Based in Hertford

Karen Ward

It's Nice To Meet You

Thank you for visiting my webpage. With me, it’s definitely personal!

I can save you time and make researching and booking your holiday much easier. You'll also get great one-to-one service, with my trademark personal touches to surprise and delight you.

As I run my business from home, I don't shut up shop at 5.30 – indeed, a lot of my work is done in the evening when people are more likely to be free to talk about their travel plans.

I can help you organise as much or as little as you like, including:

Holidays – I can source a traditional package or tailor-make a holiday especially for you
Cruises – From two night breaks to world cruises
Weddings abroad – Let me book your dream wedding in a fantastic exotic location
Honeymoons – Ask me about the best places for special holidays
Transport – I can book flights-only, rail and ferry travel, taxi or shuttle transfers and car hire
Entertainment – Let me book tickets for theme parks, tourist attractions, excursions etc
UK breaks – I can research and book the UK, from cottages to parks, hotels, boating etc
Business travel - Corporate travel can be very challenging if plans have to change at short notice. Let me sort out your flights, hotels, transfers, car hire, leaving you more time and energy to focus on your meetings and clients.


About me

I've been booking holidays and arranging travel for nearly 30 years. I love travelling and have visited over 40 countries. I have been on a variety of holidays with my family, including skiing, narrow-boating, city breaks, beach holidays and more. Personally, my favourite type of holiday is a cruise because you can visit so many new places without having to keep packing and unpacking your bags! I am very lucky to have cruised to the Far East, Australia and New Zealand, Scandinavia and Russia, Alaska, Eastern Mediterranean and the Norwegian Fjords. I’m looking forward to more!

My favourite place would have to be Madeira. I particularly love going there in June during their Atlantic Festival and seeing the wonderful firework display which is on every Saturday. I also love California, with its diverse towns and of course Disneyland! Las Vegas is definitely a favourite as is Sydney, Australia - being on the Diamond Princess as it sailed out of Sydney Harbour was truly magical!

I would love to help you with your travel plans, so please get in touch!

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Contact Me

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:

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My Blog

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.

Manhattan & Brooklyn including Coney Island - a triple delight!

08 July 2017

What a fantastic experience visiting all three of these incredible places in one trip. We stayed in Brooklyn and loved wandering around the neighbourhoods and just stopping for a coffee (Brooklyn Farmacy & Soda Fountain is definitely recommended). It was so easy getting into Manhattan on the Subway or by taxi. You could also always walk or cycle over the Brooklyn Bridge! The area of Dumbo (Down Under the Manhattan Bridge Overpass) was a real revelation, with incredible views of the Manhattan skyline. Between the Brooklyn and Manhattan Bridges had a lovely atmosphere with picnic tables and even a beautiful Carousel. We walked through cobblestone streets and discovered little bookshops, cafés, art galleries and museums. St Ann's Warehouse, just under the Brooklyn Bridge, was a real find - featuring a great theatre show. Of course, no visit to New York is complete without visiting Manhattan. Although I have been before, it was great revisiting old favourites and seeing new ones. The most poignant of which was the 9/11 Memorial. It brought home just what the city and their people went through and is a fitting memorial for the victims and their families. Battery Park was great to walk round - you can catch the ferry over to Liberty Island and Ellis Island from here. We also did the usual open deck hop-on, hop-off bus trip, although I think we could have walked some of it quicker with the heavy traffic! However, it was good to see it all with limited time on our hands! Food and drink seemed to feature with us this time and lunch at the Oyster Bar in Grand Central Station was wonderful - you don't have to eat Oysters! The Station itself is worth seeing too. I could just feel the history of this beautiful place! Champagne at the Plaza in The Palm Court, was a lovely experience. You can also have high-end breakfasts or afternoon tea - which looked very inviting - lunch or dinner. It was very busy, so you might want to book ahead! The location by Central Park was perfect. Once we decided to walk we discovered all we wanted to see and this is surely the best way of seeing Manhattan! We took a train to Coney Island, just because I wanted to get another perspective of New York City, and that we definitely did! The journey was only about 40 minutes from where we were staying in Brooklyn. It was well worth the time out to see such a great beach! It was low season when we visited so the beach was almost deserted and so beautiful. The funfair had not yet opened, however, I could imagine how busy it would be in the high season! Great boardwalk too with the usual seaside attractions. A must for lunch is Nathan's Famous (for hot dogs!). Been going since 1916! I am so glad I have seen a few different sides to New York, Manhattan is still my favourite, because of all the iconic sights, however Brooklyn was a total delight!

