Based in Stalybridge

Lara Jackson

Looking for help with your business travel? Find out how I can help here

It's Nice To Meet You

Hi there and thank you for taking the time to check out my webpage. Let me introduce myself, my name is Lara Jackson and I am excited to say I’m a Travel Counsellor based in Cheshire. A bit about me: I am married with 1 teenage son and as you can imagine their passion is football but mine is very much travel so the more football they do the more travelling I do (it’s only fair) meaning I have been lucky enough to visit some amazing destinations over the years.

Travel has not only been my passion but fortunately it has been my profession and since leaving education 20 years ago (where does the time go?) I have worked for some of the leading travel organisations in the UK dealing with a wide variety of different travel requirements from, cheap and cheerful breaks to tailor-made holidays of a lifetime as well as more recently diversifying into business travel helping companies making the most of what they spend on travel.

I have always wanted to work for myself but at the same time I wanted to ensure I had the infrastructure to make sure I could offer the best deals whilst delivering exceptional service to my clients and being part Travel Counsellors has given me the platform to do that. I always go above and beyond and particularly in these uncertain times, like me, you’ll always want to make sure you can pay for your holiday with the confidence that should anything go wrong then you are 100% financially protected.

So why book with me? I’m well-travelled, what I mean by that is I have travelled to over 51 different countries and 5 continents, including; Europe, America, Hawaii, Canada, Australia, New Zealand, Cook Island, Asia, Kenya, United Arab Emirates, Indian Ocean, Caribbean and Egypt. Also if you’ve missed a connection or lost a document there’s no need to be caller number 872 on a travel website’s customer service line, I’ll be there to assist you 24/7 365 days, I’ll always endeavour to find you the best deal whether it’s a 1-stop beach holiday or for every aspect of a complicated multi-destination trip.

Travel means everything to me and I know your holiday does to you, it isn’t just selling you a holiday it’s hopefully the start of a long-term relationship so whatever your needs my aim is to make your trip as simple and stress-free as possible.

Thanks for considering me and hopefully look forward to speaking to you soon.
Lara

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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:

Find me on social

My Videos

My top holiday destinations.

3/8/2021

I’d like to share with you some of my best holiday moments. From a private helicopter over Niagara Falls to riding a catamaran over tropic seas in the sunshine.

My favourite Hawaiian beach

3/8/2021

Makalawena Beach Hawaii. One of my favourite beaches. Not sure the hubby appreciated the walk there. HAHA

5 reasons to trust me with your holiday plans!

2/22/2021

I will make sure you are looked after every step of the way, and what’s more, you’ll benefit from 100% financial protection.

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.

A Thrilling Adventure in Costa Rica: From Rainforests to Beaches

10 April 2024

My recent trip to Costa Rica was nothing short of exhilarating. From the moment I landed in San Jose and was whisked away to La Fortuna, the adventure began. Nestled at the base of the Arenal Volcano, La Fortuna welcomed me with its lush greenery and promise of thrilling experiences. The first few days were spent exploring the rugged terrain around the Arenal Volcano. Hiking the lava trail offered breathtaking views of the surrounding landscape, while soaking in natural hot springs provided a relaxing contrast to the adrenaline-pumping activities that followed. Ziplining through the treetops gave me a bird's eye view of the rainforest canopy, making me feel like a true adventurer. Next stop: Lands in Love resort, where a day filled with heart-pounding adventures awaited. From ziplining to rappelling down waterfalls, white water rafting, and even swinging like Tarzan, there was never a dull moment. The highlight was undoubtedly the vegan lunch, a delightful surprise that satisfied both my taste buds and conscience. Continuing our journey, we headed to Monteverde, a cloud forest paradise known for its biodiversity. Exploring the hanging bridges and embarking on a night walk through the forest was a surreal experience, with sightings of exotic wildlife adding to the mystique of the surroundings. Our stay at Hacienda Guachipelin was nothing short of magical. A one-day pass offered a plethora of activities, including canopy ziplining, rappelling through the Rio Blanco Canyon, tubing down class 2-3 rapids, and horseback riding to nearby waterfalls. The natural volcanic hot springs provided the perfect opportunity to unwind and soak in the beauty of our surroundings. Finally, we wrapped up our adventure with a well-deserved break at Flamingo Beach. The pristine white sands and crystal-clear waters were the perfect backdrop for relaxation and reflection, a fitting end to an unforgettable journey through Costa Rica's diverse landscapes. In conclusion, my holiday in Costa Rica was a whirlwind of excitement, adventure, and natural beauty. From rainforests to beaches, this tropical paradise has something for every traveler seeking thrills and relaxation alike. Highly recommended for anyone craving an unforgettable escape into nature's embrace.

