Ampersand's Travels...

Welcome to Ampersand's travel blog. This is where you'll find out all the latest goings on from our travels across Asia, Southern Africa and the British Isles.

Our motto is that luxury is in the experience: watching tigers padding through the Kanha jungle in the company of an expert guide; camping out under the Ladakh stars wrapped in cashmere blankets; exploring the art galleries and fine dining restaurants in Cape Town; or explore the wild and ravishing highlands of Scotland... these are the things we adore.

All over Asia, Southern Africa and the British Isles – from Bhutan to Bali, Cape Town to Victoria Falls, Bath to Ballyvaughan – we know the most charming privately-owned hotels, the best secret beaches, the prettiest and castles, and the most exclusive safari trails in the untouched wilderness. Our Little Black Book contains the best textile buffs, the keenest foodies, the wittiest maharajas, the most expert guides and the loveliest spots to drink champagne in the moonlight.

But what we love most of all is revealing these treasures to our clients. In our blog we hope to inspire and inform you by providing the latest travel news, hotel openings and luxury holiday ideas across Asia, Southern Africa and the British Isles.

Insider View: Pondicherry

Insider View: Pondicherry

Pondicherry is charming coastal city with a distinct Indo-Mediterranean flavour. Pastel-coloured houses, friendly locals and stylish boutiques are prevalent in this unhurried sun-drenched haven. Our insider guide seeks out some of the most special corners of Pondicherry to experience this unique destination like a true local…

Dining Al Fresco: 10 of London’s Best

Dining Al Fresco: 10 of London’s Best

Summertime is when London takes it outside. Michelin starred restaurants, family-run cafés and glittering bars. There’s so much to choose from that it helps to know where look for the best outdoor hot spots. Here's our al fresco dining guide of London’s ten best outdoor eating options...

Insider India: Meeting Mallika Ahluwalia, Co-Founder of the Partition Museum, Amritsar

Insider India: Meeting Mallika Ahluwalia, Co-Founder of the Partition Museum, Amritsar

The Partition Museum has opened in the formerly derelict town hall of Amritsar, and tells the stories of the millions whose lives were impacted by the 1947 partition. We met with Mallika Ahluwalia, the museum co-founder and guiding spirit to find out more about the vision of the new museum…

Ampersand Anecdotes: The Spy Princess

Ampersand Anecdotes: The Spy Princess

Noor Inayat Khan was an Indian princess and a secret agent. She was the unsung heroine of World War Two and her story is one of astonishing courage and sacrifice. In our latest Ampersand Anecdote read about the history of this fascinating woman, and see how both her life and legacy are still influential today…

10 Japanese Cultural Concepts

10 Japanese Cultural Concepts

Japanese culture is complex and distinctive. Often visualised as an anthill society, buzzing with the advancements of technology and a population boom. However, many traditional values of Japan still underpin the culture, with a profound appreciation of nature and the simple life. Here are 10 concepts which are at the core of Japanese culture…

Insider View: Kolkata

Insider View: Kolkata

Kolkata, the old capital of British India is steeped in history and rich in stories. Old colonial mansions and crumbling relics of the Raj are still evident, but the city is now acknowledged as a powerhouse of the arts. In our insider’s view, we have handpicked some of our favourite insider to experience ‘Cal’ like a true local…

Everything You Need to Know about Visiting The Imperial Palace in Tokyo

Everything You Need to Know about Visiting The Imperial Palace in Tokyo

The Tokyo Imperial Palace is the primary residence of the Emperor of Japan. Located in the heart of the pulsating city, this haven proves to be the highly valuable privacy the Japanese royal family crave. In this mini-guide to visiting the Imperial Palace, you will learn about the best times to visit and what you will find…

Art Fever: Visiting India’s Art Scene

Art Fever: Visiting India’s Art Scene

The Indian art scene is booming. With record-breaking sales and clamouring international interest, the ninth India Art Fair welcomed over 100,000 attendees and Kochi held its third Art Biennale. There has never been a better time to invest in Indian art, from emerging artists to the larger names who have seen their value skyrocket over the past few years…

A legendary legacy: eccentric tales of Indian Royalty

A legendary legacy: eccentric tales of Indian Royalty

The dazzling style of the Maharajas remain a source of fascination to this day, with books, exhibitions and films delving into the near mythical wealth and panache. The palaces, once elusive citadels, now have opened their doors to guests allowing a tantalising glimpse into a largely vanished world. Here we explore some of the eccentricities of a singular race of princes from a bygone era…

A mini-guide to Bhutan – Land of the Thunder Dragon

A mini-guide to Bhutan – Land of the Thunder Dragon

The mountain paradise of Bhutan, known as ‘the happiest kingdom on earth’ has always been a frontier land promising a unique adventure to any traveller. Land-locked between the goliaths of India and China, Bhutan is a diminutive treasure box of alpine scenery with pristine landscapes, intriguing architecture and perhaps its greatest asset – the gentle and gracious people...


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
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
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
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
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
We have been on expensive and luxurious holidays in the past, but the service and communication Ampersand has provided has far exceeded those offered by other agencies.
- Susan Ford, 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
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

From our Instagram

Fine red shells blend seamlessly into the powdery white seashore of the #KomodoIslands to create this natural wonder - the otherworldly #PinkBeach 🏄🏼‍♀️🌊
.
Dive into its crystal-clear aquamarine waters to explore one of the richest marine environments on Earth 🌏
.
#AmpersandTravel #LuxuryIsInTheExperience
Glide through the iridescent #InleLake for a chance to see the traditional Intha (‘sons of the lake’) fishermen 🎣
.
#AmpersandTravel #LuxuryIsInTheExperience
🎌 Hot off the press - #AmanKyoto is set to open at the end of this year (November 2019) & we can’t wait! 🎌
.
Located in a secret garden behind the Golden Temple #Kinkakuji, this new property will offer a secluded retreat in the ancient Imperial city complete with beautifully-designed interiors by the celebrated #KerryHillArchitects
☀️ Hazy sunlight bathing the #TempleOfTheTooth in #Kandy 🇱🇰
.
Beautifully captured by @pradeep_gamage 📸
.
#AmpersandTravel #LuxuryIsInTheExperience
Step into #SamodePalace to walk colourful mirror-tiled halls & pass beautiful mural-lined walls 🇮🇳
.
This heritage property located in the romantic Aravalli Hills is also home to a marble swimming pool - the perfect place to take a cooling dip in the Rajasthani sun ☀️
It’s all about razor-sharp Japanese design at the @ritzcarltonkyoto - our absolute favourite hotel in the Imperial capital #Kyoto 🌿🎌
.
#AmpersandTravel #LuxuryIsInTheExperience
🇱🇰Explore #SriLanka’s coast to witness spectacular sunsets like these ✨
We’re dreaming of #Amanoi’s deep blues today 🌊
.
Sleek design, incredible views & spoiling amenities make it the ideal island getaway 🏝
.
#AmpersandTravel #LuxuryIsInTheExperience
You’re bound to meet friendly locals like these in #Vietnam 🇻🇳
.
Tour this wonderful country with us to immerse yourself in its energy, sweeping landscapes & fascinating history
.
#AmpersandTravel #LuxuryIsInTheExperience

Let us keep you up to date

Sign up to our newsletter and never miss out on unmissable exclusive luxury experiences