Hilton Barbados Resort - It's a must!

08 July 2017

We spent a few days here as part of our lovely Barbados trip. The hotel is located at Needham's point and must have one of the best views of Barbados. It was just stunning waking up and looking at the view! First impressions were amazing. The lobby was huge but also very welcoming. A great place to meet up and relax as well as checking in and checking out! The staff were so friendly and helpful. The restaurants were great. We ate at the Grille one night, which was a real treat. Breakfast in the Lighthouse restaurant was great. Eating there was not cheap in my opinion, however, it was all well worth it! The Water's Edge Bar was great for lunch or just a drink. The pools were fantastic, especially the infinity pool. The beach was everything you would want a beach to be. A brilliant stay here so close to Bridgetown and yet a world away! Will definitely be staying here again!

Crystal Cove Barbados - An Elegant Hotel!

08 July 2017

We had the most fantastic stay at Crystal Cove, with its magnificent location and fantastic service, nothing was too much trouble! We had a garden view junior suite which was very spacious. The bedroom was on the mezzanine floor and overlooked the lounge, and was the perfect size, with plenty of storage space and a large en-suite bathroom. The terrace outside the lounge double doors, was great for relaxing. Their 'Reflections' restaurant had a really lovely atmosphere, with great sea views. The food was of a very high standard and we couldn't fault it. Tip: Gentlemen must have collars on their shirts! The 'Cave Bar' was really unusual, lovely and cool and you could also swim up to it! Enjoyed eating lunch or just having a cocktail at Drifters' Beach Bar & Restaurant right by the sea - fantastic! Apart from the totally amazing location right on the beautiful beach, the pools were also fabulous! We swam in all 3 pools, which were tiered, and in the sea and were just spoilt for choice! As part of the all-inclusive 'dine around' arrangement, we had a wonderful meal at the Colony Club, right on the beach. Having arranged a wedding for clients previously to this hotel, I was so pleased to see a wedding taking place in the gardens, right in front of our ground floor suite, although my clients opted for their wedding on the beach which looked incredible too. I can't recommend a wedding here highly enough. I will always remember the intimate and unique atmosphere of this beautiful all-inclusive hotel!

Magical Madeira and Vibrant Vila Porto Mare!