From Singapore to Thailand: A Journey of Discovery and Adventure

10 April 2024

My recent escapade to Southeast Asia was a thrilling odyssey filled with captivating sights, delectable cuisine, and unforgettable experiences. Setting foot in the vibrant city-state of Singapore marked the beginning of an adventure that would take me through the wonders of Thailand. In Singapore, I indulged in the city's iconic attractions, including a mesmerizing visit to Gardens by the Bay. As night fell, I was treated to a spectacular light show, a dazzling display of color and music amidst the towering Supertrees. By day, I wandered the bustling streets, immersing myself in the vibrant energy of the city. Exploring the Jubilee Walk, I ventured through historic landmarks and cultural hotspots, soaking in the rich tapestry of Singaporean heritage. From the bustling Boat Quay to the lively Clarke Quay, every corner revealed a new facet of this dynamic city. And, of course, no visit to Singapore would be complete without a sip of the iconic Singapore Sling at the historic Raffles Hotel. From the gleaming metropolis of Singapore, I journeyed to the enchanting landscapes of Thailand, beginning with the historic River Kwai. A Kanchanaburi city tour offered a poignant glimpse into the region's wartime history, followed by a visit to the awe-inspiring Erawan Falls. Cascading tiers of emerald waters amidst lush greenery provided a serene backdrop to the historical significance of the area. Continuing my exploration, I ventured to the bustling floating markets and the bustling Maeklong Railway Market, where vendors deftly pack up their stalls to make way for passing trains. The vibrant colors and aromatic scents of fresh produce and local delicacies left a lasting impression, enriching my understanding of Thailand's rich culture and traditions. In Chiang Mai, I joined in the vibrant celebrations of Thai New Year, where the streets came alive with joyous water fights. Exploring the city's highlights, from ancient temples to tranquil lakes and sticky waterfalls, offered moments of serenity amidst the revelry. Finally, a tranquil retreat to the idyllic island of Koh Samui provided the perfect conclusion to my journey. Days spent lounging on pristine beaches and exploring hidden coves were punctuated by vibrant evenings at Chaweng Beach and Fisherman's Market. As I reflect on my journey, I'm filled with gratitude for the myriad experiences that have left an indelible mark on my soul. From the urban splendor of Singapore to the natural wonders of Thailand, this journey has been a celebration of discovery and adventure. Until we meet again, Asia, thank you for the memories.

