deal with his exceptional personal service!
Sent in by Stephen Tidmarsh
Birmingham, 12 December 2019
I have found Ian to be very professional but also very amicable and friendly - a joy to work with!
Sent in by Beverley Hogan
Liverpool, 27 September 2019
Ian found the perfect holiday for me and I wasn’t an easy customer!!! Thank you so much!
Sent in by Hannah Smith
Nottingham, 20 May 2019
We had a super experience booking our upcoming holiday with Ian, he gave us plenty of options when requested and listened to our preferences. We would definitely look to use Ian again when booking another holiday and would recommend him to friends.
Sent in by Charles Beaumont
Hull, 01 May 2019
Ian was so helpful and accommodating. Nothing was too much trouble, even when we gave him a very vague idea of what it was we wanted, he delivered something that was truly exceptional.
Sent in by Cathryn McGinty
Chorley, 12 April 2019
Great service and a better deal than I could find booking myself. I have recommended Ian to friends!
Sent in by John Oxton
Wirral, 05 July 2018
Ian is very helpful, personable and efficient. He keeps the client informed and does exactly what he says. He also proactively monitors things post departure and keeps the client informed of any issues that might affect things e.g. Icelandic weather.
Sent in by Geraldine Lewis
Widnes, 29 May 2018
Ian was an enormous help with finding us the perfect cruise he was always on hand to answer any questions and we will definitely use his services again.
Sent in by Michael Clarke
Formby, 19 April 2018
No problems just solutions, and very professional, patient manner. We will be using Ian again!
Sent in by Christina Potts
Andover, 13 April 2018
Ian gives a professional, efficient and personal service presented in a friendly manner. The information given about travel arrangements is clear and precise. Thank you Ian.
Sent in by Louise Keher
Liverpool, 06 March 2018
Can't fault the service Ian has provided. He nailed my brief on the first attempt! Previously I would spend hours and hours pouring over holiday sites and usually getting a bit stressed about it all. Thanks to Ian I've had not had to deal with any of that this time round. It's been very stress and hassle free and he's been great at guiding us through the process. We have already recommended Ian to friends who have also found the same experience with him. Can't recommend him highly enough. Thank you Ian! Can't wait for the holiday now!
Sent in by Mark Jones
Ormskirk, 05 March 2018
Fantastic service. Faultless. Ian could not do anymore. Thanks for getting us out boarding!
Sent in by Elizabeth Morton
Ely, 20 February 2018
Ian arranged a fabulous honeymoon for my daughter and her husband, they could not have praised him more. On that recommendation I contacted him about a cruise, he came up with a perfect one for me. I have already told a lot of my friends about his excellent service.
Sent in by Andrew Woods
Chester, 09 January 2018
Nothing seems to be too much trouble for Ian. He answers all queries promptly and offers a wide selection of hotels and packages which meet our requirements. I recommend him regularly to family and friends and will continue to do so.
Sent in by Katie Mills
Liverpool, 15 November 2017
Ian has been fantastic helping us plan our second holiday with Travel Counsellors! He is efficient, friendly and so helpful. I would highly recommend him to my friends and family and will certainly be booking another holiday with him again in the future.
Sent in by Kathleen Parkes
Widnes, 07 August 2017
Best service I have experienced. Speed of response and quality of information tailored to our needs is world class. Ian Hughes is the best!
Sent in by Tom McNeill
Liverpool, 24 April 2017
I've used Ian a few times to book a couple of domestic mini-breaks as well as an amazing trip to Portugal. Great service. Completely takes the hassle out of finding a tailor-made holiday, and at a great price!
Sent in by Amy Gowans
Liverpool, 24 April 2017
Ian arranged our honeymoon to Croatia and we couldn't fault the service he provided. We wanted to stay in a few different cities while we were there and Ian arranged everything for a very reasonable price. The trip was really tailored to what we had asked for. Would definitely recommend.
Sent in by Alex Gowans
Liverpool, 24 April 2017
Ian organised a dream honeymoon to Croatia for my wife and I. All the accommodation that he picked out was just perfect and he went out of his way with personal touches such as a bottle of champagne in the room upon arrival. The whole booking to holiday experience was excellent.
Sent in by Dale Barrow
Liverpool, 24 April 2017
Ian has organised several trips for myself and family members with superb service and knowledge of destinations! Don't hesitate to book with Ian!
Sent in by Justin Hopper
Wirral, 03 March 2017
Ian was clear, concise and highly professional, listening to our needs and re-quoting until we found a happy medium that suited everyone. I can't fault his positive attitude, patience and expertise and would definitely use and recommend Ian in the future. Not only did he find something I thought we'd never agree on and all be happy with, he secured us a fantastic deal!
Sent in by Sarah Goulding
Liverpool, 17 February 2017
I have referred a few friends to Ian already, as service and more importantly the holidays I've booked with you have been amazing!! Just booked out third trip with Ian and he has been beyond patient with my changing criteria. Thanks!
Sent in by Richard Lee
Hull, 08 February 2017
Ian was fantastically helpful through the whole process and never seemed to get annoyed even though we changed our minds about what we wanted several times. Would be happy to recommend him to anyone.
Sent in by Leonard Hughes
Bebington, 08 February 2017
Good, reliable and friendly service.
Sent in by Christine Edwards
Birkenhead, 11 January 2017
Ian took the anxiety out of what is going to be a fantastic holiday for us! No searching for the right hotel which we all know can be a minefield. He gave us three options and the only thing we had to do was make a decision. Thank you Ian
Sent in by Andrew Woods
Chester, 05 January 2017
The service I have received today has been fantastic. Any e-mails are answered immediately and Ian has dealt with my queries and requested amendments without fuss. I will certainly be recommending him to friends and family!
Sent in by Helen Fitzpatrick
Wirral, 28 December 2016
Ian is absolutely lovely! Really friendly and super-efficient. In today's world where it seems that a lot of people don't really care too much about customer service, this helpful attitude would make me use and recommend Ian's service without any hesitation.
Sent in by Henry Spinks
Liverpool, 24 November 2016
First class service! A warm and friendly Travel Counsellor with great experience.
Sent in by Alexandra Metcalfe
Wirral, 01 November 2016
Ian was very helpful and reliable. He listened to what we wanted and planned a very exciting itinerary for our honeymoon, which we can't wait to go on!
Sent in by Anthony Seaman
Southport, 01 November 2016
Thoroughly professional and friendly service!
From the pristine white-sand beaches of Thailand’s idyllic islands to the sprawling wide-open roads of the USA; the historic and breathtakingly beautiful architecture of India to the crystal-clear turquoise waters of the Maldives – there’s a world of wonder out there and it’s just waiting to be explored.
Contact me on 0151 601 8830