30 October 2013

This fantastic hotel in Funchal faces the sea and promenade. We stayed in The Residence in a beautiful, spacious 2-bedroomed apartment with 2 bathrooms and wonderful sea views from both balconies. There are 5 pools altogether. The huge outdoor free-form pool with palm trees all around, is set in beautiful gardens, with plenty of sunbeds. The indoor pool next to the spa, is absolutely stunning! This was definitely my favourite. It is a large heated freeform pool with loungers around, and, you can swim outside to the lovely little pool and Jacuzzi. The other indoor pool next door at the Eden Mar has lanes and a sliding roof which was opened when it was warm and sunny, and this also had a Jacuzzi. You can also use the outdoor pool at the Eden Mar. Our days were spent at the hotel, sunbathing, swimming, playing mini-golf, table tennis, or sampling the spa treatments. The gym is also a good feature if you're feeling in the mood and you can also play tennis. We have stayed here with our family too and the little ones enjoyed the play room, the outdoor playground and the children's outdoor pool. There are also good quality golf courses nearby. The local supermarket is only a 5-minute walk. The bars at the hotel offer happy hours, low-key, good entertainment, and all with a great atmosphere. The restaurants offer a wide choice. The Atlantida restaurant overlooks the pool, and the buffets here are fabulous. Sitting on the terrace at breakfast is a wonderful way to start the day. We sampled the lunches, sangria, and coffee at the pool bar! You can have a drink on your lounger or on the pool bar terrace. Lovely way to while away an hour or two! Our favourite eatery at the hotel was the Restaurant Med. The standard of food, the service, and the ambience was really fantastic. The Il Basilico Italian restaurant down by the promenade is another classy option, with tables outside. Great food! The hotel held a barbecue evening on the pool terrace. The food was fabulous, as was the entertainment. All in all, a lovely evening, in a beautiful setting. We went into Funchal which is only a short taxi ride away (or a nice stroll) and visited the fish market, which also has beautiful flowers, fruit, vegetables, crafts and trinkets. Funchal has a wide range of shops and it's great to wander the tree-lined, mosaic-paved streets, see the Cathedral in the Square, sample the little cafes or spy the cruise ships in port. You can take boat trips from the marina. We have taken a catamaran trip before and saw Madeira from a different point of view! If you're wanting even more shops a visit to 'Madeira Shopping' indoor mall is only a taxi ride away. The tour at the Old Blandy Wine Lodge is another great option. The Monte Palace Gardens high above Funchal are a real treat and the Chinese and Japanese influence add an exotic touch. The Monte Toboggan is a must for any visitor and is really exhilarating! Try and keep your eyes open! Very different from the cable car ride up, although this is also a definite must with fantastic views over Funchal! We've also hired a car before and heading west the little villages like Camaro de Lobos are so picturesque. If you have a head for heights then look down from Cabo Girao, one of the world's highest cliffs! The plateau Paul da Serra was a real surprise and almost had an eerie feel to it. On another drive we saw the wonderful little A-framed houses on the way to Santana. Spectacular views abound! We had a fantastic buffet meal by the pool at Reid's Palace Hotel, with live music. A magical evening followed by fireworks over Funchal, which occur every Saturday in June, due to the Atlantic Festival. The view from the cocktail bar over Funchal is magnificent! We also had a fabulous gastronomic experience at the Cliff Bay's Il Gallo D'Oro Michelin star restaurant. We couldn't stop talking about it! Walking and beautiful levadas are what Madeira is well-known for, and you will not be spoilt for choice. Our next trip to Madeira is already planned. We still have so much to do there, and can't wait to go back!

My customer stories

Sent by Janice Perrotton

Karen has given us outstanding service from start to finish. She makes booking a holiday so easy and she always goes the extra mile in delivering excellent customer service.

Sent by Jennifer Waititu

Absolutely excellent hotel recommendation from Karen, really listened to what we wanted and got it spot on! Thanks so much.

Sent by Sarah Bedford

The service provided by Karen has been fantastic; really quick turnaround to questions, friendly and professional. I have strongly recommended Karen to my friends and family looking for support with their travel plans.

Sent by Janice Perroton

Very professional and efficient and always friendly. Karen is the best!

Sent by Tracy Kelly

Karen goes the extra mile. Great service,

Sent by Colin Mudge

Once again, fantastic service, guidance and advice from Karen. She is a great asset to your company.

Sent by Alison Gilkes

Very efficient, thorough, knowledgeable, quick and really cares about her clients and their holidays . We will never book with any one else!

Sent by Sarah Poynter

Always professional, kind, efficient and the one of the loveliest people I have ever dealt with in the travel industry. You take the hassle out of everything and I only wish that this wonderfulness carried on all throughout the industry. Thank you

Sent by Alison Sheldrick

I had to attend a conference for a week in London and, because the venue rates were high, I decided to find an alternative hotel. I don’t know London well and when I looked, there was such a wide range of locations and costs I decided to get some help. I had no hesitation in contacting Karen from Travel Counsellors. Very quickly, I had a list of hotels in the right location to suit my budget and Karen helped me to choose the best one for me. Karen saved me time and money and, importantly, gave me peace of mind. I can highly recommend her. Thank you Karen

Sent by Samantha Hodson

I would highly recommend Karen to anybody. Her care and attention to detail is second to none. Karen makes you feel totally taken care of and that you really matter to her. I always appreciate the speed with which Karen responds to any request.