Vietnam multi centre - Hanoi, Hoi An, Nha Trang & Saigon - Part 1

12 October 2020

A little about Hanoi: Hanoi is Vietnam’s capital. It’s a huge city located by the banks of the Red River in the northern half of the country. It’s the second largest city in Vietnam by population behind Saigon, but it feels more intimate and inviting. Hanoi mains airport is Noi Bai International Airport which is about 45 minutes to the centre. Where to stay: I personally think the Old Quarter in Hoan Kiem is the best place to stay. It’s at the heart of the tourist area and puts you closest to many of the city’s top attractions. We stayed at Silunline Paon Hotel & Spa which is about 500 metres from Hoan Kiem lake and the red river. Things we did: There's so many trips to do and places to visit. We started with walking around the historical city. It may be old and crumbling in parts but it’s a city full of character. it’s a very walkable city and one that you could explore in about 2 days. Hoan kiem Lake & Huc bridge: Hoan kiem lake is an attraction in itself but there are also several structures worthy to see. Turtle tower in the middle of the lake, Nha son Temple on jade island in the lake and the connecting bridge to the temple known as the bridge of the rising sun or Huc bridge. Particularly beautiful at night when it it highly illuminated. Now the famous train street. A must see whilst in Hanoi. Unfortunately “train street” is not an official tourist attraction but lately has become a very popular place for visitors. Both sides of train street are full of bars, cafes and shops. These are active train tracks and potentially dangerous which is why it’s odd to find cafes with outdoor seating on either side. The tracks are easy enough to find and visit on your own. We spent a couple of hours here. Ha long bay overnight cruise: This was a 3 hour journey by car east of Hanoi. We did our cruise with secret Halong cruise. Ha Long Bay is a UNESCO World Heritage Site and one of the most popular tourist destinations in Vietnam. From cruising round some 2,000 islets, most of which are made from limestone, kayaking in the jade green waters, cavern the Ho Dong Tien Cave. There’s no place like it! Well that’s it for Hanoi. Next stop Danang. Today we took a short flight to Danang and a 45 minute transfer to the Palm garden beach resort and spa - Hoi An A little about Hoi An Hoi An is a city on Vietnam’s central coast known for its well-preserved Ancient Town, cut through with canals and its diverse and excellent food. Besides the charm of the ancient town, Hoi An is also an enticing beach destination. Where we stayed: We stayed along Cua Dai beach at the palm garden beach resort and spa. A Beautiful resort amidst 5 hectares of tropics landscapes gardens and a 3km stretch of fine white powdery sand beach. The position just north-east of Hoi An make Cua Dai Beach the perfect place to easily find your own patch of paradise. This hotel was perfect for us as it was just a 5 minute shuttle outside the hustle and bustle of Hoi An ancient town with plenty of bars and restaurants within walking distance to the hotel. Things we did: Que vegetable village, my son, marble mountain and bon river. This was a great trip. We Cycled from our hotel to Tra Que vegetable village. This was an experience in itself seeing the locals and riding through paddy fields. We eventually arrived at the local vegetable farm. This was a Peaceful, lush green farming area, lined with rows of planted herbs, spices and vegetables. We were welcomed by way of a heavenly foot and neck massage, a fun cooking lesson and a delicious lunch. Everything served was picked from the working farm. After an enjoyable lunch we were then dressed up in their traditional clothing and taken round the garden and even got the chance to plant and water in their customary style which has been done for many generations. Next stop Marble Mountain. The Vietnamese often called this place ‘Ngu Hanh Son’ (Five Elements Mountain). There are five mountains in accordance with the five elements of nature: Kim Son (Metal Mountain), Moc Son (Wood Mountain), Thuy Son (Water Mountain), Hoa Son (Fire Mountain) and Tho Son (Soil Mountain). Each mountain is unique in shape with their own layout of caves and shrines. We didn’t have time to see them all so we visited the most popular mountain of marble mountain, Thuy Son (water mountain) which has become the sanctuary attracting many Buddhist anchorites. After the 156 steps we found ourselves in front of a three-entrance gate leading to the Tam Thai pagoda. This one is definitely the one you don’t want to miss. It’s a witness of history and also contains great cultural values. After a steep climb you go down a semi hidden flight of stairs to Huyen Khong Cave this was once a refuge for Vietnamese revolutionaries during wartime. It was bombed repeatedly which lead to the openings in the ceiling where you can now see the heavenly light shining vertically through the top of the cave, touching the Buddha statues inside the cave. Opposite lies Hell cave and it literally was. It was dark, humid and filled with strange and scary creatures in the corners. And finally we did the last cave. Not everyone did this as it was in areas a tight squeeze but the panoramic views at the top were jaw dropping. Next stop My son sanctuary. My Son was the religious center of Champa kingdom from the second century, now remaining with red brick towers and sanctuaries. It is older than some of Southeast Asia's greatest archaeological sites, including Bagan in Myanmar, Ayutthaya in Thailand and Borobudur in Indonesia. People consider My Son as the pre- Angkor in Vietnam as these towers and sanctuaries were built from the 4th to 13th century. On arrival we took the electric shuttle which whisked us up to the sanctuaries. This was a god send as it was far too hot to walk up a hill. We were greeted with the holy Apsara dance which is performed by charming Cham ladies after which we took the opportunity to explore ancient ruins, intricate designed temples peppered with bomb craters and learned more about the history and culture of Champa. Another beautiful UNESCO site. After a long fantastic day of sight seeing what better way to end the day with a relaxing 2 hour boat ride on Bon river passing Duy Hai fishing village, Tra Nhieu - weaving village, Kim Bong carpentry village and Cam Thanh coconut jungle village. This was a tough and tiring trip but well worth it.

