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.

Little Black Book: Discover the Pink City – Jaipur

Little Black Book: Discover the Pink City – Jaipur

The fabled city of Jaipur, rose-pink capital of Rajasthan, has been busy captivating travellers to the subcontinent for centuries, not least for its unrivalled collection of shopping and dining destinations. Join us on a magic carpet ride through some of our insider places to discover Jaipur’s thriving design scene...

Research trip: Exploring Somerset & Devon

Research trip: Exploring Somerset & Devon

On a cold and blustery evening in London Ampersand's UK specialists Ellie and Rosie, set off for a couple of nights to explore Somerset and Devon, taking in three spearheads of the deep south west...

Dining with the Nawabs: A Culinary Tale of two Countries

Dining with the Nawabs: A Culinary Tale of two Countries

‘Dining with the Nawabs’ reveals a glimpse into the present-day lives of the rulers of India. An exquisitely produced book which profiles several Muslim royal families across India and Pakistan through their culinary traditions. Author Meera Ali, is herself married to the Raja of Kotwara, and uses her insider access to give us a rare seat at the tables of princely families of the subcontinent…

Christmas & New Year Escapes in India & Sri Lanka

Christmas & New Year Escapes in India & Sri Lanka

Christmas is nearly upon us and we are dreaming of the most exotic experiences in India and Sri Lanka; rich in wonderful destinations for the ultimate festive celebrations. With charming seasonal traditions, decorations and firecrackers at dawn, it’s hard not to enter into the spirit of Christmas…

Geoffrey Bawa: An Island Visionary

Geoffrey Bawa: An Island Visionary

Sri Lanka is a paradise for lovers of architecture. The island is dotted with villas and bungalows set like jewels in sweeping gardens and plantations waiting to be explored. Many of these buildings were conceived by the man called ‘Sri Lanka’s greatest architect’, Geoffrey Bawa…

Heritage & Hindustan: Nathdwara, A Divine Art Form

Heritage & Hindustan: Nathdwara, A Divine Art Form

They say a picture describes a thousand words, and to the artists of the Hindu temple town of Nathdwara, art has been a traditional way of depicting sacred imagery of gods to countless illiterate worshippers over the centuries…

A Healing Land – Ayurveda in India

A Healing Land – Ayurveda in India

The term Ayurveda literally means life knowledge in Sanskrit, and Ayurvedic medicine, as practiced throughout India, is one of the oldest known medicines, being passed down the generations for over 2,000 years. Here we explore one of the oldest medical theories and the ancient wisdom behind it…

India Design Pavilion launched at the 10th Anniversary of London Design Festival

India Design Pavilion launched at the 10th Anniversary of London Design Festival

The annual London Design Festival brings together creative talent from across the globe. For the first time this year, emerging Indian design talents were also given a platform, and the Old Truman Brewery in Shoreditch was the site for ‘This is India’ Pavilion…

Lucknow – The City of Illusions & Princes

Lucknow – The City of Illusions & Princes

Dotted with British Raj–era buildings, home to two superb mausoleums and a fabulous culinary and arts scene, Lucknow, the capital of Uttar Pradesh caters well to history buffs, without attracting the hordes of tourists. We speak to Muzaffar Ali, Raja of Kotwara about Lucknow’s reputation as a city of culture...

Seasons of India on a Grand Scale

Seasons of India on a Grand Scale

India’s seasons lay claim to an array of colourful sights and sensational delights throughout the year. From hazy golden summer evenings in the Thar Desert to the dramatic swathes of monsoon rains sweeping the Assam hills, each month promises a spectacle to behold. Four of our favourite hotels describe their favourite time of year…


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
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
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
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
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
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 🏄🏼‍♀️🌊
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Dive into its crystal-clear aquamarine waters to explore one of the richest marine environments on Earth 🌏
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#AmpersandTravel #LuxuryIsInTheExperience
Glide through the iridescent #InleLake for a chance to see the traditional Intha (‘sons of the lake’) fishermen 🎣
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#AmpersandTravel #LuxuryIsInTheExperience
🎌 Hot off the press - #AmanKyoto is set to open at the end of this year (November 2019) & we can’t wait! 🎌
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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 🇱🇰
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Beautifully captured by @pradeep_gamage 📸
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#AmpersandTravel #LuxuryIsInTheExperience
Step into #SamodePalace to walk colourful mirror-tiled halls & pass beautiful mural-lined walls 🇮🇳
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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 🌿🎌
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#AmpersandTravel #LuxuryIsInTheExperience
🇱🇰Explore #SriLanka’s coast to witness spectacular sunsets like these ✨
We’re dreaming of #Amanoi’s deep blues today 🌊
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Sleek design, incredible views & spoiling amenities make it the ideal island getaway 🏝
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#AmpersandTravel #LuxuryIsInTheExperience
You’re bound to meet friendly locals like these in #Vietnam 🇻🇳
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Tour this wonderful country with us to immerse yourself in its energy, sweeping landscapes & fascinating history
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#AmpersandTravel #LuxuryIsInTheExperience

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