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Simon Fransham

Southeast Asia & China Specialist

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Simon has been fascinated with the world ever since he was a child. This was greatly facilitated by growing up in a small Cheshire town, where to a young boy looking for adventure, nothing interesting ever seemed to happen. Fascinated by his globe, he would sit and plan all the countries he would travel to as a grown-up. Naturally, Simon went on to read Geography at university, and then to explore India and Southeast Asia on an extended solo trip, where he eventually settled in Thailand.

He has extensive experience as a Southeast Asia specialist with two UK-based luxury adventure tour operators, as well as working for a local tour operator in Bangkok where he excelled in researching and promoting some of the lesser known areas of Thailand to overseas tour operators.

Prior to joining Ampersand, Simon lived in China for almost four years. He studied Mandarin Chinese at Tsinghua university in Beijing, as well as engaging himself with Chinese culture, customs and food - he is the best person to ask where to eat the most incredible Chinese hot-pot! He joins Ampersand with a wealth of knowledge and enormous passion for Southeast Asia and China.

Simon's Favourites

DESTINATION

CHINA

China’s colossal size, lightning-fast development and language hurdles means a holiday to China can be hard to tackle as an independent traveller. Travelling in China need not be daunting, and Ampersand’s tailor-made holidays to China provide just the right amount of self-exploration and hand-holding, combining ultra-luxury at the very best hotels with cultural adventures accompanied by truly incredible guides. China...

HOTELS

Top
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Simon's favourites include the UNESCO protected Summer Palace and the boho-chic Knai Bang Chatt...

Aman Summer Palace View here
The Temple House View here
The Siam View here
The Sofitel Legend Metropole View here
Knai Bang Chatt View here

ITINERARY

A GASTRONOMIC TOUR OF CHINA

14 days from £5,570

Everyone has eaten Chinese cuisine before, but nothing compares to walking amongst the streets of Chengdu, being fascinated by the...


View here

Without question, you put together the best trip I have ever taken. We were shown around like visiting dignitaries, the hotels were fantastic and the itinerary was just right. Everybody I know will hear about how amazing Ampersand is!
- Leslie Siben, India
Everything you did for us whilst we were away was hugely appreciated, and Ampersand has been exemplary in every way. I'll always recommend you!
- Mr Richard Stoughton, Sri Lanka
Ampersand’s details preparation, attention to detail and interaction before and during our trip show exactly why good travel agents have a role in today’s internet/direct booking age. Shalmali was a delight to work with – before and during our trip.
- Mr David Wallace, North India
We had a wonderful holiday - everything was perfect. Thank you for helping us to make a thoughtful plan to enjoy and make most out of our trip. The places we visited, the guides, the transportation and driver, the hotels selected... Everything was great!
- Jaime Benitez, South India
I thought the Ampersand team was outstanding. We couldn’t have hoped for anything more.
- Mr Geoffrey Johnson, India
Difficult to articulate just how good the service from you and your team really was. We know you will continue to do well and hope we have the chance to seek your assistance again before long.
- Mr & Mrs Manson, North India
So many highlights to choose from! The hotels were amazing but Maya Villa was a highlight… I loved just hanging out in the hammock reading my book and watching the peacocks chase the cows!
- Krista Weir, Sri Lanka
I had a very lovely time and was looked after splendidly. My first visit to India could not have been better, save for being longer! But I shall return at some point and I shall look to you to make the arrangements.
- Matthew Nicklin, North India

From our Instagram

Monks in #Myanmar (#Burma) 🇲🇲
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Buddhism runs strong through the country’s veins - not only are 90% of the Burmese Buddhist, but many children are monks in training and call ancient monasteries home 🧘🏽‍♂️
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#AmpersandTravel #LuxuryIsInTheExperience
Cascading rice terraces greet you in #Ubud 🍃🍃🍃
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Balinese women make daily offerings of vibrant flowers and fruit to the gods 🍊🍐🍌🍎🌺💐
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#AmpersandTravel #LuxuryIsInTheExperience
Spot mighty lions in #SouthAfrica’s game reserves with the help of our expert guides 🐾 🇿🇦
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#AmpersandTravel #LuxuryIsInTheExperience #KrugerNationalPark #SabiSands #Madikwe
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(📸 @chris_fischer_photography)
We’re dreaming of #Bali’s reflective sunsets today 🌅
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Enjoy particularly striking views from @thelegianbali in #Seminyak
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#AmpersandTravel #LuxuryIsInTheExperience
‘Led by Buddhist monks, a butter lamp ceremony offers a guiding light to finding peace and harmony’ @sixsensesbhutan 🕯🕯🕯
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#AmpersandTravel #LuxuryIsInTheExperience
In #Japan, the lesser-known plum tree (‘ume’ #梅) blossoms in February - March 🌺
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Visit at this time to admire these special flowers and beat the crowds that swarm the country during cherry blossom peak season 🌸
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#AmpersandTravel #LuxuryIsInTheExperience
All smiles in #Vietnam 🇻🇳
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Courtesy of the brilliant portrait photographer @rehahn_photography
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#AmpersandTravel #LuxuryIsInTheExperience
Atmospheric rural villages, mirror-still lakes and gracious locals sum up #Myanmar (#Burma) for us 🌅
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📸 courtesy of @zayyarlin84
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#AmpersandTravel #LuxuryIsInTheExperience
Don’t miss out on #Teardrop’s new boutique hotels while touring #SriLanka 🇱🇰
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Each sleek property brings a fresh twist to the traditional hill country - from #NineSkies in #Ella to #CamelliaHills in #Dickoya, plus #Goatfell in #NuwaraEliya 🍃
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#AmpersandTravel #LuxuryIsInTheExperience

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