Vietnam multi centre - Hanoi, Hoi An, Nha Trang & Saigon - Part 2

12 October 2020

About the Area: Nha Trang is a coastal resort in Southern Vietnam known for its beautiful white sandy beaches, diving and offshore islands. Nha Trang is one of the most attractive destinations in Vietnam. There is so much to do here other than just lounging by the stunning shorelines. You can visit the unique waterfalls, Buddhist temples, natural hot springs, night food markets and restaurants, bars and cafes which offer a variety of choices for international travellers. Where we stayed: This was the second to last stop before heading to the crazy city of Saigon. And after a busy couple of weeks all that we wanted was somewhere luxurious with a stunning beach. WOW!! The Anam was truly spectacular. Quiet, tranquil, pristine and on its own private beach. It was a 30 minute transfer from the airport, and they offered a free shuttle to the city centre. From the minute we arrived we were in heaven. We couldn’t fault anything from the contemporary rooms, excellent buffet breakfast, 3 sparkling pools to the most beautiful beach in Vietnam. About the area: Ho Chi Minh City, also known as Saigon, is the largest city in Vietnam. It is a buzzing modern city and effortlessly blends the old with the new through historical attractions, museums, markets, pavement cafes, food tours and more. There’s no shortage of excitement in this vibrant Vietnamese city. I would highly recommend doing a little research before you go, as you could quite easily be exploring this city for months. Where we stayed: I wanted somewhere central with a pool and walking distant to all the main attractions, bars and restaurants. Luxury The One Ben Thanh Apartments was in the perfect location. Things to do: Ben Than Markets and Bitexco Financial Tower First day in Saigon, what better way to start the day than to visit Ben Than markets. It was hot, humid, sweaty and very busy but definitely a fun place to be. If you like haggling, you’ll love it here. After all that shopping and a bite to eat we headed to the Bitexco Tower. This was once the tallest building in Vietnam until it was surpassed in 2011 by the Landmark in Hanoi. The Skydeck has some spectacular views of the city and Sia Gon river. Notre Dame cathedral, Post office & War museum: This morning we got up early and headed for the war museum passing the Cathedral and the post office which were in the French quarter. We didn’t go inside but it looked very impressive from the outside particularly the Virgin Mary in front of the Cathedeal. Unless you are in the area or passing, I wouldn’t really recommend going out of your way to see it. The war museum however is a must! We spent a few hours here but definitely could have spent longer. Be prepared there are lots of artifacts and graphic photos, some very difficult images and historical facts to absorb. There’s lots to take in but it’s emotional draining. Ci chi tunnels and Mekong delta : I really enjoyed this trip. It was an amazing day which started with the Cu Chi tunnels. The tunnels were fascinating in the purpose they served during the war. We got to experience just how small they were and how inventive the Vietnamese soldiers were. We also got the real sense of the impact of the Vietnam war and an insight of the conditions in which the Vietnamese people faced during that time. The Mekong Delta was a nice way to finish the day with 2 impressive stops at a local bee and coconut farm where you get the opportunity to purchase many locally made products.

My customer stories

Sent by P Brook

Lara has been excellent helping me with my cruise arrangements

Sent by John Singleton

Lara has assisted me booking 3 trips in 5 months. She has been brilliant. Highly Recommend!

Sent by Lee Scowcroft

Lara was fantastic since the very first phone call, her experience and expertise simply shine through. She made our honeymoon absolutely perfect by going above and beyond to make it unforgettable. We'll definitely be booking a holiday soon through Lara.

Sent by Vikki Magee

Lara was really helpful and found a suitable holiday for us to book. She was very knowledgeable of the area which is always good to listen to. I would definitely use Lara again and recommend her to my family and friends

Sent by Margaret Simms

You could not have been more helpful reassuring and patient. Nothing was too much trouble ,this gave me great confidence in my travel insurance policy.

Sent by Alan Sleeman

Lara was clear and positive in her approach to our travel plans pointing out any problems that we had overlooked and going to some lengths to help us solve them, Helping to check passport ,visa's.take off and landing times..layover times that we had overlooked ,A full service that can't be faulted.Thank you Lara.

Sent by Jackie Burgess

Excellent service :-)

Sent by Barbara Spragg

Lara was absolutely fantastic. She organised everything for me and made the experience as easy as possible from leaving Manchester to getting to destination and back. A big thumbs up from me!!

Sent by Karen Kaye

Lara has been amazing in arranging our Australia and New Zealand trip. Nothing has been too much trouble for her and her advice and suggestions have been invaluable in making sure we'll get the most from our holiday. I wouldn't hesitate to recommend her to family and friends

Sent by Mike Rayner

Excellent attitude shown towards us. Very informative regarding all aspects of the booking. Never to much trouble in finding additional information.Will recommend to friends.

Sent by Zoe Xenophontos

Lara was very professional and helpful, listened to my wishes and choices and worked hard to find exactly what I requested. Offering alternatives and even going above and beyond as this was a birthday gift for my daughters 30th! Amazing service thank you! highly recommended

Sent by Evelyn Speak

Lara provided excellent knowledge and advice providing me with the confidence in knowing I was booking a holiday that was everything wanted at a good price.